Pouch cat food has been gaining much popularity recently, and for good reasons that I will discuss later. They come in single-serve pouches of different sizes so you don’t have to worry about measuring the right portion size or even storing leftovers that can easily be contaminated or go bad. But with such convenience, it’s easy to lose track of how many pouches you have served to your cat throughout the day. It’s easy to overfeed your feline friend, especially an indoor one since they tend to eat more out of boredom and not hunger. As a cat parent, it’s important to not only offer a balanced diet but also the right amount of food so your cat has good overall health.
So, how many pouches should your cat eat per day? Experts agree that serving 3-5 pouches of food daily is enough to satisfy your cat and provide her with sufficient nourishment. Of course, each cat is different and the exact number will depend on your cat’s age, weight, breed, and their level of activity among other things.
Offering the right quantity of high-quality food to your cat, and at the right time, is vital to ensuring they have a long and healthy life. But feline nutrition can be tricky since several variables come into play. Having lived with one for many years, I can assure you that it’s more than just deciding whether to offer three or five pouches a day. In this text, I’m going to show you how much your cat should be eating per day while covering all the necessary variables so you can make the right decision for your specific cat. Without much delay, let’s get started:
How Much Should You Feed Your Cat Daily?
While the average serving is marked at 3-5 pouches a day, cats have different nutritional needs based on the following factors:
The first thing to consider is your cat’s age. Cats usually become less active as they get older, thus needing less food to avoid gaining weight. Some cats will even lose their appetite as they grow older due to illnesses or even poor dental health. That being said, kittens can be served up to 5 pouches a day to accommodate their highly active lifestyle while a cat that has lived well into her teens will need 2-3 pouches a day. It’s also important to note that your cat’s nutritional needs will change as she gets older. As such, you’ll need to modify her diet to accommodate her changing metabolism and dietary needs.
The number of pouches your cat should eat doesn’t stop at just their age; their size/weight matters as well. You should base your cat’s feeding amounts on their ideal weight and not their actual weight. For instance, the ideal weight for an adult British Shorthair is up to 5.5-16.8 Kgs for the Toms and 3.6-5.5 Kgs for a female. If your cat is underweight, it only makes sense that she eats the maximum 5 pouches a day but if she’s overweight, 2-3 pouches a day should be enough. Just because your cat is obese doesn’t mean you should starve her though. You can add a few vegetables in her diet to help bring down the weight. The most important thing is to offer low-calories foods and increase her activity levels through interactive play.
Another factor is the breed. British Shorthair cats, for instance, have huge appetites and are bigger cat reeds, and will obviously need more food. Be careful though since your British Shorthair can easily gain weight without you noticing due to their natural heavy build.
Your cat’s activity levels should also determine how many pouches she eats a day. Naturally, feeding many pouches to an inactive cat will lead to obesity. Obesity in cats is just as dangerous as it is in humans. Obese cats are at an increased risk of developing certain types of cancers, diabetes, heart disease, hypertension, osteoarthritis, and generally have a shorter lifespan.
Last, but not least, it’s important to understand your cat’s eating habits. Cats have different personalities that manifest even during feeding times. Most cats prefer eating in private in a peaceful, quiet area. But for some cats, feeding is a social activity. Such cats prefer to eat with other cats or while someone stays with them. Some cats also prefer eating small quantities of food throughout the day while others don’t mind scheduled eating.
Observing all these factors will help you determine how many pouches your cat needs daily to be satisfied, healthy, and happy. If you are still finding it hard to find the right balance, don’t worry! Most manufacturers usually provide feeding guidelines on the packaging that you can follow to find the perfect suit for your cat.
How to Feed Your Cat
Now that you know how many pouches to feed your cat daily, the next logical question is how often you should feed her. The ideal situation would be to feed her little portions and often throughout the day until the recommended daily quantity is achieved. But as well know, this may not be possible, especially for those who have to go to work during the day. Adult cats can be fed twice a day: mornings and evenings. But be sure to leave a constant supply of water for them to drink throughout the day. Kittens, on the other hand, need several meals per day and if possible they should free feed. An automatic pet feeder can be an ideal solution in this case.
Cats are animals of habit; therefore, getting them into a regular feeding routine is best for both of you. This means serving your cat food in the same location and possibly at the same time to avoid confusion. Ideally, your cat’s feeding area should be in a quiet location where they can relax and feel safe. It should also be away from their litter tray. If you have two or more cats, ensure their feeding bowls are reasonably apart to avoid confrontation. And if they don’t get along, you may want to create separate feeding areas for each one.
Hygiene is also very important when feeding cats, so serve food in clean bowls. It’s also important not to leave the food lying around for a long time. Since pouch cat food has higher moisture content, try to serve it at room temperature as it’s easier to digest and smells more attractive.
Benefits of Pouch Cat Food
This type of cat food offers several benefits over traditional dry and even canned cat food. As I had mentioned earlier, they are available in single-serve pouches so there’s no wastage and you don’t have to worry about measuring the right portion for your cat.
The next benefit is related to its moisture content, which is between 50% and 80%. As you probably know, wet food tends to retain some shape and texture of the raw ingredients and is usually higher in proteins than dry foods and much lower in carbohydrates. Both of these things are important for a cat’s diet.
Pouch cat food is also available in different forms, usually gravy or jelly, with each brand putting its own unique spin to make it more appealing to cats.
Another reason cat owners are loving pouch cat foods is the fact that they can simply tear the pouch open and pour the food into the cat bowl. There’s also the issue of safety. Tin cans can cut your fingers when opening while pouches can easily be opened without any risks. Your cat can also eat directly from the pouches without the risk of scratching their face and getting injured as they would if they eat from a can.
Most pouch cat foods are designed to be fed to a cat as a staple diet without needing the dry or canned wet food. They are healthy for a British Shorthair, so longs as you are providing the right amount of food each day. However, some are not complete and balanced and are, therefore, meant to be used as occasional treats, toppers, or mix-ins for cats. The process of choosing high-quality pouch cat food is the same as any other type of cat food. In short, it should be able to meet the basic nutritional needs of your cat.