As is typical of carnivores, the teeth of the cat are appropriately modified for grasping, puncturing, and tearing (cutting), rather than for true mastication.
With the exception of "crunching" dry food, cats do little, if any, actual chewing. The hinging of the lower jaw can only be moved up and down and possesses no ability for a lateral chewing motion.
The cat has no first premolars and no lower (inferior) first or second premolars; the molars consist of a single upper and lower tooth on each side. When the mouth is closed, the upper sectorial tooth (P4) slides across the vestibular surface of the lower sectorial tooth (Ml),
producing an effective scissor-like cutting action, rather than a chewing action.
Thus the dental benefits of feeding dry food are grossly overrated. The arrangement and spacing of the cat's teeth will more likely trap small, slaiva-moistened pieces of dry food.
Carbohydrate based dry cat foods also leaves a starchy coating which promotes plaque.
Nothing replaces professional dental care.
Cats Need Animal-Based Protein
"The protein in dry food, which is often heavily plant-based, is not equal in quality to the protein in canned food, which is meat-based. The protein in dry food, therefore, earns a lower biological value score.
Because plant proteins are cheaper than meat proteins, pet food companies will have a higher profit margin when using corn, wheat, soy, rice, etc.
Humans and dogs can take the pieces of the puzzle in the plant protein and, from those, make the missing pieces. Cats cannot do this. This is why humans and dogs can live on a vegetarian diet but cats cannot. (Note that I do not recommend vegetarian diets for dogs.)
Taurine is one of the most important amino acids that is present in meat but is missing from plants. Taurine deficiency will cause blindness and heart problems in cats. (Taurine is in muscle meats)
Cats are obligate (strict) carnivores and are very different from dogs in their nutritional needs. What does it mean to be an ‘obligate carnivore’? It means that your cat was built by Mother Nature to get her nutritional needs met by the consumption of a large amount of animal-based proteins (meat/organs) and derives much less nutritional support from plant-based proteins (grains/vegetables). It means that cats lack specific metabolic (enzymatic) pathways and cannot utilize plant proteins as efficiently as animal proteins.
It is very important to remember that not all proteins are created equal.
Proteins derived from animal tissues have a complete amino acid profile. (Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins. Think of them as pieces of a puzzle.) Plant-based proteins do not contain the full compliment (puzzle pieces) of the critical amino acids required by an obligate carnivore. The quality and composition of a protein (are all of the puzzle pieces present?) is also referred to as its biological value. " More at: http://www.catinfo.org/#Cats_Need_Animal-Based_Protein_
A lesson learned by Rvers, Dan and Sandy :
"Further research on line has led to a decision to stop or severely cut back on dry kibble type cat food, and feed mainly canned meats. It will cost a bit more, but should lead to healthier cats and potentially much lower vet bills and laundry bills for our bedding. Just a few links of research on cat foods: http://www.catinfo.org/ and http://www.catinfo.org/commercialcannedfoods.htm "
I learned the lesson, many years ago, when my Bobcat developed painful crystals in her bladder. I had been feeding her the 'teeth cleaning' kind of dry food, and her twice day canned food. The sand or what ever they put in there to clean the cat's teeth, made the crystals develop. But cats are not like dogs.
Now I feed her a special diet listed with the right PH, as another of my cats got a urinary tract infection, (common in cats), and it was due to a well advertised food not having the right PH for cats.
When I got in touch with the company, all they said was "We sell a lot of it". Yes, because they have got it covered in chicken fat or something that cats love, to disguise the bad, and inadequate ingredients. That is why some dry cat foods go rancid after a while.
I didn't know if Sparky had got into Bobcat's box yesterday, but it earned him a bath.
He was nervous about having his shower, but as soon as he realized that I wasn't going to get water in his nose, he calmed down, relaxed and enjoyed it. He looks so fluffy now, since he was brush dried with a blow dryer.
As soon as he went outside that prompted him to roll in the dirt to get the 'clean' off!
This is his webpage: http://www.spcaofmc.org/animals/detail?AnimalID=2408231
Oh dear, what a dog's day!