We all know that cats are fussy eaters, but this can have a lot to do with their specific dietary needs. So what’s best for your precious kitty – wet or dry food? Here’s a quick look at the benefits and problems associated with each:
A diet consisting of only dry food can be problematic for cats because, as the name suggests, there isn’t much water content in it. Not enough moisture in your cat’s diet can lead to urinary tract disease, among other issues. Many dry foods are also high in carbohydrate, and feeding your cat a carbohydrate-rich diet can lead to obesity, diabetes and intestinal problems. Cats are carnivores who thrive on a diet predominantly consisting of protein, but it needs to be animal-based protein over the plant-based protein that a lot of dry foods contain.
So does feeding your cat a lot of wet food solve the problem? Wet or canned food can be better for cats because it ensures that they get some hydration when they eat. In the wild, cats eat animals – which are usually around 75% water! Canned cat food has about the same level of water as this (as opposed to dry foods at only 10% or less) so is a better option for hydration. However, you’ll still need to check the ingredients list to make sure that it is high in animal-proteins and low in carbohydrates and plant-proteins. The main downside of canned pet food is that it tends to be more expensive than its dried counterpart, but cats usually enjoy the taste much more!
Words of advice
Ignore marketing words like ‘premium’ or ‘gourmet’ and check the actual ingredients in the cat food. Ask your vet if they have any recommendations for your cat’s diet, and make sure that your cat actually likes the food before buying it in bulk. Louise Murray, DVM, is the vice president of the ASPCA’s Bergh Memorial Animal Hospital in New York and she said that cats would rather go on hunger strikes than eat something they don’t like!