When choosing the right food for your cat, one of the most important things to consider is their age. There is a variety of different types for kittens and senior cats. Each of them contains the needed nutrition elements for your pet according to their age. This will guarantee that your friend is happy and healthy and receives everything they need from their food.
Knowing when to switch from kitten food to an adult one and then to a senior one is not always easy, but many sources help you. It is also important to consider any other health requirements or restrictions your furry friend might have. Your veterinarian is the perfect person to ask in case of doubt. Let’s look over what is recommended for each stage of your cat’s life.
Newborn Kitten (up to 4 months)
Most newborn kittens will rely on their mothers for food up to the 8th week, but unfortunately, not all little ones are that lucky. If a kitten can’t count on the mother’s milk, it will need a lot of care and support. You will have to get a special formula or lactose-free milk to feed the tiny kitten with a syringe. It might be challenging for you and the kitten because it is something new for them, and they don’t have their mom to encourage them and support them. It is a great responsibility, but once you see your new friend taking braver steps into the world, you will feel such joy.
Kitten (from 4 weeks to 1 year)
Once your kitten is ready to move from milk, you will also see the first signs showing interest in eating some solid food. Usually, this happens around the 4th week. This is also when the little bowl of fur becomes more active and sleeps less. Being more playful and moving more is one of the main reasons they need more nutrition.
There is a variety of dry and wet kitten food that you can choose from. Your little cat will need food with a higher percentage of protein and fat at this stage. Your kitten will be growing very fast, and to support this, they will need different types of acids in their diet that are mandatory ingredients in their food.
At this stage, you can already see if your kitty prefers dry or wet food and what taste they are most excited about. Based on that, you can better know what food to order for the further stages of your cat’s life.
Junior Cat (from 1 year to 3 years)
Cats are reaching their adolescence around the time they turn 1. They will continue to be very playful and will become even more active. This is the time they become fierce and want to explore the world. They will need enough energy to do so. Of course, it depends from cat to cat how active they will be. This is one of the factors you need to think of when determining what food you should give them and how much.
A junior cat will still need a high amount of fat and protein, but the dosage should be carefully calculated. You can choose from various dry and wet foods in different sizes, packages, and tastes.
If your cat has the preference to eat dry food at this stage of its life and of course you want to give them the best dry cat food. The reason behind this is that the kibbles are helping them to train their chewing, and it is scratching their gums. Dry food is perfect for keeping your pet active because you can leave it for longer in the open and know your friends have something to eat even when you are in the office. A piece of advice — make sure you give them the right portion and have a water source because they might get thirsty.
Prime Cat (from 3 years to 6 years)
The diet of a prime cat is very similar to that of a junior one. You might have to adapt the portion again according to the changes in the activity level. It is possible that there will be a change in the metabolism level of your furry friend, and you should also keep an eye on this. If you see your cat becoming a bit chubby — try to make its portion smaller and play more together so your pet is more active.
Senior Cat (from 7 years)
At this stage of the lifecycle of your cat, their diet needs will change again. Some of the reasons might be related to their health. Similar to humans with aging, cats are starting to suffer from illness. Also, your pet’s activity level might drop, which will mean you have to adapt the portions based on it.
There are a lot of choices for cat food for seniors. At this point, they might want to switch more to wet food since chewing might be painful for them. Since the wet food is even richer in calories and your cat might spend more time sleeping instead of running, measure the portion accordingly. You need to think of many factors when choosing your cat food when they are seniors, but most importantly, make a consultation with your vet. They know your cat’s health, and any issues will interfere with their diet.
Every cat owner loves seeing their friend growing up and maturing. It is just a pleasure to see them form as an individual. This is also something to think of when you choose the right food — your cat is an individual. When deciding what to feed your cat, consider the nutrition requirements according to their age, health condition, and personal traits like activity level and food preferences (type of food, consistency, taste, etc.). The right food, in combination with a lot of cuddles, playing together, and scratches, guarantee the happiness of your friend and, therefore, your own.