Natural Cat Foods: An Essential Pet Nutrition Guide
As a cat parent, one of your most important duties is to provide your pet with the best food possible. A picky eater or a cat with a particular diet may be in your family. There may be times when you have been concerned about recalls or have doubts about the quality of commercial cat food. It’s a good thing you want to control what you feed your cat. Since domestic cats cannot feed themselves, they need to be fed by their owners. It is up to you to make the right choices for them and give them natural cat foods.
Is it possible to feed your cat natural food? Throughout this article, you will learn all you need to know about natural cat food. You will also be presented with a list of cat food your feline friend can try.
Let’s get started!
You Need to Feed Your Cat the Right Nutrients
Animals obtain nutrients from food and use them as a source of energy and for their metabolic processes, which help keep them alive and grow.
The commercial pet foods formulated with these exceptional standards should be able to satisfy your pets’ nutritional needs unless they have special needs or deficiencies related to illness. Nutrients essential for healthy living fall into these categories:
- There is no nutrient more important than water. Pets always need fresh and clean water, even when food can meet some of their water needs. Many illnesses can occur due to a lack of water, and even death can result.
- A vitamin catalyzes enzyme reactions. Cats need to get a tiny amount of vitamins to function appropriately metabolically. Unlike some nutrients, vitamins cannot be synthesized in the body, which makes them integral to the diet.
- Cells, tissues, organs, enzymes, hormones, and antibodies are built with proteins necessary for growth, maintenance, reproduction, and repair. Proteins are found in a variety of foods. An animal’s protein contains a complete profile of amino acids. Other protein sources include vegetables, cereals, and soy, though these are not considered complete sources.
- Proteins are made up of amino acids categorized as essential and non-essential. Dietary sources must be supplied with essential amino acids since animals cannot synthesize these substances sufficiently. On the other hand, feeding your pet non-essential amino acids is unnecessary since your pet synthesizes them.
- Energy is provided by carbohydrates, which also play a vital role in gastrointestinal health and reproduction. Carbohydrate requirements are not minimal, but glucose requirements are to ensure that vital organs like the brain receive enough energy. Carbohydrates such as fibers can help reduce chronic diarrhea by altering the bacterial population in the small intestine. A moderately fermentable fiber source is necessary for cats to benefit from fiber.
- Compared with proteins and carbohydrates, fats give your pet twice the amount of energy. Certain hormones are produced by fats, which are essential for cell structure. Fat-soluble vitamins cannot be absorbed or utilized without them. The body’s internal organs are protected by fats and insulated by them. Because a cat cannot synthesize essential fatty acids in sufficient quantities, a pet’s diet must include these fatty acids.
- A mineral is an inorganic compound that is not metabolized and doesn’t yield energy. A diet rich in these nutrients is essential for animals, as they cannot produce them. In general, minerals are primarily responsible for maintaining fluid balance, constructing bones and teeth, and involving themselves in many metabolic processes.
What is the difference between natural and organic cat food?
Natural cat food
As it applies to human food, the FDA does not yet define “natural.” But there is one for pet food. Chemically synthesized processes are not allowed to produce or process “natural” ingredients, according to the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO). In addition, it cannot contain chemicals or processing aids that are chemically synthesized. There are exceptions to this rule, such as unavoidable amounts due to good manufacturing practices.
AAFCO defines natural ingredients as those obtained from plants, animals, or mining. “Natural” refers to ingredients processed physically or thermally, purified, extracted, hydrolyzed, enzymatically, or fermented.
In addition to vitamins and minerals, pets do need a small number of synthetic ingredients. Due to this, AAFCO allows them in natural dry and wet cat food.
Organic cat food
The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) defines “organic” as applied both to human and pet food products. Following the USDA’s National Organic Program, organic crops must be grown on pesticide-free land for three years before they are certified organic. Livestock labeled “organic” is fed organic feed, doesn’t receive antibiotics or growth hormones, and has access to the outdoors.
There may be ingredients in an organic product that are not organic, even if its label specifies it is organic. The USDA classifies organic food into four levels:
- A 100% organic product means that all its ingredients are organic.
- “Organic” means 95 percent of the ingredients are organic.
- It is estimated that 70 to 95 percent of the ingredients in products labeled “made with organic” are organic.
- If less than 70% of the ingredients are organic, this statement means that more than 30% of the ingredients are not organic.
The USDA organic seal should be found on organic cat food. To qualify for that seal, pet foods must contain 95 percent to 100 percent organic ingredients.
What is the best cat food, natural or organic?
Organic and natural cat food can be chosen according to personal preferences. You can choose the following options depending on your comfort level and confidence level.
It is a must to feed your cat a complete and balanced diet according to their life stage is a must. AAFCO’s standard nutrient profiles must be met or exceeded for pet food to be rated complete and balanced.
Excellent and Healthiest Natural Organic Cat Food
Stella & Chewy’s Freeze-Dried Raw Absolutely Rabbit Dinner Morsels Cat Food
Providing your cat with raw meat from freeze-dried food provides a safe, convenient way to offer them a prey-model diet.
Rabbit meat is the primary ingredient in the raw morsels, a source of protein and nutrients appropriate for the species. Almost all of the protein in the recipe comes from animals.
Upon removing the morsels from the bag, they complexed and dried. Adding warm water to the chunks will transform them into a hydrating meal.
Many food ingredients are derived from plants, including pumpkin seeds, olive oil, dandelion, and dried kelp. Due to its high levels of animal protein and absence of artificial colors and preservatives, it is a convenient, safe alternative to raw food. A choice of moisture content is also available. There are, however, generally high costs associated with it.
Smalls Cat Food
Chicken, turkey, and fish are some of the premium protein sources used by Smalls to make fresh cat food.
The cats were smitten with it as soon as they tried it. Your cat will enjoy this healthy, tasty treat tailored to their needs. Fresh raw and freeze-dried raw options are available with different recipes so that you can choose the protein your cat prefers.
This food features a high moisture content, a satisfying texture, species-appropriate protein, and a human-grade consistency. However, the price is higher than the market average.
Taste of the Wild Rocky Mountain Grain-Free Dry Cat Food
Authentic salmon taste is present in both varieties of this cat food. As an added benefit, it offers cats a balanced diet full of vitamins and minerals. They are made from vegetables and fruits, which combine with meat flavor to form a tasty treat most cats love.
Cats’ nutritional needs are met, and their coats are kept shiny with the ingredients in this product. Cats are more likely to consume all the food when the food is easy to digest and swallow.
In addition to giving your cat the taste of wild meat, like venison, salmon, and trout, this food also boosts its immunity. Due to its grain-free composition, it reduces the risk of allergic reactions. Even though this product is expensive, it contains organic ingredients that can improve cats’ coats and help them lose weight.
Nature’s Logic All Life Stages Dry Cat Food
Over 60% of the Animal Protein in Nature’s Logic All Life Stages Dry Cat Food comes from animal sources, so there are no fillers like rice, corn, or soy. There are no artificial ingredients added to this product. You can also count on your cat getting essential vitamins and minerals because it contains fruits and vegetables. Your feline’s digestive system will benefit from the probiotics included in the food.
When smelling chicken, some cats have been reluctant to eat it. Others find the density of chicken too rich.
Castor & Pollux Organix Dry Kitten Food
Castor & Pollux Organix Dry Kitten Food is the best choice for kittens! The consumption of flaxseeds and organic coconut oil is beneficial for the growth and development of your kitten.
Healthy muscles require protein, which can be found in organic free-range chicken. All ingredients are natural and organic and are made in the U.S.A. There were no synthetic fertilisers or hormones used during their production. These omega-3 fatty acids keep kitten coats shiny and healthy. Hairballs will also be kept at bay with the fiber added.
Occasionally, kittens reject this food because it isn’t tasty enough for them. Also, kittens have been reported to develop allergies to it.
What Should You Know Before Buying Organic Cat Food?
To make organic cat food, organic ingredients must be grown on land that has not been treated with pesticides for at least three years. In this case, pesticides aren’t used in manufacturing, and the product will be less likely to contain allergens and toxins.
Organic food is the purest definition, but it also means food made from fresh, nutritious ingredients designed to be healthy and balanced for cats. Organic cat food consumers should research and discover which brands offer wholesome, balanced cat food that goes above and beyond what is required for organic classification.
Why You Should Buy Organic Cat Food
What are the benefits of feeding your organic cat food? Let’s look at the advantages of this type of food.
- The ingredients in organic cat food are usually much healthier than conventional cat food, particularly if they have not been contaminated with toxins such as pesticides. A pet is less likely to be injured, suffer unexpected side effects, or be allergic to organically grown ingredients.
- Several cat foods contain by-products from animals that are unhealthy in some way. Regarding cat food, it’s always better to go organic and avoid the potential issues other types can cause.
- You can easily balance your cat’s weight with organic foods since they often contain healthy ingredients. Domesticated cats are increasingly overweight due to other types of cat food containing fattening filler and unhealthy ingredients. By using organic food, you won’t have to restrict how much food you give your cat or put them on a diet.
Healthy Human Foods Cats Can Eat
Cats are carnivores and should be fed a diet high in protein and fat. However, many cat owners don’t know the importance of feeding their cats human food. It’s allowable to feed your human food because they provide vitamins, minerals, proteins, and other nutrients that can help keep your feline friend healthy.
- It is imperative that meat cats consume meat, as they are obligate carnivores. Your cat will enjoy hearty meals, including chicken, turkey, and duck, to stay healthy and happy.
- You might need to add more fiber to your cat’s diet if you notice them chewing on houseplants. Try substituting small portions of vegetables such as carrots, broccoli, asparagus, or squash for those lush leaves (which may be covered in toxic pesticides).
- Cooked eggs are a great source of protein, iron, and other minerals for your cat. In contrast, raw eggs pose a risk for salmonella and E. coli. That’s something to keep in mind!
- Your cat will love whole grains, whether they are refined or unrefined. Unlike refined grains, vitamins, iron, and fiber are all found in whole grains. Cats can enjoy human foods such as oatmeal (with water) and brown rice on a well-balanced diet.
- It is common for kittens to enjoy milk and to become lactose intolerant later in life. A sick cat can be persuaded to take its medicine by giving it small amounts of cheese and milk.
- Your cat’s skin and coat will benefit significantly from avocados, as they are not only yummy and safe human foods but also abundant in vitamins A, C, E, and B6.
- To maintain a healthy and balanced ratio of fatty acids in cats and dogs, they must consume fish. Salmon, tuna, herring, and crab provide the right proportions of these nutrients for your cat.
It is possible to feed your organic cat food, but you need to find a brand and style that appeals to them and is healthy. We hope we’ve made it easier for you, but don’t hesitate to ask your veterinarian about the right food for your cat and how to meet its nutritional needs. You should carefully examine the contents of any organic food you plan to purchase before purchasing it!
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the benefits of feeding your cat a natural diet?
Cats are carnivores, and their diet is mainly composed of meat. There are a few other foods, but it is not the same as the diet of their ancestors. A natural diet for your cat will help them maintain a healthy body weight, lower the risk of diseases like diabetes and cancer, and keep their teeth clean and healthy.
What is the difference between wet and dry cat food?
Wet cat food is the most popular type because it provides more moisture to the cats’ digestive system. Dry cat food doesn’t provide as much moisture, leading to dehydration in cats.
What are some of the dangers of artificial cat food?
Artificial cat food can be dangerous because it contains no natural nutrients. It is just a substitute for the nutrients cats need to stay healthy. Cats are carnivores, so they need meat and other animal parts in their diet. Artificial cat food doesn’t have these ingredients, which can cause health problems like kidney disease and urinary tract infections.
Do cats need supplements with their food?
Cats can get these nutrients from their food, but some cats may require supplements with their food. Cats that eat dry food may need a supplement for moisture, whereas cats that eat canned food may need a supplement for minerals like iodine and selenium. Furthermore, some cats have digestive problems, which can be alleviated with a supplement.