Effects of Nutrition Choices and Lifestyle Changes on the Well-Being of Cats, a Carnivore That Has Moved Indoors

1318 words 6 pages
“Effects of nutrition choices and lifestyle changes on the well-being of cats, a Carnivore that has moved indoors”

Debra L. Zoran and C.A. Tony Buffington
Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, Vol. 239, No. 5,
September 1, 2011

Genevieve Ball
Animal Nutrition 505, Dr. Shapiro
October 13, 2011
Main Summary
The domestication of cats can be perilous as their nutritional changes in dietary protein and caloric intake effects their metabolism, muscle mass, water intake, urine acidity levels, and immunity against diseases, all of which effect their overall feeding behavior, well-being, and physical health. 70% protein intake is considered adequate in a cat’s daily diet, however studies show that a more accurate
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The balancing of nutrients and dietary intake relative to energy output is most important when determining the amount of protein, water, and caloric values required in a feline’s diet (Scherk, 2010, p. 3). Carbohydrates are actually not required as a part of their diet as cats can utilize protein to satisfy both dietary and energy requirements (Scherk, 2010, p. 3). Studies show that intact felines (require 60-80 kcal/kg/day) have 7-33% more energy to utilize than that of neutered male and female cats (require 40-50 kcal/kg/day) (Scherk, 2010, p. 3). Diets that are high in carbohydrates (dry foods) and low in protein is detrimental as it is a contributing factor to obesity as well as diabetes in cats (“Feline Nutrition,” 2011, p. 1 and Scherk, 2011, p. 3). Cats can utilize carbohydrates as energy, however they lack in carbohydrate-digesting enzymes which affects their ability to break down sugars, thus resulting in excess calories that are stored in the body as fat (“Cats Need High Protein, Low-Carb Diet,” 2011, p. 22). A balanced amount of carbohydrates in a diet should be no more than 3-5% (Pierson, 2010, p. 3).
Like humans and other animals, it is important that cats drink approximately ½ cup of water per 8 pounds in order to maintain proper hydration (“Feline Nutrition,” 2011,


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