An effect of sterilization results in a decrease in the cat’s energy needs but increased hunger. From the equation results a possible weight gain. Should you change your diet after the operation? If so, what kind of food to give him? And in what quantity? Our advices.
Sterilization in cats: what are the consequences?
Usually carried out around the age of six months, sterilization has several advantages for your cat. The operation contributes to prolonging his life expectancy by avoiding certain diseases related to his reproductive system, including Cancer. This small surgical intervention will also produce benefits on his behaviour by putting an end in particular to the urinary marking, fugue and aggressiveness generated by the sex hormones of the male. At the same time, sterilization involves some disadvantages such as the predisposition to overweight orobesity, phenomena that can lead to serious health problems (diabetes, osteo-articular disorders, cardiovascular disorders, breathing difficulties, etc.).
Sterilized cat: why adapt your diet?
The hormonal change in neutered cats often causes a decrease inactivity and an increase in sound appetite. Less active and more greedy, he will tend to gain pounds. However, the change in its metabolism causes a decrease of 20 to 30% of his energy needs. Logically, if you continue to feed your pet in the same way as before the operation, weight gain is inevitable. Do not wait until your feline is obese to act and adapt his diet the day after surgery.
What should a sterilized cat’s diet contain?
The diet of a sterilized cat must ensure a balance between less fat, more quality protein, low carbohydrate content, minerals, a pH aimed at limiting urinary stones as well as fibers to ensure good transit. Choose premium brands and choose quality croquettes or pâtés with a protein rate greater than 50% and a fat rate between 10 and 20%. The products sold in the veterinarian or in specialized stores are more expensive but their composition ensures a strong power. satiating. Vegetables, such as zucchini, can also be integrated into their diet because they will increase the effect of satiety without increasing calorie intake.
Sterilized cat: what type of food?
When you have checked the food composition, you have the choice between different types of food for your neutered cat:
- Dry foods. It is advisable to choose special kibbles for sterilized cats because their composition is adapted to their nutritional needs. They are generally hypo-energetic (light) while containing all the nutrients essential for good health: vitamins, minerals and proteins; In your selection, opt for dietary kibbles rich in fiber which increase the feeling of satiety;
- Wet foods. The pâtés contain fewer calories than the croquettes because they are made up of around 80% water. This type of food can represent a good option for an overweight cat, especially as the different textures and flavors appeal to the most discerning gourmets. In addition, humidity provides hydration continuous to prevent the risk of urinary or kidney problems;
- Mix-feeding. One solution is to offer an alternation between croquettes and pâtés in order to benefit from the benefits of these two foods. For example, you can serve him croquettes light and mix them with meat mash little fat (chicken, lamb, game, duck) or fish (tuna, salmon). Combining dry food with wet food has the merit of satiating sufficiently, and therefore of limiting bulimic behavior;
- Household rations. Homemade dishes require perfect mastery to avoid the risk of deficiencies or undernutrition in your feline.
What rations for a sterilized cat?
The advantage of food dietetic is not to have to drastically reduce the daily rations, an action that could starve your cat. On the contrary, the energy intake of its meals being lower, you can maintain your habits. First, it will be necessary to determine the amount which your animal needs according to its weight: for this, refer to the rationing table indicated on the packaging or seek the advice of your veterinarian. Suggestion: every morning, fill the cup with the necessary amount of food and distribute the food in small portions throughout the day. In this way, you can be sure that you do not exceed the dose he needs. When changing the power supply, observe a transition current over two weeks during which you will mix the new kibbles with the old ones then gradually increase the proportion of new foods.
On the program: weighing and activity
After the operation, it is recommended to to weigh your cat every two weeks for a quarter to check for a possible weight gain because that’s when his appetite will grow while his energy needs will decrease. Depending on the result of the weighing, it will be a question of adjusting his diet. In addition to a suitable food, do not forget to move your animal using games : ball, foam mouse, obstacle course, fishing rod, feather duster … You can also organize a treasure hunt by hiding croquettes at different places in the house in order to force him to move. Treats that must be subtracted from their daily food intake, that goes without saying!