Lifestages, Lifestyles, and Cat Food
原文在此(Original article here)
The ownership and copyright of this article belongs to the original writer and this is just a translated version, only for sharing.
商業貓食的數量和形式就像兔寶寶繁殖一樣迅速成長. 一個網路商店就有353種不同的乾糧, 735種不同的罐罐!
The number and types of commercial cat food seems multiplying like rabbits. One online store carries 353 different dry foods, and 735 varieties of canned food! Here’s a sampling of the lifestages cat food is made for:
- 幼幼貓(0~4個月)Babycat (0 to 4 months)
- 幼貓(0或4~12個月)Kitten (0 or 4 to 12 months)
- 成貓(1~7歲)Adult (1 to 7 years)
- 熟貓(7~10歲)Mature (7 to 10 years)
- 老貓(10歲以上)Senior (over 10 years)
- 年輕成貓(結紮/去勢後~7歲)Young adult (from time of spay/neuter to 7 years)
- 年輕公貓(去勢後~7歲)Young male (from time of neuter to 7 years)
In contrast, the American Association of Feline Practitioners (AAFP) has come up with its own lifestage classifications:
- 幼貓(出生~6個月)Kitten (birth to 6 months)
- 青少年(7個月~2歲)Junior (7 months to 2 years)
- 青年貓(3~6歲)Prime (3 to 6 years)
- 熟齡貓(7~10歲)Mature (7 to 10 years)
- 老貓(11~14歲)Senior (11 to 14 years)
- 貓瑞(15歲以上)Geriatric (15 years+)
這個系統依據營養需求, 行為及該年齡常見疾病將生命階段分期. 這個會比較有邏輯, 因為貓咪通常會在中年時過重, 老年時體重減輕. 但是就算是AAFP也認為所有的年齡分期並沒有很清楚的界線,不並是絕對的.
This system divides lifestages by nutritional needs, behavior, and diseases common to each age group. It makes more sense in a way, because cats do tend to become overweight in middle age, and lose weight as seniors. But even AAFP recognizes that “any age groupings are inevitably arbitrary demarcations along a spectrum, and not absolutes.”
"生活方式"食物, 包含品種專用食品. 有很多的選擇, 像是活動力高, 室內, 體重控制, 毛球, 腸胃敏感, 無穀, 無麩質, 泌尿道系統, 腎臟, 低敏, 多貓, 皮毛, 暹羅貓, 波斯貓, 緬因貓...等
Then there are what I call “lifestyle” foods, including breed-specific diets. There are dozens of choices, including active, indoor, weight management, hairball, sensitive stomach, grain free, gluten free, urinary, kidney, hypoallergenic, multiple-cat, skin and coat, Siamese, Persian, Maine coon, and many more.
還有很多不同的食物型態: 乾糧, 半濕糧, 罐頭 (包含妙鮮包), 生食, 脫水糧, 冷凍脫水糧,及自製.
In addition, there are multiple food forms: dry, semi-moist, canned (including pouches), raw, dehydrated, freeze-dried, and homemade.
寵物食品製造商也喜歡強調品質,以和其他商品區隔. 有優質, 特優, 非常優, 金牌, 銀牌, 四星級, 更佳, 高於, 專業, 處方, 人食用級, 還有天然與有機. 除了最後兩個, 期他的字詞並沒有規範或明確的定義.
Pet food manufacturers also like to make quality claims to distinguish one from another. Today we have premium, super-premium, ultra-premium, gold, platinum, four-star, plus, extra, professional, prescription, human-grade, and of course, natural and organic. Except for the last two, there are no rules or definitions for any of these terms.
就算如此, 貓食還是有兩個重要的營養標準: 成貓與成長中(幼貓,懷孕或授乳母貓)."全貓糧"表是能符合成長需求. 所有其他的標語都只是廣告用詞. 這些食品的不同處只在於蛋白質,纖維與脂肪比例的些微不同, 而且或許有一或多種"吸引人的原料", 像是藍莓, 奧米加-3脂肪酸或是海帶. 這些標示只是用來吸引你的, 與貓咪的健康相關性非常小.
Yet after all is said and done, there are only TWO nutritional standards for cat food: adult and growth (kitten, pregnancy, lactation). “All life stages” foods comply with growth requirements. Everything else–everything–is purely marketing. The differences between these foods are primarily cosmetic–minor alterations in protein, fiber, and fat percentages, and perhaps one or more “glamour ingredients” such as blueberries, Omega-3 fatty acids, or kelp. These labels are designed to appeal to you, and have little to do with your cat’s health. (For more info, check out our other articles on pet food labels and marketing hype.)
現在, 想想貓咪這個物種, 想想大自然是怎樣將貓咪的生命階段分期. 年輕的幼貓, 理所當然的, 是由貓媽媽餵奶; 這種貓奶飲食會維持3~4個月, 但是幾周後他們就會慢慢的開始嘗試由許多不同獵物組成的固體食物. 而這是他們會一直吃直到老死的食物. 所以"天然"的貓咪只有兩種不同營養需求的階段: 貓奶, 及其他貓生.
Now, think about the cat species for a moment, and consider how nature divides up the feline’s lifestages. Young kittens and cubs, of course, nurse from their mom; this milk diet continues for 3 or 4 months, but after just a few weeks they are gradually introduced to solid food in the form of a variety of prey animals. And that’s what they eat until their dying day. So the “natural” cat only has 2 nutritionally distinct stages: nursing, and the rest of their lives.
這是個值得注意的點, 在大自然, 貓奶或獵物都沒有被烹煮, 殺菌, 輻照, 粗磨, 冷凍乾燥或是其它的處理. 貓奶含有乳糖, 可以提供很多的熱量以提供快速的成長; 但是只要斷奶, 貓咪的生理需求就不需要碳水化合物. 他們天然的飲食是無穀,無麩質, 新鮮且生食; 這對他們的皮膚, 毛髮, 肝, 牙齒, 體重, 活動力, 過敏, 腎臟, 膀胱及所有年齡, 身體部位與狀態都是最好的.
It’s worth pointing out that, in nature, neither mother’s milk nor prey animals are cooked, pasteurized, irradiated, kibbled, freeze-dried, or otherwise processed. Milk contains the sugar lactose, which provides plenty of calories to support rapid growth; but once weaned, cats have no physiological need for carbohydrates. Their natural diet is grain-free, gluten-free, fresh, and raw; and it’s good for their skin, coat, liver, teeth, body weight, activity, allergies, kidneys, bladder, and every other age, body part and condition.
所以, 當你在選擇一種貓食的時候, 不要被那些炒作的詞給蒙騙. 選擇你可以負擔的最佳品質且貓咪肯吃的濕食. 不要只餵一種; 貓咪需要多樣性. 避免那些包含"肉塊"或"雞塊", "碎片"等其他形狀的食物, 這些通常不是肉, 而是由植物蛋白所組成的. 確定你的貓食為全貓糧; 這是最適合的標準. 如果你還在餵乾糧或半濕糧, 今天會是一個很好的時機開始進行飲食轉換.
So when you’re choosing a cat food, don’t fall for the hype. Get the best quality wet foods you can afford and that your cat will eat. Don’t feed just one food all the time; cats need variety. Avoid foods containing “meat chunks” or “nuggets,” “shreds,” or other shapes, which are not meat at all but formed from texturized vegetable protein. Make sure your cat’s food covers all life stages; this is the most appropriate standard. If you’re still feeding dry or semi-moist food, today is a good day to start the transition to a better diet. For more information, please see our Nutrition category, which contains dozens of articles on holistic nutrition, supplements, and the pet food industry.