A study performed at Auckland’s Massey University found that cats fed a wet food diet are less commonly overweight than those on dry food diets.
Dr. David Thomas made this finding during a study related to obesity in cats and their owners, which found that between 25 and 40 percent of cats are overweight.
The study’s goal was to determine if there is a definitive link between weight gain and dry food consumption.
Sixteen cats were studied in all. They were split into two groups – initially each cat was fed dry food. Then, half of the cats’ diets were changed to wet food. According to Dr. Thomas, cats on wet food lost weight and the others gained weight.
He speculates this is because cats feel full more quickly by eating wet food.
Another important factor is that dry foods tend to consist of carbohydrates. Domestic cats require a mostly protein diet – and wet foods contain, in large part, meat.
That’s not the only determining factor, though. Dr. Thomas says overweight cats tend to be fed “on demand,” meaning when their bowls empty the owner replenishes the supply immediately.
Vets say proper feeding requires scheduled meal times with equal proportion at each meal. That way, the cat can become accustomed to a routine, enabling it to maintain a healthy weight.
Our best advice – check the ingredient labeling on your cat’s food, and make sure the ingredients mesh with your cat’s dietary needs. Consult your vet if you’re not sure – they’ll tell you exactly what your feline needs to live a long, fit life.
Summer Valley Veterinary Clinic
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