For those who have kibble addicts, it’s common for to leave cat food out all day. Dry food is a convenient way to offer our kitties an all day buffet, if you will. Free feeding is the most common way domesticated cats are fed in America, but that doesn’t mean it’s the healthiest.
If you’re looking to feed your cat a healthier and more species appropriate diet, picking up the all day buffet is necessary. Cats are not designed to eat at their leisure, so free feeding isn’t healthy for their bodies or minds.
Picking Up The All Day Buffet
The first step to a healthier cat is picking up the bowl and scheduling routine feeding times. Routine feeding in smaller amounts has been proven to reduce stress in cats and it also helps increase hunger at feeding time. Cats addicted to dry food are less apt to eat the healthier food you put down because they don’t have to – and they probably aren’t hungry anyway. When fed at scheduled times each day, cat’s bodies are creating digestive enzymes in the saliva to prepare for food. This gives our cats the hunger and the extra desire they needs to explore new, healthier foods.
Once the option of the buffet is gone and you have a hungry kitty, she will be much more likely to accept the healthier canned or raw food you put out for her at this time. We’re in no way suggesting that you starve your kitty (which is dangerous), but hunger is your friend.
We understand how heartbreaking it can be to take away the all day buffet of food at first. When we did this our cats were following us around and looking at us like we were starving them. After a few days of scheduled feedings, however, they seemed happier and way more excited to eat. The transition from kibble to a species appropriate healthy diet was much easier from this point on.
Three years later and our cats are still fed a healthy diet on a daily routine, and they are as happy and healthy as ever!
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