Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Facts about feeding your cat

Although you cat seems so cool and independent (and let’s face it, he probably is!) it’s up to you to pick the right food to feed it. Avoid, while you can, those loud cries for food and insatisfaction. Let your cat know that it’s up to you. Here are some things to take into account when buying and providing your cat food.

What are a cat’s food requirements?
Cats are carnivores therefore they need up to two or three times as much protein as dogs or even humans. They rely on nutrients, either from animals or plants, but mostly from animals: high protein, fat and carbohydrates. Their bodies are prepared to metabolize it, but not to produce the amino acids that these foods have and that cats need.
Therefore, cat food is made mainly out of water, proteins, fats, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals. Some brands will offer many more nutrients that thought they will not harm your cat, it won’t necessarily give it a better nutrition.

When and how much to feed my cat
As we stated before, you have to take control of this activity, not only because it’s you who is the master, but because you shouldn’t let your cat think that it has a saying on when and how it’s fed.
Some vets say that two times a day is better to avoid the whining; but it will ultimately depend on their energy requirements like whether they are more or less active, the climate, among other factors. Cats are individuals, just like people, so they need to be noticed and fed accordingly.

Dry food vs Wet food
Some vets focus on whether the food is high quality. They say that if it is, it won’t really matter if the base is dry or liquid.
However, other vets have strong opinions on how canned (wet) food will have more meat, giving them ultimately more proteins. Also, the amount of water in dry or wet food will vary and it will depend on your cat’s water intake. Bear in mind that cats are less sensitive to thirst and dehydration so you should keep an eye on their habits.
They all agree that what needs to be avoided is food with high percentages of carbohydrates since it shouldn’t go over the 10% that cats need on their diet.

Can I change my cat’s diet?
If you are going to change brands or types of food, do it gradually. Alternate the food, replace 25% of the current food with the new one and keep doing that until you can finally just feed it the new food. This will prevent digestive disorders that can get messy.

How long does the food last?
You should keep the dry food in a cool dry place, but don’t get more than what you will need for four to six weeks. With canned food, you can buy as much as you want; however you should not keep an open can in the fridge for more than 48 hours.

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