How Often and How Much Should You Feed Your Cat

Cats for all their lovely attributes have this awful reputation, that of being finicky eaters and it is not entirely unfounded. If you have a cat at home, you may have seen how it endlessly fusses over the food that you serve him. He will only eat food that tastes good, without regard for whether it is good for his health or not. A downside of this attitude is obesity, which is taking on gargantuan proportions and is one of the major diseases ailing most cats. But it is not as much the cat’s fault, as it is ours; we let them eat injudiciously thereby sowing seeds of bad eating habits in the cat.

For the cat to be healthy, you must feed it a balanced and nutritious diet. You must also take special care about how much and how often you feed it. We have a few important tips that you can refer to when feeding your extended family member:

Determining frequency

How often you need to feed your cat will depend on a number of factors like its age, the food you are feeding it, among others. If the cat is a kitten you may have to feed it more frequently, than say and an adult cat. This is because though kittens need more nutrients, almost twice that of an adult, for their growth and energy, their small tummies don’t allow them to gobble them all up in a single sitting. Consequently you have to space the feedings. As it grows, you can go on increasing the quantity while decreasing the frequency. While the kitten is growing up, make it a point to regularly take its weigh to ensure that it is not overweight. Here are a few guidelines that you can follow for feeding canned food like Whiskas, Royal Canin or Purina to cats of different ages:

At 6 weeks: Since the kitten can only take small helpings, space four or more feedings regularly throughout the day.

At 3 months: Gradually increase the serving but bring down the frequency to around three.

Around 6 months: By this time you can serve meals twice a day.

In case of adult cats: A cat gains adulthood at the age of one year, and you can continue to feed it twice daily. However being adults, they may from time to time also need supplementary dry foods.

Dry food for cats: If you are feeding your cat dry food, or even canned cat food, you may need to feed an adult cat twice daily, preferably at night and in the morning.

Determining how much to feed

The Animal Medical Center in New York states that an active healthy cat needs 30 calories per pound to see it through the day. Since a healthy cat weighs around 8 pounds, it comes to around 240 calories per day.

The recommendation of the Animal Medical Center aside, there are many other factors that determine how much you should feed your cat: metabolic rate, the level of physical activities it indulges in, and environmental conditions like temperature. And all these factors collude to make it extremely difficult to arrive at fit-for-all solution. To add to the confusion, the same amount of different food frequently has different caloric requirements, meaning that you cannot treat all food similarly. The best way to deal with such a tricky situation is to follow the feeding guide given here.

Weight

Volume/ day

5 pounds ( 2.3 kg)

¼ cup (30 gm) to 1/3 cup (40 gm)

10 pounds ( 4.5 kg)

3/8 cup (45 gm) to ½ cup (65 gm)

15 pounds ( 6.8 kg)

½ cup (65 gm) to ¾ cup (95 gm)

When buying cat food, match this list with the label printed on the cat food. Overfeeding is not a good thing and can make the cat obese and lazy, so a good idea to avoid overfeeding is to measure and separate the daily ration and stop feeding the cat once that ration runs out.

Luckily, the cat food market has evolved tremendously in recent times and there are many good options that you can choose from. But still before buying, do take some time to do the necessary research.

The body condition of the cat also has a say on the amount of food it needs to be fed. If it already has a normal body weight, give it a helping that is an average of the recommended ranges. If instead it is a little underweight, give it bigger helpings. Conversely, if it a little underweight, you have to feed it smaller helpings.

It is advisable that you record the weight of the cat every two weeks, because you have to alter its diet accordingly. Also, figure out the size of the helpings that help your friend maintain its enviable, ideal body condition. It will make your job that much easier.

 

LaurenLauren is a homemaker who loves pets. She owns 2 pets, a cat named “Macavity” and a dog named “Chilly”. She is currently living in NYC with her family. In her part time, she loves to share articles on pets and home improvement. You can get in touch with her on Google Plus.

By Natalie Hennessy 13 days ago at 11:00 am 0 Comments

The Lo-Down Starring Ailo The Cat

Hello there.

Welcome to the Lo-Down, a new P.L.A.Y. series developed specially with cat-lovers in mind.

My name is Ailo, (or Lolo, as my mom sometimes calls me) and I am the star of this show.

I just turned three, and I live in Norway with mom and dad, who adore me even though I am a 15.5lb ginger rascal. Ah, the things you couldn't tell just by looking at photos of me.

BTW, this is me nestled inside my dad's overnight bag. As much as I love attention, it's nice to disappear from the world once in a while. I was able to snooze for an entire 30 minutes before they found me.

Anyway, you'll be seeing more of me later. Like, literally -- maybe there'll even be a full body shot. But for now, I really need to go lie on the kitchen counter. Check back soon to follow me on my claw-some adventures.

Later.

prrrrrrrrrrrrt,

Ailo

By Natalie Gomez on Aug 08, 2014 at 3:07 pm 0 Comments

It's important to seek the best care for your pet and pay attention to how your pet is behaving. If you notice any warning signs such as increased thirst or urination, lack of appetite, diarrhea or vomiting, problems breathing, changes in sleeping habits or any unusual behavior, it could be a sign of sickness and you should contact your veterinarian. Whether you need to take your pet to the vet or are taking care of needs at home, it's important to seek high quality care.

Pets Are Family Too

Providing Nutritional Food

Pets have special nutritional needs like people do. It's important to choose the food for your dog or cat that best suits their needs. Good quality food can help to prevent health problems especially in cats that tend to get urinary tract infections more than dogs. Pets should not have table food. Many foods can be toxic or otherwise harmful to pets. Table food can also contain minerals or additives that don't agree with pets. It's much better for them to have food that's formulated for them.

Specialty Care

Dogs and cats should have regular visits to the veterinarian for checkups and shots. If there are any potential problems the vet can detect them with diagnostic tests before they become serious. One problem that is common in some cats and dogs is diabetes, which can only be treated by a veterinarian. Canine or feline diabetes can be controlled with insulin, diet, and exercise but a veterinarian has to prescribe the most effective treatment.

Flea and Tick Care

Regular baths with a good quality shampoo formulated for pets will keep your pet's coat clean and shiny. It will also prevent infestation of fleas and ticks. If you have cats, you may want to take them to a groomer for their bath. If you find ticks and can't remove them, be sure to take your pet to a veterinarian to get them proper treatment.

Keeping Claws Trimmed Prevent Accidents

Keeping your cat or dog's nails trimmed will prevent scratches and could keep the claws from tearing and requiring an emergency visit to your veterinarian. Scratching posts for cats prevent them from scratching at furniture. If you have an indoor dog, talking them for walks on the sidewalk and cement will help keep the nails trimmed. If they become too long, be sure to trim them yourself or have a vet help you to prevent further problems.

The Importance of Exercise

Make sure your pet gets regular exercise. If you have a cat, you can buy toys to get them to run around, but some cats like to amuse themselves. Regular walks with your dog are good exercise for both of you. It's also a great way to bond with your dog and have special time together.

Spaying and Neutering

Spaying and neutering are procedures that can only be done by a veterinarian. If you aren't breeding your pet, it's important to have them spayed or neutered. Benefits of spaying and neutering include offsetting pet overpopulation, keeping pets healthier by preventing serious diseases,and ensuring better behavior in males.

By following some simple steps, you can ensure that your dog or cat is happy and healthy. Regular checkups are important, but one of the best things you can give your pet is plenty of love and attention.

Informational credit to Brimley-Lawrence Animal Clinic.

Anita GinsburgAnita Ginsburg is a freelance writer from Denver and often writes about home, family and finance. A mother of two, she enjoys traveling with her family when she isn't writing.

 

 

By Natalie Gomez on Aug 07, 2014 at 9:54 am 0 Comments