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You are here: myPetSmart.com > Pet Care Library > Articles > Kitty Cuisine Feeding Facts

Kitty Cuisine: Feeding Facts

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Just like people, cats and kittens need a balanced diet to stay healthy. First, find out what brand of food your new friend was eating before you got her, and continue to feed the same brand. If you need to switch brands, do so gradually by mixing a bit of the new food with the old food and increasing the amount of new food over several days, until you're only feeding the new food. Here are some other things you need to know:

Dry or Wet?

Just like people, cats and kittens need a balanced diet to stay healthy. First, find out what brand of food your new friend was eating before you got her, and continue to feed the same brand. If you need to switch brands, do so gradually by mixing a bit of the new food with the old food and increasing the amount of new food over several days, until you're only feeding the new food. Here are some other things you need to know:

Dry or Wet?
Whether you decide to feed your cat dry food, wet food, or a combination of both, remember to be consistent with when and how much you feed. Be aware that wet food will spoil if left out too long, so be sure to remove uneaten food when your cat is finished eating. You can leave dry food out all the time for nibbling.

Read the Label
Cats are obligate carnivores, which means they need a diet rich in meat proteins to stay healthy and satisfied. Dry food should be about 30% protein and 15% fat; wet food should be about 10% protein and 6% fat.
 

In addition to protein cats also need a diet rich in amino acids and taurine. Both of these nutrients are found in meat and fish, so if you're feeding a premium or specialty pet food, it will have plenty of these two nutrients.
 

Male cats need a diet low in ash and magnesium to help avoid urinary tract problems.

How Much & When

Talk with your vet about when and how much food your cat should be eating. As a general rule, kittens will eat wet food three times a day until they're six months old, then twice a day until they reach a year. Adult cats will eat once a day, then nibble on dry food for the rest of the day. If you're feeding dry food only, you can leave it out all the time and your cat will eat whenever she's hungry.

Milk
Although they love the taste, older kittens and adult cats don't produce the stomach enzymes needed to digest milk. However, there are several varieties of flavored milk formulated especially to be digestible for cats.

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Comments

09 Apr 2011 12:21 am

chrisettav said:

Glad to know I can get milk for my adult cats.

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