2 Easy Things You Can Do RIGHT NOW to Improve Your Cat’s Health!
A Boujee Cat is a Healthy Cat.. We can’t stress that enough! A cat can be well groomed, have all of the best toys and accessories, and can strike a pose in the cutest cat tree… but if your kitty’s health is not on point, what does everything else even matter!?
As Cat Moms and Dads, we have a duty to help our cats live their best lives. We want our four-legged family members to thrive and live a happy healthy life, and that starts with eating and drinking.
Here are two simple things you can do TODAY to help improve your cat’s health:
- Feed your cat from elevated bowls (if you aren’t doing so already!)
- Increase your cat’s water intake
#1 - ELEVATED BOWLS
Does your cat eat from a bowl that sits on the ground?
If yes, you are not alone.. this is the traditional way humans feed pets. We can’t be too hard on ourselves, because most people don’t know any better.. But this is NOT how we should be feeding our cats!
Eating at ground level creates an unpleasant and uncomfortable eating experience for your cat. Cats bodies are designed to eat in a standing position, not bent over. Bending over for food compresses their digestive tract and increases risk of choking, nausea, indigestion, gas, and vomiting. If your cat is eating from a traditional food bowl that is placed on the ground, it could be causing serious discomfort and indigestion problems. You want to be sure your kitty is retaining all of the healthy nutrients you will be feeding him or her.
We have so many happy customers who have switched to elevated bowls. We highly suggest making the switch to elevated feeding bowls if you haven’t already, and here is why:
IMPROVED DIGESTION: Elevated bowls helps prevent vomiting, nausea, reflux, choking, and discomfort. Raised bowls allow your cats to eat and drink the way they were intended to: standing. An elevated feeder allows your cat’s digestive system to function properly.
INCREASED COMFORT: By raising your cats bowls, you are prevent strain on the neck and spine. Elevating your cats bowls is a small ergonomic adjustment that can have a big payoff. Better posture for your cat is key to preventing future hip problems and aches and pains as your cat ages.
HEALTHY EATING HABITS: An elevated 15 degree angle makes the food and water bowls more approachable; it is easier and more natural for cats to eat/drink this way. Cats have very sensitive whiskers, and the angled elevated bowl help prevent their whiskers from coming in contact with the bowl and the food and water, creating an overall more enjoyable eating experience for your cat. This may also promote cats to drink more water, which is key to their health!
Could you imagine if we felt like throwing up every time we had to bend over to eat!? Ugh! No thank you.
After vetting out al of different elevated bowls, this was our top pick, with the stainless steel bowls for extra gleanability. This bowl is also an excellent option, and a bit cheaper! We want your cats to be eating well and feeling swell, so we want to give you an extra 20% off of your purchase, use discount code HEALTHYCAT20 at checkout. Both of these exceeded our standards in looks and quality.
#2 - INCREASE WATER INTAKE
A hydrated cat is a healthy cat. Dehydration can lead to very costly vet bills, chronic pain and discomfort for your cat, and even death. When your cat does not consume enough water, this puts stress on the kidneys. Kidney failure is the most common cause of trips to the vet and is the most common cause of death for house cats.
Although we think of our cats as family members (which they are), they are still animals. The origin of the cat species were from locations in the desert, where there was often no water available. Mother nature designed cats to get most of their hydration from their food. Our cats ancestors drank very little water, but stayed hydrated from their fresh food diet of prey, which naturally has a 70-80% moisture content. Because of this, cats did not develop a “thirst drive” they way humans or dogs did. They did not need to drink water to stay alive.
Fast forward to 2020 – Cats still do not have a thirst drive. But our cats now live indoors, and are not feeding from the live prey they caught – they get fed the food we feed them! If a cat is only getting fed dry kibble food, which has almost no water content, it is getting only a tiny tiny fraction of the water it needs. Dehydration is so common amongst cats simply because the dry food they are being fed is not designed for their anatomy.
Although your cat may seem *fine* and you don’t think he or she may be dehydrated, we like to promote being proactive rather than reactive! It is most likely the case that your cat does not drink enough water. This is a good article on how much water your cat should be consuming.
What you can do TODAY to help increase your cats water intake, is start working more water into your cats FOOD (since you can’t force them to drink water, and they don’t drink enough on their own!)
RAW FOOD DIET
We think the best option for optimum health is a raw food diet. This way of eating aligns with their natural diet and contains the highest water content. Transitioning from dry food to raw food was the best thing we did for our cats, and Raw Paws makes the process seamless and easy. Some people may cringe at the thought of a raw food diet, but again, our cats are animals that naturally handle raw meat better than humans. And we aren't talking grocery-store grade ground meet - no, no, no. We actually make our own raw food, and will be sharing the recipe in our Healthy Cat Cookbook that is in the works. But for starters looking to transition to a raw diet, Raw Paws does an incredible job, and makes the transition super super easy. They do all of the "dirty work" for you, and take care of preparing the meals for your cat – all you have to do is portion and serve! We think the Chicken blend is the best to start introducing your cat. They source the absolute best ingredients from free-range chickens from a farm in Indiana! The food is made small batches weekly, so you know you are getting the freshest food, and they freeze dry it and ship it! They also give you step by step instructions on how to introduce raw food into your cats diet – they even have a hotline you can call with questions! To us, this is a no brainer. You can start today by ordering a freeze-dried package to be sent right to your door!
Wet Food Diet
If a raw diet is out of the question for you, the next best thing is to start switching your cat to a wet food diet. And at the bare minimum, introduce your cat to wet food if you haven’t already. Even the cheapest wet food contains more water than dry food. Not saying that we recommend the cheapest, because quality ingredients are still important. Wet food contains almost double the amount of water than dry food, so you are definitely up-ing your cats water intake by switching to wet food. If you want to add wet food into your cats diet, this is the canned/wet food that we would recommend to use.
Also, please note: Changes to the diet should be made incrementally so your cat can adjust. You should introduce new food by slowly mixing in the new food with the old food. Do not make a complete shift right away. It is a good idea to consult with a veterinarian before changing your cat’s diet.
Worst case scenario, you can’t do any of these things, here are some other ideas to start getting your cat better hydrated:
Add water into their kibble.
Start adding some water into the *elevated* bowl you are feeding your cat from. This will hopefully promote them consume more water. But Take Caution: Be sure to not leave water-soaked kibble out for more than 30 minutes, though. Kibble may contain bacterial or fungal contaminants, so leaving water on dry food for too long could cause your cat more harm.
Try a Water Fountain.
Some people swear by them – Bubbly fountains may attract your cat to drink more water because of the movement/stimulation of the bubbling water. Not all fountains are created equal though. Low quality fountains with no filter or a poor filter can make it easy for bacteria to grow. Make sure you buy a quality fountain, or clean your fountain very regularly. We recommend this fountain, this is what Boujee cats drink out of! You can use this discount code HEALTHYCAT20 for this, too :)
Add a Splash of Tuna/Sardine/Fish Juice to Water – If you know there is a type if fish your cat likes, try adding a drop or two of it’s juice into their water. If you try this, put an extra bowl of plain water out in case your cat is turned off by it, that way your cat has two options. By “juice” we mean the watery liquid from canned tuna/sardines packed in water.
Use Filtered or Spring Water in your cat’s water bowl. Cat are ultra sensitive to taste and smell, so the tiniest amount of chemical or chlorine in tap water could prevent your kitty from drinking. We make it easy on ourselves and order filtered water to be delivered right to our door.
Clean Water Bowl Daily. Since any scent can turn your cat off, it’s good to wash their water bowl daily in case any contaminants have gotten into the bowl.
Fill the Angled Water Bowl to the Brim. Serving up a full dish of water in a 15 degree angled bowl will promote your cat drinking more, because it makes the experience more comfortable for them. Their wiskers are very sensitive, and they do not like putting their faces into a bowl. The angled elevated bowl helps avoid water getting on their face, and their whiskers from touching the water.
Provide More than One Water Bowl. It’s a good idea to have water in more than one location throughout your house! By placing individual water bowls in areas like near your cats’ favorite sleeping spot, or on an additional level of your home, you are encouraging more water drinking.
Add A Floating Ball to Water Bowl. Sometimes a cat may not be able to see the water level, and that deters them from drinking. Try adding something like a ping pong ball or a fish bobble that floats on the water surface, so they can better gauge the water level. Make sure whatever you put in the water is clean. Just like the juice idea, if you try this, put an extra bowl of plain water out in case your cat is turned off by the floating object.. that way your cat has two options. If this trick works, clean the floating device daily along with the bowl.
If you have been successful in using any other ways to get your cat to drink more water, we would love to hear them!
With all of that said – Both eating/digesting food properly and consuming water are essential to our cats’ health. A healthy cat is a happy cat – so do your due diligence to provide your cat with what it needs to thrive! These are a few things that can be done today to make your cat's life better:)
Cheers to a happy healthy New Year! Meow!
Please Note: This is not medical advice, these are our professional opinions formulated from our knowledge and experience. Always consult with a veterinarian before making changes to your cats diet or for medical advice. The purpose of this article is to provide the cat community with a platform to learn and discuss experiences. We only recommend products we believe in and stand by. Some of our links my be affiliate links where we could make a small commission to support the funding of this blog and the cat community.