Feeding cats correctly

If you provide your cat with a varied diet, it will be well prepared should a change in food ever become necessary.

Cats naturally consume several small meals over the course of the day. They really enjoy indulging in “snack-size bites”. Cats are most suited to eating dry food “ad libitum”, i.e. whenever they want it. In addition, you can provide them with one or several small meals of wet food. Always clear away any food which has not been eaten within half an hour. Ensure you serve the food at room to body temperature - not cold from the fridge. Overweight cats must not be allowed to eat “ad libitum” of course. Instead they should be given food which has been weighed into precise portions.

Diversity in a cat’s diet

Cats essentially love diversity as much as we humans do. A diverse range of foods is important in the growth phase, otherwise cats can very quickly get used to specific food during this early stage of life. This means that, later on, they will no longer accept any other kind of food. Interesting and varied food when a cat is young also makes it easier to follow a diet prescribed by a vet, for example. Fundamentally, however, cats should be fed balanced complete food.

Diversity in a cat’s diet

A wide variety of food offers many advantages

Changing a cat’s food

Some illnesses require a cat to follow a special diet. Often it is also necessary, for a variety of reasons, to get a cat used to a new type of food, for example if the cat has a new owner. The best way to introduce a new food is to do it as carefully as possible, mixing a small portion of the new food with the current food. The proportion is gradually increased until only the new food is in the bowl. It is important that the new food (as the former food) is served at least at room temperature, and that it is fresh. In difficult cases the new food can also be given together with other flavour-enhancing ingredients e.g. warm chicken broth or warm milk, which can also gradually be left out.

Dog food for cats?

Long-term, balanced nutrition for a cat on the basis of dog food is not possible! Cats are strict carnivores and have other nutritional requirements than dogs. Cats require more protein and an additional number of essential nutrients which, unlike dogs, they cannot form themselves.

Are mice healthy?

In principle, yes, as cats have adapted to eating them over centuries and they also contain the vital amino acid taurine. Mice, however, are intermediary hosts to various types of worm e.g. tapeworms. This means your cat can become infected with worms if it hunts mice and should therefore be treated frequently (several times a year) with a dewormer.

Why does my cat hunt birds?

The hunting instinct in cats is so highly developed that they hunt even when they are sated. Everything that is small, moves quickly and jerkily and emits high-pitched noises will capture the attention of a cat. Stalking and pouncing are innate parts of a cat’s behavioural repertoire and the opportunity to hunt adds to their tranquillity and well-being, even if the hunt is not successful. Feeding your cat more, therefore, will not protect the birds in your garden.