Do you let your cat sit beside you when you serve yourself supper? Do you tend to feed it the same thing that you eat? We all want the best for our furry friend, but all the delicacies you eat cannot go in your cat’s diet. They have particular dietary requirements, and failure to abide by the same may result in health issues.
Understand your cat’s basic nutritional needs
Cats also need to abide by a nutritional chart as we humans do to stay fit and gain all the adequate food essentials. Ranging from proteins to vitamins, taurine (amino acid) to fats and enzymes, there are many things that should essentially go on your cat’s plate.
For instance, dry cat foods have become immensely popular over the years, due to its ease of storage, convenience, and cost-effective constraints that they offer to the cat owner. Yet, it is important to note that this type of food can also contain carbohydrates in excess, which may not be suitable for your felines, as it can lead to obesity and diabetes mellitus, the US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health says in its report named, Cats and Carbohydrates: The Carnivore Fantasy?.
Just like we humans have limitations on the amount of carbohydrates we consume, cats also have some restrictions to the same and should not be overfed with carbs, or the day is not far when you happen to find your house cat turning out to be obese.
Indeed, wet food is known to help cats losing weight since the water help him to feel full in a faster way, while the fact that it contain high protein and low carb will also promotes satiety. Canned foods are suitable for cats of all ages and have an ample amount of nutrients and fats that are necessary for cats, and of course, they are available in a range of flavours. They are easy to store in the refrigerator and since wet food contain watery contents with an enticing aroma, they help them to stay hydrated.
Adapt the diet based on your cat’s age
Cats can usually be divided into three age groups, namely kitties, adult cats, and senior cats and every group cannot be fed with the same type and amount of food. Providing the right cat or kitten food is essential, since his diet will change overtime, such as his condition.
Before four weeks old, kittens should be given milk replacer if their mother is not around as cow’s milk will not have the same nutritional balance. Then, they will naturally slowly move to more solid-food to get their daily dose of protein, fat, and nutrients that are crucial to their development. Wet kitten food and kitten formula will be good choices, and after 8 weeks, you can start feeding your kitten with meat-based products.
Adult cats require a lesser amount of fats, vitamins, proteins, and other essentials compared to a kitten, and after six months, you can start providing your cat with more adult diet, depending of the breed. A cat can face obesity issues during adulthood, especially house cats with not much “rooms” to exercise. Ensure that you are giving them a proper amount of food, two or three times a day and that you offer them a right balance diet between dry food and wet food.
On the contrary, senior cats above ten years of age should be provided with a specific diet as they tend to lose muscle mass and they need more digestible protein to stay healthy. If your cat starts to have conditions like diabetes, arthritis, inflammatory issues, consult a vet and adapt their diet to support their needs. If they have dental problems, consider wet food over dry food.
Some ingredients shall be avoided
Everything cannot be served on your cat’s plate, and some ingredients should not be given to your cats, or else they might have health issues in the future.
Meat by-products are produced from organs, livers, kidneys, lungs or intestines and they generally use inferior quality proteins powder in high concentration and thus should not be consumed by felines. The risk is that they might further destroy the natural proteins and enzymes present in the meat, making it unfit to be consumed by cats.
Feeding your cats with an excess of carbohydrates might not be ideal and should always be given in moderation, especially if your cat suffers from conditions. Carbohydrates are necessary, but when fed in abundance, they can turn out to be problematic for your cats owing to the glutens present in them.
Always read the label to ensure that the ingredients are not harmful and prefer healthier products, even though it might be a bit pricier.
Dry cat foods make use of certain preservatives such as butylated hydroxytoluene, and it stands effective in preserving the food but at the same time are cancer-causing agents too.
Thus, instead of feeding your cats too much-preserved foods, go in for fresh food to save them from the wrath of chemical preservatives.
Cats are independent animals, and while they still have the ability to hunt birds and mice is not be the best diet to help them grow and develop. To choose the best food for your furry friend, it is recommended to take into consideration their age and conditions. Senior cats and middle-aged ones will have different needs, such as outdoor and indoor cats. Those who suffer from medical conditions such as urinary problems or diabetes shall follow specific diets, and discussing with your vet will be the best way to know precisely the type of food your cat needs. And don’t forget that feeding your cat the right way will always be a wise choice to find a clean flat when you get home!