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March 2001


by (Livin' La Vida) Mocha

"MMMMMMMMmmmmmmmm" <whisker lick>

English Translation:

Cats enjoy treats for the same reasons humans do -- they taste good. Many treats on the market today have the added benefit of being healthy as well as tasty. And, treats can serve several purposes: as a training device, an encouragement and reward for successfully completed commands, or for tolerating a potentially unpleasant event (such as grooming or medicating).

As with most things, simpler is better. The highest quality treats are made of single ingredients: liver, kidney, fish, chicken, and are dried or freeze dried. The ones that are extruded (like dry food) or semi-moist have the laundry list of ingredients. When shopping for treats, do the same as when shopping for any food for your cats. Avoid products that contain byproducts or artificial flavors. And remember, an excess of any food can result in an overweight kitty, so don't confuse giving treats with giving your cat love and affection.

Favorite treats:

Azmira's Beef Kidney Bits According to the package, these are wholesome and fit for human consumption. They are even federally inspected by The Food Safety Inspection Service (a specialized division of the USDA). The chunky, irregularly shaped pieces provide a lot of crunch and have a strong meaty odor, which is attractive to cats. Cost: $3.85 for 80 grams (sandwich bag size) Order via phone: 800-497-5665

Thunderpaws' Chicken Bits Supreme These work especially well as bribe food to be sprinkled on a stick or finicky cat's dinner to encourage eating. It is also fit for human consumption. These are a good choice for cats who may be allergic to fish. Cost: $3.50 for 2 oz package Order online:

Alaska Chum Chips Salmon is high in essential fatty acids. The pieces are large enough to be fed as treats or crumbled into food. Cost: $3.75 for 1 oz package Order online: