Pampered four-legged friends: why are cats so fussy when it comes to eating?

This is a paid post presented by Royal Canin

Every cat owner knows the following situation. The cat comes to the food bowl, sniffs briefly, meows disappointed and leaves again. No other pet is as sensitive when eating as the velvet paw. “I would not describe them as picky, but rather as individualists who choose their food according to various aspects,” says Karin Uhl, veterinarian at Royal Canin. “They are descended from the African wildcat and have not adapted as closely to us humans as dogs, for example.” The cat’s sense of smell plays the most important role when it comes to eating.

Cats smell much better than humans

Cats have a keen sense of smell that is about 14 times stronger than that of humans. Cats sniff their food and only then decide whether to eat it or not. The sense of taste, on the other hand, is not as pronounced in velvet paws. They only have 473 taste buds, humans have around 9000. It has also been proven that cats cannot taste sweet. However, you can differentiate between sour, bitter, salty and umami.

The sense of smell in cats decreases with age. This can sometimes be a reason why old animals no longer show the same appetite. In this case, the cat should be offered food that is more odorous. “Wet food smells more intense than dry food.”

The sense of touch in the mouth also plays an important sensory role in cats. This means feeling different textures in the mouth while eating, has a strong effect on the feeding experience. “The texture, consistency, size, shape and temperature are all important criteria that determine whether a cat likes something or not,” says Uhl. “This is very pronounced in cats. Only then does the taste come into play, which is judged. “

The cat’s natural predilection

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Several times a day instead of large portions

Like their ancestors, cats are strict carnivores and hunt solitary in the wild. She catches a lot of small prey throughout the day. Domestic cats should not be given one or two large servings per day, but several small servings distributed throughout the day. With a combined feeding of dry and moist food, this can also be implemented well for working cat owners. «Cats eat an average of 1.5 minutes and come back to the food bowl later to continue eating. That is a natural behavior. “

Cats are sophisticated hunters and very intelligent animals. Indoor cats in particular can be under-challenged due to their limited territory. Therefore, it makes sense to offer occupation with feeding games at the same time as feeding. “You can now find numerous great intelligence games for cats in specialist shops. But you can also easily make feeding games yourself from empty kitchen rolls, for example, ”advises the veterinarian. “Hiding dry food croquettes in different places in the apartment is also an option.”

So if your cat doesn’t eat everything you put in front of her, you needn’t worry. This behavior is not always innate, it can also be learned. “A cat can develop a rejection of a product if it combines a smell or the food itself with fear, unpleasant experiences such as a stay in a veterinary clinic or digestive disorders,” says Uhl. “Whenever possible, cats should only be offered new food in their familiar surroundings, if the cat feels comfortable.”

Tips and Tricks

There are more points to keep in mind when it comes to feeding cats. The temperature of the feed is also decisive. “Never serve cold from the refrigerator, cats like their food in the range of body temperature, which corresponds to the temperature of prey in nature,” explains Uhl. The warmth makes the food smell more intense and attracts the cat. «You can warm the food in the microwave, but you have to be careful not to heat it too hot. At temperatures above 40 degrees the acceptance decreases and you have the opposite effect. “

The food should also always be kept separate from the water bowl and in a place where the cat can eat relaxed and feels safe. Cats love hygiene. Make sure that the bowl no longer contains any residues of old wet food.

Presented by a partner

This post was dated Ringier Brand Studio created on behalf of a customer. The content is journalistically prepared and meets Ringier’s quality requirements.

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