You want your cat to be as healthy and happy as possible, and most of that health comes from her diet alone. There are many different brands and types of cat food on the market, so it can be confusing when you are trying to figure out which one is best for your cat. The Association of American Feed Control Officials dictates that all cat food brands must be nutritionally complete, but that doesn’t mean that all food contains the same quality of ingredients. Here are a few things you should look for in your cat’s food to ensure that he is getting everything he needs to live a long life.
Choose Quality Ingredients
Cats are carnivores, which means that they require significantly more meat in their diets than grains or vegetables. A little grain in your cat’s food is fine, but if there are more grains than meat, it is not an ideal food for your feline. The ingredients on your cat’s food are listed in descending order, so you want to make sure that the first couple ingredients are meat, such as fish, chicken, and turkey. You also have the option of eliminating grains from your cat’s diet altogether by purchasing a grain-free food. Grain-free options are usually more expensive than regular options, so if it’s not in your budget, don’t worry about it. Your cat will still obtain all of the necessary nutrients even if there is some grain in his food.
There has been a lot of controversy surrounding the byproducts that are contained in most cat foods, but they really aren’t something to worry about. These byproducts are things like liver and lungs, which actually have a lot of nutritional value for your pet. Contrary to popular belief, byproducts are not hooves and hair, so don’t be fooled into thinking they are something unhealthy for your cat. Just because humans do not want to eat these organs themselves doesn’t mean that they are detrimental to your pet’s health.
Wet Food vs. Dry Food
Once you choose a brand of cat food that has a high-meat, low-grain content, you need to decide whether you’re going to give your cat the dry or the wet version of the food. Experts believe that both versions of food provide cats with the right amount of nutrition, but the wet food does provide more moisture, which can be highly beneficial for cats who do not otherwise consume very much water. Wet food does tend to be significantly more expensive, so there are other ways to can encourage your cat to drink more, such as a dripping faucet or water fountain. Another option is to alternate between wet and dry food or mix the two together so your feline can consume plenty of water without you having to break the bank.