Cat Nutrition

During the year of 2009 I was only teaching part time and wasn't sure I wanted to keep teaching. So I enrolled in an Animal Studies course and started working part time at Paddington Cat Hospital as a vet nurse. While I really loved the job and getting to spend so much time with cats and learning all about them, vet nurses are severely underpaid in Australia so the temptation of making the career change full time was not an option. I learnt so much though and now feel qualified to dish out advice about cats.

Today I thought I'd talk about nutrition and share with you, what I learnt from cat vet Randolph Baral. When it comes to food, it is important to of course feed your cats a complete and balanced diet. I feed my cats a combination of both wet and dry food, the dry food being the most important to their diet. The reason for that is because it is the most nutritious, providing protein, carbohydrate, antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and all the other goodness they need. Wet food is 80% water.

So here's the lowdown. All premium brands are complete and balanced, ie. Science Diet, Royal Canin, IAMS etc. Bosco and Oliver eat Royal Canin or Science Diet dry food. Bosco gets a combination of Indoor, Light and Oral Care, while Oliver is still eating kitten food.

For their wet food cats need a wide variety because they get bored quickly. Again the premium brands are complete and balanced, but Bos and Ollie loathe Science Diet wet food and aren't too crazy about Royal Canin wet food either, however they do eat it every now and then. They like IAMS wet food, but don't love it.

Some supermarket brands are complete and balanced, some aren't.

Fancy Feast White Label - complete and balanced

Whiskas Sachets - complete and balanced across the whole box, but not necessarily per sachet. So your kitties can eat this sometimes, but not every day.

Fancy Feast black label - not complete and balanced, should only be fed to your cats sometimes, more of like a treat.

Dine - complete and balanced across the range, but not necessarily per tin. So your kitties can eat this sometimes, but not every day.

I also feed my cats some Holistic brands like Ziwi Peak, Holistic Select and Eagle Pack which I get from Petbarn and they are all complete and balanced.

These are the foods my kitties eat, they only eat the ones I recommended as a treat on the rare occasion, purely because I feel like I don't have a choice. They need variety or they pretty much refuse to eat. And happiness is also an important factor in your cat's diet! One other thing I do every now and then is give them a cat vitamine, just to make sure their immune system stays extra strong.

One thing I will never do to my carnivore cats is push my vegetarian diet on them. There are alternative vegan foods available for pets and I just don't think it would be right to feed it to a cat. Maybe if they were omnivores, like dogs, it would be okay but they're not. You only need to watch Animal Planet and see a lion tearing into and antelope to see how carnivorous cats really are.