Cats of all shapes, sizes, breeds and ages often share the same space and the same dinner bowl. But cats have different dietary needs, and those with more than one cat often find that it becomes cumbersome to keep track of the amount and type of food each cat requires.
To make the process easier, The Iams Company recently introduced a food containing ingredients that the company says “work together to meet the individual needs of each cat in a household.”
“Feeding different foods to multiple cats living in the same home often is impractical, so Iams Multi-Cat is formulated with those needs and differences in mind,” said Dr. Dan Carey, a veterinarian with Iams. “Developing this food was a two-step process. First, cat owners described the ultimate food that would answer the needs of their cats. Iams nutritionists took that information and discovered the ideal combination of ingredients to accomplish the goals and fulfill the needs of these multi-cat households.”
The key ingredients in new Iams Multi-Cat are L-carnitine, which helps overweight cats burn fat; vitamin A, which is believed to help lower risk of weight gain; and protein for lean muscle mass.
According to industry research, 71 percent of all cats living in the U.S. live in a multi-cat home and 40 percent of those households make the extra effort to sequester each cat at mealtime.
But feeding is just one of many challenges multi-cat owners face. For those considering bringing an additional cat into their household, Iams offers the following tips:
* Give the new cat its own room with a bed, a scratching post, litter pan, food and water dishes and toys.
* Ease into it. Let the new cat explore the house while the other cat explores the new cat’s room. Also, let the new cat play with the first cat’s toys and then switch the toys. This will help them get used to each other’s scent.
* When introducing the cats, open the door just wide enough so that they can see and smell each other and stay close by to supervise. Repeat these short introductions as often as necessary until they are able to stay comfortably in the same room, with supervision.
* Give your first cat lots of extra attention and affection during this period of adjustment.