Feeding Your Cat – A Easy Information

This information is about feeding grownup cats. If in case you have a brand new kitten in your life,  you want one among our kitten guides. You possibly can observe this hyperlink to find out about feeding an 8 week outdated kitten, and also you’ll discover extra kitten guides within the menu on the prime of every web page on this web site.

cat eating from stainless steel bowl

We’ll discuss cats with particular dietary wants under. However for now we’ll go over the essential dietary wants of a grown up cat. 

What’s the greatest meals for my cat?

There are 4 primary methods to feed a cat. None of those is true or mistaken, and every has benefits and downsides. Your choices are:

  1. Uncooked meat weight loss plan
  2. Residence cooked
  3. Dry kibble
  4. Moist meals in pouches/cans

The primary two choices require fairly a little bit of effort in your half. We’ve got a helpful information to do-it-yourself cat meals, so I gained’t go into that right here.

In the event you feed your canine on a uncooked weight loss plan chances are you’ll wish to do the identical in your cat. It’s just a little tougher to get this proper with a cat as a result of they’re obligate carnivores. That merely implies that cats have to get the vary of vitamins that may be discovered of their pure prey.  

The pure prey for a cat is a really small animal equivalent to a rat, vole, or small fowl. These sorts of meals aren’t available to house owners and simply giving your cat a bit of rooster or beef steak will not be going to supply the vitamins they should keep wholesome.  As well as, a cat’s innate fussiness (see under) is more likely to complicate issues additional. 

For these causes, most cats are ate up kibble or moist cat meals in pouches or cans, or on a mixture of these two. And its primarily these two kinds of feeding that we’re going to be speaking about on this information

Which is healthier, moist meals or dry meals?

There’s fairly a debate on this subject. There have been various research trying on the affect of moist meals and dry meals diets on numerous facets of cats’ well being. 

A few of these research have proven poor hydration and an elevated threat of painful bladder stones in cats ate up dry meals, in contrast with cats ate up moist meals. Nonetheless, different research have contradicted these outcomes and in some circumstances indicated that moist meals could also be extra more likely to trigger well being points than dry meals. So it’s not simple.

When Billy was a kitten, the consensus was that moist meals was a lot safer for male cats. So he has been raised, and remains to be ate up, moist meals. Now, the choice appears much less clear. This article by Brennen McKenzie  accommodates hyperlinks to the scientific research in the event you’d wish to study extra. And naturally, new analysis is popping out on a regular basis, so it’s a good suggestion to ask your veterinarian what the most recent pondering is on moist vs dry cat meals. 

Particular person cats could differ in fact, however all cats ate up kibble should be given entry to recent clear water. Simply offering that water will not be ample, you do have to regulate your cat to ensure that they’re consuming repeatedly

Within the wild, cats get practically all the water that they want from their meals, and the drive to drink will not be notably robust in cats. In case your kibble fed cat is reluctant to drink water, as some cats are, chances are you’ll want to consider methods to make sure they’re adequately hydrated. Cat water fountains could assist some cats drink extra, however in the end in case your cat merely isn’t consuming sufficient you would possibly want to think about switching to moist meals. 

How typically do cats must be fed?

Many pet mother and father really feel obligation certain to chop down the variety of meals their cat has as soon as  the cat has reached a specific age. There’s no legislation that claims a grown up cat should go 24 hours between meals. You possibly can feed your grownup cat as soon as a day, or in the event you want you may feed them a number of instances a day, simply as you’d a kitten.  

In case you are out at work all day, then a few times each day meals goes to work higher for you. I work at home and like to supply a number of meals to my cat. 

There are advantages to dividing a cat’s each day meals ration into a number of sittings, together with:

  • Alternatives for bonding between cat and proprietor. 
  • A number of alternatives to rehearse recall
  • Helps to maintain outside cats nearer to dwelling
  • Some cats wrestle to eat all their meals in a single sitting


Sharing meals is a deeply bonding expertise. It helps your cat to construct a relationship with you based mostly in your generosity and kindness. What might be nicer? 

And the extra meals you feed every day, the extra alternatives it’s important to forge and deepen that bond.


Every mealtime is a chance to apply recall with a excessive worth reward. Six yr outdated Billy remains to be fed 4 instances a day, and now has a greater recall than most canine!  Right here he’s coming dwelling for tea.

Staying Shut To Residence

Billy is free to roam wherever he chooses, and frequent small meals are a good way to assist guarantee he by no means goes too far-off. 

In case you are in an city space and your cat is allowed exterior, a number of mealtimes are essential. Your cat will virtually actually beg meals out of your neighbours in the event you don’t provide multiple meal a day. 

This could find yourself with another person changing you in your cat’s affections, or in your cat entering into bother with neighbours that don’t welcome his visits. 

Ought to I go away meals down for my cat?

Cats which might be given a complete day’s meals without delay could wrestle to complete their meal. Which means that their dinner results in the canine, or going stale and attracting flies. 

In the event you take away what your cat leaves, they’ll most likely be hungry later and head for a extra beneficiant family, or spend the night wailing. Both approach, frequent small meals helps keep away from this. 

How a lot meals ought to I give my cat?

The amount of meals that your cat wants every day relies upon partly on their weight. A Maine Coon or Ragdoll cat goes to wish extra meals than cats which might be naturally smaller cat. However calorie necessities additionally differ between related sized cats. 

Oscar for instance has two pouches of moist meals every day, whereas Billy will get by way of 4 complete pouches (and nonetheless thinks he’s arduous executed by)  The 2 cats are the same dimension, ate up the identical model, and the producer recommends 2-3 pouches per day for a mean sized cat.  

The producer’s pointers are a great place to begin however you must alter portions by assessing your cat’s physique situation. Let’s clarify how to try this.

Is my cat the appropriate weight?

Lots of people have a look at cat weight charts and are apprehensive that their cat is simply too skinny. Some fear that their cat is simply too heavy which is a extra frequent drawback. 

Wholesome weights can differ broadly even between cats of the identical breed. It’s possible you’ll discover it fascinating to take a look at our Ragdoll Cat Dimension Information the place you’ll discover the weights of our readers’ cats recorded in a chart. It exhibits simply how a lot variation there may be. 

To seek out out whether or not your cat is a wholesome weight you don’t want a weight chart, you must assess their situation together with your eyes and arms. 

The best way to assess your cat’s physique situation

Have a look at your cat from above. Is the middle of their physique, the place their ribs finish, wider than their hips or shoulders. In that case, it is a clue that they’re obese. Now run your arms down the cat’s backbone, can you’re feeling the spikes on their spine? That’s an indication that your cat could also be underweight. 

Have a look at the cat from the facet. Is there loads of floor clearance? You don’t anticipate to see the massive upward curve in direction of the groin that you simply do in canine, however the cat’s abdomen mustn’t dip in direction of the bottom within the middle and in a wholesome cat, the size of leg that’s under the underside of their stomach goes to be as a lot because the depth of their physique above.  A low slung stomach is an indication that your pet could also be obese. 

maintaining your cat slim is a precedence

In the event you suppose your cat is obese, have a chat together with your veterinarian. They’ll offer you a extra sincere reply than most of your family and friends will! And in case your cat is obese, it’s time to cut back the amount of meals that you’re giving them. Attempt chopping down by a 3rd for per week or so, then reappraise the scenario. 

Billy could be very fats certainly if we fed him each time he requested for meals. However not all cats are grasping, or as prepared to overeat as our Billy is! In actual fact it may be difficult to get some cats to eat in any respect.

Why is my cat so fussy?

One of many predominant causes that many cats are fussy is as a result of cats instinctively hunt down selection. Nearly all cats want to not eat the identical meals for quite a lot of days in a row.  One idea is that this intuition for change or selection is nature’s approach of lowering the danger of poisoning from a single meals supply. 

The speculation sounds believable sufficient. Within the wild, if a cat had been to feed on the identical substance over lengthy intervals and that substance was contaminated with toxins, the cat could be harmed. So whereas it’s annoying when your cat turns their nostril up at a model of meals they had been fortunately consuming per week in the past, there might be some logic behind that fussiness. 

The easiest way to get round that is to buy a number of various kinds of cat meals and rotate them each few days. This solves the issue for many cats. It might be ample simply to purchase totally different flavours of the identical model, however with some cats you’ll want to change the model round too.

Cats that want a particular weight loss plan

If in case you have a cat with particular dietary wants it’s essential to work together with your vet to be sure to get their wants met.

Pet shops and on-line suppliers do promote each kibble and moist meals particularly designed for sure well being points. The vary and number of totally different cat meals available on the market might be bewildering. There are excessive protein meals, meals to assist with furballs, grain free meals, meals for urinary well being, weight management meals, the record goes on. 

However don’t be tempted to diagnose your cat from the again of a packet. In case your cat has a selected well being drawback, your veterinarian is the particular person that will help you by way of this maze and level you in the appropriate path. 

Feeding a senior cat

You may also purchase cat meals particularly designed for senior cats. And maybe surprisingly many cat meals producers designate any cat over seven as a senior cat. 

Relaxation assured that almost all cats, offered they’re a wholesome weight,  aren’t more likely to present any important indicators of outdated ages till they’re away from their first decade and common cat meals is simply wonderful for the common wholesome cat for the primary ten years and past. 

As soon as cats transfer into their second decade then you must pay a bit extra consideration to what they’re consuming and consuming. Kidney issues aren’t unusual in older cats for instance. 

You don’t want to fret about this, simply regulate your cat and in the event you suppose they’re consuming much more than traditional, or dropping pounds, or in any approach trying much less comfortable and wholesome than they had been, a fast go to to your veterinary skilled is so as. 

A protracted and wholesome life

So there you’ve got it. Your cat will almost certainly thrive on moist pouches or kibble, or a mixture of each. They’ll be extra more likely to eat every part you serve up in the event you ring the adjustments and provide a special taste or model each few days.

Feed the amount beneficial by the producer to start with and scale back or improve the amount in case your cat is simply too plump or too slim.

If you wish to keep on feeding your kitten 4 meals a day as soon as they’re grown up, that’s wonderful. If its not handy so that you can try this then a few times a day can be wonderful too. Cat’s are fairly straightforward to feed so attempt to not fear. Any issues and a fast chat together with your veterinarian ought to put your thoughts at relaxation.

I’ll finish this information with one other nod to that always talked about ‘wholesome weight’.  It sounds a bit cliched however being slim actually will add years to your cat’s life and can assist to  preserve them younger and match for for much longer.