We talk about growth, but in fact we should talk about growth and development:
* the growth is weighty; the weight increases,
* growth is also statural; the size of the kitten increases: it grows
* development is related to the deposition of new tissue. Everything starts at the same time, from conception, but does not continue at the same rate for all tissues and organs.
Thus most of the development of the nervous system is set very early in life, that of the skeleton is intermediate, and that of the muscles is quite late.
Adipose tissue is put in place early with the multiplication of adipose cells, and can develop (each adipose cell may store fat, up to 1000 times its size) throughout life, which allows obesity!
So the adult size (linked to the growth of the skeleton) is reached before the muscular system is fully developped: this allows the skeleton to withstand the force imposed by the muscles.
We can thus have the impression that the growth is finished when the adult size is reached. But in reality, it is only statural growth that is completed.
The weight nevertheless continues to increase by the deposition of muscles (lean mass).
If we don't allow a good muscle development, then the body composition may not be optimal: the young gains weight but with adipose tissue rather than proper muscle tissue...
The growth of the kitten of course begins at conception. The maximum growth rate (ie the moment when the kitten gains the most weight per day) is before birth. Then the growth of the kitten is quite linear, it takes almost the same weight and more every day for several weeks.
The end of growth, and muscle development…, appears around 40 weeks (10 months), and until then, the diet must be adapted to growth (with more proteins, essential fatty acids, vitamins…)… even in case of sterilization…
The puberty of the male cat occurs between 8 and 10 months. He begins to mark his territory with urine deposits (urinary marking) and to fight with other males *The puberty of the cat occurs between 4 and 12 months, with the appearance of the first heat. It becomes capable of reproducing, to be avoided before the end of growth.
* in the choice of date of sterilization of a cat, it is useful to add that the end of the growth (and the muscular development…) is approximately at 40 weeks (10 months), and until then, the food must be adapted to growth (with more proteins, essential fatty acids, vitamins…)… even in the event of sterilization… Think about it?
Neutering, whatever the age, decreases the caloric need by 20%, but does not decrease all the other nutritional needs, nor the appetite.
It is therefore necessary to modify the diet of the kitten so that it continues to grow without gaining weight below its optimal weight, but also that it gains weight that is "lean" and not adipose tissue.
Neutering does not mean that the kitten has acquired the digestive abilities, maturity of an adult cat.
Avoid: foods rich in fiber and starch (starch, carbohydrates).
To be favored: foods adapted to growth, rather wet foods, canned or adapted household ration (growth kibble can still be given but in limited quantities, weighed). The addition of a few dice of zucchini, little by little the amount can be increased.
Keeping a diet for growing kittens (always richer in proteins, vitamins, etc.) is essential.
The risk of overconsumption is great if left to will. So it is necessary to weigh and limit the amount of food available as needed.
To cover the appetite, it is interesting to give at least a portion of wet food.
>>> with a little growing croquettes, growing boxes and either a little zucchini (in Treats > fruits > zucchini: choose a gradually larger quantity)
>>> with a part growth kibble and a homemade part without starch which will allow to cover all the needs and the appetite
In case of absence, it will be easy to replace the homemade part by Growth trays without starch, to keep a variety, and volume in the ration.
To get the kitten used to to a variety of food, it is wise to accustom it to the variety from an early age.
Meat or fish (we speak of fish fillet) are the sources of animal protein and amino acids in the recipe.
In the case of a household or half and half recipe, all the meats or fish offered can be used to establish a recipe adapted to the kitten in question.
The recipe finally proposed and calculated must be able to be given every day. Certain foods (tuna, etc.) can be given once a week, but not every day. A small * indicates this when you choose meat or fish in the home ration or mixed diet (half and half) recipe. In this case, you will have to establish another recipe most of the time.
Kittens begin to be able to digest a small amount of starch only at 6 weeks of age. Second, most kittens digest a small amount of cooked starch well.
All kibbles contain starch. Some trays/boxes contain some others do not. In a homemade diet, you have the choice to add some or not.
In case of a half and half recipe for kittens, the home made part is offered without starch. There will be starch provided by the kibbles and, possibly via the wet food, if the one chosen contains it.
In case of a totally home made recipe, it is possible to choose whether or not to add a starch. If your kitten does not tolerate kibble, you can choose a household ration without starch. In any case, the kitten manufactures glucose by gluconeogenesis from proteins.
The kitten appreciates diced vegetables and tolerates them well if cooked, and in reasonable quantities.
In the kitten, vegetables can be brought because they contain water but ultimately quite little fiber. This is particularly true with succhinis.
Once neutered, you can stay with "few vegetables" or "normal amount" depending on the appetite.
If the kitten is very young or does not like vegetables at all, it is possible to choose "No vegetables"... you will have to add wheat bran: it does not take up space, mixes with coza oil and Vit'i5 and allows you to provide fiber essential to digestive comfort while it accepts vegetables.
You can add to the ration some diced zucchini (> fruit > zucchini: small amount) to gradually accustom it
Available and chosen treats are taken into account in the final recipe. So if you want days with treats and days without, it's best to make multiple recipes, one with and one without, to provide the right amount of overall nutrition.
My favorite treats among their favourites: Olive (fruit category), plain yogurt (dairy > it's lactose-free), peeled shrimp tail (only one!)...
Once you have chosen the treat, you must choose the quantity you want to give from a list of quantities you can give, taking into account the characteristics of the kitten
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