Sunday 14 May 2023

Cat food which is "as good as it looks" designed to appeal to humans

This is a very short and perhaps obvious note but I don't think the point I am making is that obvious to many readers. Felix make a cat food which is proudly described on the box to be 'as good as it looks'.

Felix cat food as good as it looks
Felix cat food as good as it looks. Image: Pet at Home.

Neither the manufacturers nor the cat owner have any idea what type of pet food cats find visually appealing. The registered strap line means that the food is as good as it looks to the purchaser of the food. The human cat caregiver. It is primarily designed to be attractive to the cat's owner not the cat.

If the cat is pleased with the way it looks so much the better but they are not the targeted audience. It is the caregiver. It doesn't really matter that much if the cat sees it as lip-smackingly good or not for the reasons provided in the last two paragraphs.

That said when you read the strap line you automatically infer that Felix cat food is 'as good as it looks' to cats! That's what we think. We become our cat and believe that the food will look appetizing to our beloved feline friend.

It is a psychological game that the manufacturers play with their customers. When you look at the food it does look a bit like human food. It has to because it has to look appetizing to humans.

So Felix have to make a cat food that looks appetizing to humans and is therefore somewhat like human food while also being good cat food.

The final point to note is that cats don't decide on whether a food is appetizing by its appearance but by its smell. Their nose is the adjudicator on the palatability of their food.

You will always see domestic cats smelling food before they eat it. If they don't, they must have got used to being given the same food daily and smelled it as they approached their bowl.

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