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How to Feed Your Older Cats Properly

Because of their advanced age, senior and geriatric cats should be given special feeding considerations. Older cats can develop tooth problems and may find it hard to eat dry food. If that is the case with your senior cat, switch his diet to canned food or moisten the dry food with some canned food.

A cat's metabolism slows as he ages, and his senses of smell and taste begin to diminish. As a result, many older cats lose interest in food and become too thin. If your senior cat seems to have lost his appetite, try offering him some dry food soaked in warm chicken or beef broth. You also can switch to a canned food only diet. Canned food tastes and smells more appealing than dry food, and it is easier to digest.

When cats ages, they slow down and become less active. As a result, senior or geriatric cats require fewer calories than middle aged adult cats do. They need less protein in their diets than active adults. Too much protein can lead to kidney problems. Some owners give their older cats a specially formulated food designed for seniors. Ask your veterinarian if your cat needs a special diet or any vitamin supplements to keep him healthy and happy in his golden years.

Organic cat food

Organic cat and kitten food comes in several varieties and can be found in health food stores and pet supply stores. Organic foods contain ingredients that are grown or raised without pesticides, chemical fertilizers, growth hormones or antibiotics. There are no preservatives, chemical flavorings, colorings or other additives, so it does not have a long shelf life. It is also more expensive than other traditional types of cat food, but if you follow an organic diet for yourself, you may decide to do the same for your cat.

Homemade meals and supplements

If you are feeding your cat or kitten a home cooked diet, you need to add vitamin supplements to the food. You can purchase feline vitamin supplements from a veterinarian or at a pet supply store. These vitamins come either in a tablet form that can be crushed up and mixed with the food orin a liquid that can be given directly or added to the food.

If you give your cat or kitten a 100 percent balanced commercially prepared food, no supplements are needed. Adding extra vitamins to your cat's diet can be dangerous, so do not add them unless your veterinarian specifically instructs you to do so. The vet will tell you what type, dosage, and frequency of supplementation that your pet needs if any.

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