Most people think any food can be given to cats, specially since they believe in the myth that cats have nine lives.
But giving just anything to cats can sometimes lead to severe damage to organs and worse, death.
Cats, like humans, need nutritious food and a balanced diet.
There are also food that are toxic to cats. Cats either die slowly or instantly if you are giving food that damage their liver and/or kidneys or is poisonous to them.
"What you feed your cat is vital to his life, health, and ability to thrive," said PetMD in “Smart Shopping or Cat Food. What Should I Feed My Cat?”
“Not all cat food is created equal, so what should you look for in kitty cuisine?” PetMD said.
PetMD listed five important things to look out for:
1. Protein, Baby, Protein
“Cats are true carnivores. Their bodies were created to process meat, meat, and more meat. Cats don’t even need to eat their veggies, lucky critters. Cat food containing muscle meat is the best, as it has the highest protein content,” PetMD said.
So check out the label of the cat food and look for the ingredients. It must state there that it has a lot of meat in the cat food. The meat should be in the first three ingredients listed there. The first three items listed there are the main content of the cat food.
2. Water, Water Everywhere
“Cats have a low thirst drive. But this doesn't mean you can just leave your home and be confident your cat will make do with an open toilet lid. No, instead, make sure there is always plenty of fresh water available for your cat, “ PetMD said.
“Feeding your cat high-quality food with good moisture content (around 78 percent) is another way to quench the little thirst it has. Or you can go the easy route: add some water to kitty's food -- it's like making insta-gravy,” Pet MD added.
Again, the label of the cat food will state the moisture content of the cat food you are buying, whether it is dry food or canned food.
It is also good to add water to the dry food and the canned food.
Some owners boil bone broth or chicken/meat broth and add the broth to the kibble. Cats love this, specially senior cats who can no longer chew.
3. Taurine: The Reason Cats Wear Sunglasses at Night
“Taurine, an amino acid, is an essential part of your cat's diet. Usually found in meat, a deficiency in taurine can lead to blindness and death in cats, so make sure the cat food you buy has high levels of taurine,” PetMD said.
“If in doubt, add supplements to the food (check with your vet for recommended supplemental dosages),” PetMD added.
It also said: “Did we mention taurine is why cats see so well in dim lighting? Who would want to take that ‘superpower’ away?”
You can add some ground chicken or beef to a cat’s food, together with the broth every now and then for more taurine, and to make feeding time more exciting, and new, for your cat.
4. Dry Vs. Wet
“Some people still advocate dry food over wet food for cats, but more and more vets are jumping on the wet food float. Wet food is higher in meat proteins and low in carbohydrates. Dry food, meanwhile, is high in all those unnecessary carbs and can lead to urinary tract blockages and other serious illnesses in your cat,” PetMD said.
5. Filler Facts
“We're not talking about those fun stocking fillers given out during the winter holidays, but the fillers used to bulk out cat food and save food manufacturers money. These fillers can be anything from corn to cereal by-products to feathers, weeds, and straw. Yes, straw! So make sure you get what you really paid for and buy cat food that is low on by-products and carbs,” PetMD said.
Your vet can help you find the perfect food for your cat's needs.
“There are even frozen all-meat foods sold for cats. So now you have no excuse. Apart from opposable thumbs and the opportunity to rule the world, your cat really only wants healthy food,” PetMD stressed.
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