Feeding Time: Meeting the Unique Nutritional Needs of Your Cat

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Cats are referred to as “obligate carnivores’ which means that they need larges amount of protein in order to Tips-for-feeding-your-cat_132_433137_0_14084547_500survive, as well as high levels of fat.Cats need at least 10% fat in their diet and at least a quarter of their intake should be made up of protein. Kittens on the other hand requrie HALF of their intake to be made up of protein, so be careful of feeding your kitten adult commercial cat food.

Carbohydrates should make up no more than 40% of your cat’s diet because cats, unlike humans, don’t actually need carbs for energy. They get all the energy they need from meat. The carbs in commercial cat food are merely there to bulk up the food. Cats have no problem digesting carbohydrates however.

Can I feed my cat a vegetarian diet?

The simple answer is a resounding NO! Cats CANNOT thrive and survive on a vegetarian diet (so even if you’re a vegetarian, don’t think you’re doing your kitty a favour by eliminating meat from his or her diet). Meat contains an amino acid called Taurine which cats cannot function without. A lack of Taurine leads to heart disease and blindness in cats. Cats also require Vitamin A, which is contained in abundance in fish oil and liver. The most important mineral is Calcium which your cat needs to maintain healthy bones and teeth.

Because cats need more than 60 different dietary elements to stay healthy, it is often easier to feed them a commercial brand of cat food, but not just any brand: Make sure that you use a quality brand recommended by your veterinarian, such as IAMS or Eukanuba. Magic absolutely loves his IAMS. IAMS has a great loyalty plan in South Africa. Simply email iams@cuberoute.co.za or phone 0800 00 4267 and give them the name, age, sex, breed and birthdate for each of your kitties. You’ll immediately receive a welcome voucher, and then another voucher of up to R80 off your purchase of a bag of IAMS cat food (depending on the size of the bag) every 3 months, redeemable anywhere. It’s a great saving, especially when you’ve got 7 cats like we do :-)

Do I need to give my cat supplements?

Supplements should ONLY ever be given to your cat when recommended by your veterinarian, for example when a cat is pregnant or has special dietary requirements. If your cat is eating a balanced diet, appropriate for his or her age, there is really no need for supplementation. In fact, giving your cat too much of a certain vitamin or mineral can actually be harmful to your cat.

– Article posted by Phillipa Mitchell

 

by Phillipa Mitchell