Your kitten's diet from four to 12 months
At this stage in their development, your kitten's energy needs will be reducing gradually, although they still need much more than an adult cat. During this period, adult teeth replace your cat's milk teeth and their digestive system matures, so they're now able to crunch, chew and eat solid foods more easily.
However, a cat's digestive system still only accounts for 3% of their bodyweight—compared to 11% of a human's—which means it can be quick to become aggravated from a new food or stress. Your kitten's food and feeding at this time should be consistent: the same food, in the same place, in a peaceful and stress-free environment.
Over this period your kitten is at the peak of its weight gain, increasing in size by 3.5 oz a week at the age of four to five months. It's important to monitor their weight closely so they don't increase in size too rapidly and risk becoming obese. You can help prevent this by making sure you only give them the recommended portion of kibble or wet food each day.
Your cat and their diet from one year onward
As a fully matured adult, your cat now has very different nutritional needs from their early days. Their energy requirements are much lower, and several other factors should be considered: their lifestyle, such as whether they're an indoor or outdoor cat, their breed, gender, and whether they are neutered or not.
Every cat still has nutritional needs which must come from their diet. This includes the essential amino acid, taurine, which is only available from animal sources, and vitamin A and D which continue to support your cat's health.
Your cat's nutritional needs will change significantly over its lifetime, but if you're ever unsure of the best feed for them, ask your vet who'll be happy to help.