December 9, 2021

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Feeding Your Cat and Getting the Balance Right

5 min read

Feeding Your Cat As a cat lover, you’ll want your furry friend to lead a long, healthy, happy and active life. One of the best ways to achieve this is by making sure your cat’s diet has the right balance of the five major nutrient groups: protein, fats & oils, vitamins, minerals, and carbohydrates. As a cat lover, you’ll want your furry friend to lead a long, healthy, happy and active life. One of the best ways to achieve this is by making sure your cat’s diet has the right balance of the five major nutrient groups: protein, fats & oils, vitamins, minerals, and carbohydrates.

The moist or ‘wet’ food

Complete dry foods

Moist or ‘wet’ food comes in cans, foil trays or pouches. This type of food should always be served at room temperature to allow your cat to get the most enjoyment from the textures and smells.

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Once opened, cover any remaining portions and store them in the fridge for no more than 24 hours – and remember, the food will need to reach room temperature again for the next meal, so take it out of the fridge in plenty of time before serving. Wet food shouldn’t sit around uneaten for more than an hour as it will become unappetizing and could attract bacteria, resulting in tummy upsets.

Dry foods are a very popular alternative to wet foods. Their kibbles contain the right balance of nutrients and have a crunchy texture that can help keep your cat’s teeth healthy. They are also more concentrated with nutrients than most foods, so you only need to serve small helpings.

Whether you’ve decided to feed wet or dry food, read the label to check that it is a ‘complete’ food rather than ‘complementary’, otherwise you might be buying a snack/treat instead of a balanced meal! Despite their appearance, dry cat food and dry dog food are not the same. The dietary needs of cats and dogs are quite different, so dog food is not suitable for cats and cat food is not suitable for dogs.

Learn More-The Best Flushable Cat Litter

How do you change a cat’s food?

If you decide to change your cat food to a different type or brand, introduce the new food gradually over a period of seven to ten days. For cats it is best to put out two bowls, one with the old food and one with the new, so your cat has the opportunity

Our article on feeding and adult cat can give you more advice on how to change your cats’ food carefully.

How do you change a cat’s food?

The idea of preparing a special homemade meal for your cat can sound like a labor of love, but unfortunately, it isn’t recommended. It’s difficult to provide a balanced feline diet using home-cooked or raw foods as some ingredients have very high or low q

Raw meat can also contain parasites and bacteria, such as Salmonella, which can make your cat ill so, as a cat owner, you need to pay particular attention to hygiene if you decide to feed a raw diet. Be very careful too about bones as these can splinter and even lodge in your cat’s intestine.

Do cats need food supplements?

Healthy cats that are fed a complete, balanced diet don’t need any supplements. In fact, the addition of supplements could unbalance their nutrition and cause problems.

That said, some cats have special nutritional needs (e.g. for growth, certain medical conditions or during pregnancy) and cat food diets are available that are formulated for those specific needs. If in doubt, have a chat with your vet.

How much to feed your cat

Feeding guidelines

How much you feed your cat depends on their breed, activity level and lifestyle. A good place to start is by following the feeding guidelines on the pack but bear in mind that these are approximate guidelines. The actual amount needed will vary from cat to cat depending on things such as their size or activity level. Monitor your cat’s body condition score regularly with our tool and use this as a basis to adjust the amount of food you feed your cat.

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