Cats are considered obligate carnivores, which means that they need to eat meat on a regular basis to stay healthy.
This is also true of the big wild cats in Africa and other parts of the world.
Your cat’s diet is very important to its overall health and well-being.
What Exactly is an Obligate Carnivore
An “obligate carnivore” is any animal that needs a diet that consistent of at least 70% meat to stay as healthy as possible. Other animals that are classified this way include seals, dolphins, minks, and tarsiers.
Cats and many other animals are obligate carnivores because of the food that their ancestors ate on a daily basis. A diet that is heavy in meat gives these animals the vitamins, minerals and nutrients they need to thrive. This food also contains essential fatty acids that keep them very healthy.
Raw meat from a cat’s natural prey is easy for it to digest as well. The fact is that cats have a lot of issues with digesting plant matter in general. They can even have a difficult time with certain fruits and vegetables, including avocado.
Which Nutrients do Cats Require?
There are certain nutrients that ever cat needs to eat on a daily basis to remain healthy. This includes protein, vitamin A, vitamin B12, and various amino acids. These nutrients help to fuel your pet’s body so that it can maintain an adequately high energy level each day.
Those who do not feed their cat a proper diet could notice a variety of problems with them, including heart and liver issues. An improper diet can also cause skin problems and even hearing loss over time.
Finding the Right Cat Food
If you need to choose the right food for your cat, there are numerous considerations that you will need to make. It is crucial that you choose a food with added vitamin D3 and niacin. This will help to ensure that your cat gets everything it needs to stay healthy.
You also need to make a point of selecting a food that features a good meaty source of protein, such as chicken, fish, or beef. Some cat foods even have a combination of these things.
Take the time to actually read the label on each of the cat foods you look into before making a final decision. This will provide you with the information needed to make the right choice. You don’t want to feed your cat anything in particular without knowing everything that is in it.
You should always avoid cat foods with artificial ingredients in them. This will only increase the chances of your cat having an adverse reaction of some kind. If you want to keep your pet healthy, you will need to keep this in mind when reviewing your options.
It’s All About Digestion
The average cat’s digestive system is designed to digest most types of meat very efficiently and with ease. These animals are not meant to eat plants, as their bodies cannot break them down very well. Cats have a fairly short digestive tract, which is why they don’t do well when eating a plant-based diet.
Should I Give my Cat Raw Food?
Some people choose to keep their cat on a raw food diet, which can have its benefits and drawbacks. It is very important to consider the pros and cons before making a final decision either way.
This type of diet involves giving a cat raw meat of some kind. It is not cooked in any way, which means that there is always the risk of bacteria. As long as your cat is in good health with a strong immune system, this usually isn’t an issue.
It is important to be very careful during the preparation phase, cleaning all surfaces thoroughly before and after preparing their food.
One of the biggest benefits of a raw food diet for cats is that it can prevent issues like obesity and dental disease. This type of diet can also keep your cat’s coat clean and shiny. You will need to make a point of weighing the risks and benefits of this before deciding what to do.
A lot of people claim to notice a huge improvement in their cat’s overall health when they go from dry food to a raw diet. This could help your pet in a number of ways, so it is something to at least consider.
Dangers of a Veggie Diet
The last thing you want to do is to put your cat on a vegan or vegetarian diet. This simply is not healthy for your pet. It can lead to a huge taurine deficiency, which messes up their metabolism. This can actually lead to excess weight gain over time.
While humans can be fairly healthy on a veggie diet, cats are not the same way. These animals have a completely different digestive process and metabolism than people. If your cat isn’t getting all of the nutrients it needs from its food on a daily basis, it won’t be as healthy as it could be.
- Obligate carnivores are animals that thrive on a mostly meat diet. Some of these animals include cats, dolphins, and even minks.
- Cats have short digestive tracts, which means that they can digest meat easily but not plant matter.
- Some of the most important nutrients for your cat to get on a daily basis include vitamin A, vitamin B12, and tons of protein.
- You will need to be careful about which food you give to your cat, especially if you want it to be as healthy as possible.
- You should avoid putting your cat on an all or even mostly veggie diet.
- A cat’s need for meat-based protein dates back hundreds if not thousands of years to their feline ancestors.
- A raw food diet can be highly beneficial to cats, but it also comes with its fair share of risks.
- Consult with your veterinarian if you aren’t sure which food to give your cat.