Get your cat to eat dry food by appealing to its inherent curiosity. Experiment with brands, flavors, and textures to see which ones your cat likes. Introduce dry food with their usual wet food beside it to pique the cat’s interest. Make eating dry food interesting for your cat, and he’ll be eating it regularly in no time.
If you are having a hard time getting your cat to eat dry food, keep reading.
Why does my cat not like dry cat food?
Cats may not like dry food because they are obligate carnivores and wet food feels more like fresh meat. Wet cat food has a higher protein content than dry cat food, which has a higher carbohydrate content. Cats must eat protein from meat as a main source of nutrients.
You can take your cat to the vet to rule out any medical issues, like dental conditions, that make your cat reluctant to try dry food.
If your cat is healthy but still refuses to try dry food, it may be due to one of the following reasons:
- When there is a significant change in the household, such as a new pet or a new baby, the cat can interpret that as a threat and lose its appetite.
- Cats can imprint on a specific food’s flavor and texture, which makes them unwilling to give a new food a try. That is why it is important to expose a kitten to a variety of foods at an early age.
- There are many different kibble shapes, sizes, degrees of hardness, and textures to choose from. Some of them are made for specific cat ages, so if you are giving your senior cat dry food that is for younger cats, they might find the kibble too hard. Some breeds of cat have a kibble size and shape that is designed for them. Flat-faced or brachycephalic cats prefer kibble shapes that are easier to pick up.
- Cats do not like to eat off of a dirty dish because cats instinctively avoid putrid-smelling meat. A dirty dish has a similar smell.
- Adding medication to a cat’s food may ruin that type of food for them. They will associate it with the bitter taste.
- Cats with no access to fresh, clean water may refuse to eat dry food because there’s no moisture. This may exacerbate chronic dehydration.
What are the advantages of feeding my cat dry food?
- Dry cat food has a longer shelf-life when placed inside an airtight container
- It can be left in the food bowl for long periods of time with no risk of spoilage, especially when the owner is away for most of the day
- Dry cat food is cheaper than wet food.
How soon can I start feeding my cat dry food?
You can start introducing dry food to your kitten as early as five weeks old. This is when a kitten is weaned off of milk and expected to start eating solid food. Start by feeding the kitten a mixture of wet and dry cat food to avoid any gastrointestinal problems due to a change in diet.
Over the weaning process, add less wet food and add more dry food. Soon enough, the kitten will be eating completely dry food. Make sure there is a bowl of fresh clean water next to the kibble for the kitten.
Introducing your cat to dry food
These tips can help ease the introduction of dry food to your cat:Try giving different brands of cat food that are breed and age appropriate for your cat in regards to kibble shape, size, texture, and hardness.
- Try using a shallower dish for flat-faced or brachycephalic cats.
- Set the dry food next to the cat’s usual wet food. He will be curious enough to try the dry food.
- If these do not work, don’t feed your cat for 12 hours and offer dry food. Do not withhold food for too long, though.
- Try adding one-part water to three parts kibble. The softened texture may encourage the cat to eat it. Make sure not to leave the wet kibble in the bowl for more than 30 minutes. Throw away any leftovers.
- Wash the cat’s food dish after every meal with a mild, fragrance-free soap.
- Sprinkle food toppers on the dry food, such as bonito flakes or cat vitamin powder.
- Appeal to your cat’s curiosity by placing the dry cat food inside toys or containers with holes that the cat can play with to get to the kibble.
- Make sure that your cat has access to fresh clean water at all times because a well-hydrated cat is more inclined to eat dry food than a dehydrated one.
- Establish a consistent feeding schedule.
Dry cat food is more affordable and has a longer shelf-life than wet cat food. Get your cat to eat dry food by appealing to its curiosity and offering a variety of breed and age appropriate flavors and textures for the cat to try. Introduce dry food to your kitten at five weeks old by mixing it with wet cat food.
Use a shallow dish for flat-faced breeds. Clean the dish after each meal. Add enticing toppings on the kibble. Make dry food feeding fun for your cat by using toys. Do not forget to supply the cat with fresh clean water all the time.
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