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How Changing Seasons Can Affect Your Cat’s Appetite

Changing Seasons and Cats

Sep 12

After a long winter, it’s always nice to be greeted by spring and then summer. But by the end of summer, most people are ready for the cooler days of fall and winter. As the seasons change, so do habits. Whether it’s spending more time outside during the summer or getting to bed earlier during the winter because of when the sun goes down, humans aren’t the only ones who are affected by these shifts. Research has shown that these changes can have a direct impact on cats’ appetite.

What the Data Says

Although plenty of cat owners have probably noticed changes with how their cats eat, not a lot of research had been done in this specific area. Fortunately, English and French researchers got together to conduct a six-year study on this topic. The study included 22 normal-weight cats and 16 overweight cats. 30 of the cats were housed in runs that had both indoor and outdoor access, while 8 cats were housed indoor-only.

For the entire six years, researchers carefully measured how much the cats ate on a daily basis. What they found is the 5 months when the cats ate the most were October through February. March through April plus September marked the months with intermediate food consumption, and then June through August were the lowest months of eating. By comparison, cats ate 15% less in July than they did in December.

Due to the limited sample size, no statistically significant differences were established between the indoor-only cats and the ones in runs with full access.

Making Adjustments for Your Cat

So, what does this research and the other information known about eating habits mean for you as a cat owner? It actually presents an interesting situation for domesticated cats. During the winter, the seasonal changes trigger them to eat more. However, since domesticated cats aren’t at risk of going long periods without access to food, this can actually cause them to gain weight.

If you want to take care of your cat’s needs and health, it’s important to keep a close eye on your cat’s weight during the fall and winter. By monitoring, you’ll be able to see if you need to encourage your cat to be more active, feed slightly smaller portions or switch to a leaner style of food that still provides all necessary nutrients on a daily basis.

The cat food blends we offer include adult and lean cat, which are both formulated to meet the nutritional levels established by the AAFCO cat food nutrient profiles for “All Life Stages.” If you have any questions about switching your cat to one of our blends or anything else related to your cat’s appetite, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us!

#CatBehavior, #CatNutrition, Autumn, Cats, Fall, pets, Weather

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