Have you ever wondered how to feed a cat the right way? If so, you’re not alone. A lot of feline fans out there are curious about whether there’s an ideal method of serving meals to their precious kitties. Now, a recent statement published by the American Association of Feline Practitioners (AAFP) shows that there may indeed be a “right” way and a “wrong” way to feed a cat.
The October 2018 statement published in the Journal of Feline Medicine and Surgery explained that normal feline feeding behaviors include hunting, foraging, and eating frequent small meals in a solo manner. Experts said that allowing pet cats to mimic these natural behaviors inside the home can help prevent stress-related issues in cats such as cystitis, overeating, inactivity, and obesity-related problems. But according to the AAFP, not enough cat owners are following these preventive steps while feeding their pets.
“Currently, most pet cats are fed in one location ad libitum, or receive one or two large and usually quite palatable meals daily,” said consensus statement chair Tammy Sadek, DVM, in a press release. “In addition, many indoor cats have little environmental stimulation, and eating can become an activity in and of itself. This current type of feeding process does not address the behavioral needs of cats. Appropriate feeding programs need to be customized for each household, and should incorporate the needs of all cats for play, predation, and a location to eat and drink where they feel safe.”
But what exactly do these “feeding programs” include? While the best way to feed a cat will vary from pet to pet, the programs usually involve offering frequent small meals, practicing forage feeding (by putting food in different locations in the home), or implementing multiple food and water stations. In some cases, automatic feeders might be the best option.
So if your kitty has been having any problems eating, talk to your vet about what feeding program might be the best one for your furry friend. Let’s keep our cats healthy and satisifed — if they’re not happy, then nobody is happy!
Next, check out some of the cutest two-faced cats that’ll make you do a double-take in the video below: