Published by: Ingrid King. Last Updated on: February 2, 2023 by Crystal Uys
This post is sponsored by Darwin’s Natural Pet Products and contains affiliate links*
We all want our cats to live long and happy lives. We know that healthy habits increase our vitality and help prevent serious illness, and the same is true for our cats. If you’re not already practicing these five healthy habits, now is a good time to start!
1. Feed a species-appropriate diet
While we can’t control our cats’ genes, we can control what we feed them, which is why proper nutrition is so important. Cats are obligate carnivores, which means that they need meat not only to survive, but to thrive. The optimal diet for a cat is a properly formulated raw, home-cooked or grain-free canned diet.
2. Maintain a healthy weight
According to a 2016 study by the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention, a staggering 59% of cats in the U.S. are classified as overweight or obese. 28% are overweight, and an additional 31% are “clinically obese”—more than 30% above ideal weight. These statistics are horrifying to me. Just like with humans, obesity leads to serious health problems, including diabetes, heart and respiratory problems, a compromised immune system, and more. Unless cats figure out how to open cans or bags of food, the responsibility for helping a cat lose weight rests squarely on human shoulders.
3. Exercise and play
Play is crucial in keeping cats happy and healthy. Play behavior is a way for cats to exercise their hunting instinct. Toys that mimic predatory behavior, such as interactive wand toys, are a great way to not only encourage play, but for cat and human to bond. Puzzle toys keep cats mentally challenged. It’s a good idea to rotate toys so cats don’t get bored with the same old toys.
4.Create a healthy environment
At their core, cats are still wild animals, and while we’ve invited them into our homes to share our lives, we can’t expect them to completely give up all their instincts. We have to look at our living space from the cat’s point of view and provide an environment that keeps them stimulated. Provide plenty of toys, places to hide, places to climb and perch, and things to watch.
5. Regular veterinary check ups
The American Association of Feline Practitioners recommends a minimum of annual wellness examinations for all cats and more frequent visits for senior cats in its recently released Life Stage Guidelines. Regular check-ups can help avoid medical emergencies by detecting conditions or diseases before they become significant, painful, or more costly to treat.
About Darwin’s Raw Food for Cats
Darwin’s has been my go to food for the past five years, and Allegra loves it. There are so many things to like about Darwin’s, both in terms of what’s in the food and what’s not:
- 100% meat – no animal-by-products or fillers
- Ethically sourced human grade ingredients from farms they trust
- Formulated under the guidance of veterinary nutritionists
- Free range, pasture raised, cage-free meats
- No GMO
- No steroids
- No hormones
- Made fresh: you will receive your meals 4-6 weeks from production
- Ready to serve
Even better: it’s delivered right to your door.
Special offer: get 10 pounds for $14.95!
Darwin’s has an introductory offer that can’t be beat so you can try this for your own cats: For $14.95, you get 10 pounds of raw food. You can customize the flavors depending on your cat’s taste preferences.
Once you place your introductory order, you are automatically set up for automatic shipments (you choose the frequency of shipment,) but you can cancel or change this at any time.
For more information and to order, please visit DarwinsPet.com.
*FTC Disclosure: This is a sponsored post, which means that I was compensated to feature this content. Regardless of payment received, you will only see products or services featured on this site that we’ve either used or would use ourselves. The Conscious Cat is a participant in Darwin’s affiliate program. This means that if you decide to purchase through any of our links, we get a small commission.
Photo via Darwin’s Natural Pet Products Facebook page, used with permission.
About the author
Ingrid King is an award-winning author, former veterinary hospital manager, and veterinary journalist who is passionate about cats.