So how much should a cat actually eat? We answer that question in the article below, as well as some related questions. It is important that your cat gets enough nutrition, but still not too much. Of course, it is difficult to know “how much should a cat eat?”, So we are here to guide you.
If you are a cat owner for the first time, the question is “how much should a cat eat?” probably one of your first questions when bringing your cat home. Even if you have owned cats for several years, you may sometimes wonder if your cats are getting too little or too much food. Let us go through some factors to consider when answering the question “how much should a cat eat?”.
How much should a cat eat?
If you’ve ever wondered “how much should I feed my cat?” we have the answer. The answer to the question “how much should a cat eat?” is based on many variables, including the cat’s weight and the cat’s age, if you feed with soft food or dry food, the cat’s activity level and if it is pregnant or breastfeeding.
The brand of food you give your cat also makes a difference when we answer the question “how much should a cat eat?”. A dense dry food for high quality cats will contain more nutrients per weight than a low quality food, and therefore requires smaller portions to give your cat the same amount of nutrition.
Many cat owners give their cats free access to dry food, supplemented with wet food once or twice a day. A diet with only dry food is not necessarily a bad diet if you provide high quality food, but it does require that you encourage your cat to drink a lot more water to compensate for the dry food.
When should I feed my cat?
When you bring home a new cat, it is important that you continue to feed her the same amount and the same type of food according to the same schedule as it is used to. You can then gradually switch to your own food and your own schedule. Cats are very sensitive to change, and a new cat will already have a lot of stress from the new environment, so if you keep the food and schedule consistent, it will facilitate her transition and keep her bowel weight in check.
When you are ready to move on to your own food and your own schedule, you need to decide what type of food to give your cat (wet or dry food, raw food or a combination), and using the number of calories in each type of food decide how much of each variety you should give the cat.
What should you give your cat – wet food or dry food?
How much to feed a cat also depends on whether you feed your cat with wet or dry food. Another important factor when answering the question “how much should a cat eat?” is to take into account what you give your cat in the food bowl. The basis of a healthy cat diet is meat-based protein such as meat, fish or poultry. Dry food should have a high content of animal proteins and a low content of plant proteins (which cats are poor at digesting). Carbohydrates should not make up more than ten percent of the ingredients.
Wet food should mainly consist of meat with as few by-products and fillers as possible.
Are you still wondering: “how much should I feed my cat”? Some calculations Animal Medical Center in New York have done, a healthy, active adult cat of 3.6kg needs about 60 calories per pound and day. An average 3.6kg cat needs about 240 calories per day.
Usually, dry food contains about 300 calories per 2.5 dl, and soft food contains about 250 calories in each 180ml jar. If you use these numbers as a benchmark, the average cat would need about 2 dl of dry food or just under a whole 180ml can of wet food per day. You can adjust the proportions depending on whether your cat prefers more or less dry or wet food.
If you leave the dry food standing all day, you measure the daily amount of food in your dry food machine every day. This reduces the amount of feed that gets old and must be discarded. It also helps you monitor how much your cat is eating. If you have to take a skinny cat to the vet, it will make the diagnosis easier if you can determine exactly how much it eats per day.
By portioning the food you can prevent your cats from eating too much. Free choice feeding is one of the leading causes of obesity in cats.
Also check out what cats are not allowed to eat – “human food” is an example of food that is not good for cats.
How often should you feed a cat?
Your cat’s meal schedule is another thing to consider. Another factor when deciding “how much should I feed my cat” depends on how often you feed your cat. How often you should feed a cat depends on what you feed her. Most cat owners feed their cats in the morning and evening, and possibly supplement these meals with a bowl of dry food that is available at all times.
Does your cat eat enough – or too little?
Throughout the cat’s life, you will need to change your diet to adapt to changing metabolism and changing dietary needs.
Feel your cat’s spine and ribs.
If the ribs and spine are visible through the skin, the cat is definitely too think.
If you can not feel the ribs, your cat is probably overweight.
Adjust the cat’s portions accordingly.
Preventing your cat from becoming overweight is much easier than forcing an overweight cat to lose weight.
It will make both you and your cat much happier.