New research into cat food suggests that feeding dry cat biscuits may be to blame for feline obesitas.
The ease and convenience of dry cat biscuits heightens the risk of owners
perpetually topping up the dish and overfeeding their pet, says researcher Dr
David Thomas, director of Massey University’s Centre for Feline Nutrition in
Palmerston North, New Zealand.
Dr Thomas says cats are naturally designed
to eat several small, protein-packed meals a day. The study, which set out to
establish whether there is any link between dry food consumption and weight gain
in cats, found that those fed solely on dry biscuits got plumper but lost weight
once they changed to a wet, or canned food diet. Cats ate less and felt fuller
more quickly eating canned food because it contained more water. “It’s harder to
overfeed wet food than dry,” says Dr Thomas.
The findings of the cat
study will be presented at a major nutrition conference at the University’s
Auckland campus, which will be held on December 5-7. Most of the 300 papers from
New Zealand and overseas researchers attending the joint New Zealand and
Australian Nutrition Conference deal with human nutrition. A session on animal
nutrition includes the latest studies on nutrition for goats, calves and
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