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    How to buy healthy cat food on a budget?

    Articlecat health and wellbeingFriday 16 September 2011

    Your cat’s health is determined by various factors, such as daily exercise, living conditions etc. However, the kind of food your cat eats is related directly with your feline’s health. Cats are known for being individuals. They have their own special nutritional need and preferences – chicken, fish, canned food, dry food, all mixed food. Everything depends on your cat’s individual choice and also you should remember that there is neither universal food nor brand good for every cat. It might happen that you feed your cats with very well-formulated food to a group and it results that most of them do great on it, some do marginally well, and a few may actually get sick from it due to food intolerances or other medical problems and issues. Fortunately for all the cat owners, there is a great variety of offer with well-formulated cat food for felines at all life stages. It is recommended you try several options in order to determine which of the products works best for your cat. 

    Although there are dozens of brands available on the market and foods to choose to from, they might have different nutritious. More expensive brands do not mean more suitable for your cat. Feeding your pet healthy food does not necessarily have to strain on your budget. Try to choose food high in protein as this is what your cat needs most to grow. Remember however, that not all proteins are the same. The two types of proteins available in cat foods are plant based and animal based. Cats are natural carnivores so the best food would be one based on animal protein. Choose a canned food for optimal health as dry foods might contain plant proteins. Canned or wet foods contain animal proteins. Dry foods do not contain enough water and are often too high in carbohydrates. Lack of water might lead to urinary issues such as crystals and carbohydrates can lead to weight gain and can disrupt blood sugar balance. 

    Apart from the food, you should remember to keep your cat's water bowl full at all times. Remember to keep it fresh and change it often, especially during the summer when the temperatures are rising. Cats do not have strong thirst instinct, which can lead to dehydration. Canned food might contain more water but it is still not enough to keep your cat healthy. Water might be the cheapest way to get your cat hydrated. Learn to read the labels. Not all canned foods are created equal. A brand name is not necessarily better than less expensive alternatives. The ingredients in a healthy food contain real meat (not a by-product), whole grains (such as rice, barley and oats), and vegetables or/and fruit. The ingredients in less healthy foods contain by-product meal, corn, wheat, soy, colours and preservatives such as BHA, BHT and propylene glycol. These ingredients might lead to side effects and in the end, do not provide any nutritional value. Ingredients are usually listed in order of weight. Look for a meat at the first ingredient, such as chicken or an organ, such as liver. The guaranteed analysis shows a breakdown of nutrition listed by percentages. 

    Remember that only because a product is a brand name, it must be healthy. Many brand-name pet foods are lacking key ingredients so read and compare labels to find the best value.

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