Proper Feeding & Helpful Hints for your Ocicat / Kitten
Waiting for Your Kitten
Your Ocicat kitten has enjoyed top quality meals whilst growing up at Oz Catz—to ensure your kitten continues to grow well we recommend you follow our raw meat diet.
BUT—raw meat alone is not enough! Take note of the other requirements for good kitten/cat nutrition.
Your Kitten is a Tiny Tiger
Your kitten and the big cats have a lot in common. The only significant difference is size.
All cats are highly evolved predators and meat-eaters at heart. Just because we have brought the cat into our homes and into our lives has not changed their basic instincts nor their physiology.
Cats are Social Animals
Our cats have no need to compete for food so this enables them to form strong social bonds with us.
Cats see us as a member of their pride—so make sure they see you as—HEAD OF THEIR PRIDE!!
Cats are Born Hunters
Just like the big cats, our pet cats have the same hunting instinct. You can see this when you watch your kitten playing—stalking, chasing, pouncing on his pretend prey.
Hunting is just a natural instinct to them, but nevertheless, all cats are individuals and some are more hunter-orientated than others.
Cats are Obligate Carnivores
This means that your kitten and cat must have meat in their daily diet. They cannot exist as vegetarians or on grains.
Your kitten has the same basic food needs as the biggest lion or tiger in the wild—the only difference is the size of the prey. The cat’s body is designed to process raw, prey-based diets.
Cats’ Teeth are Made for Meat
Little cat or big cat—their teeth are those of a meat-eating predator. Their teeth are designed specially to hold and kill prey and to cut through skin, meat and bone.
Cat’s Digestive System
Your cat’s digestive system is little different from a wild cat whose diet consists of 90—95% muscle, bone and animal organs. Cats in the wild eat mice and other small creatures like rabbits, insects, frogs, lizards and birds.
Cats are unique in that they are designed to metabolize this diet which is high in moisture, protein and very low in carbohydrates.
Cats get most of their energy from glucose that their livers process from protein—not carbohydrates.
Protein is also required for the formation of healthy cells, enzymes, hormones, ligaments, tendons, organs and protective tissues.
Cats need fats for conversion to energy and to keep their coats in good condition.
In the diet of a wild cat, fat comes from the meat and bone marrow, eyes and brains of their prey.
Carbohydrates for the wild cat comes from the intestinal contents of small animals like mice or birds which graze on grasses.
Cats are naturally semi-dehydrated, originating as they do from a desert species.
Cats fed dry food risk becoming chronically dehydrated, increasing the risk of urinary and kidney problems. Most of a cat’s moisture requirements come from food. Dry food provides onlyabout 10% moisture.
“Real Food for Healthy Dogs & Cats—Simple Homemade Food”3rd Edition written by Beth Taylor & Karen Shaw Becker, D.V.M.
“Food Pets Die For—Shocking Facts About Pet Food”by Ann N. Martin
“Your Cat—Simple New Secrets for a Longer, Stronger Life”by Elizabeth M. Hodgkins, D.V.M
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Helpful Hints for feeding your kitten / cat
Make sure your cat eats every day
Never let him go more than 24 hours without food
Being hungry encourages him to try new foods
Thaw frozen raw foods in the refrigerator
Warm raw foods before serving
Provide a quiet stress-free place for his meals—preferably not in the kitchen as this will encourage to seek more food on your kitchen benches
If your cat already has health issues like diabetes—consult a cat specialist before making the transition as diet changes can cause changes in blood sugar levels.
Feed your cat on a flat plate—not a bowl - cats don't like getting their whiskers dirty and food on a plate makes it easier for them to attack it!
Your cat or kitten does not need milk - milk can produce tummy upsets
Serve your cat’s meal on a clean plate for every meal
Vary your cat’s diet so he waits or his next meal with anticipation
When you include bones in his meal, make sure the bones don’t get stuck between his teeth or across the roof of his mouth
Always feed human quality meats—pet meats contain excessive amounts of preservatives - to test this, leave some pet meat on the bench for 24 hours - if it does not spoil, it's because of the preservatives, which also destroy vitamins and minerals
Alternate meat types to provide variety and better nutrition
Include whole bones only 2—3 times each week—unless included in a minced mixture - it takes much longer to digest whole bones than meat
Mix the different foods together so fussy cats cannot eat only their favourite bits
Include a raw egg twice each week
Add offal—lamb hearts, chicken hearts, chicken giblets, beef hearts, etc. to every meal
Do NOT include liver in meals more than once each week—excess Vitamin A can lead to serious bone abnormalities
If serving only an evening meal, a small chicken neck or yoghurt is good for breakfast
Yoghurt is good for gut health
Prepare meats and offal in advance and freeze in meal sized portions in separate freezer bags
Clean cutting board well between handling and chopping different types of meats
More is NOT better when it comes to adding vitamin, mineral and calcium supplements— too much is as bad as not enough and will cause serious health issues