The domestic house birman cats for sale is a descendant from Felis silvestris lybica, but over time has evolved into its own distinct species. Purebred cats especially have diverged from their ancestral wild cat’s genetic makeup and their nutritional needs reflect that. Commercial cat food has been designed to meet the metabolic needs of cats who no longer have the lifestyle of a wild cat. In this article, we’ll explore which food is right for your cat, and the health differences between canned and dry foods.
The Feline Diet
There are so many options for diets to feed your cat, it can be overwhelming to sort through all the information and misinformation to make a decision. In general, most veterinarians agree that cats should be fed a diet that has been certified by the American Association of Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) to meet their nutritional needs.
While cats are technically obligate carnivores, their diet should still include a healthy balance of mostly protein, moderate fat, and some carbohydrates. The nutrients and vitamins that come from carbohydrate sources are an important part of a balanced cat diet. In addition, they are less calorie-rich and in moderation can help reduce the caloric density of the diet.
What to look for in a cat food brand
Preferably, a cat food brand should be chosen that:
- Employs veterinary nutritionists
- Has gone through actual diet trials with animals in the life stage the diets claim to feed
- They should have quality control programs in place to ensure a safe product. Ingredients should be sourced from the United States or other reputable sources
Larger pet food brands, in general, have more power in securing consistent supplies of ingredients that meet their criteria, more resources for testing both raw materials and finished products, and are more likely to invest in research.
If this seems confusing and daunting, the good news is that there are LOTS of diets that meet these criteria. Animal nutrition has come a long way as people have elevated the status of animals to be full-fledged family members. If you are feeding a food that your cat likes, makes their coat shiny, doesn’t give them GI problems, isn’t an odd off-brand obscure diet and isn’t ‘too good to be true’ in terms of cost, chances are it’s fine!
How Much Do I Feed My Cat?
Knowing how much to feed can be a little complicated on the other hand. Every individual is different, and there can be changing metabolic needs as the cat grows, ages and becomes a senior. The feeding recommendations listed on the back of the bag are usually based on a calculation, and to some extent, extrapolated from published caloric requirements based on studies in colony cats.
Individual diets and nutritional requirements will vary from pet to pet, but a good starting point for serving size can be found on the back of most cat food bags. Use the bag’s guidelines, then adjust portion size to reach an ideal body condition score.