Very often, both experienced and novice pet owners wonder if dry food is harmful to cats or dogs. Before answering it unambiguously, it is useful to clarify the composition of a particular feed, the effect of its components on the health of the cat, as well as get acquainted with the reviews of professional veterinarians.
5 pluses of dry food
If you take a specific dry food for cats, whether it is harmful or not, you can answer not only based on an analysis of the composition. You should also take into account which brand is involved. Famous manufacturers that produce food under well-known brands (for example, "Whiskas") take their reputation with great responsibility. And regarding lesser-known products, doubts may arise: if a cat eats mainly dry food, it is better to purchase the highest quality ones.
1. Component balance
Such varieties include feeds of "premium" classes, as well as "extra premium". Their main advantage and, accordingly, the main reason for their popularity is that they contain the optimal amount:
- mineral additives.
Obviously, feeding a cat fully at the expense of homemade food is not always obtained. Therefore, if you stand on the fact that the most important thing is a full-fledged diet of a cat, it is better to stop the choice on a quality dry feed.
2. Correspondence to the age and condition of the body
Another undoubted plus of this type of food is the ability to choose the best option based on:
- developmental stages (pregnant, lactating cat);
- body conditions (obesity, the development of other diseases).
Feeding in accordance with the individual characteristics of the cat is most beneficial: the body receives exactly those substances that it needs at this stage of development.
3. Cleaning teeth from plaque
The cat has to gnaw dense granules that begin to crumble into pieces of different sizes. Therefore, it is believed that in this way it is possible to ensure the prevention of plaque and the appearance of tartar. On the other hand, cat food is harmful to the cat in cases where a large amount of carbohydrates is found among the components, they can ruin the tooth enamel. Substances turn into sugars, which serve as a breeding ground for bacteria. Therefore, there are times when such a diet is harmful to the animal.
4. The presence of taurine - benefits for the whole body
Almost all such types of food for cats contain the beneficial substance taurine. It has a complex effect on the body.:
- Prevention of the development of heart and vascular diseases.
- Providing normal heart rate and blood pressure.
- Participation in metabolic processes in the nervous system.
- Activation of digestion (digestion of fats in the intestine without the participation of taurine is almost impossible).
5. Practicality and convenience
Finally, dry food is also convenient in that it significantly saves time and effort: it is enough to simply give the right amount of components (and you can easily measure by volume or by weight). This is especially important for busy people who have almost no time to prepare food specifically for the cat. In addition, you can store such goods without a refrigerator. It is important to take care of the absence of direct sunlight and excessive humidity.
3 disadvantages of dry food
It is important to understand that this type of food can be harmful to the cat, especially when it comes to little-known brands that are not credible.
Uniformity of diet
The harm of dry cat food is manifested under the condition of a constant, uniform feeding regime for a long time. First of all, the digestive system begins to suffer:
- constipation, bowel obstruction develop;
- gastritis, ulcers are formed;
- disturbances in the liver are observed.
Obviously, such diseases develop over a long time, so the owner should carefully monitor the condition of the cat. When the first signs of digestive disorders appear, it is best to consult your veterinarian about how to adjust your diet.
Lack of moisture in the body
Obviously, the main harmfulness of dry food is a lack of moisture, which greatly distinguishes it from other types of food. As a rule, manufacturers recommend wetting the granules, as well as constantly putting a bowl of clean, fresh water. But the pet may not drink it in sufficient quantities, because of which the body will gradually get dehydrated.
The reason for this phenomenon is that the cat is a predator, and he is used to getting moisture mainly from the victim’s body. Interestingly, even in the wild, cats (tigers, lions and others) rarely go to watering places. Thus, if the animal drinks very little water, the “dry” type of food is harmful and even dangerous. It is best to alternate it with ordinary food and wet foods.
The presence of unsafe chemical components
Finally, the feed is also harmful because it contains chemicals that ensure its long-term storage - preservatives. As a result, the cat constantly receives not only valuable components, but also unsafe “chemistry”, the influence of which is assessed negatively in the distant future (several years ahead). Of course, the premium product is not so harmful, but giving the cat only dry food is highly discouraged.
The basis of a normal diet is always a balanced, varied diet and relatively accurate observance of the daily intake of calories, vitamins and minerals. Even the best food, if used improperly, will do more harm to the cat than good. Veterinarians say that dry and wet modes are better to alternate. This is especially important for those animals that have been eating uniformly for a long time.