THE “MODERN” CAT AND ITS NUTRITION
YOUR CAT HAS NEEDS THAT YOU MAY NOT KNOW OF
We try to be honest with ourselves but especially with our companion animal.
The close coexistence between mankind and cat has put a strain on its natural instincts, which have gone from those of a skilled nocturnal hunter to, now, a domesticated “sofa companion.” There have been real changes in their daily needs, food and otherwise, while some ethological and ancestral aspects have remained unchanged.
My name is Sonia. I am a veterinarian and part of the Almo Nature staff. Below I will tell you about some changes that have occurred in the cat during its years of life spent alongside human beings, as well as some of the wild instincts they’ve retained. Overall, it’s important to respect the nature of cats while taking into account their “new” nutritional needs.
YOUR CAT IS DIFFERENT
Most cats today are true house cats, with new habits and comforts that we could not have imagined just 50 years ago. Cats sleep under the sheets or in warm blankets on comfortable pillows. The luckiest ones have tree-like perches scattered around the house that they can climb, scratch or rest on. In fact, cats love to stay high to keep the situation under control!
Giving your cat access to high spaces or setting up special raised platforms so they can “control” the living room as they would their hunting area in the wild can help relieve stress that can accumulate when, for example, a cat lives in an apartment without any access to the outdoors.
Indoor cats partake in minimal predatory activities, often limited to chasing the unfortunate fly that entered the house. They enjoy the comfort of a full bowl and an owner who adores them and is willing to offer tasty treats to satisfy their palate.
This new state of comfort saves the cat a large amount of energy that, in the past, was used to hunt, defend itself or escape predators. The rhythms of its life have changed, and consequently, so have its caloric and nutritional needs.
It is important and necessary to adapt your cat’s nutrition to these changes by offering high-quality recipes following a correct and nutritionally balanced nutrition, that will help them avoid excess calories and possible related problems.
HOW TO PROTECT AND ENHANCE YOUR CAT’S NATURAL INSTINCTS
Even if your cat sleeps curled up in a chair and runs towards you when you get home, they still have innate behaviors and attitudes linked to their nature, especially concerning their nutrition.
The cat and its relationship with water
In nature, cats tend not to drink a lot. In fact, their main source of hydration is their food. The hunted prey provides them with the necessary amount of hydration for their body to carry out its functions. In nature, cats do not particularly like still and stagnant water (such as puddles) but instead prefer fresh and running water. Does that behavior remind you of anything?
You may have discovered that running water from the tap can succeed in enticing your cat to drink while their full bowl of water remains untouched. Water is essential to sustain life in every living being, including the cat. Make sure that your cat has access to water at all times. Cat drinking fountains can be a good solution for these issues; it responds to their instinctual preference for running water!
Small and frequent meals
The cat is a nocturnal hunter, which explains why it often becomes very active in the late evenings. During its hunting expeditions in nature, it can even consume 10-12 prey per day, independently regulating the number of calories consumed, reducing the quantity of food introduced and not the number of meals. This aspect should make us reflect on how, even inside our home, it is important to preserve this way of feeding.
Splitting the daily ration by offering small and frequent meals throughout the day and night is the recommended feeding routineAlmo Nature's nutritional advice has always been to alternate the wet food daily, to help the cat to stay hydrated, and offer kibble, allowing the cat to indulge in its instinctual habit of eating numerous small meals throughout the day.
ALTERNATING FEEDING FOR CATS
The nutritional advice we propose follows all of these aspects and focuses on preserving the nature of our feline companion and paying attention to their real needs.
The pet food market today is very large and offers a great variety of choices. Almo Nature recommends alternating wet food with dry food to get the best of both foods and respect our cat’s needs. We call it “alternating feeding.”
At least 60% wet food
In order to support proper hydration, wet food should make up the majority of your cat’s daily food intake and can be offered in the mornings and evenings. Clean, fresh water should also be available for your cat at all times, even if they also eat wet food. Alternating the recipes you offer your cat—for example, rotating between white meat, red meat and fish—provides a wider variety of nutrients, thus supporting a better nutritional balance.
And what about kibble?
Kibble is beneficial to a cat’s nutrition , but feeding them a feeding routine exclusively of kibble may lead to kidney problems over time, so it must be offered in the right quantity. Kibble should make up about 40% of a cat's daily food intake.
How is kibble beneficial to cats?
- Allows for small meals, appealing to your cat’s nocturnal feeding habits. Leave the cat’s daily serving of kibble out for the whole day and also at night, allowing them to nibble between main meals and at night—because, let's remember: cats are nocturnal hunters by nature and often prowl the house at night in search of food!
- Ensures a nutritionally balanced nutrition by providing all of the necessary and important nutrients to meet your cat’s needs—kibble is a complete food!
- Promotes chewing, benefitting a cat’s teeth and digestion
What if your cat struggles to eat dry food?
That is not a problem—in that case you can feed your cat complete wet recipes along with the complementary ones, always following the nutritional advice. This way, you can still ensure you are feeding them a varied nutrition, correct nutritional balance, and indirectly, adequate hydration.
ALMO NATURE`S PROPOSAL
Almo Nature offers several product lines, organized to help you choose for your cat:
- HFC represents the highest quality ingredients used in our foods
- Holistic offers functional recipes to support your cat’s specific nutrition needs or concerns
- Daily wet line offers a wide variety of quality ingredients at the right price point
All Almo Nature recipes are maintenance recipes, meaning they’re designed to meet your cat's nutritional needs while preserving their natural state of physiological well-being.
If your pet has a special condition or health problem and is following a Veterinary Diet or a nutrition suggested by their veterinarian, ask when it will be possible for them to return to a routine of high-quality maintenance recipes.
NO IMPROVISED, DIY FOOD!
Not everyone agrees with the idea of feeding their cat commercial food; instead, some prefer providing home-cooked meals . However, it is important to be aware of a cat’s nutritional needs, particularly knowing which minerals, vitamins and amino acids should be added to the food, and in what quantities and proportions, to ensure a nutritionally balanced meal. Improvised, do-it-yourself nutrition is not a valid option for the well-being of your cat. If not prepared correctly, with the help of a veterinary nutritionist, you risk promoting malnutrition in your cat.
If you choose a home nutrition for your feline companion, it is best to consult a veterinary nutritionist who will be able to set up and maintain a nutritionally balanced feeding for your cat.
When it comes to innovative recipes for cats or dogs, Almo Nature—based in Genoa, Italy—always considers the wellbeing of animals first, because we see ourselves as the human companions of our animals!
Almo Nature engages in various areas, the most well-known being our high-quality food for companion animals: nutritionally balanced, prepared following high quality standards to ensure exceptional, complete and balanced daily nutrition.
The work, however, goes much further! Thanks to the Reintegration Economy and Fondazione Capellino, all revenues (after expenses, investments and taxes) from the sale of Almo Nature recipes are allocated to safeguarding biodiversity and fighting climate change. So, by choosing the quality of Almo Nature for your cat, you are directly contributing to the Foundation’s projects for the common good.