Owning a cat comes with a lot of decision making such as the meal plan for your cat and the available alternative cat foods in the market. Equally important is the frequency and amount of food to feed your cat, and the never-ending fear of whether the food you are giving your cat is healthy enough.
Given the fact that most people, even the truest cat lovers, ponder on the feeding requirement for their cats, here is what you need to know on the importance of giving your cat wet food.
Do Cats Need Wet Food Every Day?
The answer is YES! Wet food provides your cat with the necessary nutrients and water required for a clean bill of health.
Water makes up about 67 percent of your cat’s body. Water is an essential agent in breaking down the chemical elements in their body, which would otherwise be toxic for your cat.
It is not easy for a cat to take water from any source on its own, and even when it does, it might not be enough. Wet food traps the moisture within the food hence acting as a substitute for direct hydration.
Some of the key ingredients of wet food include fish and meat, which is a great source of protein necessary for muscle toning in the cat. Lean muscles are important for a cat’s development from one milestone to the other.
Wet food also comes in a wide range of varieties. Variety provides the desired diet change, which cats crave daily. After all, how would you like to eat the same flavors of food day in and day out?
How Much Wet Food Should Your Cat Eat?
Contrary to what most cat owners think, wet cat food can and should be used as more than cat treats. It should be a priority in your meal plan.
How much you offer your cat depends on the weight of the cat and whether or not you incorporate the dry foods into your meal plan.
Research has shown that older cats weighing about 3 pounds should have at least three ounces of wet food a day. If you have incorporated dry food into your meal plan, then one serving during the evening should be enough. Whenever in doubt, it is best to contact your veterinarian to make sure you are meeting your feline’s dietary needs.
What Is Better For Cats – Wet or Dry Food?
This question can be approached in three significant ways; individuality, nutrition, and cost.
Just like human beings, cats are unique, and therefore, come with their own peculiarities and desires. To find out what option is better for your cat, offer both forms of cat food and observe what captivates them the most. Then, incorporate that into their meal plan.
Also, when it comes to nutritional value, wet food is the best option as it caters to most of your cat’s needs. For example, cats with health issues are advised to take wet food due to its hydration and nutritional values. This is because wet food comes in cans that help trap in moisture necessary for hydration while having high nutritional value for the cat, hence an all in one sort of meal.
On the other hand, wet food can be a bit on the expensive side, especially for a cat lover who has a tight budget. Unlike dry foods, Wet food comes mostly in cans and, at times, already cut out into portions, while dry foods come in economical packages. Dry foods can also last longer as compared to wet food, which should be eaten within the hour of opening.
The best option would be to evaluate your options and come up with the perfect meal plan with your veterinarian in a way that meets your cat’s nutritional needs and also accommodates your budget.
Can I Mix Wet and Dry Cat Food?
Also known as blended feeding, mixing of wet and dry food as a feeding plan is a sure-fire way to offer your cat the best meals from both worlds. For instance, you can choose to leave out dry food for your cat to nibble on throughout the day. Then in the evening you can put out enough wet food.
This ensures that the cat is taken care of during the day and at night with enough food, water, and nutrients. It also gives you enough time to clean out their feeding containers in the evening after their meal.
Though some people tend to mix dry food with wet food in the same sitting, it is not recommended. Unless under instruction from the vet, mixing dry food with wet food can cause an over-concentration or a dilution of the nutrients in the cat food. This may lead to weight gain or loss as well as other similar diseases.
What is the Healthiest Wet Food?
When shopping for healthy wet food, look out for wet food with the highest nutritional value. Wet food for cats should have at minimum:
- Enough moisture to provide the required hydration needs for the cat.
- Enough meat or fish to act as a source of much needed protein.
- Formulae that is specific to your cat’s age. (Kitten vs Adult)
The current market is saturated with companies claiming to offer the best wet food. When doing your research, the best wet food should cater to all the above mentioned nutritional needs, age, and budget that is okay on your wallet.
When it comes to wet food, the most important thing to note is that its nutritional value is only as good as the first hour after putting it out. Everything after that becomes poison for your cat.
For this reason, put out the wet food and let it rest for about ten to fifteen minutes since some cats do not like cold food. Thereafter, introduce the food to the cat and ensure they eat it within the hour.
Once the cat has finished or lost interest, clean off the feeding plate immediately. To avoid wasting a lot of wet food, measure enough for one sitting. The remaining food in the can can be saved for later by using can covers epecially made for canned wet food.