Hello! Nigel here!
As you can see, the small human that takes care of me on weekends has decided that it is amusing to make me look like a holiday rabbit. Why the humans insist on humiliating us cats like this, I do not understand. However, it seems to make her very happy so I will allow it…..for now. I will agree to let her do this so long as she doesn’t try to feed me any of that bunny food….things like carrots and lettuce. I am a cat. Cats eat mice and birds….not salad. Which brings me to my topic for the day–Food.
What do you humans out there feed your cats? Did you know that cats have very specific nutritional needs? I bet you didn’t….But don’t worry…you have me…Nigel…to educate you on how to best care for your feline friends. Cats are not small dogs, nor are we small humans (though many of us think that we are.) You cannot feed us an omnivorous diet (plants and meat) like you can feed your dogs or yourselves. We are what is called “obligate carnivores”. This means that we MUST eat meat. Not only must we eat meat, but in the wild we would never eat any plants…save for the small bits of plant material you might find inside of the digestive tract of a mouse. Sorry for the graphic content of this post….but it is for science, so I hope you understand. So please be advised that although we may consider some of your own efforts to be kind to animals by becoming vegetarians or vegans noble, we cats cannot afford to live this kind of lifestyle ourselves. It will make us quite sick.
When it comes to the type of food to feed us, there are most certainly many kinds to choose from. Before coming to reside at For Cats Only I had the good fortune of taking a trip to the local pet store with my rescuer from A Second Chance Rescue. I saw shelves upon shelves of food with delectable culinary delights for kitties. With so many to choose from, I am sure you humans can find it confusing. Let me help you out by narrowing your selection down a bit, so that you choose the healthiest food options for your cats.
Generally speaking, it is much better for your cat’s health to feed canned (wet) food as opposed to those dry dehydrated niblets. I am not really sure why the humans have developed these crunchy desiccated vittles. My current theory is that they are getting us used to eating this food-like substance so that when the zombie apocalypse occurs they can save us by launching us into space to live on a safer planet with bags and bags of this food item. Since you and I both know that this scenario is quite unlikely, I recommend that you just feed us what is healthiest for us here on earth. Canned cat foods come in many flavors. All are nutritious, however many cats seem to be sensitive to fish. Fish have a substance in their meat called “histamines” and this can cause some cats to have itchy skin. So, Dr. Stephanie and Dr. Jeff recommend feeding your cats Chicken, Turkey and Duck based foods. Beef is tasty as well, though it has some more likelihood of causing allergic reactions than poultry. The other main reason to feed canned food is that it is full of moisture. We cats need plenty of water to keep our kidneys and bladders healthy. Since we tend not to drink a lot of water separate from our food (even if we are eating dry food), cats that don’t eat wet food often are lacking adequate amounts of water to keep their urinary systems healthy. Canned food has 75% moisture while dry food has only about 10%. So, please feed us canned food…it is so much better for our health.
For those of you who are worried about how canned food may affect our dental health, I can assure you that ordinary dry cat food does not have any helpful effect on reducing dental tartar in cats. Although dry food can be helpful for dogs, this is yet another example of how cats are not small dogs. Let me repeat this…”CATS ARE NOT SMALL DOGS.” I’m sorry to get worked up….but some people really don’t seem to understand this simple truth. If you would like to know more about how you can help your cats with their dental health, I will be blogging about it another day.
If you have any questions about your cat’s proper nutrition, please feel free to leave me a message on the For Cats Only Facebook page. You can also make an appointment with Dr. Stephanie or Dr. Jeff at For Cats Only and they would be happy to help you with your cat’s diet.
That’s all for now. Nigel, signing off! Meow!
P.S.–Many of you have asked if I am from the United Kingdom. I most certainly am one of the Queen’s loyal subjects. I very much recommend that you read my blog entries while imagining my voice speaking with a British accent. You will find them much more entertaining this way.