Rhyd Broughton Clinic
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Unlike man who is an omnivore, the cat is a strict carnivore with a body perfectly adapted to this type of diet. Feeding cats with a Health Nutrition food suited to their age, their size, their lifestyle, specific sensitivities and even to their breed means supporting their health and wellbeing. Cats are ‘nibblers’ and prefer to have several small meals a day. They can easily take up to 10-16 meals a day if food is made available to them.
Dry food has dental advantages but if you wish to feed wet food chunks or flakes are preferred. Also a good quality wet diet should be selected. Texture is very important to cats. They tend like a variety of textures and also flavours.
Feeding Your Cat
A kitten should be weaned at around 4-6 weeks old and will be able to eat a good quality kitten food. If you choose to feed a dry kitten diet, the kibble will be of a suitable size to enable your kitten to eat it without difficulty. However warm water can be added to soften the kibble at first and the amount of water added can then be gradually reduced.
Kittens/cats do not need milk (cows or ‘kitten’/‘cat’ milk) as they lose the ability to digest lactose (a type of sugar in the milk) and this can cause diarrhoea. Water is just fine. Remember that if you are feeding a wet diet, the kitten/cat will get the majority of its water intake from the wet diet, so may not seen to be drinking much. Fresh water should be available at all times, especially if fed a dry diet.
At the age of 12 months old change your cat onto adult diet.
If and when your cat is neutered, his/her energy balance will alter which can lead to weight gain. Reducing the energy level in the diet will help by reducing the quantity fed daily by 10-20% or switching to a ‘neutered’ diet. A controlled diet and plenty of exercise will prevent weight gain.
Indoor cats will require less calories than outdoor cats, this can be achieved by feeding them a lower calorie diet or by reducing the daily amount fed.
At the age of 7 years an senior diet should be selected as this will have reduced levels of phosphorus and sodium to maintain kidney and heart health plus good quality protein to maintain muscle mass. A senior diet can help with joint support and weight maintenance, as it is tailored to the dietary requirements of older cats.