Before even bringing the cat home for the first time, we have to stop by the pet store to buy its feed. The problem is that what should be a simple and quick task can turn into a complicated job, as new brands appear every time. And they all say more or less the same thing: »complete food for your cat or kitten». How true is that phrase?
The truth is that it depends a lot on the composition of the cat food that we have in our hands or that we are going to buy. Therefore, to ensure that we are going to give you a quality meal, we have to carefully read the ingredient label. So let’s see what the composition of a good feed is like .
How to interpret the feed label?
The ingredients with which the feed is made will appear from higher to lower proportion . Of all of them, the ones we have to look at the most are the first three, since they will be the ones that will really nourish the animal. In this sense, if we take into account that it is carnivorous, in the event that cereals are included (rice, corn, barley, etc.) it is best to leave it on the store shelf, otherwise we could put health at risk. of the feline .
A good cat food will be made up of fresh meat , while another of medium or low quality will consist of by-products of animal origin. What do we mean by “by-products”? Well, heads, beaks, nails, … parts that a cat would not eat.
What proteins do we find in feed?
The cat must ingest proteins of animal origin , since they are those that have all the amino acids they need; On the other hand, those of vegetable origin do not provide all that it needs to synthesize proteins. To understand it better, say that proteins, be they of animal or plant origin, are composed of amino acids that the animal’s body recovers separately and then synthesizes them, thus creating new proteins.
What ingredients does the cat NOT need?
- Cereals: we discussed it before. Not only can cereals cause allergies, but your body cannot use them well, which often causes diarrhea or loose, odorous stools.
- By-products: when we talk about by-products, I always like to ask the same question: if none of us would be able to eat the beak, nails or head of an animal, why do we give it – even in the form of feed – to our cat?
- Beetfiber: this fiber comes from the sugar companies that extract the juice from the vegetables, obtaining a vegetable fiber paste that will end up in the animal feed companies. Although they provide more structure to the stool, it is not recommended for a cat.
The price of a low quality feed is usually very low (I say “usually” because there are brands that invest a lot in marketing, but then when you read their labels they can surprise you a lot by including, for example, cereals). Often the kilo comes to 1 euro.
On the contrary, a high quality feed costs, at least, 4 euros. The most expensive that I have seen is 8 euros / kg, which is logical if we think that fresh meat already costs us more or less that in a butcher shop.
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