If it is the first time that you have a michi as a pet or if you have been with it for a while, doubts will always arise about its diet. How do we know if we are feeding them correctly?
In this blog, Waggy's compiled all the information necessary to answer your questions. Stay and let's discover the factors to consider when feeding them, what foods we should avoid, if the raw diet or barf diet is a good thing for them and much more. Let's get started!
What should you take into account when choosing a cat's diet?
All our pets need a balanced, quality diet and there will also be cases in which the diet must be different. For example, if the cat is pregnant, if they are stressed cats or have some pathology. However, some of the general factors to consider are the following:
Nutritional needs vary depending on the age of the cat. Kittens, adults and senior cats have different requirements in terms of nutrients. Be sure to select a food that is specifically formulated for your cat's life stage.
Weight and activity level
The amount of food a cat needs also depends on its weight and activity level. More active or larger cats may require larger portions, while less active or overweight cats may need a lower calorie diet.
Foods that cats can eat
Our michis have their basic diet, however, we can incorporate the following foods in small quantities:
Chicken, turkey, lean beef, lamb, and other lean meats are excellent sources of protein for cats. Once the kittens finish their portion of lean meat, it is essential that you help them with their oral hygiene. If you don't know how to do it, I recommend reading: dental cleaning in cats
Fish such as salmon or trout are rich in omega-3 fatty acids. However, some cats may be sensitive to fish, and too much can cause nutritional imbalances.
Cooked or raw, eggs are a good source of protein. Make sure you cook eggs completely to avoid salmonella risks.
In small amounts, the liver provides essential nutrients such as vitamin A. It should make up no more than 5-10% of the total diet due to its high vitamin A content.
Natural yogurt (lactose-free)
It can offer probiotics beneficial for intestinal health in small amounts.
Catnip, catnip and catnip are safe and often enjoyed by cats. Do you already know all the benefits of incorporating Catnip into their diet? Read them in the following blog: Catnip for cats
Additionally, you could try giving your pet Waggy's treats that, although they do not have catnip, do contain a similar ingredient, known as: CBD for cats and which brings many benefits to the cat's health.
What can't a cat eat?
There are foods that are toxic or that should be avoided in your diet because they are potentially dangerous, such as the following:
It contains theobromine, which can be toxic to cats and cause heart and neurological problems.
Found in coffee, tea, soft drinks, and some medications, caffeine can cause problems similar to those of chocolate.
Onions and garlic
They contain substances that can damage cats' red blood cells and cause anemia.
It contains a substance called persin, which can be toxic to cats and cause digestive problems.
Grapes and raisins
They can cause kidney failure in cats, even in small amounts.
Small, splinterable bones
Small bones can splinter and cause blockages or lacerations in a cat's digestive system.
Excess dairy products
Although some cats can tolerate small amounts of dairy products, many are lactose intolerant, which can cause gastrointestinal problems.
Even small amounts can be dangerous and cause respiratory and neurological problems.
Bread, cereals, etc., can hinder your cat's digestion and cause discomfort, so it is better to avoid them.
Some others are:
Vegetables and fruits that cats can eat
The following vegetables and fruits are beneficial for our pets, however, they should never replace their basic diet. We can incorporate them as complements:
- Pumpkin: It can help digestion and provide fiber.
- Carrots: Raw or cooked, they are a source of fiber and nutrients.
- Zucchini: Cooked and without seasonings, it is a light option.
- Spinach: In small quantities, raw or cooked, they are rich in nutrients.
- Broccoli: Cooked and in moderate quantities, it provides nutrients.
- Apples: Without seeds or core, apples are safe in small portions.
- Pears: Like apples, remove seeds and core.
- Blueberries: Rich in antioxidants, they can be offered in small quantities.
- Strawberries: An occasional treat, also rich in antioxidants.
- Watermelon: In small quantities and without seeds or peel.
Other options are:
Raw diet for cats, is it recommended?
The BARF diet or raw diet is recommended as long as the meat is frozen for at least 48 hours so that the parasites that live in it die. Likewise, opinions about it are divided, so Waggy's will expose the following advantages and risks of raw diet for cats:
- The raw diet can more naturally provide nutrients, including enzymes and vitamins, that can be lost during the processing of commercial foods.
- Chewing raw bones can help maintain dental health by reducing plaque and tartar buildup.
- Some advocates suggest that a raw diet can improve the health of cats' skin and coat.
- Raw diets can carry the risk of bacterial contamination, such as salmonella or E. coli, for both the cat and the humans who handle the food.
- Raw bones can splinter and increase the risk of intestinal obstruction or injury.
- Some cats may refuse the raw diet or develop allergies to certain raw foods.
What should newborn cats eat?
Actually, both michis and furry dogs should feed on breast milk during the first two months. It is after these two months that you can begin to wean the mother and little by little introduce some specific food for kittens mixed with water.
In situations where the mother does not want to feed them, the options may be the following:
Milk replacer for kittens
In the absence of the mother, it is essential to use a specialized cat milk replacer for kittens, as cow's milk is not suitable for them. You can find kitten milk formulas at pet stores or with the help of your veterinarian.
Bottles and teats
Use bottles designed for neonatal kittens and teats specially designed to simulate the act of breastfeeding. Make sure the milk is at a suitable temperature before feeding the kittens.
Quantity and frequency in feeding cats: Considerations
The amount and frequency of feeding our michis will depend on several factors such as the following:
- Kittens require more frequent feeding, usually 3 to 4 small meals a day.
- Most adult cats benefit from two meals a day. However, some may prefer to feed in small portions throughout the day.
Weight and body condition
Adjust the amount of food according to your cat's body weight and physical condition. More active cats may need more calories, while sedentary or overweight cats may require smaller portions.
Type of food
The amount of food also depends on the type of diet your cat is receiving. Dry and wet foods have different calorie densities, so amounts may vary. Be sure to follow the manufacturer's recommendations and adjust for your cat's individual needs.
If your cat has specific medical conditions, such as diabetes or kidney disease, the diet may need special adjustments. Consult your veterinarian to determine the best amount and type of food.
With the help and information from this blog we can conclude that the ideal diet for our michis consists of high-quality animal proteins, such as lean meat, poultry or fish, which provide essential amino acids. Additionally, they need healthy fats, vitamins and minerals to maintain optimal health. Although some cats can tolerate small amounts of certain vegetables, the majority of their diet should come from foods formulated specifically for cats, ensuring a nutritional balance suitable for their specific needs.