Holistic Approach to Feeding Your Cat in 6 Easy Steps!
In the case of us cats – you first have to understand that our DNA is 96% the same as many cats in the wild. Therefore it is important to think about our ancestral lifestyle and see how you can apply it to our modern day lifestyle to help ensure a long healthy and stress-free cat life for us.
What is an Holistic Approach? A holistic approach is to provide support to the whole individual (human and animal) and consider their physical, emotional, social and spiritual wellbeing.
The concept is to consider the “total wellness” of the individual and not sacrifice one aspect for another. For example taking certain drugs which can cause other areas of the individual to suffer and therefore do more damage than they might cure.
The intent is to be pro-active and anticipate what is needed for the wellness of the whole animal - cats in this case. Us kitties are sensitive creatures and can get stressed easily and suffer if certain trigger points are not addressed.
I, Laszlo have put together a simple list of 6 easy-to-follow steps to take a holistic approach to feeding your cat.
Cats are what we eat – just like you humans!
So feed us our ancestral diet…biologically appropriate raw food…fresh whole raw animal protein, raw bones and raw organs – available frozen and freeze-dried.
At the very least eliminate kibble which mom calls “death nuggets” and focus on lightly -cooked limited ingredients wet food. READ the ingredients in all food you buy – if it’s first ingredient is not whole animal protein – don’t buy it! We need a minimum of 90% whole muscle meat to thrive.
Freeze-dried raw food is great option for people who want a shelf-stable product – and all they have to do is re-hydrate the freeze-dried food with ½ cup of water and serve. *please note that freeze-dried is a more expensive process than buying the same exact raw food frozen so be prepared to pay 30% more.
By nature cats do not graze, so leaving out a bowl of kibble all day goes against our ancestral habits.
Besides eating kibble all day is the same as you humans eating at McDonalds everyday!
We eat 2 meals a day - breakfast and dinner and we also get a midday treat – freeze-dried turkey breast or duck.
Mom puts our raw food breakfast and dinner food down and we 3 kitties eat every thing up in 5-10 minutes. Just like we would in “the wild”.
When you train your cat to 2 set meals a day verses the “free-grazing” food out all day method – you actually stimulate our appetite and we are excited at mealtime and eat with great gusto finishing everything up.
Every day hydrate our food to ensure that we do not become dehydrated
This is the easiest way to get water into us cats. As we are desert animals, we are not hardwired to drink water ancestrally. Chronic Kidney disease is very common in cats as young as 3 years old – so be pro-active and put a cup of water in our food every day...1/2 cup with breakfast and 1/2 cup with dinner.
Serve our food in a wide and low (8” X 1”) stainless steel or glass bowl to avoid “whisker fatigue”.
Some people think this is a myth – but that is false. As you know, our whiskers are our “navigation tools”, and when we eat from a taller and narrower bowl it forces our whiskers to bend back and causes stress. We don’t like that! As a result, some of us cats will take our food out of the bowl and eat it on the floor next to the bowl.
Elevate our bowl to 3” – 4” off the floor so that our esophagus is “more level” with the bowl.
It has helped me a lot to not have “scarf and barf” incidents after eating! I will say that some cat people don’t believe in raising the bowl – saying it can cause possible bloating and a twisted stomach. Upon further investigation, the word from the holistic vets mom spoke to is that it can occur in canines, but is very rare in felines.
In multiple cat homes, feed each cat in a separate area to protect “mealtime security”.
Domestic house cats are social by nature, but we prefer to dine in private. Just because you humans like to eat together at a communal dining table, don’t assume that we are the same.
With multiple cats there is often one food bully; even I have been accused of being one! And the skiddish cats that are affected by the bullies, don’t get enough food and nutrients in order to stay healthy and not stressed.
Mom feeds Beau and Bouvier in 2 different places in the kitchen and I eat in the bathroom. Even if your home is tiny, you can still find corners to feed in – and be sure to face us cats to the wall with our backs to the room.
Even with all these pro-active steps to provide mealtime security in place, Mom remains in the area as the "food police" until we are all finished eating.
Six Simple Lifestyle shifts...start one at a time!
With these 6 simple steps, you can improve your cat’s dining experience that is more in line with their ancestral needs.
With these steps in place, you can help ensure that your cat lives a long healthier life – and avoids many of the food-related human ailments that affect many cats today such as obesity and diabetes.