A quality diet for your cat will help keep your cat healthy
and happy. Good nutrition can prevent a myriad of health problems. A good
cat food contains a high percentage of meat content, and will have a relatively
high amount of protein and fat. Cats are pure carnivores and consequently
have specific dietary needs. Cats must eat meat to survive. Some low-grade
foods will contain wheat, corn or rice as a base. These ingredients don't
provide any nutritional value to your cat.
A poor quality diet can cause problems for your cat. In some cats corn
based foods can lead to allergies. Since it is a cat's nature to eat
only meat, some recommend a homemade raw meat diet. While these diets
if used correctly can be excellent, problems with a raw meat diet may
arise. The major concern is parasitic infections. Organisms that would
be killed during the cooking process can live in raw meat. This is particularly
a problem with pork. Raw pork should never be given to a cat. Another
problem with raw meat diets is, if not formulated properly, important
vitamins and nutrients may be left out.
Commercial cat foods are available in cans, moist, or dry. Canned foods
usually contain the highest meat content, but can spoil once opened.
Dry foods, while convenient and longer lasting usually don't have as
high meat content and are often of lesser quality. Moist foods, often
in packets generally contain many preservatives. One option is to feed
your cat a combination of quality canned and dry food. This provides
variety in the diet, while increasing the likelihood of your cat receiving
many more of the needed nutrients. Although quality food may be more
expensive, this is often offset by the fact your cat will need to eat
less to receive the same nutrition level. Cat supplements can be helpful
if it is believed the diet may otherwise be lacking.
Cats by nature usually know what is good for them and what isn't. If
your cat is underweight or overweight, it is likely a sign that something
is missing from its diet. Don't put your cat on a weight control diet,
or make any other significant changes to your cat's diet without consulting
your vet. Significant dietary changes can be harmful if not done properly.
Make sure you give your cat plenty of water, especially if you are feeding
mainly dry food. Cats will often opt to drink from a puddle or other
place besides his dish. This is can be due to chlorination in the drinking
water. As long as your cat is finding some sort of water source this