Cats are the most common pets in the world, but not everyone knows how to feed them properly. But these fluffy outrageous people bring into our life not only joy, but also additional worries. This is especially true for feeding cats, which causes the owners a lot of questions. To the most popular of them: how to feed a cat at home? We will talk about this today.
The cat is a predator
It is difficult to overestimate the importance of a balanced diet to maintain the cat's vital functions at an optimal level. After all, the health, life expectancy and normal functioning of the cat's reproductive apparatus will depend on the balance and good quality of the feed that the owner offers his pet. A diet that can compensate for the need for proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins and trace elements can be considered acceptable for a cat. Otherwise, there is a high risk of the emergence of pathologies initiated by metabolic disorders.
Many cat owners believe that since their pet is a predator by nature, then the ideal diet for him should consist only of animal products. Indeed, wild cats feed themselves exclusively by hunting, tracking and attacking mice and birds. However, meat alone will not be enough. It turns out that herbal products contain indispensable components, without which the normal development of a cat is simply unthinkable. You must have seen your pet eat vegetables with pleasure or just pinch grass. Do not worry, because such actions are understandable. Just a cat in this way makes up for the deficiency of minerals in his body.
A few rules for proper feeding
Cats eat big picks. They start their meal slowly. Cats will never eat what they do not like and a good owner should understand this, choosing what to feed the cat.
Do not mix in the plate.In vain, some try to make a homogeneous mash from individual components. Anyway, the cat will choose only what she likes. All the rest, even the smallest pieces, will remain in the cup after lunch.
This circumstance does not allow cat food producers to neglect their products. Only correctly selected food made from high-quality raw materials with the addition of smell and taste enhancing ingredients will be appreciated by cats.
Cats are very attentive to the temperature of food. Here, instincts play a big role. Indeed, in the wild, cats begin to eat prey immediately after a successful hunt, until it has cooled down. In addition, it has been experimentally proved that cold food is absorbed by the cat's body much worse.
Experiment. The organoleptic properties of cat food are also extremely important. However, in this matter, each individual has individual preferences. One, for example, loves experimenting and enjoys tasting the new food offered by the owner, while the other, on the contrary, is more conservative, is skeptical of everything new and prefers the usual diet.
As mentioned, manufacturers of cat food add taste enhancing ingredients to their products. However, choosing the right supplement is very difficult. After all, if, for example, dogs are very fond of sweets, and in this regard you should not think for a long time, then cats treat these additives with coolness. In addition, even tasty, from the point of view of a cat, food should have a certain size and consistency.
How to feed a cat with prepared feed?
So, in order to understand how to feed a cat at home, you need to understand what kind of choice we have. There are several types of industrial feed for cats - it is dry and wet, as well as several classes of products, such as economy, premium and super-premium. Let's take a closer look at the features of each of the species and understand how to feed a cat with finished feed.
Feeding your cats ready-made dry food relieves the owner of many worries. This is especially convenient when moving or traveling, when there is no time or opportunity to cook something on your own favorite. Just open the bag, pour the right amount of granules in a bowl, put clean water next to it and that's it, your cat is full and satisfied. When feeding dry food, clean water next to the bowl is very important. After all, the moisture content in such a feed does not exceed 12%, because otherwise during the storage process, the likelihood of mold. However, this fact does not at all affect the composition of the feed, which is not inferior in nutrition to wet.
The main thing is that the cat has free access to clean drinking water, as well as the food that you give the cat was full-time. And that’s it. If your mustachioer likes food, it feels good, it looks great, then dry food is the most convenient option for the owner.
In addition to dry feed, wet ones are naturally on sale. They can be sold in the form of canned food for cats or just packed in spiders. In any case, wet foods are no worse and no better than dry ones - they also have their advantages and negative properties.
In canned foods, 85% is considered the permissible moisture level. Before it goes on sale, such food is sterilized and sealed. Do not buy weight cat food sold from open containers. Wet food is a perishable product and can cause severe poisoning in your pet.
Canned products are not affected by mold and putrefactive processes. However, when buying wet food, you should make sure that the packaging is not deformed or sealed. The jar should not have any signs of corrosion or swelling. Also, it’s worth buying only in trusted places, since in this case you can be sure that the canned food was stored correctly and you will not buy an expired product.
Features of the composition of the finished feed
The composition of cat food can be considered balanced. It includes ingredients such as meat, fish, meat offal and herbal ingredients. Further, manufacturers enrich the resulting mixture with vitamins and mineral elements. The feed is given the necessary consistency. Of course, wet food for cats is most preferable, because it looks very appetizing, nutritious, well absorbed. Moreover, for the owner to feed his pet with such products is not a big deal.
When purchasing canned food for cats, one can be guided by the considerations that when buying ordinary canned food made for humans, since they are almost identical in appearance. The bank must contain the data of the manufacturer, including the address and contact information. The terms and conditions of storage should also be indicated.
Medical feed for cats and cats
Having visited a modern pet store, the owner of the cat may be confused by the assortment of finished products for his pet. In addition to the usual, on the shelves are widely represented medicinal feeds designed to help your pet in the fight against various pathologies. However, it is worthwhile to warn compassionate owners from the uncontrolled use of such products, because otherwise you can only harm your health. It is possible to feed a cat with medicinal feeds only upon the prescription of a veterinarian and under his control, since an accurate diagnosis must first be made.
Sometimes you can hear from the owner of the cat that he feeds his pet food against urolithiasis for preventive purposes. This approach cannot be considered correct, since on the one hand the composition of such feeds can vary greatly, and on the other hand, such prevention can greatly affect the family budget, because feed against ICD is much more expensive. Remember, self-treatment of a cat can cause irreparable harm to its health.
Feed economy class. Is there any savings?
When choosing industrial food, it is important to understand the difference between the classes of food for cats. Sometimes cat owners go to the other extreme and, in order to save money, purchase economy-class feeds, forgetting that they use ingredients of dubious nutritional value, for example, waste from the processing of meat and fish. Moreover, in low-quality cat food you can find potentially dangerous additives for the animal, designed to somehow improve the eating of food.
Savings when feeding a cat with economy-class feeds are deceptive, since your pet will eat it in large quantities and still remain hungry. But premium foods made from natural meat and fish are eaten in much smaller quantities and cause a cat to feel full for a long time.
In our age of high speeds, prepared feeds have become for cat owners not a luxury, but a necessary necessity. Manufacturers make sure that the use of cat food is convenient and easy. For this purpose, you can find all kinds of packages on the shelves of pet stores, which, importantly, are disposable. In other words, the packaging of feed is designed for one serving. Thus, spoilage of feed during storage in the open air is excluded.
In order for the cat to be active and healthy, it is necessary to follow the recommendations indicated on the container. Moreover, when consuming premium fodder there is no need for auxiliary feeding with vitamin and mineral premixes. We can say that combined feeding, when along with ready-made feeds uses natural products such as meat, fish, milk, adversely affect the health of cats, cause metabolic disorders, and also lead to overweight.
If the owner wishes, he can pamper his pet with natural products. At an ordinary grocery store, you can buy meat and fish, as well as offal, milk, eggs and vegetables. However, before serving, such food is additionally enriched with vitamin and mineral premixes.
What food is good for cats: video
Natural feeding cats
How to feed a cat if ready-made feeds are not suitable? Then it makes sense to turn your attention to natural nutrition - in other words, “off the table”. Sometimes the owners of cats mistakenly believe that their pet will have enough to eat leftovers from the dining table. And this is not about the quality of the feed, but about its composition. Here, it is first of all important to feed the pet not for everyone, but with an understanding of the matter - because if you systematically feed I write, which does not contain all the necessary microelements, you can easily plant the pet’s health. How to feed a cat with natural food?
Fish and meat
Therefore, you can not do half measures in the preparation of a cat's dinner. Food will have to be prepared separately, using meat that is rich in essential amino acids, fats, vitamins and iron as the leading ingredient. Cats are happy to eat meat. Just beware of overuse of pork, as it is too greasy. In addition, the meat-based menu contains little calcium, which must be replenished separately.
Fish is also a fairly valuable food for cats, but not as attractive in taste. Fish fillet, like meat, is rather poor in terms of calcium content.
It is strictly unacceptable to use fish, especially river fish, in cat food without preliminary heat treatment, since parasites are quite often found on the fish body.
The cat is able to pretty famously deal with any fish. Nevertheless, it is undesirable to give this product with bones to the cat, as large fragments can seriously injure the intestines of the animal, up to perforation, which can result in peritonitis and death. This is especially true of purebred cats, which in the process of their development have moved quite far from their relatives from the wild and have lost many behavioral skills.
Milk for cats
Many cat owners consider milk the ideal product for their pet. This is partly true, since at least one other food product is unlikely to be compared with milk in terms of nutrient balance. But this statement does not apply to various powder substitutes.
Individual individuals, due to the individual characteristics of their body, are not able to absorb lactose, also called milk sugar. Drinking even a small amount of milk results in severe diarrhea. In this case, it is advisable to give your pet fresh milk or, if this is not possible, to use dairy products, which cats rarely have problems with.
Cats love eggs, although owners often use this food product to feed kittens. The egg is rich in protein, iron, folic acid and vitamins. However, you should know that a raw egg in addition to useful substances contains avidin, which is an antagonist of biotin. Therefore, it is better for cats to feed eggs boiled.
A great source of protein, thiamine and all kinds of vitamins is germinated grain. If it is not possible to germinate the seeds of cereal plants, then you should not try to treat your pet with whole grain. Cats will not eat it.
The beauty of using vegetables in cat food is enriching food with B vitamins. However, this makes no sense when feeding boiled vegetables, since all the necessary vitamins will be destroyed. Despite this, the benefits of vegetables are still there, as they are rich in fiber, which normalizes intestinal motility. An adult and healthy cat eats about 200 grams of feed per day. With a properly composed diet, 70% of this mass will be allocated to meat, and the rest to other additives, for example, milk, vegetables or eggs. How to feed a cat so that the pet is fed and healthy?
The daily portion should be divided into 3 parts and given to the cat at equal time intervals throughout the day. Especially finicky individuals can be homogenized in a blender. In this case, it will be very similar to industrial.
Differences between natural and finished feed
The opinion of the veterinarian about feeding natural and prepared feeds on the video:
Features of feeding cats at different ages
Depending on age, the choice of how to feed a cat at home should shift towards the age-related characteristics of the animal. A kitten, an adult cat or an elderly cat needs a different approach to their diet.
An extraordinary task may be the question of what to feed the kitten if the mother cat abandoned them for some reason. As you know, feeding kittens with milk usually lasts up to 5 weeks. An alternative to breast milk is goat milk with the addition of chicken eggs. If goat milk is not available, then ready-made substitutes can be purchased at a veterinary pharmacy.
As soon as the kittens start trying to eat on their own, they can be offered a mix of herculean porridge, eggs, cream and mashed meat. Gradually they are accustomed to heat-treated meat and fish.
Of course, when feeding kittens, ready-made feeds will be an ideal option, since they maximally satisfy all the baby's nutritional needs. The daily portion should be divided into 6 parts and given at equal time intervals throughout the day.
Feeding an old cat
Problems with feeding deliver to their owners and cats in old age. How to feed an elderly cat? Feed them, like kittens, should be in small portions, offering high quality food.
An aging cat requires more attention, since quite often completely refuses food. At the first signs of anorexia, you should immediately show it to a veterinarian, since liver pathologies may occur in the future. The consistency of the feed also deserves attention, since a cat with rough tooth problems is unlikely to be able to eat rough and solid food.
Pregnant cat food
During pregnancy, the cat needs nutritious food. The developing fetus makes its adjustments to the diet of the cat-mother. During this period, the cat's body for normal functioning requires 2 times more energy than before. However, after a week of pregnancy, the diet should be reduced. The same applies to water, to which the cat should have free access around the clock.
From the diet of a pregnant cat completely exclude food that can initiate bloating. But the dose of vitamin and mineral supplements, on the contrary, is increasing. Also, to normalize the weight of future kittens, fat-rich feeds should be included in the diet. This measure can significantly improve the vitality of babies after birth.