If you’re the owner of a pet cat then you’re the partner of a tiny, adorable predator that you’ve chosen to share your home with. For all the fun, the games and the purring, there’s also a big responsibility. You have to provide a happy, healthy environment for your cat, with plenty of stimulation, both mental and physical, places to explore, places they feel safe and secure and perhaps most importantly for their health, the right diet.
Today we’re taking a look at how you can provide a healthy diet for your cat, so you can feel confident you’re providing the care your pet deserves.
Your cat’s age is one of the most important factors you need to consider when you’re buying food for it. Kittens need a different mix of nutrients to adult cats, who again have different requirements to senior cats. Fortunately, most cat food is clearly labelled as either for kittens, 1+ years (the point at which most cats are considered fully grown), or seniors.
Allergies and Changes of Food
Cat vomit and diarrhea is one of the most common health problems you’ll encounter as a cat owner, and a lot of time symptoms like this can be caused by food. Cats can be as prone to allergies and intolerance to their food as some humans, so if your cat experiences regular bouts of vomiting or diarrhea or both, start keeping a note of what they’re eating. You might just diagnose a feline allergy to fish! If you’re worried about what to feed a cat with diarrhea and vomiting, then go for small, regular meals that are easy to digest: rice and boiled chicken is a common choice.
You can also upset a cat’s stomach by changing their food! Whether it’s because you’ve discovered a health-based reason to make a change, for financial reasons or simply to provide variety, you might want to change your cat onto a new kind of food – and this can cause them some discomfort!
If you’re making a change, try to plan ahead so you can do it over an extended period of time – start by presenting a small amount of the new food alongside your cat’s regular meal, then gradually shift the quantities until the balance is firmly in favour of their new supply. If you make the change over the course of a full week, they should accept it with no mishaps!
Dry or Wet Food
One of the great debates in cat owner circles is whether it’s alright to feed your cat entirely on dry food (biscuits, or kibble) or if wet food is a necessity. It’s less convenient than kibble, so it might be a significant advantage for you if you can feed your cat on kibble alone.
Fortunately, it is an option. The important thing is to check the packaging to ensure it’s labelled as ‘nutritionally complete’ – this means it supplies all the vitamins and minerals your cat needs on a day to day basis. One thing dry food doesn’t supply as much of is water! If you’re shifting your cat onto a dry food only diet, then bear in mind they’ll be thirstier and make sure they have plenty of fresh, clean water available.
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