How much should I feed my cat?
Every cat has their own unique personality and how they enjoy their food is a big part of that. While some cats are all-day grazers, some like to eat their meals quickly.
However your cat likes to dine, here are some tips to keep them satisfied and happy.
Wet or dry food?
The choice of whether to feed your cat wet or dry food is largely a personal decision, and a matter of what your feline friend is most fond of eating. As long as there’s an appropriate amount of animal protein for your cat, as well as all the other vitamins and minerals they need, they can thrive on either type of food.
They both have advantages and disadvantages. Dry food tends to be better for your cat’s teeth, as the kibble helps to clear plaque build-up as they crunch on their meal. However, your cat might need to drink more water as it contains much less moisture than wet food.
You can feed your cat with a mixture of wet and dry food if that’s what you and your cat prefer. Just be sure to keep to the correct portion sizes.
Choosing a quality cat food
Whichever food you choose for your cat, there are some key ingredients you should look out for to help keep your cat happy, healthy and full of vitality.
A few things to consider when buying cat food are:
- High quality animal protein is an important part of a cat’s diet. It helps to keep their muscles healthy and ready to spring into action.
- If you’re buying dry food look for crunchy kibbles with a mineral blend that will help scrub your cat's teeth with every bite, helping to reduce plaque build-up.
- Essential amino acids such as Taurine to nourish cat’s heart so you can feel their love every day.
- Omega 6 & 3 and vitamins to help keep their coat gorgeously soft and shiny.
- Healthy digestion is important to keep your cat happy and healthy – plus it makes things easier for you when it comes to cleaning up after them. IAMS food includes a tailored fibre blend including prebiotics and beet pulp for healthy digestion.
Tips for changing your cat's diet
Switching your cat's diet to a new food takes some planning. Because cats are creatures of habit, they’ll usually prefer their current food rather than trying something new. They, like humans, become accustomed to something and may not welcome a disruption to their routine.
Here are some things to keep in mind when changing your cat’s diet:
Introduce the new food gradually. Initially, offer your cat 25% of the new food with 75% of their current food. Slowly change the proportions over the next three days or so by gradually increasing the amount of new food and decreasing the amount of old food. At the end of this weaning process, you should be feeding 100% of the new food.
Stick with it. If your cat does not seem to like the new food straight away, keep offering it alongside their old food until they are starting to accept the change.
Cut down the treats. When trying to change your cat’s diet – especially if you are switching between wet or dry, cut out the treats completely. Offering table scraps or other treats will teach your cat that there is another option for getting their daily food, and it’s not the best nutrition for your feline friend.
Why your cat might be off their food
If your cat has gone off their food, don’t assume it’s them being fussy. It might be something else that’s going on in their lives.
Perhaps another animal has been introduced to the family, or a new baby? Have you bought them a new bowl, or changed their feeding area? If a cat’s surroundings change suddenly, this can cause some strange behaviour, including going off their food.
If your cat seems healthy, happy and lively, has a good coat and clear eyes, there is generally little cause for concern. Keep giving your cat food and fresh water, and keep an eye on their behaviour and it should go back to normal in a couple of days. If your cat is off their food for an extended period of time be sure to visit your vet.
What every cat needs
Regardless of which food you choose for your cat, make sure they’ve got plenty of fresh, clean water available.
Give your cat a quiet, comfortable place to eat, away from family hustle and bustle. And remember, regular visits to the vet help to keep your cat happy and healthy.