7b Life Cycle Nutrition of Cats 1 Flashcards Preview

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Flashcards in 7b Life Cycle Nutrition of Cats 1 Deck (38):

What are the 3 critical phases of growing cats during first year?

1. nursing period
2. weaning period
3. post weaning period


Describe kittens at birth.

- immature
- depend on queen for food, Abs, warmth, hygiene
- strong suckling reflex
- will continuously cry in discomfort


What may happen if there is a poor queen kitten interaction?

- cannibalism
- neglect


How do kittens regulate temp during first month?

- poorly self regulate
- body temp > room temp
- queen maintains temp and humidity of nest box
- hyperthermia as bad as hypothermia
- humidity at 50%


Why is it difficult for kittens to regulate their own temp?

- don't have much fat reserve


Describe colostrum.

- produced during first 24-72 hours
- high DM
- low lactose (3%)
- protein and lipid levels decline from day 1-3, but rebound after day 3
- energy content declines from day 1-3 but increases through lactation
- passive transfer of immunoglobulins


When should kittens receive colostrum?

- within 12 hours after birth
- 16 hours after birth, passive immunoglobulin transfer stops


What happens if kittens do not receive colostrum?

- kittens immunologically compromised
- susceptible to infections and sepsis


Does queen's milk provide enough nutrition

it is the optimum nutrition!!!!!


What could happen if kittens are fed milk replacer?

- grow faster
- growing above normal growth rate may result in orthopaedic issues


What does cat milk contain high levels of?

- arginine and taurine
- DHA reflects queen's intake


What are 3 non nutritive factors of milk?

- increased food digestion
- increased neonatal development
- increased immune protection


As lactation progresses, what happens to the milk?

- increase in milk energy, protein, lactose, Ca and P levels
- decrease in Cu, Fe and Mg
- Zn remains constant


How many days does it take to double the birth weight of a kitten?



What is the birth weight of kittens and what should their weekly weight gain be?

- birth 85-120g (<75g high mortality)
- 100g weekly weight gain


What is the energy requirement of nursing kittens?

20-25kcal/100g BW


Why are males kittens heavier than female kittens by 6 weeks of age?

- consume larger quantity of food


How many kcal/mL does milk contain?



What is the carb requirement of nursing kittens?

- no carb requirement, but lactose in milk


Why is lactase activity high during nursing, and declines quickly after weaning?

- lactose is preferential energy substrate


What would happen if you fed a kitten too much cow milk?

- diarrhea, bloating, abdominal discomfort in kittens
- bacterial metabolism of lactose in large intestine


What is the function of immunoglobulins in the gut?

- prevents invasion of microbes into blood stream (translocation)
- local immunity persists as long as kitten gets mil
- need milk until maturation of immune system


How and when does weaning occur?

- queen starts avoiding kittens
- kittens start eating increasing amounts of food
- creep feed at 2.5 weeks
- 3-4 weeks of age, complete at 6-10 weeks of age


Is early or late weaning better?

- later weaning allows for more time for immune system maturation
- decreased kitten mortality in post weaning phase


Why is weaning stressful for kittens?

- transition to independent feeding
- greater environmental exposure
- no maternal antibodies = reduced immune defines
- increased mortality in post weaning period
- stomach small so need energy dense food


What kind of food should you offer during weaning?

- first offer moist food with water or milk replacer
- by week 6-8, learn to eat dry food


Why is semi moist food bad?

- promotes highly acidic urinary pH
- metabolic acidosis
- impaired bone mineralization


How long do kittens grow?

- 8weeks - 10-12 months


What are the nutrient requirements of growing kittens?

- maintenance + growth


What is the equation for ME of growing cats after weaning?

ME (kcal) = ((100xBW^0.67)/MER) x 3.2 x ((e^-0.189p)-0.66)


Describe the protein requirements of growing kittens

- high at weaning and decrease gradually to adult level
- higher requirement for sulfur amino acids than other species
- essential amino acids: total protein ratio high for low protein levels and for very high CP levels
- high quality protein


Describe the fat requirement of growing kittens.

- greater than adult cat
- tolerate wide range of dietary fat (1-64%)
- fat digestibility >90%
- excessive fat intake predisposition to obesity
- DHA important for neural development (9% DM based on milk composition)


Where might a cat get DHA?

- animal tissue like fish or eggs


How does fat digestibility increase with age?

- increases with age between 9-17 weeks of age
- develop ability to digest fat (pancreatic lipase and bile acids)


Describe the Ca and P requirements of growing kittens?

- Ca: 440mg/ kg BW per day
- P: 400mg/kg BW per day


What can a Ca deficiency and P excess lead to?

- nutritional secondary hyperparathyroidism -> osteitis fibrosa: limping and reluctance to move -> extra Ca not recommended


Describe the urinary pH of kittens

- urinary pH less than adults cars
- likely due to H+ released during bone formation
- kittens fed highly acidified food grow slower
- lower risk to develop struvite


Describe the carb requirements of growing kittens

- none known
- adequate supply of gluconeogenic amino acids
- can digest some starch in cereal grains
- excessive feeding of poorly digestible carbs can cause bloating, gas and diarrhea