How Much Should I Feed My Cat The Basics
The answer to How much should I feed my cat is based on many variables, including a cats weight and a cats age, whether youre feeding wet cat food or dry cat food, the cats activity level, and whether or not she is pregnant or nursing.
The brand of food youre feeding also makes a difference when were answering the question How much should I feed my cat. A dense, high quality dry cat food will contain more nutrients by weight than a low-quality food, and thus require smaller portions to deliver the same amount of nutrition for your cat.
Many cat owners allow their cats free access to dry food, supplemented by canned food once or twice a day. A dry-food-only diet is not necessarily a bad pet diet if youre feeding high quality food, but it does require that you encourage your cat to drink a lot more water to compensate for what shes not getting in canned food.
How A Cat’s Eating Habits Impact Their Portion Sizes
What cats eat, as well as how they eat and how they live, greatly impacts their well-being and their health.
Domestic cats have distinctly different feeding habits from humans or dogs. Instead of two or three large meals, some cats prefer to graze over the day. It is important, therefore, not to overfeed during these meals. Instead, measure out your cat’s correct portion for the day and then either divide this into smaller meals, or leave the bowl out during the day and allow your cat to revisit whenever they like, depending on your cat’s preference.
Feeding puzzles are another great way to engage your cat’s hunting instincts and encourage them to be more active during meal times.
Why Its Crucial To Calculate How Much Food To Feed A Cat
You might wonder why its important to determine the exact amount of wet cat food you should give your cat? As of 2017, an estimated 60 percent of cats in the US are classified as clinically overweight or obese. Thats about 56.5 million cats who are too heavy, and extra weight has a dramatic, negative effect on feline health.
Overweight cats are at an increased risk for congestive heart failure, skin disorders, infections, diabetes mellitus, complications associated with anesthesia and surgery, hepatic lipidosis , and some types of cancer.
Feeding cats wet food is never as simple as just opening up a can and letting them eat until theyre full. Indoor cats, in particular, tend to burn few calories throughout the day, and they become bored, which we all know can lead to excessive eating and weight gain. Pet parents need to take a strategic approach to measuring out cat food to prevent or deal with weight gain in cats.
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How Much Should You Feed Your 4
At this stage, kittens still need about twice as many calories per pound than adult cats. Refer to the feeding guidelines on your kittens food to determine how much to give him per pound of bodyweight.
Kittens in this age group need around 60-65 calories per pound of body weight per day. For example, a 5-pound kitten should consume about 325 calories per day.
How Much Dry Food Should I Feed My Cat
A dry cat food diet is not as hydrating or nutritionally dense than a wet food diet, which is why you will feed your cat less if only using dry food. Dry food diets can be adequate for your cats health as long as you pick a quality food and your cat stays hydrated throughout the day. Youll have to give your cat water and make sure that your cat drinks enough. Otherwise, incorporating wet food into your cats diet may be needed. Here is a chart to help you stay on track with your cats feeding schedule:
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Raw Rules Food For Cats
There are two main rules for feeding cats. When you follow these, youre working with the cats natural nutritional patterns.
After seeing so much success with switching our cat Bob to a raw food diet for kidney disease, friends and family and readers have been asking me about a recipe for kittens and healthy cats.
The only change to the Feline Kidney Care Raw Food recipe is that I used bone-in chicken in place of the beef, as it contains the healthy fats from the skin as well as bone bone that cats need to grow and maintain bone health. Cats with kidney disease need to limit their phospherous, but cats without kidney disease should NOT limit phosphorous and should include bones in the diet.
Is this recipe enough taurine? I wasnt sure, since taurine in the chicken heart may degrade when its frozen, and my chicken hearts come frozen. Since taurine is so essential to cats, I sprinkle powdered taurine, 1 pinch, on each container of his food .
Why Do Cats Need Wet Food
Many veterinarians recommend that cats eat a diet of exclusively or mostly wet food. There are a couple of reasons for this. First, cats are obligate carnivores and are not designed to ingest many carbohydrates . Dry food will automatically contain many more carbohydrates than wet food. For many cats, dry food consumption leads to obesity.
Secondly, most cats are not big water drinkers and tend to keep themselves on the edge of dehydration. Wet food naturally provides more water in the diet, which supports the kidneys, urinary tract, and overall health.
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How Much Should You Feed A Kitten
Caring for a kitten is like caring for a baby or even a puppy. Youd really have to pay close attention to its essential needs especially its nutrition as this provides the basic foundation for optimum growth and development. Feeding kittens can be quite complicated because of several factors that have to be considered. Knowing how much you should feed your kitten requires an understanding of these factors.
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How Much Wet Food To Feed A Kitten Per Day
One of the most important decisions you will make for your kitten is to decide on how to meet its nutritional needs. This is not always a simple choice since there are so many options available for a discerning pet parent today.
In this article we are not only going to cover how much wet food to feed a kitten per day, but we will also discuss the differences in food quality and what you should look for when choosing a brand. If you are having a difficult time choosing the right option for your kitten, see our article on the best canned kitten food.
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Say Goodbye To Canned Cat Food
Its time to can the cans and upgrade to IAMS Perfect Portions instead! With these ready-to-serve, easy-peel trays, you can feed your feline a fresh and flavorful meal every time without the hassle. Choose from a variety of recipes based on your cats age, lifestyle and flavor preference. Whether shes a kitten, a senior or requires an indoor cat diet, theres plenty of options to choose from!
How Much Should You Feed Your Adult Cat
As your kittens metabolism starts to slow down and he reaches adulthood, you might notice him start to put on excess weight. Obesity is a common issue among adult cats and, when not corrected early on, may lead to complications later in life. Regular exercise and a well-controlled diet will help to prevent obesity and keep your cat in good shape.
Whether you feed your cat homemade cat food or the best commercial cat foods, its critical to feed him the right amount per day. But theres no single amount of food that every cat should eat each day.
Calorie needs vary from cat to cat, with many factors coming into play. When deciding how much to feed your cat, youll have to consider his breed, age, reproductive status, underlying health conditions, and more. In general, however, the recommended daily caloric intake is about 20 calories per pound of bodyweight.
that helps you identify how many calories your cat needs per day.
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Should I Supplement Iams Pet Foods With Vitamins Minerals Or Oils
One of the benefits of feeding your cat a high-quality product is that it has already been carefully balanced in proper ratios to provide optimal nutrition. That means nothing needs to be added! Our foods are nutritionally complete and balanced, so adding vitamins, minerals or oils could offset that balance.
How Much To Feed A Kitten Per Day
Theres no one answer to the question. This all depends on the age, size, individual cat and if it is its only dietary option.
Generally, growing kittens should be on a schedule. This allows you to control his dietary intake to avoid becoming overweight.
Your kitten should eat three times-per-day morning, afternoon and evening. Read the package to determine what it recommends per-pound, per-day then divide that portion up into three equal meals.
The label is a good starting point when determining how much wet food to feed a kitten per day, but your individual cat will tell you if its too much or too little. For example, if he is gobbling up his food and always seems hungry with little to no weight gain, you may want to increase the amount and conversely offer less if hes beginning to gain too much weight. Also see the the weight of the kitten is at the right level and take into account whether your kitten is too lean or perhaps even too chubby . If she needs a bit more weight see our tips on how to fatten up a cat.
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Feeding Wet Cat Food Vs Dry Cat Food
Most veterinarians recommend that cats eat primarily wet food. The higher water content in wet foods can help treat or prevent kidney and lower urinary tract disease as well as obesity and all its associated health problems. High quality wet foods like Fancy Feast Gourmet Naturals tend to contain more meat and protein and be lower in carbohydrates than dry foods and this better matches a cats nutritional needs in comparison to dry.
The chief benefits of dry foods are their lower cost and the fact that they are the best option when food needs to be left out for extended periods of time. If you choose to feed dry, opt for a quality, high protein cat food, like Solid Gold Indigo Moon with Chicken & Eggs Grain-Free High Protein Dry Cat Food, and try to maximize your cats water intake. If your cat likes to drink from running sources of water, consider purchasing a kitty water fountain like the Catit Flower Pet Fountain.
How Fast Do Kittens Grow
Right from the birth, the kitten will grow pretty fast and attain a developed stage soon enough. The fastest growth happens between the age of week 4 and week 16. Between these ages it gains abbot 60 to 70 oz. weight.
It is also an important part of their development as the kitten develops various senses and gets accustomed to socialising.
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Scheduled Feeding Vs Free Feeding
There are two different types of feeding routines: Scheduled feeding vs. free feeding.
Scheduled feeding is giving your cat meals at a certain time every day. Feeding an adult cat at regular times provides the security and predictability of a routine, Ryan Llera, BSc, DVM and Robin Downing, DVM, DAAPM, DACVSMR, CVPP, CRPP write for VCA Animal Hospitals. Meals become a cornerstone event of the day around which other activities are added.
Routine feeding is the best way to monitor your cats eating habits, and its recommended for multi-cat households to make sure that one cat isnt getting all the food. The only disadvantage here is that your cat isnt in control and may develop a habit of excessive meowing or begging around feeding times.
Free feeding is leaving out food for your cat to graze. This gives them full control of when they eat, which can help cut back on begging. However, free feeding has a few notable disadvantages. Jackie Brown of Catster explains that wet food wont stay fresh very long, so its not a successful free-feeding option. You also cant keep track of how much they are eating, and this can lead to overweight cats. Its also difficult to make sure each cat is eating enough in multi-cat homes.
VCA Animal Hospitals advises that many cats receive too many calories and because they do not get enough physical activity, grazing or free feeding is not recommended.
Why Your Kitten’s Diet Is So Important
To help your kitten grow and stay healthy, its vital to provide food suitable for their age, lifestyle and specific nutritional needs. They need the right balance of proteins, fats, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals. Only a well-balanced diet will provide essential amino acids, such as taurine, which cannot be synthesized by the body.
- Birth to four months
- Adult cats
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Canned Cat Food Drawbacks
Canned food is often more expensive than dry food, so this may play a role in your decision.
Once opened, canned food has a shelf-life of 24 hours and must be stored in the refrigerator. If your cat does not finish their wet food, it should be properly stored in the refrigerator or discarded. Leaving canned food out for longer than a few hours can run the risk of contamination and cause gastrointestinal upset.
Does The Diet Of A Kitten Need To Change Regularly In Their First 12 Months
Kittens do a lot of growing in the first 12 months.
As their bodies change, so do their nutritional requirements.
Even though you will be reducing the amount of meals they eat, you still need to make sure they are still getting the right amount of calories and nutrients.
- 8 12 weeks: Your kitten will have finished the weaning process by now, and should be moving on to solid foods. Starting them off on wet food is a good idea until teeth strengthen. Make sure you feed them wet or dry complete food to ensure they have all the daily nutrition they require.
- 3 6 months: Dry food can now be added to their diet, keeping protein levels up to match their high energy levels. If you are giving them a mix of dry and wet food, three meals at between 80g to 100g per serving is a good starting point.
- 6 12 months: A kittens metabolism will be starting to slow now as they approach adulthood. Mealtimes can be twice daily, with a servings of 100g 125g per meal.
These are average guidelines, and will vary depending on size and breed.
Be careful not to overfeed your kitten. Problems with obesity can start at an early age, and are difficult to set right later on in life. Consistent weight checks will keep them on track. Neutering a kitten may also have an effect on their weight. Regular checks by yourself or your vet will make sure some their calorie intake is controlled.
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Wondering What You Should Be Feeding Your Kitten
Newborn kittens get all the nutrition they need in the first few weeks from their mothers milk. The weaning process generally starts between the first and second month.
After weaning, kittens should have a wet or dry complete food to ensure they have all the daily nutrition they require.
As they grow, they need to be eating high-quality food made with real animal protein. They require a much higher level of protein than adult cats in order to support healthy growth, and increased energy levels.
The right amount of vitamins and minerals is also vital for rapidly developing digestive and immune systems.
Food should be easy to digest and delicious.
Dry food is an excellent protein-packed choice, especially when its grain-free.
Your Cats Particular Health Needs
The best cat food for your cat will be unique to their lifestyle and nutritional needs.
For example, if your kitten or cat is of normal weight and healthy, then a kitten or adult maintenance diet should be sufficient. If your cat is overweight, it may be best to look for a low-fat diet.
If your cat has a health condition, your veterinarian may prescribe a specific diet formulated for that disease. For example, kidney diets are recommended in most cats who develop kidney disease, or a urinary diet may be more appropriate in cats who have lower urinary tract disease.
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