Tips To Feed Your Cat For Awesome Health
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American Journey Turkey & Chicken Recipe Dry Food
Our Top Pick for the Best Affordable Cat Food: For a cat food brand that offers the ideal combination of quality and affordability, try this American Journey Turkey & Chicken Recipe Cat Food. This formula features real, deboned turkey as the main ingredient with fresh chicken for supplemental protein. It is grain-free for digestibility and supplemented with fresh fruits and vegetables as natural sources for key nutrients. This formula provides a minimum of 40% protein and 15% fat, so you can rest assured knowing it more than meets your cats nutritional needs. Plus, with chelated minerals and dried fermentation products for digestive support, your cat will be enjoying balanced nutrition with optimal digestibility.
- Pros: Premium animal proteins, grain-free carbohydrates, fresh fruits, and vegetables, rich in omega fatty acids, chelated minerals, probiotics for healthy digestion
- Cons: Contains some plant protein , peas may cause digestive upset in some cats
Is It Ok To Mix Wet And Dry Cat Foods
Absolutely! In fact, I generally recommend feeding a combination of wet cat food and dry cat food. Research is beginning to show that wet cat food is closer to the real moisture content of the natural prey diet and since cats arent good drinkers, getting the right amount of water in their diet is more important than it is for dogs. Having said that, wet cat foods dont benefit dental health. Not all dry foods do, either! As a vet, my go-to recommended mix is to feed 70-80% of calories as wet food, and the remaining 20-30% as dry kibble ideally something that helps with dental disease, like our number one dry food above.
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Skipping Vaccinations For Indoor Cats
Almost every state requires pets to have rabies vaccines unless the vet says theres a medical reason not to, and just because your cat never ventures outdoors doesnt mean its safe from diseases like rabies or leukemia, says Dr. Nelson. Your cat might make a dash outside, and even supervised kitties could catch Feline Leukemia just by going nose to nose with another cat, she says. Ive had clients who found a bat in their house and the bat tested positive to Rabies, says Dr. Nelson. The cat had to undergo a mandatory quarantine period at the owners expense, and the owner then had to go through post-exposure vaccinations themselves, total tallying around $5,000. For your sake and your pets, follow your vets vaccination advice. If your cat is on edge, these factors might be making it cranky.
Understanding Feline Nutritional Requirements
Cats, like all living creatures, require six classes of nutrients:
Water: The single most important nutrient for sustaining healthy cell and overall body function. Cats lose water through their:
Additionally, many of a cats functional body components are made of proteins, including:
Proteins all have their own digestibility profile, because some proteins, like fish and chicken, are more available for use in the body than other proteins, like plant and dairy. Digestibility refers to the net amount of protein that is left after the cat foods chemical breakdown in the body.
Proteins also contain essential amino acids that synthesize, or break down and utilize, the protein molecules themselves. Amino acids are synthesized in the liver with the help of carbon and nitrogen. There are 30 total amino acids, 20 dispensable and 10 non-dispensable . Dispensable refers to the ability to be safely absent from a diet. This means the 10 non-dispensable, or essential amino acids, must come from a cats diet. A high quality cat food that follows a sound feline nutrition requirement protocol will only use unprocessed or minimally processed fish, poultry and meat that contain upwards of 40% of this feline nutrition requirements per serving.
Fats also supply linoleic and arachidonic acids, which are essential for overall health. Cats that have fat deficiencies will display the following symptoms:
- Stunted growth
- Infection Susceptibility
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Dry Food: The Downside
For cats with health conditions, dry food may not be as beneficial as canned partially because it lacks the water content that canned foods provide. This is where a consultation with a veterinarian is essential, helping you choose the best food for your cat’s needs. Keep in mind older cats may have a harder time eating dry food than wet, especially if gum or dental issues have set in. Canned cat food’s soft consistency may be easier for older kitties to eat than the crunchy kibble they ate at a younger age.
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What Sort Of Cat Bowl Should I Get
Although lions in the zoo are different from your cat in many ways, the fact remains that both need enrichment when they eat. In fact, part of our duties as owners are that we allow our cats to express natural behaviors- like hunting. The wild ancestors of our domestic cats would have spent most of their day hunting our pet cats can eat a bowl of food in minutes, leaving them with hours of the day to fill. For your cats mental and physical health, you should consider feeding them with puzzle feeders that allow them to express some of this natural behavior. Many types of puzzle feeders are available, from the treat ball style all the way through to those designed like mice for your cat to hunt.
There are a lot of cat food bowls on the market to choose from too, so take a look at our top picks and see if there are any your cat would love.
Ziwi Peak Lamb Recipe Canned Cat Food
Our Top Pick for the Best Canned Cat Food: If youre looking for the best canned cat food, we recommend Ziwi Peak Lamb Recipe Canned Cat Food. This brand is based in New Zealand so, while it may not be made in the USA, Ziwi Peak is one of the top cat food manufacturers and known for the quality of their ingredients and manufacturing processes. This lamb recipe features fresh New Zealand lamb as the primary ingredient with green-lipped mussels as a natural source of glucosamine and chondroitin. It is a grain-free recipe made with a limited number of main ingredients and supplemented with chelated minerals for maximum nutrient absorption. As a premium source of protein and balanced nutrition, this is a great option for the best canned cat food for indoor cats.
- Pros: Single source of premium animal protein, grain-free and low in carbohydrates, contains fresh organ meats, natural source of glucosamine and chondroitin, chelated minerals
- Cons: Not made in the USA, expensive to feed as a staple diet
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Can I Feed My Cat A Diet Of Dry Food
You dont need to give your cat dry foods.
This is because all the nutrients your cat needs are in wet canned cat foods, with the benefit of easier digestion and higher moisture content for kidney health.
Dry cat food has the benefit of being convenient for periods outside of the house .
Feeding your cats 100% dry cat food is not recommended.
If you want to use dry cat food, I recommend only giving your cat up to 25% of their diet via dry cat food to make sure they get enough moisture. Check out my article on the best dry cat foods for health.
Try to use a dry food product that is as low in carbohydrates as possible.
Shes Turning His Nose Up On Her Favorite Food
Your kitty goes crazy when you bring home a new bag of kitty kibble, but if she hasnt shown much interest lately, take note. A decreased appetite could indicate many things like an underlying infection, cancer, or maybe their choppers are bothering them. Cats have a wide array of dental issues including gingivitis, periodontitis, and stomatitis which lead to resorption of many tooth roots. Cats also suffer from a build-up of dental tartar and fractured teeth, says Dr. Rossman. Dont ever feed your pets these 11 foods.
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Purina Pro Plan Critical Nutrition Cat Food Best For Weight Gain
Whilst the vast majority of cats are overweight, there are a few who need a helping hand with their weight gain. This is especially true of cats who have been ill, or who have recently been rescued. This food is high calorie at 208 kcal/5.5 oz can, meaning even cats who struggle to eat much should be able to get their daily calorie allowance. Its even been formulated with a smooth consistency in case syringe feeding becomes necessary.
Please note it is very important to follow your veterinarians advice when it comes to your cats weight. Most healthy adult cats do not need to gain any weight, but if youre not sure then your vet will be able to tell you whether theyre at an ideal weight or not, or you can read our guide below. If you think your cat is losing weight you should also take them in for a check over, as many medical conditions can contribute to weight loss, and simply feeding more will not correct the problem.
Wherever Ive worked as a vet, we always have this on the shelf or in the back office. Not only is it ideal for inpatients being fed after surgery but its ideal for cats presented with vomiting and diarrhea, as it is easy to digest.
- Stew texture can result in pickiness
Can I Mix Wet And Dry Cat Food
Yes. Some cats dont get enough water when they eat only dry foods because you simply cant force a cat to drink water if it doesnt want to.
Mixing wet food with your cats favorite dry food will ensure that it doesnt become dehydrated.
However, you must be cautious about leaving this mix of wet and dry food exposed throughout the day. Wet food can become rancid after several hours, particularly in a warm climate.
Exposed wet food will also dry out and become less appetizing to a cat. Due to this, a cat might stop eating its food after the first feeding.
It is important to bear in mind that cats are small eaters. In the wild, they catch small prey throughout the day, many hours apart. Their stomachs have adapted to handling only small meals. That is why most cats dont finish their food if they are given large quantities in a single sitting.
A mix of wet and dry food will provide a different shape, texture and aroma to your cats regular diet – something that might entice picky cats. A cat that refuses to eat can develop serious medical problems. But to be on the safe side, you should consult your veterinarian first especially if your cat is on a therapeutic diet.
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Cats With Medical Conditions
Your vet might recommend that your cat is fed a special diet if they are diagnosed with certain medical conditions. These will often be prescription diets, which have been designed to help some cat illnesses such as skin problems, obesity, kidney disease and diabetes. If your cat has an illness and youre not sure which food is best for them, speak to your vet for advice.
Some Human Foods Are Ok Occasionally
Though cats ought to stick primarily to packaged cat food, since its formulated specifically to their dietary needs, you can give them a nice treat periodically, such as tiny morsels of tasty human food. Small pieces of cooked meat or fish make wonderful treats for cats, says Dr. Coates. Other yummy treats include cooked egg, cantaloupe, and mashed sweet potato. Conversely, theres a long list of human foods your cat cannot eat, including chocolate and grapes.
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Dietary Requirements At Different Life Stages
There are also cat foods that are formulated for life stages. These foods include:
- Kitten food
- Adult cat food
- Senior cat food
Although a cats diet stays the same in many ways throughout its adult life, there are a few differences at different life stages. Choosing a cat food that has been formulated to match the age-appropriate nutritional requirements will help you keep your cat healthy.
We Are Feeding Cats Too Many Carbohydrates
Note: I have stopped using the term grain-free since it has become somewhat meaningless. Many companies tout that their products are grain free but then they just load up the food with high carbohydrate ingredients like potatoes and peas which are not grains but still contribute a significant carb load to the food. The grain-free descriptive has become very deceptive and misleading.
In their natural setting, catswhose unique biology makes them true carnivoreswould not consume the high level of carbohydrates that are in the dry foods that we routinely feed them. You would never see a wild cat chasing down a herd of biscuits running across the plains of Africa or dehydrating her mouse and topping it off with corn meal.
In the wild, your cat would be eating a high protein, high-moisture, meat/organ-based diet, with a moderate level of fat and with only approximately 1-2 percent of her diet consisting of carbohydrates. The average dry food contains 35-50 percent carbohydrate calories. Some of the cheaper dry foods contain even higher levels.
This is NOT the diet that Mother Nature intended for your cat to eat.
Many canned foods, on the other hand, contain approximately less than 10 percent carbohydrates.
Please note that not all canned foods are suitably low in carbohydrates. For instance, most of the Hills Science Diet and the Hills prescription diets are very high in carbohydrates and are not foods that I would ever choose to feed.
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Feeding Both Canned And Dry Cat Food
To balance the benefits and drawbacks of both options, you may choose to feed a combination of both. This may be particularly useful with cats who require a higher water intake but enjoy eating dry better than canned.
If you are looking to mix wet cat food and dry cat food, talk with your veterinarian to find the best balance. Your veterinarian can help you calculate how much your cat should be eating and how to portion out the two food options.
Every cat is different, and the amount you feed a day will depend on the age of your cat, your cats current body condition, and the presence of any underlying diseases.
Canned Cat Food Benefits
The largest benefit of feeding a canned diet is the higher water content. Cats with certain health conditions that require a higher-than-normal water intake, such as kidney disease, diabetes, or lower urinary tract disease, may benefit from the additional water in these diets.
Canned food is also highly palatable, and some cats will eat a canned diet over a dry diet, particularly if they are picky eaters.
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Weruva Paw Lickin Chicken In Gravy Grain
Weruva Paw Lickin Chicken in Gravy Grain-Free Canned Cat Food is one of the best foods you can feed your cat. It is made with boneless, skinless chicken breast and thigh meat, and chicken liver, all in a delicious gravy. There are no grains or fillers in this food, so it is highly digestible and nutritious. The chicken is also humanely raised and cage-free. This food is suitable for all life stages so that you can feed it to your kitten as well as your adult cat. It is also available in various sizes to choose the right size for your cats appetite.