Sterilized cats are famous for their especially irrepressible appetite. They not only constantly beg for food, but also gain weight catastrophically quickly, which leads to obesity. It is important not to forget that such an intervention in the body involves a mandatory adjustment of the diet. Knowing what you can feed a sterilized cat at home will help you avoid obesity and other common hormonal problems.
Preoperative and postoperative diet
Before a full transition to a new diet, your pet will have to arrange a fasting day and sit on a postoperative diet. With its help, the sterilized cat will be able to prepare its body for the upcoming changes.
Hunger strike before anesthesia
Preparation for general anesthesia includes the obligatory refusal to eat 12 hours before the operation. This is necessary in order to exclude sudden attacks of vomiting. Otherwise, the unconscious animal may choke and suffer from aspiration pneumonia. For the same reason, it is recommended to remove water, but a little later – 3 hours before the surgery.
The first day after surgery
Feeding a sterilized cat on the first day after surgery is not provided. The sterilized cat won’t have an appetite right after waking up, so don’t even try to persuade it to have a hearty lunch. Offer some water instead to stay hydrated.
Please note that only an awakened animal can be given water. Gently wet its lips with a damp cloth or pour a small amount of liquid directly into its mouth through a syringe or dropper. A bowl of water can be given only 3-4 hours after waking up, when the pet becomes more active.
First week after surgery
Food is introduced on the second day, but only when interest appears. If your pet categorically refuses to eat, you can keep it on a starvation diet for another 1-2 days. All this time, it must regularly drink water, since dehydration is much more dangerous than a hunger strike.
All meals served should be digestible and soft, and the size should be reduced to 1/3 of the usual portion. Focus on the following products:
-Wet canned food and spider meat pieces;
-Fermented milk products with low fat content;
-Slimy porridge cooked in water.
Harder foods can cause constipation, which can lead to seams apart. You should also avoid too high and low temperatures that irritate the stomach lining.
Gradually, increase serving size to return to normal within a week. Please note that it should not exceed 150 g per day.
The transition to familiar food
Sterilized cats return to their usual diet about a week after surgery, but with minor adjustments. In addition to lowering the total calorie content, you will have to abandon a number of dishes familiar to the animal.
Dry feeding is much easier. All norms can be viewed on the packaging, and the composition of such a product excludes the presence of substances harmful and useless to the body. The owner can only decide what kind of food to feed the cat after sterilization, since there are not so few options marked with Sterilized.
Why should you review the diet of a sterilized cat?
Changes in hormonal levels slow down metabolism, increasing the tendency to obesity. The animal becomes less active and more voracious, so the habitual diet can cause rapid weight gain. Also, after the operation, the frequency of urination is reduced, which is fraught with stagnation of urine and the subsequent formation of calculi – that is, urolithiasis.
Natural cat food after sterilization
In addition to reducing calories and serving sizes, you will need to limit the cat’s fat intake in favor of foods fortified with proteins and slow carbohydrates. Knowing what sterilized cats can and cannot eat, you can easily create a new menu without harming your pet’s health.
For convenience, all permitted products can be disassembled by their predominant elements. The most important are:
-Proteins. Contained in meat (beef, chicken, rabbit, and turkey), fish, offal, fermented milk products (yoghurts, cottage cheese) and eggs. These proteins are called animals’. Unlike the plant proteins found in wheat, corn gluten and soybean meal, they are absorbed much faster in the stomach and do not overload the kidneys. Before serving, meat and offal must be frozen well and boiled to exclude parasite infestation.
-Carbohydrates. They are represented by cereals (buckwheat, oatmeal, and rice), vegetables (zucchini, carrots, and broccoli) and fruits (apples). Thanks to its high fiber content, it quickly induces feelings of fullness. They are also effective in the prevention of constipation.
-Fats. They are found in sea fish, but it is not recommended for sterilized animals due to its high phosphorus content. Fish should be replaced with vegetable oils from pumpkin seeds, flax seeds and corn, which have a similar composition.
The percentage of these elements should be 52%:12%:36% in accordance with the previously indicated order. Don’t be surprised that the smallest proportion is carbohydrates, not fats. The thing is that it takes a very long time to digest them, so in the wild, cats receive them in a semi-digested form, along with a swallowed rodent.
The ban includes indigestible foods high in fat, magnesium, phosphorus and salt. It contributes to obesity, causes constipation and provokes the development of ICD.
When reviewing your sterilized cat’s diet, be sure to skip the following foods:
-River and sea fish;
-Fatty dairy products and milk;
-Semolina, barley and oatmeal;
-Onion and garlic;
-Potatoes and legumes.
It is also forbidden to feed the animal with food from your table (smoked meats, sweets, canned food, baked goods, and marinades). Human meals are high in spices, salt, and artificial additives that a cat’s stomach cannot handle.
Vitamin supplement from vetharmacy
Unlike ready-made food for sterilized cats, “natural food” is not able to provide the body with all the necessary elements. For this reason, some vitamins and minerals have to be replenished with the help of ready-made complexes.
Please note that all vitamin and mineral complexes are administered only after consulting a veterinarian. Self-selection of drugs can result in an overabundance of nutrients.
As noted above, sterilized cat food must be labeled Sterilized. It means that the creation of these granules took into account the rearrangement of the hormonal background. Such food has a lower calorie content and excludes the presence of harmful elements.
When choosing a brand, focus on its quality. Economy-class feeds are replete with useless plant components and mechanically deboned meat, so it is better to stick to premium and holistic.
Don’t forget to study the composition. The quality of the product will be confirmed by:
-High meat content, determined by the location of this ingredient in the 1st place;
-Absence of flavor enhancers, flavors and other dubious additives;
-The presence of L-carnitine, which accelerates metabolism, and L-lysine, which preserves muscle mass.
Please note that when fed naturally, 75% of the fluid comes from food. If your pet eats only “drying”, then the granules give it no more than 10% moisture from the daily requirement.
In order to prevent dehydration of the body, make sure that the amount of water the sterilized cat drinks exceeds the volume of “crackers” eaten by 2 times. The rate may decrease when feeding with wet canned food, but should not fall below 20 ml per 1 kg of weight.
Feeding frequency and daily portion size
Having decided what kind of food you will feed the sterilized cat, the owner will be faced with a change in the frequency of feeding and the size of the daily portion. Remember that dry granules cannot be mixed with natural food. Such eating can result in digestive upset.
Adult animals are fed twice a day at specific times. The interval between feedings should be equal to eliminate hunger.
If your sterilized cat does not eat enough and constantly wants to eat, divide its daily portion into more meals. After sterilization, the cat does not control the amount of food eaten and thoughtlessly swallows everything that is put in its bowl.
The average daily serving size depends on body weight. It is 30 g per 1 kg and is calculated individually. Be sure to control the weight of your pet and change the serving size up or down as needed.
With a weight of 5-8 kg, 150-250 g of feed per day will be required, that is, the number of recommended products will be as follows:
-Meat and offal – 70-120 g;
-Fermented milk products – 30-60 g;
-Vegetables – 40-50 g;
-Cereals – 10-20 g.
If your sterilized cat drinks little water, add light broths based on vegetables and meat to its diet. It is also necessary to mix a few drops of vegetable oil into the food. It has a positive effect on the digestion and quality of the coat.
How to understand that an animal gets everything it needs from food?
The general health, appearance and weight of a sterilized cat will tell you about proper feeding. If the pet is cheerful and active, does not suffer from constipation and other digestive disorders, its coat looks well-groomed and shiny, and its weight is stable, despite a good appetite, then you are doing everything right.
If at least one of these points is violated, the available food must be reviewed. Contact your veterinarian for detailed advice.
Obesity tendency and how to deal with it
Food for a sterilized cat is not a panacea. You can get fat on it if you do not follow the feeding standards and do not monitor physical activity.
If your pet is steadily gaining weight, reduce its daily portion by increasing the number of meals up to 4-5 times a day. Fractional nutrition effectively fights hunger and improves metabolism.
Also, don’t forget about active games. If you don’t have enough time, buy educational toys that your pet can play on its own. In any case, weight loss will not happen by itself .
A sterilized cat’s balanced diet is the key to its health and long life, so pay special attention to this point. Do not skimp on the freshness of natural products and the quality of dry food in order to provide your pet with all the necessary elements. And do not forget that after the operation, the weight of the mustachioed pet will have to be monitored even more closely than