Clearly this is a problem for more than just elderly cats, the big question everyone should be asking is why.
First, is it even logical biscuits clean teeth? It's comparable to suggesting wolfing down half a packet of Hobnobs will give us humans pearly whites. Simply eating something hard doesn't clean teeth - particularly if you have massive canines that cut through biscuits like a knife through hot butter. For this theory to even be on the table, cats would have to chew their biscuits.
Cats (unlike humans) don't chew food to mix it with saliva before swallowing. The acidity of their gut is such that saliva and mastication would destroy their teeth. Instead cats only use their teeth to rip something small enough to be swallowed whole - their digestive system takes care of the rest.
This means kibble is swallowed not chewed.
I was surprised to read how many noted their cats vomited or didn't eat well when the temperatures soared, after all we're always hearing cats originate from the desert.
What confused me more is that we didn't experience any issues from the heat,despite the fact one is a long coated and extremely thick, fluffy feline; on the contrary they both basked in the sunniest and hottest room (on back legs akimbo to help keep themselves cooler) despite repeated attempts to lure them out.
I mentioned this to a vet friend of mine and after a chat I decided to dig more. I'm quite shocked at what I found and think it should be more widely shared with pet owners.
Whilst the general consensus is multiple proteins are needed, some raw feeding group on Facebook disagree; instead they argue variety is "optimal" not "compulsory"
Raw bones however are a different ballgame.
Whereas many of us are used to seeing the image above, many of us forget our domestic cats are basically tiny lions .
Whereas humans have molars (creating a flat surface for grinding plant materials), along with canines - cats have a completely different configuration.
As an experiment they swabbed a dog owner's (unwashed) hands, the dog's tongue and the dog's bowl following a raw meal. They did this in association with Liverpool University, who claim to have an unpublished study showing the following:
"The faeces of 114 dogs fed a variety of raw diets and 76 fed cooked diets (which includes kibble and tinned) were tested for the presence of some pathogens known to be harmful to human health. The percentage of dogs carrying antibiotic-resistant E. coli and Salmonella was significantly higher in the raw-fed cohort of dogs, compared to the cooked-fed cohort."
As a result of this the authors claim:
"This suggests that the spread of resistance to antibiotics used in human medicine is encouraged through the feeding of raw food diets, and supports existing research that there is a higher risk of coming into contact with potentially harmful pathogens if you feed your pet a raw food diet. " (BBC Scotland)