Is it Time To Switch My Feline’s Food?
May 5th, 2021
Paying attention to your feline friend’s nutrition will contribute to a longer, healthier life. But did you know that with time, your cat’s needs change, and you’ll need to accommodate for these changes by switching foods? Learn all about the signs that it’s time to move on to a different diet.
Life Stage Feeding Requirements
Your trusted team at All About Cats Veterinary Hospital is happy to offer tips and recommendations about the best cat food choices based on your fur-ever friend’s unique needs during each stage of life. In general, we recommend a wet food diet over a dry food diet, as wet food is more beneficial to a cat’s overall and long-term health.
Kitten: During this stage, from weaning to about one year old, your kitty’s food is designed to meet the growth requirements by providing a higher protein content and calorie count. Otherwise, you risk complications, including problems with growth or illness. Choose a wet food that is labeled as a kitten diet.
Adult: During the adult phase, from about one year old to ten years old, depending on the cat, obesity is one thing to look out for. Make sure you select nutritious and high-quality feline food, taking into account your cat’s activity level and lifestyle.
Senior: Medical issues often surface during the senior life stage, about eleven plus years old; dietary changes may be necessary. For example, mobility issues call for foods that contain glucosamine and fatty acids such as DHA and EPA. There are also foods specific to cats with chronic kidney disease, heart disease, diabetes, urinary disease, and obesity.
Other Signs It’s Time to Change Your Cat’s Food
While most cats will require food changes during life stage transitions, there are additional signs you’ll need to note that may indicate it’s time for a switch. These include a dull or flaky coat, lethargy or weakness, obesity, gastrointestinal disturbances, food allergies, or specific health conditions.
Transitioning Your Feline Friend to the New Food
Transitioning your cat to the new food is a process. Switching too quickly can result in gastrointestinal upset, including diarrhea and vomiting. So what’s the best way to switch to the new food? The most important thing is to avoid any abrupt changes and to make a gradual transition. Think seven days. On the first day, use a mix of primarily current food with a little bit of the new food. On each following day, add a little more of the new and take out more of the old until you fully transition to the new food. Once the switch is complete, monitor your kitty to ensure no changes in behavior, health, or appearance develop. If they do, make sure to visit All About Cats Veterinary Hospital to determine a better food option.
When Is it Time to Visit the Vet?
If you notice a change in your furry friend’s hunger level, including a decrease or dramatic increase in appetite, it’s best to determine the underlying causes of the eating issues. Don’t simply switch foods or overcompensate with treats.
Talk to Your Trusted Veterinarians
Visit All About Cats Veterinary Hospital in Kirkland, WA, to learn more about healthy cat nutrition for a long and healthy life. We are happy to make food recommendations based on your four-legged companion’s unique needs. You can always count on us for paw-some feline care because, after all, we are all about cats!
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