Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

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SarahT1 [PLLE]
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Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by SarahT1 [PLLE] »

Hello all

Two of our cats, both rescues who came to us with long standing health issues, have had major dentals and were both diagnosed with calicivirus. We had a big meeting set up at the vet on Saturday morning when to all intents and purposes we would be booking a date for Edgar to have a complete extraction followed by 100 days of orally administered Inteferon, and to consider a further dental for Pepsi plus the meds. I was looking forward to none of it

However, things took a completely unexpected turn. Both of their mouths were looking significantly better than expected and to his slight bewilderment, the vet immediately gave them a reprieve for at least a month. He even said that it was possible that a 'miracle cure' had been accomplished. Both are on Metacam daily for Edgar, (apx 7 years) every other day for Pepz (apx 17 ys), but the main change for them has been cereal free food. They both now have Lily's Kitchen supplemented by Encore, Thrive and Applaws. The vet was persuaded that this was the cause of the improvement. This may be a little 'out there' for some, but Pepsi has also had some Rieki treatment and interestingly she showed the greatest improvement. I appreciate the jury may well be out on that one, but the cereal free option has, I know, really helped other cats as well. Our vet thought our two were quite irredeemable cases, and has been compelled to acknowledge that a non-medical intervention may well have helped more than anything else (apart from extraction) so far. Edgar still had some inflammation even where the teeth had been extracted, but finally that seems to be receding.

So I really recommend Lily's Kitchen especially for its health benefits. Two other friends have move their furbabes onto it and one reports much better gum health, and both have commented on rather fine looking poos. Pepsi is inclined to rather elderly small, dry poos, and I have also noticed that she is doing better in that respect. too.
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by Eliz+Cats »

How very interesting! And I'm so glad your cats are now doing well (whatever the reason!).

I switched all five of my cats to grain-free food (low carb wet) seven and a half years ago when my youngest cat was diagnosed with diabetes. (Previously they'd been on a mix of Science Diet dry food and canned food that contained a fair amount of carbohydrates.)

With the switch to grain-free wet food the difference in the condition of all my cats was quite striking. I'd done it to benefit my diabetic boy, but the condition of the other cats improved enormously. Shinier coats were the first change. But it also happened that my slightly skinny cat gained some weight, and my overweight diabetic boy lost weight. The new diet seemed to balance things out...

I now know (though was clueless about this before the diabetes dx) that cats just haven't evolved to eat grains. :roll: It seems so obvious now. But I'd honestly never thought about it before... :oops:

Carbohydrates are hard for cats to digest, and some cats have grain intolerances too.
It may be, Sarah, that the switch to grain-free food has naturally reduced any inflammatory responses in your cats' bodies. It could have increased your cats' taurine level also. And since taurine helps the immune system the food switch might have made it easier to fight off infection...? (Pure speculation, I know..... Can you tell I'm an avid fan of grain-free food??? :lol: )

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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by sarie »

I'm so pleased they've improved like that! Hopefully they can hang onto their teeth... !! :)

I'm a huge advocate of grain free - my cats have never had any specific health issues but they both had dry skin and Clive had gum inflammation a few years ago when he was only 3 years old.
I did a little research on food as I wanted to improve their coats and their skin and I stumbled into the world of cat food and quickly realised how bad the majority of mainstream cat and dog foods are.
Mine were eating Felix pouches and dried Royal Canin at the time which were not only expensive (as the cats inhaled them so I got through a lot) but also turned out to be pretty unhealthy.

I switched mine onto a combination of Orijen dried and Bozita wet as this seemed like a good trade off between quality and cost. As a result their diets are completely grain and sugar free and the balance of nutrients in their diet is as good as I could get it.

Within about a month there was a marked improvement in their skin and coats and within 6 months Clive's gums were completely normal; they both also lost quite a bit of their belly fat and seemed generally more active. Since then I've never gone back and although occasionally I know they hanker after some rubbish quality food, I never give in to their demands. The vet often asks what I feed them when I take them in for their annual checkup as they're in such good condition. No surprise that they've never heard of either Orijen or Bozita.. they were the ones who pushed Royal Canin onto me in the early days and I thought I was doing a good thing by feeding it to my cats - turns out it's one of the worst offenders for grains!

My brother recently switched his cats onto Orijen after I gave him some advice as his both had health issues too.. they're already showing signs of improvement. Grain free is absolutely the way forward :)
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by greenkitty »

I'm not sure if you've come across Dr Addie's website before? She's a research vet at Glasgow University and she advocates cereal free food for stomatitis, you need to make sure they are getting some "complete" food as some of those you mention are complimentary but there are options for those too, if your cats will eat them :)

Her website is a great source of information on this dreadful condition and is well worth reading.

http://www.dr-addie.com/stomatitis.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by bobbys girl »

What good news! (I really needed some this morning! :roll: ) Hope things continue to improve. Very interesting about cereal-free. Obvious really, cats are carnivores not vegetarian! Having said that mine like a little rice in their diet! (Sorry if I have overdone the !'s - it's one of those days!!!!!!!) :lol:
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by greenkitty »

Just to add that it's the sugars in the cereals that reacts to plaque around the teeth and causes this extreme inflammation which is why they often suggest extraction as in a lot of cases removal of the teeth stops this reaction.
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by SarahT1 [PLLE] »

LOL, definitely Eliza! I love your post, it has built my faith in cereal free even further. Definitely the way forward. My friend, Carol, whose girl is also now on Lily's has also reported a shinier coat and no mats in her long hair. As you say, how obvious when you think about it, that cats have not evolved to eat grains. In the wild they are hardly going to be munching on the corn at field edges, rather finding the mice in the middle of it! I feel positively evangelistic now. Unfortunately, the cost of cereal free will put a lot of folk off. Hopefully the more people who buy it, there is a chance that the price might come down a little.


Just seen your post too now, sarie. I will look up the Orijen dry now. My third cat, lou Lou, doesn't like wet food and really only wants dry, but she doesn't like James Wellbeloved cereal free, so an alternative option would be great.

Hi Julia - yes I know Encore and Applaws are not complete, but fortunately Thrive and Lily's are. A while back when I was worried that Lou Lou, our other girl, was not eating enough complete food, a different vet (not at our practice) said that as long as she had a few mouthfuls of complete dry food a day then it was not such a worry if she only ate Encore wet (as she did at the time - she has now at least moved on to Sheba, but I have to get her onto Lily's soon). I will look at this website with interest. It's Glasgow who do the calicivirus tests as you doubtless know.

Now seen all your lovely replies. It all makes so much sense once you think about it for one second, doesn't it. The sugars are addictive too...

love to all and thank you for your posts in response.
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by SarahT1 [PLLE] »

Have now ordered a trial bag of Orijen Regional Red. Sounds delicious. If my little dry food preferring girl likes it, then we should be successfully on cereal free for all three cats.
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by sarie »

I'm glad you're giving it a go Sarah :) Mine have the Cat and Kitten which is poultry based but they go nuts for it. I was tempted to give the Regional Red a go for a change at some point so you'll have to let me know how you get on with it! :)

If she doesn't like that one then give the Cat and Kitten a go too... second option :)
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by greenkitty »

Lily's Kitchen do a dry cereal free food available at Tesco (chicken or fish flavour) plus their own version which is harder to track down, this is complete and not to be confused with the treats. There's also a brand called Canagan which is dry and cereal free :)
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by Crewella »

I started feeding Butchers Classic after Grumpy Nellie had all her teeth out and came to live with me and I started reading about the benefits of cereal free food. It certainly seemed to help her gums, and she's doing fine now. :)
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by SarahT1 [PLLE] »

Interestingly none often would take to Butcher's which was disappointing as it's not too expensive. The Orijen Regionsl Ted biscuits have gone down very well on arrival! More tasty than JWB I assume.
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by MarkB »

That's great Sarah. :)

I have always been wary of cereals in food and knew cereal-free was the way to go with gut issues, but didn't know it could help with gum issues too. We had several years of bloody poos with Alice, before I decided to bite the bullet and start an elimination diet. I started with wheat and didn't need to go any further. For her, all it took was a change to Purina One sensitive, fed with Felix senior wet. She had the odd upset stomach now and then still, but no blood and no terrible smell.

A decent, but well priced cereal free wet I highly recommend is Lidl own Coshida pouches (not to be confused with the basics one) which are cereal-free and don't even contain the dreaded 'various sugars' - they contain a small amount of inulin instead.

Anyway, let's hope you have cracked it. Is there a Calici Yahoo group where you could share your findings?

I am also going to mention it to my mum, whose cat also has it. She is a really picky eater, but she can only try.

I know JWB now do a completely cereal-free dry now and Arden Grange have a range of cereal-free dry.
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by SarahT1 [PLLE] »

Thanks Mark. I didn't know that Lidl variety were cereal free. I've got them now and then as spare emergency food. Will take them more seriously now. Yesterday I Yahoo'd cereal free food for cats and was amazed by the range. If I can just get Lou onto cereal free wet for the little wet she eats we've cracked it for all the family. Lou would like a raw diet for preference I think but she likes her dry food too.

Will look to see about a Yahoo group later. I will be interested to see how Val's Mr Grey gets on after his extraction and possible calici.
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by MarkB »

Even Felix pouches (except gravy ones) are cereal-free, but most also contain fish. The only one that I know of that doesn't is the meat selection foil trays (on offer £2.50 a box in Iceland :) )

Co-op own pouches - even the gravy ones, are cereal-free.
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by greenkitty »

The battle is getting them to eat it! My guys will eat Butchers but aren't that keen on it and will leave some which they don't do with other foods.
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by bobbys girl »

Mark - mine have been on Coshida (jelly) for some years now. It is cereal free, cheap and they ALL like it. I'd say that's a result!

We have never (as far as I know :? ) had problems with cereal. But after reading this post I find I am reading the (very) small print on any new food. The only problem we have had is with pouches containing tuna. They will eat 'John West' but refuse point blank to touch any cat tuna - what's with that?

I like them to have variety, so most weeks sees me picking up a couple of Coshida's from Lidl (easy peasy). Then going next door (that's handy) to Pets at Home and scouring the shelves for that weeks offers on 'good' food. :roll:

They all like Applaws, but it is ruinously expensive (x5) I'm trying them with 'Purely' ocean fish in jelly. They love it! It contains fish, sunflower oil and tapioca and claims to be wheat-gluten, colour, dairy, preservative free.
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by MarkB »

I think Coshida smells quite appetizing - especially compared to Whiskas, which turns my stomach. I don't buy it at all. I struggle to get enough Coshida as it comes to them on a pallet of 1/2 jelly, 1/2 gravy boxes. Quite often, they have tons of the gravy one, but no jelly ones. I manged to get 2 last week. I asked a member of staff and she said they aren't allowed to put a new pallet out until they have all gone. Kylie won't touch 'cat tuna' - They are doing 4 tins of John West for £3 in Iceland at the moment, although the tins seem a bitter smaller than usual (165g)

I took a photo of the Coshida in Jelly box (it used to be called Opticat in there I think). I think it is about £2.60 a box :)
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by bobbys girl »

Mark - they do Opticat as well. I don't think the pallets are 50/50. I ALWAYS have to root around for the jelly ones, even with a new pallet - funny that? I know what you mean about the Whiskas, Poo!

My OH went fishing this afternoon and caught 5 Mackerel! The kitties think it's Christmas! :roll: Looks like I'll have to fight them for tea. :lol:
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by SarahT1 [PLLE] »

Oh yum! So with 5 furbabes and 5 mackerel I don't see where you fit in there at all!!
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by PeanutsFriend »

We don't have Lilys Kitchen over here. Not even online.
We get Beyond ONE Purina kibbles. Sheba, Grandmas Homestyle, Fancy Feast and Iams for wet.
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by SarahT1 [PLLE] »

We get One Purina, Sheba and I AMs but not the other two. Grandmas Homestyle sound very American - it's probably over here but called something else !
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by MarkB »

I remember some time last year, someone (can't remember who) phoned Mars to ask about ingredients of Sheba in gravy. If I remember rightly, they were told that they use wheat gluten in the gravy.
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by PeanutsFriend »

My guys only like the beef in the Sheba and they seem to be trading that in for our things. I offer a variety and let them pick and choose. Having so many, there is always someone who doesn't like the food today. Then they get baby food.
Here lately they are enjoying the Gramma Kitchen one. I was thinking Sarah, that maybe the same thing as Lilys Kitchen. I am sure someones Grandma is named Lily.
The kibbles Beyond ONE they are eating the chicken one right now. But they are offered the Herring once in a while.
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by SarahT1 [PLLE] »

Very good , Jill, I'm sure there is a Grandma Lily out there!

I'm now a close reader of labels too. Spent ages in Waitrose trying to find a cereal free Lou Lou might like that is complete. Waitrose own make is cereal free but still has various sugars but she liked that so it's a step in the right direction.

The Orijen Regional Ref dry is a massive hit so we're getting there.
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by KittyWitty »

greenkitty wrote:Lily's Kitchen do a dry cereal free food available at Tesco (chicken or fish flavour) plus their own version which is harder to track down, this is complete and not to be confused with the treats. There's also a brand called Canagan which is dry and cereal free :)

Remember that the LK in tescos is actually a different range and are not as high quality as their main range!
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by greenkitty »

Correct Kittywitty and Noodle wouldn't eat it!!
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by SarahT1 [PLLE] »

Discerning girl!
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by MarkB »

The range in Tesco is made specially for them (it is called Lily's, rather than Lily's Kitchen) and is a dumbed down version, made specially for Tesco, and expensive @ £3.99 for a tiny 350g bag - especially given that is isn't organic like other Lily's products.

I bought a tube of Lil's Kitchen crunchies last year. It isn't complete. My cats wouldn't eat it, nor would the cats that visit the garden. I ended up feeding birds with it. Ditto the foil trays of wet food.
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Re: Encouraging progress attributed to cereal free food

Post by Shelly and Dora »

Goodness Mark..... Dora absolutely loves the foil trays of Lily's kitchen - in every flavour. She's never been a fussy eater and has always enjoyed whatever I've given her but her reaction to Lily's is fab! She absolutely laps it up..... Every last bit! It's a joy to see. I do mix water with it to give it a slightly less solid consistency.

I've been giving her Lily's for about 4 weeks now and there is a very noticeable difference to the shine & feel of her fur. Initially her poo's were HUGE!! Every other day as normal but clearly there was some clearing out of the system going on!!! That's settled down in the last 10 days or so though.

I also got a tube of the Lily's biscuits for her thinking that as the foil wet was complete then the complimentary biscuits would be ok. She also loves them.

Maybe I've just got a girl who takes after her mummy and generally loves her food! It's a good job I'm better at controlling her weight than I am at keeping mine in check!!

Shelly
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