Is Your Cat Growing Old? Here Are Some Dietary Changes That You Should Make
Cats have a long lifespan, and as they age, their dietary requirements begin to change. In fact, most cats become finicky eaters as they grow older, and you will be lucky if you get them to eat anything at all. If your cat is past the middle-age years, you should consider making some dietary changes to boost their health and prolong their life. Read on to find out the importance of making dietary changes to your aging cat and some of the best foods that you should start giving them.
Why should you change your cat's diet?
As cats age, their digestive systems become less tolerant to certain foods. If you don't change their diet, they may not be able to obtain as many calories from these foods as they used to, which can affect their weight and level of activity. Changing their diet to foods that can be easily digested can provide the required calories to increase their metabolism.
Cats become susceptible to diseases and illnesses as they grow old. There is a need to include foods and supplements in their diet that will boost their immunity and promote their health. Doing so will reduce the chances of illnesses with old age. Even if your cat does fall sick, their body will be able to handle the disease and medications better if they are healthy.
Which foods should you feed your cat?
It is okay to feed your old cat any foods that you wish. However, particular nutrients should often be provided to help your cat maintain good health and to prolong their life. A proper diet should contain the following types of nutrients and food supplements:
- Antioxidants: These can be found in vitamins, and they hinder cell damage, which usually accelerates as cats grow old.
- Proteins: If your cat is overweight, you can substitute oils with proteins to prevent them from gaining excess fat. The proteins will increase the body's muscle mass and provide energy without causing obesity and weight issues. Thin cats can do well with portions of both fats and proteins.
- Fish oils and fatty acids: Fish oils and fatty acids help to maintain strong joints and minimize the effects of brain aging.
- Carbohydrates: Carbohydrates are essential foods for energy. When feeding your cat carbs, ensure that they are highly digestible to avoid digestion and bowel problems.
Whether you are giving these nutrients in the form of foods or supplements, ensure that they are highly palatable and welcoming so that the cat doesn't reject them.
Consult with your veterinarian if you are not sure of the suitable dietary changes for your aging cat. Also, if the cat is suffering from a disease, they can recommend the best foods and supplements to aid in the healing process.