As a basic principle, the food given to a cat must be appropriate to its needs (age, energy expenditure, pregnancy, etc.), thereby laying the foundation for a long, healthy life.
The issue of a pet’s nutritional requirements is something all owners need to tackle, both a) to be sure of choosing the correct ready-made products and b) to be in a position to provide a properly balanced diet when preparing the pet’s food themselves.
When making our way through the jungle of available cat food products, several factors need to be considered.
If you prefer not to go to the trouble of preparing your cat’s food yourself or simply do not have the time, you can use either of the below food types. However, you should make sure you are giving your cat high-quality products that contain all the important nutritional elements it needs.
Cats devour their prey completely, and this creates a balance between nutrients, fibre and digestion. Cats need a lot of animal protein, and offal, meat and fish are excellent ways of supplying this. Animal fat is essential when feeding a cat. It provides energy and helps the cat absorb various vitamins.
Vitamins must be provided in properly measured doses: too much or too little will be damaging to the cat’s health. Raw beef liver, for example, is exceptionally rich in vitamin A, which is important for eyes and skin (among other things). Too little vitamin A can lead to skin problems and eye problems. Vitamin A is not eliminated in the urine – it is stored in the liver. Therefore, too much Vitamin A can produce poisoning symptoms such as lethargy, depression, reduced appetite and lameness.
Minerals like calcium, iron, iodine and many others are important for bones, muscles and teeth.
Fibre is important for the digestion, and vegetable consumption is an especially effective way of ingesting this.
Dry or wet food?
Water is important for cats. In the wild, a cat would absorb moisture via the animals it kills and eats. Wet food contains a great deal of moisture and is therefore a good source of water for house cats. If you are giving your cat dry food, it is very important to provide water. Cats like to consume food and water from separate receptacles, so you should therefore put the water in a separate bowl. We recommend soaking dry food, to make sure the cat gets plenty of water and to prevent ailments of the urinary tract later on.