Cats are notoriously finicky eaters. Usually they will know right away if their usual food has been tampered with in any way. There are many ways to help promote the acceptance of new foods. A simple way includes making sure the food is at room temperature, not refrigerated. However, simple ways usually don’t work. Here are two other ways, somewhat simple, that may help. If they don’t, then you have a REALLY finicky eater.
A gradual transition
This is one that most owners do when getting their animals on a new food. The gradual transition also allows the digestive system to adjust to the new food without having the ‘shock’ of having it introduced right away. This works by switching the old food to the new food over a gradual period of time.
If the cat is not as finicky a eater, the transition period will be shorter. All you do is take a percentage of the old food away, and substitute it for the new food. Say I started out with 100% old food. So on day 1, I am going to take 10% of that away, and add 10% of the new food. So the cat is gradually making that adjustment, usually without knowing it.
However, you might have that cat that WILL know it. The gradual transition will be much longer. Instead of day one being 10% new food, it might have to be as low as 2%. In a bowl of dry food, it might be a few kibbles. What a pain huh? But if you really need your cat to switch over, it might be the only way.
If the transition just doesn’t work at all, compromising might be a solution. This is somewhat similar to the transition, however it works the opposite. You start out giving the new food right away. That is what they eat, no adding it gradually to the old food.
But if you see your cat is having difficulty adjusting, or just flat out refuses to eat, some compromising might have to be done. What is meant by that is adding the old food to the new food, but only a small amount. So if the food in question is wet food, just add a little spoonful to the new wet food. Sometimes all a cat needs is that familiar scent of its old food to encourage it to eat the new stuff.
If the food in question is dry food, add a few old food kibbles to the new stuff, like I mentioned it is kind of the opposite of the transition. If you are going from dry food to wet food here is a tip: just crush a few of the dry food kibble into a powder of sorts. Then sprinkle it onto the wet food. As mentioned, sometimes all it takes is that familiar scent to get them eating.
If the transition or the compromise doesn’t work out for you, then that is one stubborn cat.