Using a continuous recording computerized system, an experiment was conducted to examine the feeding and drinking patterns of the cat. Four diets; 1), dry commerical; 2), canned commercial; 3), casein based purified cats during 8 consecutive 7-10 day periods. Mean daily dry matter intake was greater (P<.01) for the dry than the canned diets. Mean daily caloric intake was 71 kcal/kg BW. Drinking water intake was greater (P<.01) during feeding of diet 1. Total water intake (mls/g DM) was highest (P<.01) for diet 2, even though the cats drank no water. There were no differences in meal frequency among diets (16 meals/day). Mean meal size (g DM/meal) was 4.8 g. It is concluded that domestic cats eat many small meals throughout the 24 h period, showing no diurnal cycle. After only a brief adaptive period cats clearly adjusted their dietary intake to their maintenance requirement despite the variable caloric content of the 4 diets.
- Food intake
- water intake
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
- Nutrition and Dietetics