As a pet owner, one of the most important things is your pet’s health. And when it comes to health, what you feed your pet is one of the most important things you should pay attention to. Cats and dogs are very different when it comes to feeding time. There are a lot of different types of pet foods on the market today, all claiming to be the best for your pet, and all claim to have all the nutrition your pet needs. Studies are always being done on what pets need, and specific studies on cats nutritional needs as well as dogs’ specific needs. While dogs will often scarf up just about anything you put in front of them, cats are much more finicky, not to mention that they have different needs when it comes to keeping them healthy. Many cat owners prefer to make their own cat food in order to make sure that their furry little feline is getting the right nutrition and not a bunch of additives and preservatives they don’t need. Especially if their kitty suffers from health issues, making homemade cat food can be a great alternative to store bought brands. If you have considered making your own cat food, here are a few tips to help a healthier diet for your cat.
1. Types of meat your cat can eat
Of course everyone knows that cats like meat, and really, that is what the primary food for a cat should be. Cats are carnivores by nature, so although cats are meat eaters, not all meats are good for your cat. Knowing which meats your cat can eat will help you avoid trouble for your cat by giving them something they shouldn’t have. If you want to give your cat a variety of meats to change things up for him and keep things interesting, here is a list of meats your cat can eat that are safe: You can give your cat lean cooked and cubed chicken pieces, lean beef, turkey, as well as lean deli meats, like ham chunks.
2. Cooked fish
We often picture cats eating fish, when we think of meat. It’s why cats love tuna and come running when they hear a can being cracked open. Although it seems like this is a cats’ most favorite meat, cats actually aren’t big fish eaters and shouldn’t be fed a fish-heavy diet. That being said, it is ok to feed your cat some fish, as long as it is cooked fish and never raw. If you plan to indulge your cat a little with fish, be sure to cook it thoroughly but just till it’s tender. Remove any bones to prevent your cat from getting one stuck in his throat, or swallowing it, which can cause choking or scraping and tearing of the digestive track.
Yes, vegetables can be good for your cat, but only sparingly. Bits and pieces of certain vegetables can be a healthy alternative to store bought cat treats. They can help boost your cat’s immune system, and they may help an overweight cat to lose weight. Not all vegetables are tolerable by cats, so knowing which ones are safe, will help you to protect your cat from medical issues created by the wrong foods. Here are some vegetables that are safe to cook and include in your cat’s diet: chopped carrots, peas, frozen corn, broccoli florets, green beans, bits of zucchini, small pieces of lettuce, spinach, and of course, catnip. Here are the vegetables to avoid. They are dangerous and toxic to a cat, so never give your feline garlic, any type of onion, avocadoes, tomatoes, or type of mushroom. You can either mix a few vegies into your cat’s main meal, such as mixing them up with their lean meat, or use as a snack between meals.
4. Avoid salt and spices
When cooking for your cat, avoid using salt and spices in their meat and vegetables. Spices, salt and pepper are for humans and not for cat consumption. These things are hard on their stomach and other organs, which can make them sick. Cats are simple and like the flavor of the meat alone. It’s not about cooking for your taste, but your cat’s.
5. Change things up
Variety is one of the best keys to follow when cooking homemade food for your cat. For one, mix the meats up and avoid feeding the same type of meat to your cat day after day. The same goes for vegetables. An idea is to give your cat chicken and corn one day, and the next, some lean turkey and peas the next. This gives your cat different nutritional benefits, and different flavors to enjoy.
Homemade meals for cats are fairly simple since they are primarily meat eaters. Dry food is not recommended for a cat’s main diet, kibble form is the most common form of dry food. It is severely lacking in water content and can dehydrate your cat. It also contains a lot of preservatives that cats do not need and high in fat content. The more natural your cat eats, the healthier your cat can be, so if you have the motivation to go all-natural, your cat will probably thank you.