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How to Pick the Best Cat Food

What would you describe your feline friends? As for me, I would describe my cat as a cocky individual being but can be very loving sometimes. Nevertheless, no matter how our cat is, as a paw parents, it is important for us to know how to take care of them. There is many things we can do to keep them healthy, one of the most basic but most important thing is to take care of what they eat. Food is needed for living being to survive because that’s where energy came from, to keep them healthy, and for recovery if your cat is sick. But if you don’t pay enough attention, food poisoning or food related disease may occur to your pets.

Then you might be asking, what is cat’s natural diet? What is safe for cats to eat? Which is better; dry food or wet food? What can you do to keep them healthy? If you just happen to adopt a cat, or if you already own a cat, and if you’ve been wondering if what you’re doing is right or not, hopefully this article can answer your curiosity.

What is a Cat’s Natural Diet?

While dogs and human are omnivores, cats are obligate carnivores. What does this mean? Dogs and human can eat both meats and plants but cats needs meat to survive. There are two types of protein, animal based proteins like meat or organs, and plant based proteins like vegetables and grain. Human and dogs can rely on them both, but cats can’t. What does animal based proteins has that the plant based proteins doesn’t? The answer is Taurine. Taurine is one of the most important amino acids that only exist in meat. Catinfo.urg also stated that taurine deficiency will cause blindness and heart.

What is Safe for Cats to Eat?

Basically, cat is different from human based on their nutritional needs. According to “Cat Lovers Book” by Yudhi Prayogo, DVM (Doctor of Veterinary Medicine), unlike human’s needs for carbs that stands 60-65% of their diet, cats needs for carbs is very low. Their protein needs stands at 25-40 %, while human only need 8-12% protein in their diet. What about fats? Cats need 15-45% fats, while human needs 25-30% fats on their diet.

What does this mean? This mean cat’s diet consist on protein and fats. You can feed your cat animal-based proteins such as chicken, lamb, turkey, beef, fish and egg, because they have complete amino acid profiles. You can also look for liver because it is a very good source of vitamin A and D, also copper and zinc. There are many fish canned food on the market that’s good for your cat, such as tuna, salmon, mackerel, and even seafood platter.

Dry Food vs Wet Food

There are two types of pet food, dry food and wet food. Which one is better for your pet? To help you to make choice, we will talk about their pros and cons below.

Dry Food

Pros:

  • Fast and easy to serve.
  • Not easy to become spoiler

Cons:

  • Low water intake (7-10%). This is bad because cat doesn’t drink as much as dogs do, because they have low thirst drive. This makes cat is more prone to dehydration. Cats get their water intake mostly from their food. In the wild, cat’s prey (rats, birds, etc) contain water in their body, that’s where cats get 50% of their daily water needs. Dehydration in cats can lead to severe disease, like urinary tract disease, kidney failure, and urolithiasis (stones in their urinary tract).
  • You get what you pay for. If you want the best quality food for your cat, you need to spend more. Of course it is worth it to see your cat healthy because a good material and technology will give your cat the better cat food.

Wet food

Pros:

  • Fast and easy to serve.
  • Has better aroma, cats prefer this than dry food.
  • Contain 75% of water.

Cons:

  • Once opened, you can’t keep them too long, you should only keep them 1-3 days.
  • Canned wet food is easier to spoil than the dry one.
  • Higher price.

What Can I Do to Keep My Cats Healthy?

Now you know the difference between dry food and cat food, what can you do to keep your cat healthy? If you choose to pick the dry food, you should give your cat water source available all the time. You can also mix the water with some food that your cat like, to increase their water intake. Easy tip from me is to give them wet food sometimes, maybe even as a treat, this is a fast way to increase their water intake. Then again, if you are unsure, you can consult your vet. Every cat stage in life have different nutritional needs, kitten, adult, and senior cat’s food is different. If your cat have some special case, like obesity or kidney disease, they need prescription’s diet from their vet. To sum it up, here below is a list of what you should do and shouldn’t do to your cat.

DOs:

  • Cook the meat or fish before giving them to your cat.
  • De-worm your cat every 3 months.
  • Always make water available for your cat.

DON’Ts:

  • Give them paracetamol.
  • Feed your cat a dog food and chocolate.
  • Give them onions.

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