Dry cat food has many benefits which is why many pet owners prefer it as part of their cat’s daily nutrition. The benefits include the following:
- it is convenient – easy to measure, feed and store
- it is high in energy – provides the energy requirement of your cat
- it has dental benefits – helps with teeth cleaning and reduces tartar build-up
However, relying too much on dry cat food alone could pose health risks for your cat. Due to its dry texture, cats may have difficulty swallowing it. Also, hydration is essential in a feline’s daily diet to aid proper food absorption. Check out our earlier articles on cat not eating wet food and wet vs dry cat food for more details.
You should consider adding water to dry cat food for the following reasons:
1. To increase water intake.
Cats have different personalities and while some love to lap up water some cats tend to scrimp when it comes to drinking water. Adding water to their kibbles is an easy way to help increase their water intake so that they stay hydrated.
2. To avoid health problems.
While there are cats that are picky eaters, there are also those that rarely drink water and as a result, they become dehydrated. This could lead to a myriad of health problems such as an imbalance in electrolytes that could cause major havoc to the organs. Urinary tract infection is another threat among dehydrated cats. Also, moistened kibbles allow senior cats to chew more easily.
3. It improves digestion.
Event though cats like their kibbles for its crunchy taste it also has its downside, it is dry and brittle and cats may have a hard time chewing them. Thus, most cats tend to swallow whole pieces that are damaging to their digestive system. Cats have short gastrointestinal tracts and food spends less time being digested. Adding water to dry cat food makes it softer and easier to digest, preventing gastrointestinal upset.
Some pet owners add water before feeding the dry cat food to their cats so that the kibbles will expand before their pets eat and not in their tummies. In many cases tummy problems like vomiting and being over-full can be resolved.
4. It slows down your cat while eating.
Cats tend to eat dry cat food in huge mouthfuls because it is easy to ingest due to its dry nature. This speed eating could pose serious trouble to a cat’s tummy, including bloating. Adding water to dry cat food ensures that your cat will eat the kibbles more slowly.
5. It stimulates appetite.
As earlier mentioned, cats have different temperaments and the same holds when it comes to their food drive. Some cats eat with gusto while some are finicky. Adding water to dry cat food could solve this problem as it stimulates a cat’s appetite, enhances the flavor and releases the aroma of the kibble. It also becomes easier to chew and your cat will have a more enjoyable meal experience, thus, improving her interest in mealtime.
How much water should you add to dry cat food?
Before you add water to dry cat food, be sure to determine the correct ratio of water to kibble. Cat experts recommend a ratio of one-part water for every three parts of dry cat food. Try to observe if this particular mixture sits well with your cat and if you have doubts about whether you are doing the right mixture or not, you may consult your vet.
Is it okay to leave wet kibbles out for a long time?
No, it is not okay to leave wet kibbles for a long time as it may become contaminated with harmful bacteria. Always make sure that exposure time is only at a maximum of 30 minutes but during hot days it should only be 10 to 15 minutes. Never let moistened kibbles sit out too long and only prepare a quantity that your cat will be able to consume in one sitting.
Cats adore their dry cat food but as a responsible pet parent, you should see to it that they remain hydrated. Adding water to their kibble brings great benefits as it enhances their appetite and palate, improves their water intake, avoids health risks and speed eating and improves their digestion.
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