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Optimum Feline Nutrition - What Should You Feed Your Cat?


Kitten Food

For the first month of a cat’s life, kitten food comes in the form of mother’s milk and/or commercial milk replacer formula given every 2 - 4 hours if the kitten has been separated from its mother. Once this initial period passes, kitten food can become a dietary staple in the following stages, amounts, and frequency:

From 3 - 5 weeks of age, feeding kittens involves offering the milk-replacer formula in a shallow dish to encourage weaning from a bottle. You can also add a moist, easily chewable diet consisting of a mixture of warm milk-replacer and high-quality canned or dried kitten food 4 - 6 times a day.

By 5 - 8 weeks of age, your kitten should be able to chew its own kitten food, and you should provide a protein-rich and energy-filled diet, with feedings taking place 3 - 4 times daily. There are many different types of kitten food available, and we would like to discuss these dietary options with you at your next veterinary appointment. Typically, we recommend canned kitten food because it will mimic the natural diet both in consistency and formulation. However, a good diet may also consist of a combination of canned and dry kitten foods. After 6 months of age, kittens should be fed 2 times per day.

Kitten food is usually very high in protein, calories, and fats, which are all necessary to support healthy growth and body function. Feeding the right kitten food in the right amounts and at the right times throughout the day is essential for happy, growing cats. Our veterinary staff would be happy to discuss the best kitten food options for your feline friend as well as a proper feeding schedule at your next veterinary appointment.

Senior Cat Food

Beginning around 7 years of age, cats begin transitioning from adulthood to the mature/senior stages of life. This transition causes health and lifestyle changes with a cat’s:

  • Weight
  • Skin
  • Joints
  • Teeth
  • Internal organs

If your cat is doing well on his or her current diet, then there may be no need to change to a different formula. Some brands make a senior cat food that is specially formulated to deliver ingredients that are more easily digested than standard adult cat foods. Senior cats are more likely to develop health issues related to intestines and kidney disease. There are diets specifically formulated to benefit cats with these issues which may help slow the progression of these diseases.

Your veterinarian can help you choose the best cat food for your senior cat by taking his or her pre-existing medical conditions, current health status, and overall lifestyle (indoor, outdoor, sedentary, active, etc.) into account.

 

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