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Busy Lifestyles No Excuse For Poor Cat Diet

2 February, 2005

Busy Lifestyles No Excuse For Poor Cat Diet

At a time when many people are pondering the extra kilos they've put on over Christmas and making New Year resolutions for themselves, there's a plea for them to also think about their cats' diet.

The appeal was made today by New Zealand's cat food supplier CHEF(r) who says there's an increasing number of cats suffering from obesity-related diseases. Chef's animal nutritionists say that if cats are fed closer to their natural needs, like lions and tigers seen on TV2's "The Lion Man", they should live happy, healthy lives.

Chef is sponsoring the show for the second season and hopes it will reinforce the fact that domestic cats, like their wild cat relatives, thrive on a meat diet. The new series of The Lion Man screens from this Sunday (6 February) at 7pm.

Chef Marketing Manager, Glenys Henry, believes that the modern cat's lifestyle is mimicking its owners in that they are being allowed to eat more and are exercising less.

"While dry biscuits are quick and have their place in a cat's diet, owners need to realise that cats really benefit from wet food such as fresh meat or canned cat food," says Glenys.

Dr. Wouter Hendriks, Director of Animal Nutrition and Physiology at Massey University, says that cats are like small lions and 60% of their body consists of water which needs to be maintained at a constant level.

"Like their lion relatives, cats are carnivores too, which means they get most of their fluid intake from the food they eat, rather than by drinking water," says Dr. Hendriks.

A study conducted by Massey University showed that cats who were fed a diet of 100% canned cat food consumed more moisture overall than those who were fed other forms of cat food.

"Other types of cat food such as dry biscuits are processed to remove water and are more energy dense than wet food. This can affect a cat's ability to know when it is full and may lead to overeating with its associated health problems," says Dr. Hendriks.

"By feeding cats a wet meal every day, such as canned or pouch products, cats would be getting a diet that is nutritionally close to their natural needs," says Dr. Hendriks.

Glenys says that Chef hopes to educate owners on achieving a healthy balanced diet for their cats.

"Just as many humans begin 2005 with New Year diet resolutions, why not make a resolution for your cat by starting to feed it at least one wet meal a day," says Glenys.

Chef(r) canned and pouch catfoods contain all the essential nutrients including taurine, linoleic acid, vitamin A, vitamin D and niacin. Massey University tests CHEF(r) cat food products against international standards set by AAFCO (the Association of American Feed Control Officials). These standards are recognised worldwide for providing a petfood that is nutritionally complete and balanced, which is essential to help your cat maintain excellent health.


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