16 answers

Can Not Get Baby to Take Formula

My baby is 8 months old and I will have to look for new employment in the coming weeks and will not be able to pump for daycare feeding. What can I do to get him to drink formula, he doesn't like the taste is the only problem. Has any one tried the pedia sure for children under a year? Thanks for your help!

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Well, I think all these responses are very helpful. I guess my concern is that I don't like pumping and I think it would take me about a half hour or more just to get a few ounces (past experience). I considered trying different brands but was shocked by the cost of one can, 14 dollars! I do like the idea of mixing with breastmilk, but again the getting enough out issue. I will of course continue to breastfeed in the morning and after work. He does drink water/juice in a cup and bottle and he does eat solids, but I am not sure if that will be enough to supplement him while at work. I will confer with the pediatrician as well, but wanted to hear from other moms so thank you so much. I heard what one mom's baby liked to drink, but would like to hear what other babies like to drink for formula as well. Thanks again for the great responses!

Featured Answers

Have you tried different brands? The premix vs powder. My daughter also did not care for formula when she weened herself at 6 months. I tried about 4 differnt brands till I found one that she would drink. It ended up being a soyed based formula.
Good luck

More Answers

I'm starting to lose my milk so I had to start giving him the bottle. It took me awhile to find a bottle that he would take (Avent). I would start out with breastmilk and then moved to half breastmilk and half formula. Now he will drink the formula if I don't have to fix a half and half.
I hope this helps you! Good Luck!

I think you've gotten great responses so far. Mixing the two until he gradually gets used to it is probably easiest.

But, I wanted to say that going back to work doesn't mean you HAVE to stop breastfeeding. By law employers are required to give you a place and time to pump for your baby. Don't give up. Breastfeeding is one of the best things we can do for our little ones for so many reasons. Any employer worth working for will make accomodations for you. If they aren't, you don't want to work there. What happens when one of your kids is sick? Daycare won't take them and that means time off for you. Take your time and look for a family friendly company to work for. You won't be sorry if you do.
Also, remember that nursing your baby in the mornings and evenings is the perfect way to stay connected and close once you are working out of the home.

Good luck with everything! This mom job sure is a lot of work, isn't it? :)

Your son is too young for pediasure... he really needs the nutrients that only formula or breast milk can supply.

In my experience with my own children and my nieces and nephews I have cared for, some babies just won't take it until they have to. Try leaving him with your husband for an entire day, and he'll take one by the end of the day. By the next day, he won't protest unless he feels the breast is an alternative. He will probably go on a feeding strike and refuse to take it, but after a couple hours of that, he will get hungry enough to drink it. A baby will not starve himself.

If you feel like a slower more gradual approach would work better for your family, then start diluting bottles of breast milk with a little bit of formula. Gradually increase the amount of formula in the bottle, and gradually decrease the amount of breast milk.

I've only tried 2 different formulas - Both were Good Start - 1 was DHA/ARA and the other was the soy version. We stuck with the regular version because my dd drank two bottles of the soy and refused the rest. She was also a breast milk and formula baby. I think that Good Start is very similar tasting to breastmilk (sweet) - it smells and tastes much better than some of the other formulas that I've smelled/tasted (my niece and nephews drank Enfamil). Perhaps Enfamil has changed its formula since then, but a few years back it was not as palatable, IMO.

HTH! Good luck!


Have you tried doing half breast/half formular for a week or so, then slowly takign out more and more of the breast milk? Worked for me. Good luck!

Have you tried different brands? The premix vs powder. My daughter also did not care for formula when she weened herself at 6 months. I tried about 4 differnt brands till I found one that she would drink. It ended up being a soyed based formula.
Good luck

Hi T.,
Try goats milk. You can buy it in a store, depending on where you live, or perhaps a goat person living in your area. Goat milk is close to human milk in perfect protein ratios. Our "kids" are similar in size. I know many children who grew and excelled in life who drank goats milk from 3-4 weeks old on up. Good luck to you, it'll work out. Best, M. M.

Hi T.!!

Try mixing pumped breast milk and formula. Start with mostly breast milk and add a little more formula each day. Watch to see how the baby handles the formula. some formula may upset his system. You might have to try differnt kinds. But if you slowly increase the amount of formula he shouldn't fight the change. Make sure to keep the temperature the same. Mine always liked their bottles warmed up.
Good luck,

I remember looking into Pediasure and finding that it contained a lot of sugars! Perhaps infant formula is different, but I would try anything I could to pump breastmilk as long as possible. It is the absolute best for our babies!

Also, I love Drs. Sears' books for advice and guidelines. They are husband and wife pediatricians with a large family and have many books for all stages of infancy and childhood and all sorts of issues.

When I transitioned from breast feeding to formula, I found it was best to mix them together. I gradually increased the amount of formula in the mix until it was all formula, and he didn't seem to mind.

Is Pedia-sure sweetened? I'm not sure I would try it at that young if it is. It could bias him toward other sweet foods.

Get the canned, pre-made enfamil stuff in the yellow/gold container (I think it says "our closest formula to breastmilk" on the cans). It's more expensive, but it will make the transition for you I bet.

My baby was exclusively breastfed and very picky - wouldn't even drink breastmilk over 12 hours old. And definitely no formula. I went out of town to perform at a symposium, was going to be gone all day and evening while baby was with grandma (she was 8 months old, had trouble with food, and I had gone back to exclusive breastfeeding on the advice of the dr.) I got to grandmas and realized I had left all my frozen, stored breastmilk at home in my freezer. I was beside myself! Grandma was an hour from the symposium, so it's not like she could run the baby down to get fed. I was completely freaking out and grandma said, "just let me go to the store and get formula and try it." I told her it was so not going to work, but another mom there turned her onto this stuff, and she ate it fine all day after a couple minutes of tasting and looking at grandma funny. I was thrilled. (by the way, if you taste the two, they taste totally different. powdered formula, to an adult's palette, is absolutely disgusting. Just the smell makes me want to barf. The canned liquid stuff has a funny aftertaste, but otherwise isn't that bad).

The other hint: have someone ELSE try feeding your baby the bottle while you're not around. Otherwise she'll insist on the breast. (mine still won't take a bottle from me, but will from others no problem).

Good luck!

Try goat's milk. It mimicks human milk better than cow's and kids like it. If your child likes it, try mixing it with formula.

How long will you have to leave him? Is it all day? Also, is he doing solids at all? Maybe the day care can give him solids and water and he can make up on the nursing when you get back to him if it's not for the whole day.

Good luck with everything!


Have you tried using breast milk with a little formula mixed in? Over time increase the amount of formula and decrease the amount of breast milk. For example, start with 4 oz breast milk, 2 oz formula for two or so days. then do a 1/2 and 1/2 bottle and then gradually phase out the breast milk.

I guess the first answer to your question is a question. Does he drink from a bottle yet? If you've already gotten him to take breast milk from a bottle, then I suggest putting a very small amount of formula in with the breast milk. Increase the amount of formula a little bit each time. If he starts noticing the taste and refuses it, then fall back to the last amount that he would take and give him a day or so to tolerate that, then go back to slowly increasing the formula. You should be able to slowly switch from breast milk to formula. Also, try different formulas. They do taste different. And I have friends who have had really good luck with powdered goat milk. And your pediatrician should be able to offer some advice. If thats to much hastle, call your local WIC office (if you have them in your area). They always have great advice. I don't think pediasure is enough until 1 year. And I think (don't quote me) it has a good amount of sugar in it, which you don't want baby to get too use to.

I hope this helps. Good luck...especially with 3 boys!

Start mixing expressed breast milk with the formula. more breast milk to formula ratio at first then ease it down so that eventually you are giving him strait formula. it may take a while but he will get use to it. good luck :)

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