Thursday, June 13, 2024

How Many Calories Should Cats Eat Per Day

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An Example Of How To Use A Food Scale To Measure Wet Food

How Much Food Does My Cat Need?

I find it easier to work in grams rather than ounces, because with ounces you end up with very small decimals, which can make calculations a little confusing. So, the first thing to do is to convert the ounces in your can of wet food into grams. We dont have to be too precise, so we can just multiply the number of ounces in your can of cat food by 28. Well use an imaginary 3-ounce can of cat food:

3 ounces X 28 = 84 grams of food in a can

Next, divide the number of calories per can by the number of grams of food in a can. Lets say our fictional food has 110 calories per can, so:

110 calories / 84 grams = 1.3 calories per gram

So, we know that every gram of food has 1.3 calories.

Our pretend cat above needs to eat 178 calories a day. Divide the number of total calories your cat should be eating by the number of calories in every gram of food.

178 calories per day / 1.3 calories per gram = 137 grams of food

Set your scale to weigh in grams. Put a container on your scale, zero it out, or press tare if your scale has that button. This prevents the weight of the container from being weighed. Keep adding wet food until you get to 137 grams. Now you have all of todays food in one container.

How Much Should A Maine Coon Cat Weigh

Maine Coons are quite rugged and athletic felines, so do Maine Coons get fat?

The truth is that even these powerful cats can struggle with obesity, which is why it is incredibly important to monitor your cats weight.

You can do this by using our Maine Coon growth chart to gauge the weight range your Maine Coon cat should be, according to their age.

Keep in mind that a Maine Coons weight can range anywhere between 8 and 25 pounds, which is a huge range.

It is difficult to see if your cat is a healthy weight since a Maine Coons thick fur can make it very difficult to tell. As a result, the best way to tell if your cat is underweight or overweight is to feel its ribs.

Therefore, for those of you wondering, is my Maine Coon overweight, you should focus on how your cats body feels instead of the number you see on the scale.

A healthy cats ribs will feel as though there is a thick layer of cloth over them.

Underweight cats, however, have sharp ribs that are easily felt.

If you think your cat is underweight or overweight, you should discuss the next steps with your vet before making any changes to your cats diet.

The reason I say this is because some owners put their cats on a strict diet if they think their cat is overweight. They assume it is best to make their cats lose weight as fast as possible.

This is actually incredibly dangerous, though, as cats need to lose weight at a very gradual pace.

What To Do When Your Cat Wont Eat

Cats eat instinctively, so if my Maine Coon wont eat, I know somethings wrong.

If youre wondering, why is my Maine Coon not eating, then here is what you can do to get your cats diet back on track:

  • Find Food Your Cat Likes: Your cat might be refusing to eat because it is picky. Try a variety of food brands and flavors to see if you can find something your cat enjoys. If your Maine Coon wont eat wet food, it might be offended by the way it smells since wet food smells stronger, and cats have delicate noses.
  • Watch Out For Allergies: Your cat might be refusing to eat because it is allergic to its food. Try to find a food without seafood, wheat, or other common allergens. You can also take your cat to the vet to get it tested for allergies.
  • Change Your Cats Food Bowl: If you use a deep, small food bowl, it could be causing your cat to experience discomfort as its whiskers are pushed against the bowl. Switch to a wide, shallow dish instead.
  • Make Sure Your Cat Feels Safe: Another reason your Maine Coon might not be eating is because it does not feel secure in its environment. Cats that are eating are vulnerable to attack. Therefore, if you have other pets in the house, your cat might feel insecure. Try putting your cat in a room away from other animals, or up high on a counter or somewhere dogs or other pets cannot reach it.

Maine Coon Raw Food Diet

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How To Make Keeping Track Of How Much A Cat Is Eating A Little Easier

Remember the earlier fictional calculation that resulted in a feeding our pretend cat 1 3/8ths of a can?

Who can scoop out precisely 1 3/8ths of a can?

What I recommend is scooping out a whole days worth of food into a plastic container at the beginning of the day. Then every time you feed a meal, scoop from the plastic container. Each meal might not be exactly the same number of calories as the last meal, but by the end of the day, your cat will have had roughly the number of calories you intended for him to have.

The same goes for dry food. If you use a free-feeder, scoop out the days allotment into the feeder. That will keep uneaten food in the feeder from getting stale, and it will also help you monitor how much your cat is actually eating. If you have to take a thin cat to the vet, for example, it will be helpful for your vet to know exactly how much she has been eating.

Even if you dont free feed, its good to keep todays food in a certain bag or container. That way, if anyone else feeds the cat, theyll know to use only the food in the special container, and not just scoop out a random amount.

What Is The Best Way To Feed My Cat Dry Food

Calculating How Much Wet Food to Feed a Cat Guide

With a blended feeding routine, you may feed your cat dry food in the morning, and wet in the evening. This way, she can graze on the dry food throughout the day if she chooses, and you can dispose of any dried out wet food before going to bed. There is also the option of mixing your cats dry food with wet cat food,

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How Does Your Cats Size Impact Their Nutritional Needs

If youve ever seen litters of kittens, you know that theres usually one kitten thats smaller and one thats larger than the others. Sometimes, genetics can impact a cats size, so you might have a smaller Maine Coon, or a larger Singapura, and youll have to adjust their meals accordingly.

You can apply the typical 4045 calorie per kilogram of their body weight method to determine their approximate daily food intake.

Why Do Cats Need Wet Food

Many veterinarians recommend that cats eat a diet of exclusively or mostly wet food. There are a couple of reasons for this. First, cats are obligate carnivores and are not designed to ingest many carbohydrates . Dry food will automatically contain many more carbohydrates than wet food. For many cats, dry food consumption leads to obesity.

Secondly, most cats are not big water drinkers and tend to keep themselves on the edge of dehydration. Wet food naturally provides more water in the diet, which supports the kidneys, urinary tract, and overall health.

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How Much Food Should A Kitten Eat

From 8 weeks to 4 months of age, it is necessary to give young cats 5 servings of food a day , with 5 grams of dry or moist food per serving. Remember that these animals do not usually drink a lot of water, so you should alternate the dry feed with wet food to supplement this lack of fluid. So, if during the first months of life it is necessary to give them 5 meals a day as already mentioned, try to have 2 servings of dry food and 3 servings of moist food, for example.

At this stage of their life, their stomach is very small and cannot fit large amounts of food for each meal, but as our pet grows, they will need a little more food at each sitting. So, from 4 to 6 months of age, it is necessary to increase their portions by 10 grams per intake so they are not lacking any nutrients. You should always try to maintain their ideal weight.

After 6 and up to 8 months, you should reduce their food intake to 3 meals per day, with between 20 and 30 grams per serving. And from 8 to 12 months, meals should be reduced to 2 times per day. This pattern will be maintained throughout their adult life, which will begin at the age of one. Remember that the data we provide here is from a general perspective and the exact measurements of food and calories they will eat per day will depend on the health and weight of your pet. If you have any questions, promptly consult your trusted veterinarian.

How To Feed Your Cat So It Stops Begging And Starts Losing Weight

Managing Your Cat’s Weight

Cats, Nutrition

Cats receiving an adequate number of calories per day will be hungry . So feeding a cat until it is full is almost always overfeeding unless it is an actively growing kitten under eight months of age.

Naturally, cats eat multiple small meals a day by hunting and eating what they catch. Having a bowl of dry food available allows multiple small meals of a high caloric feed with no effort on the cats part, this is a recipe for weight gain.

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Weigh Your Cat To Ensure A Healthy Rate Of Weight

Regardless of diet, limiting access is the key. And a scale to accurately weigh the cat on is handy. Peoples digital scales can be used by weighing the person with and without holding the kitty. Monthly weights at the same time of day are sufficient.

We want about a pound a month of weight loss, not more. Sudden weight loss in a cat can result in serious health issues. Weight loss is hard to accomplish in a cat, no short cuts exist, and it takes an active process to achieve.

Just like people, it is an individualized program for each kitty and dealing with the behavioral consequences of a hungry cat can be one of the largest challenges. The hardest thing for people to accept is that a hungry cat is okay and healthy, it does not require fixing despite what the kitty may think.

Dr. Matt McCormick, DVM

Companion Animal Clinic has been serving Blacksburg, Virginia and surrounding Montgomery and Christiansburg communities since 1974. We are an AAHA accredited veterinary hospital and provide quality, professional care for dogs, cats, exotics, and small mammals. Learn more about our amazing team.

How Many Calories Should A Cat Eat Cat Feeding Guide

All cats have individual dietary needs based on their breed, size, age, and health conditions. As notoriously picky eaters, finding the right food for them is only half the battle. Feeding your cats the appropriate amount is a crucial aspect of their diet. Obesity in cats comes with a long list of severe health problems, so keeping their weight in check with appropriate food portions is key to keeping them at a healthy weight long term.

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What Are The Nutritional Requirements For A Growing Kitten

When choosing a diet for your growing kitten, it is important to understand three key nutrients: protein, fat, and calcium.


  • Protein requirements for growing kittens are high during the weaning stage, but the amount of protein they need will steadily decrease thereafter.
  • The recommended protein range for healthy kitten growth is 35-50% on a dry matter basis with at least 9% dry matter from an animal source. These levels support optimal growth, so it is not recommended to exceed them.
  • Nutritional formulations for adult cats should not be fed to growing kittens. Although the dry matter protein level may be adequate, other nutrients and energy content will not be balanced for optimal growth.
  • Fat is a source of essential fatty acids. It is a concentrated source of energy and it carries fat-soluble vitamins.
  • Excessive energy intake is risky and can lead to obesity and developmental orthopedic disease. For this reason, the fat content for kittens should be rationed between 18-35% on a dry matter basis.


  • Kitten growth formulations should contain 0.8-1.6% calcium on a dry matter basis.

Once an appropriate nutritional product has been chosen, no additional vitamin or mineral supplements should be given. You should also avoid foods that produce a urinary pH of less than 6.2. Your veterinarian can help you determine the pH levels for kitten foods you are considering.

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What The Vets Have To Say About It

How Much Food Should I Feed My Cat

If we assume the average cat weighs approximately 10 pounds then the average indoor cat needs 250 calories a day, according to the team at Kirkwood Animal Hospital in Kirkwood, Missouri. Most high quality foods have approximately 500 calories per 8 ounce cup of food meaning an average-sized house cat should have a total of 4 ounces of food a day.

Knowing how much to feed your cat starts with identifying their ideal body weight. This is something you should discuss with your cats veterinarian, but you can do a quick visual assessment at home. Cats should have ribs and a spine that are easy to feel but not too bony, writes Dr. Jacqueline Brister, DVM for Embrace Pet Insurance. When looking at a kitty from above, the abdomen should taper in somewhat. In other words, a cat of a healthy weight should have an hourglass figure.

However, there are some exceptions to this thin and trim rule. As cats enter adulthood, they may develop extra, loose skin on the belly region in between their legs a feature vets call the primordial pouch, according to Dr. Brister. Veterinary experts arent exactly sure why cats have it, but it is likely used for protection of important belly structures during a fight. While normal, your vet should still examine your older cat to see whether this pouch is too large for its body size.

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How Many Calories Does A Cat Need Cat Calories Per Day

The number of calories a cat needs in a day depends on many factors. Like the age of the cat, their activity level, and whether or not the cat is neutered. As every cat has their own individual need, we, as their purrr-ents, need to be aware of their needs. For instance, neutered or spayed cats require a reduced calorie intake compared to an intact adult cat.

Similarly, a pregnant cat has a higher calorie intake compared to a normal non-pregnant cat. And the number of calories for a kitten is slightly more than its older siblings.

Generally speaking, to determine the calories contained in your cat’s food, you refer to the package label although this information is correct it might not be exactly what you are looking for as it does not take into account the cat’s weight, activity level or it being neutered or intact, which are important factors in determining the ideal cat calorie intake.

If you are not sure whether or not your cat is at an ideal weight or are concerned that it might be gaining or losing weight, you can calculate your cat’s BMI to find out if any action is needed.

If you notice any changes in your cat’s eating habits, you might need to monitor your cat’s calorie intake, as that would be the main source of the change. And don’t forget to consult your vet before actually making any drastic changes to your kitty’s diet.

One last note to remember – chocolate is toxic to cats – the same as it is to dogs!

Calorie Calculator: One Way To Start

You can start in one of two places.

I like to start with a calorie calculator, like this one by the Pet Nutrition Alliance. The Pet Nutrition Alliance is a coalition of veterinarians, veterinary nutritionists, animal hospital groups, and others who are committed to helping pets live healthier lives through proper nutrition.

To use the calculator, input your cats weight and whether or not he/she is spayed or neutered. Then choose a body-condition score by sliding the square left or right on the scale. . Leave the current calorie intake blank, and leave the ideal pet weight section blank, too. Choose calculate now and the program will tell you approximately how many calories your cat should be eating each day.

Once you know approximately how many calories your cat should be eating, you can figure out how many cans or cups you should feed.

Lets try an example with a fictional cat who eats Fancy Feast from a can. My fictional cat weights 8 ¾ pounds and is spayed. Her body condition is just right: shes a 5. When I enter this information into the calculator, it says she needs about 198 calories a day, including about 20 calories worth of treats. So, she needs to get about 178 calories from food.

To find out how many cans of Fancy Feast she can eat each day, I divide the 178 calories by the number of calories in a can:

178 divided by 64 = approximately 2 ¾ cans of food each day.

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