Any animal needs the right diet and proper nutrition to ensure longevity. Being a responsible cat owner, the duty falls on your shoulders to select the right food for your lovely little tigers. But should you feed your cat dry or wet food? We will answer this question to provide you proper guidance in taking care of your cats.
Admittedly, there are many issues about dry food and the top three and most significant are protein type, carbohydrate content, and water content. Studies have also shown that there are many diseases associated with eating kibble or dry food such as diabetes, hairballs, inflammatory bowel disease, obesity, asthma, and dental health. To understand further, let us discuss the three main problems with dry food one by one.
Dry cat food has high plant-based protein. If you do not know by now, cats are carnivores in nature. In the wild, cats hunt birds and rats. By natural design, cats are obligate carnivores and this means their bodies were designed to get protein from other animals. This is why lions, tigers, and other members of the cat family are fed real meat in captivity. Dry cat food, having plant-based protein, does not provide enough of this essential amino acid to your pets.
To top that, cats are not physically built to effectively digest protein coming from plants. Their internal organs are designed in such a way that they can absorb protein better if the protein came from animal meat. Cats also need Taurine. It is an essential amino acid found in protein but plant protein contains very little of it compared to animal-based protein. Without Taurine, cats are likely to develop blindness and heart diseases. In humans, Taurine is essential for babies to develop their brains and cognitive functions.
As mentioned earlier, cats do not eat grass. This means they have lesser carbohydrate demands than other animals because plants like grains or wheat are high sources of carbohydrates. The problem with dry food is that it contains too much carbohydrate that our cats do not need. In the wild, cats will eat smaller animals that have high levels of protein and high moisture content. Dry cat food does not provide this but it has high carbohydrate content. Cats do not need carbohydrates and feeding them with food that has high carbohydrate content is detrimental to their health.
Every living thing needs water. The problem with cats is that they do not seem to have a natural drive to get thirsty. You will observe that they rarely drink water compared to dogs. This kind of flaw in their natural design poses serious risks on their health.
And this is why you need to induce a lot of fluid on their diet. If you do not do so, you are risking your cats to develop chronic dehydration. Needless to say, dry food has very low moisture content compared to wet canned food. In the wild, a mouse or a bird normally has 70% water. With this raw diet, the cat is getting enough protein, less carbohydrates, and 70% water. Dry foods or kibble only contain about 10% water and this is not enough to supply your cat with the right amount of fluid.
So what is the verdict? Feed your cats with canned wet food or raw diet that can meet all these three basic dietary requirements. Also, you have to be careful since not all wet foods meet this nutritional value. Read the labels carefully and use sound judgment.