Five Reasons Why Your Cat is Always Hungry
When you think of a pet begging for food, the first pet that comes up in your mind would probably be a dog, with its big sad eyes and cute behavior. But nevertheless, cats can pretty much be obsessed with food as well, and often act in a similar way.
The reasons behind this behavior can be psychological and depend on each cat's personality. Unfortunately, it can also be a sign of serious health problems, which should be identified as soon as possible. If you notice that your feline friend started to act like it is always starving, something might be wrong, and a good idea might be to check with your local veterinarian.
But what may be causing this kind of behavior? Below are some possible reasons:
1. Natural Curiosity
It is known that sometimes cats may want to try human food out of their natural curiosity. As they see how their human owners consume something, their reaction would be to know what is it and to try it as well. A good idea would be keeping them away from it (especially if it is surely not for felines), and distract them by giving them something else to eat, or play with. Cat toys and small treats would be helpful here.
It is important to mention that as a typical cat gets older, less curious it becomes.
2. Cats are not always fans of human-like feeding schedules
Wild cats hunt for food for 12 to 20 hours every day, and they are often used to having small meals every now and then. Following the diet set by humans is not in their habits. In time, many domestic cats are accustomed to eating bigger meals just a couple of times per day, some of them are still not quite fond of this schedule. Instinctively, they start to beg for food during the day, even when they are not so hungry at the moment.
3. Feline diabetes
Sadly, diabetes mellitus is quite common among cats, with up to 2% tend to develop it with age. Whether it is type I or type II, diabetes will cause either an insulin deficiency or a poor response to the produced insulin. It interferes with cat's body, preventing it from processing glucose for energy, resulting in excess glucose in the blood. Thus, a sense of bottomless hunger becomes one of its common symptoms.
It is important to mention that other symptoms of diabetes include increased thirst and urination, and if detected, your cat should be taken to local vet clinic promptly.
Proper and timely treatment of diabetes can ensure a cat survival up to old age, but without attention it can quickly turn into an emergency.
4. Problems with the thyroid gland
Hyperthyroidism may be another feline condition with the symptom of constant hunger. It is usually caused by a benign tumor developing on one of the thyroid glands, which leads to increased production of thyroid hormones.
The entire feline body is being affected by this condition, especially its heart and kidneys. Strong hunger, especially when combined with weight loss, is one of the most common signs, others being increased thirst and urination, and if not taken care of in time - also vomiting and diarrhea.
5. Problems with digestive system, including cancer
While the irritable bowel disease usually leads to a loss of appetite, if your cat does not consume enough nutrition, it will feel hungrier. Similar thing happens in case of tumors in the digestive area. If your feline friend starts fasting suddenly, but will act like it is hungry all the time, it might be a good idea to call your local veterinarian.
What is feline's optimal appetite
Generally, the best way to feed your cat is to have at least two meals a day, about 12 hours apart. But making it into smaller, but more frequent ones during the day will also be a good idea - think about it as a breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner you are having every day. The important thing to understand is that you are in charge of controlling, how much food is consumed on a daily basis.
First of all, it is important to consider your cat's age. Growing kittens generally need at least three meals a day regardless of your schedule. Both wet food and dry food works great.
Next, you have to make sure you know how much food your cat should be getting in order not to overfeed it. If you feel that he or she loves its food a bit too much, it may be a good idea to switch to food that tastes a little less delicious. This way, your cat will not be so tempted to overeat. Make sure you keep their food storage somewhere inaccessible, so your cat cannot get to it.
It is important to note that you should always keep the water bowl clean and full, especially when feeding your cat dry food. Keeping it properly hydrated works pretty much the same way as with humans - it contributes to your pet's health and well-being.
Unlike dogs, many cats won't instantly get excited and come running if they hear you preparing their meal. But as long as they eat enough, everything should be fine. If you're lucky enough to own multiple cats, a challenging task will be to satisfy both starving kitten and a relaxed adult feline. In this case, a good idea would be to feed them different rooms