How Long Is Your Cat A Kitten? New Survey Shows A Majority of Kitten Owners Are Divided On The Answer

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One thing most kitten owners can agree on? Believing that feeding kitten food gives you a head start on healthy living lifetime

ST. LOUIS, July 8, 2021 / PRNewswire / – A Purina survey published today found that nearly all kitten owners accurately identify their youngest cat as a kitten by being less than 12 months old, but owners are divided on how long they think cats are kittens . Knowing how long a cat is considered a kitten is critical to making sure it is getting all of the nutrients it needs in its diet for growth and development.

A Purina survey published today found that almost all kitten owners accurately identify their youngest cat as a kitten based on less than 12 months of age.

Among kitten owners who accurately identified their youngest cat as kittens, 18% believe their cats are kittens for six months and 20% believe they are kittens for 12 months, with the remaining kitten owners being dispersed over a year .

“Cats are generally considered kittens for the first 12 months of their life and should be fed kitten food this year,” said Dr. Callie Harris, DVM, veterinarian at Purina. “After a year, a kitten has matured into an adult cat and can be switched to adult food. However, some larger breed cats, such as the Maine Coon, may require longer kitten feeds. I always recommend consulting your vet if you have specific questions about how long to feed kitten food. “

Purina’s Kitten Owner Survey 2021 surveyed 1,000 kitten owners in The United States and discovered what is most important to kitten owners when it comes to their pet’s nutritional needs.

Among other key takeaways:

  • Most owners (89%) believe that feeding kitten food gives them a head start on healthy living

  • Almost all kitten owners (65%) believe kitten-specific food is important; However, because of the divided opinion about how long a cat is considered a kitten, there is a disagreement about how long they think it should be used

  • Almost all kitten owners (96%) believe that it is important that their kitten enjoys the food given to them, and 91% believe that the food they feed their kitten will affect their health for a lifetime

The survey also helped owners learn more about their kitten’s mealtime preferences:

The story goes on

  • While the majority of kitten owners prefer dry food (30%) or a combination of dry and wet food (28%), kittens are more likely to prefer wet food (26%)

  • Almost half of owners (48%) compromise by feeding their kittens a mix of wet and dry food

  • Most owners (91%) are open to the idea of ​​adding variety to their kitty’s diet, and 81% of owners believe that introducing their kittens to different foods will make them less picky in the future

  • Those with more than one cat are likely to offer variety for their kitten when they do for their other cats (85%)

“By feeding kittens a diet that consists of different flavors and textures, their owners also help them develop their taste buds and prevent them from preferring solely one type of food over time,” said Dr. Annie Valuska, Ph.D., Senior Expert in Eating Behavior at Purina. “The more varied a kitten’s diet, the more adaptable they become to dietary changes as they get older.”

Visit for additional kitten-specific information and tips and discover wet and dry kitten food from brands such as Fancy Feast®, Purina® Pro Plan®, Purina ONE®, Purina® Kitten Chow® and Beyond®.

About Nestlé Purina PetCare
Nestlé Purina PetCare creates richer lives for pets and the people who love them. Founded in 1894, Purina has helped dogs and cats live longer, healthier lives by offering science-based nutritional innovations. Purina makes some of the world’s most trusted and popular grooming products, including Purina ONE, Pro Plan, Fancy Feast, and Tidy Cats. Our 8,000+ US employees pride ourselves on our trusted pet food, treats, and bedding brands that feed 49 million dogs and 66 million cats each year. More than 500 Purina scientists, veterinarians and animal care experts ensure our commitment to unsurpassed quality and nutrition.

Purina promotes responsible pet care through our scientific research, our products, and our support for pet-related organizations. In the past five years, Purina has done more than $ 150 million to organizations that bring and keep people and pets together, as well as organizations that help our communities and our environment flourish.

Purina is part of Nestlé, a global leader in nutrition, health and wellness. For more information, visit or subscribe here to get the latest Purina news.

About the survey
The national survey of 1,000 U.S. kitten owners ages 18 and older was commissioned by Purina and conducted by Dynata (formerly Research Now / SSI), an independent survey research company. between March 18 and March 28, 2021. The maximum range of sampling error was +/- 5 percentage points with a confidence level of 90-95 percent. Kitten owners are defined in this survey as people whose youngest cat is less than 1 year old, who do not work in the pet industry and who are partially or fully responsible for the care and selection of food for their kitten.



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