I bought a food dispenser for my new kitten that allows it to eat as much as it wants. It seems to be getting what seems to me as an abnormally large belly, after just a few days. But I haven't had a kitten before so this might be normal.

Is it normal for a kitten to have a big belly?

I've taken pictures to demonstrate.

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    Related question Can I overfeed my kitten? Feb 3, 2015 at 19:23
  • @James yep, my question from days ago. The answer was "probably not" but I'm asking this one specifically since I noticed the big belly. Feb 3, 2015 at 19:39
  • An answer that was deleted due to it being too short mentioned checking for FIP. One of the symptoms is abdominal swelling. If someone wants to expand on it or incorporate that into their answer they can.
    – Spidercat
    Nov 24, 2015 at 23:15
  • My vet told me fat belly can also be caused due to worms , make sure your kitten does not have any worms Sep 9, 2017 at 9:56

2 Answers 2


Yes and No. It depends what you mean by "big."

Normally a well fed kitten will have what I refer to as "a fat belly," reflecting their stomach being full of food. One of their main jobs at this stage in life is to store food and grow as fast as possible. The more they can gorge themselves the longer they can survive when mom is away hunting.

A skinny kitten is reason for concern, and should be taken to the vet. To judge skinny and fat you really have to have seen a fair amount kittens.

Kai's advice is perfect IMO: It is good to take your new animals to the vet and you can work out when to immunize them and get them fixed etc. If the kitten is active, playful, eating and eliminating and you have no reason to believe something is wrong with it, it is probably healthy.

If you think the kitten's belly is too big or the kitten has other symptoms take it too the vet.


I would recommend not using the feeder anymore. Maybe get a timed feeder so the kitten eats 3 meals a day but isn’t getting too much food. And definitely talk to your vet about anything abnormal! Cute kitten though!!

  • 1
    Kittens are growing rapidly and high energy, and need sufficient nutrition and calories to support that. Adult cats shouldn't be free-fed, but kittens should be, at least until around the "teenage" state.
    – Allison C
    Dec 21, 2020 at 15:03

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