Healthy dry cat food
The benefits of high-quality dry cat food and points to note when feeding it.
Should I give my cat wet or dry food? Many cat owners ask this question, not least because cats are more prone to urinary tract disorders than other pets, and it is especially important to ensure an adequate fluid intake to avoid them. Here you will find out what to consider when feeding dry food.
What makes a good dry cat food?
A high-quality dry food for cats will contain lots of well-balanced nutrients, vitamin and minerals. The main difference between dry and wet foods is the water content, which plays an important role in a cat’s diet. Cats are able to produce highly concentrated urine. Nature arranged this so they can make their body water last as long as possible, just like their ancestors in the desert. So it is a good idea to select a dry food with an additive that maintains the urine pH within the optimum range. This will help to prevent dangerous urine stone formation, such as struvite stones. Constant access to a dish of fresh water will also help to prevent urine stones. Alternatively you can soften your cat’s kibble in lukewarm water. This will also enable you to ensure that your cat is consuming water with her food.
What are the benefits of dry food?
If you would prefer to give your cat dry food, this has a number of benefits for your cat, yourself and the environment.
The benefits of dry food for cats are:
- Dry food can be stored for long periods
- The larger pack sizes allow you to reduce waste
- Feeding dry food is *less expensive than wet food
The kibble lasts longer in the bowl, which means less food is wasted. If you put food in the bowl in the morning, it will still be acceptable and palatable to your cat several hours later – in contrast to wet food which will already have dried up and will probably no longer be hygienic. This is a particular advantage in the summer as, in contrast to dry food, wet food is a welcome food source for insects in hot periods. They also like to lay their eggs in it. Another advantage of dry cat food is that the high energy content will keep your cat feeling full for a long time, and will supply especially active cats with more energy.
How often can I give my cat dry food?
Giving dry food will greatly meet the needs of your cat. Does your work take you away from home for many hours each day? Then you can fill your cat’s bowl with dry food in the morning so she can eat small amounts several times during the day. This is known as “ad lib” feeding (from the Latin for “as desired). It makes your feline friend act like her relatives in the wild who have to catch and eat around ten mice every day. It is important not to top up the bowl at the end of the day if the daily ration has been eaten. The information on the packaging can be a good guide if you are not sure how much dry food your cat needs. If your feline friend is neutered, she will need up to 30 % fewer calories than an unneutered cat. The same applies to older or more cuddly cats who are less active.
Simple tips if your cat is not drinking enough
As with their food, cats like to drink water in lots of small portions over the course of the day. The approximate water requirement is between 50 and 70 millilitres per kilogram of body weight. If your cat is noticeably drinking less, there are a number of tricks to make sure that the essential water requirement is covered. For example, you can offer your cat wet food in addition to the dry food. The Happy Cat Meat in Sauce is especially suitable for mixed feeding. If necessary you can add a little warm water to the wet food to ensure that your cat takes in more liquid.
You may have spotted that your cat prefers to drink flowing water from the tap when you turn it on in the kitchen or bathroom. In this case it is a good idea to get a drinking fountain. Some cat owners also find it helps to add a small amount of unsalted, unseasoned meat stock or a few drops of water from canned tuna to the drinking water. This will transform drinking into a taste sensation.
My cat is prone to urine stones: is dry or wet food better for cats with kidney issues?
Cats are naturally able to produce highly concentrated urine. This can become a problem if your cat is prone to urine stones. It is particularly important to make sure she drinks sufficient water throughout the day to prevent new urine stones forming. You can switch your cat to a reduced-phosphate food to promote and support her kidney health. To make the change of food easier for your feline friend, Happy Cat has an especially tasty dry food in the range that is very gentle on the kidneys. Cats will sometimes refuse a new food because they don’t like the taste. Happy Cat Sensitive Adult Kidney Diet is especially tasty, and the high-quality raw ingredients it contains and a high taurine content also ensure that the food will cover your cats overall needs.
In short, which is better for cats – dry food or wet food?
In the end, it is your cat who decides what you are going to feed her! Both types of food will provide your cat with a species-appropriate diet. But the important thing to remember when feeding dry food to cats is to ensure that she drinks enough water.