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Facing Your Feline's Golden Years
 
Older cats have a variety of nutritional needs that differ from those of younger cats. Since cats age at different rates, you should familiarize yourself with your cat's behavioral and eating changes.

Some potential major changes as your cat ages include: a decreased sense of smell, decreased sensitivity to thirst, decreased thyroid function, decreased saliva production, and tooth and gum deterioration. These changes can lead to many problems that range from obesity to insufficient food intake and weight loss.

You may also find that your older pet becomes more finicky as it ages. Varied feeding throughout your cat's life will prevent a senior cat from addiction to a single food type. Try mixing dry food with moist if your cat denies one of the types.

What should you feed an aging cat?
To provide your elderly feline with the best possible nutrition, search for a high quality ration with high digestibility. Pay attention to kibble size and appropriate fat and protein levels. Offer your cat small amounts of food 2-3 times daily.

Fat Cat - Image

Obesity is a common problem for older cats. Learn how to prevent and treat it.

Link to Mens and Womens Health

Good nutrition is vital to keeping your cat's immune system functioning properly.
 
Generally, it's advisable to avoid poor quality generic, "no brand" diets. Make sure your diet of choice contains quality ingredients and is fresh. Low price brands may reflect lower quality ingredients or less rigorous manufacturing standards. 
 
Look for products produced by companies that demonstrate research, controlled feeding trials, and good manufacturing procedures and quality control.

Special medical diets may be prescribed by veterinarians to some older cats with diagnosed medical conditions. 

What should you feed a fat cat?
While
obesity more typically affects younger- middle age cats, it can also be a problem for older cats. Weight loss is more common for older felines. Loss of weight can be an indication of more serious health issues such as diabetes and thyroid or kidney disease. Consultation with your veterinarian is a good idea, especially if the loss is rapid.
 

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