Which food do you use?

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andybriz
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Which food do you use?

Post by andybriz »

Apologies if there is a similar thread(s), I used the search function but no results showed up - or I was doing it wrong! Anyway on to the subject of my post...

I have 2 cats, one is on prescription food but the other one is on normal food. For the first year he was on Whiskers kitten pouches and biscuits but a few people have said to avoid as poor quality so I wanted to try something else.

When he turned 1, I initially kept him on Whiskers but moved to the adult version so there wasn't that much of a change for him, but after a month or so I moved onto Purina as it looked much higher quality. I bought some biscuits and pouches. The pouches gave him diarrhoea and after a couple days I called the vet who said to keep him on the food as it may just be changing from one food to another and she gave me some paste stuff. After 2 weeks and no change at all, I moved onto Iams pouches and he was back to solid poops almost instantly and seemed much happier. I still have some Purina biscuits which don't cause any problems, it seemed to be just the pouches. I eventually want to have him on just dry biscuits when the pouches are all used up - my mum and dad have had 4 cats over the years on exclusively dry food and they all were happy and healthy and lived to around 20.

Just wondered what everyone else uses and why?
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sarie
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Re: Which food do you use?

Post by sarie »

Hehe this will open up a whole can of worms - everyone has differing views but there is a general agreement that certain foods are best avoided due to their poor quality - GoKat for example :)

I buy all my cat food from http://www.zooplus.org" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; as they stock a wide range of cat foods that aren't readily available elsewhere and I find it easier to bulk buy a one month supply every month online than have to continually stock up elsewhere.

After doing extensive research I no longer feed my cats any foods containing grains as some cats are intolerant of these and grains can lead to issues such as upset tummies, vomiting and diarrhea as well as less obvious problems such as skin complaints. Grains and foods containing a lot of carbohydrates are also connected to diabetes in cats due to the way their bodies process them, so I prefer to just avoid grains entirely and choose foods that are low in carbs. A lot of cat foods contain grains and carbs though - in fact most do unless they state otherwise. Some contain more than others though, so if possible just avoid the high grain and high carb foods if you don't want to cut them out entirely. A lot of people choose not to eliminate them from the diet due to how much it limits the selection of foods available and/or their own personal views on diet.
I also won't feed foods that contain sugar or sugar derivitives, again because of the risks of diabetes and dental problems. Felix in Jelly pouches are a good example of a cat food that contains sugar. Look out for "various sugars" and other sugar derivitives such as glucose, fructose or dextrose on the ingredients list.

Mine eat "Orijen Cat & Kitten" dried food - this is a very high quality dried cat food from Canada, one of the best on the market. It's quite pricey but you get what you pay for and it's no more expensive than horribly inferior brands (with high grain and high carb contents!) such as Royal Canin. Mine go nuts for it and I've recommended it to a few people who've had similar results - it's very high protein and smells very meaty so seems to go down very well. Cats do tend to binge on it at first though as it takes them a few days to realise that it has a high protein content so they over eat and may suffer with minor stomach complaints and stinky poo when they first move onto it. Mine were fine within about 3 days but you can always mix it in with their existing food to start with to make the transition smoother.
If you're going to feed them a 100% dry only diet then you need to make sure you're feeding them the best quality dried food you can afford as it's their only source of nutrition so you need to make sure they're getting a good balance. The likes of IAMS dried just isn't up to the job. In fact from my research I'd go as far as to say anything you can buy off the shelf in a British supermarket pet aisle is likely not up to the job, particularly when it comes to dry food.

I buy the 6.8kg bags and I have a dry food storage bin to keep it fresh at home. It lasts quite a while but I feed a combination of wet food too so it doesn't go down as quickly as if I fed purely dried food.
It has the added bonus that it's suitable for both cats and kittens so you don't need to feed them separate dried foods.
If you're going to feed a dry only diet then do make sure that there's plenty of water available at all times and make sure your cats are drinking it. Some cats do fine on a dry only diet (like your parent's cats) but others may run into problems with urinary tract infections and kidney problems if they're not big on drinking so do make sure that your cats take in sufficient water when you first move over to feeding only dry. I personally wouldn't recommend going dry only but it's a personal choice so if you choose to do it then just make sure you've researched the risks so you can mitigate them :)

I know you're not planning on feeding wet - but if you do need to get any wet foods then there are plenty of good ones on zooplus. I feed Grau grain free but I've also had success with Bozita, Schmilla and Lily's Kitchen in the past. Bozita was the cheapest of the bunch but the lowest in quality as a result. However, even some of the lower quality foods on zooplus are still far superior to things like Whiskas pouches.

Good luck - it's a bit of a minefield and really does depend on what your cat likes/will eat, what you can afford and whether or not you can source it so there are a lot of factors that make the decision a very personal one.
If you're interested in doing any research yourself, this site has some great information too :)

http://www.catinfo.org/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

And a link to a dry food storage bin you can get from Argos - this is the one I have and it's fantastic as it has a rubber seal to keep things fresh, opens up completely for refilling with a flap for daily feeding, has a scoop and has wheels if you're not up to carrying it around should you need to move it when it's full. Only downside is that it has dogs on it.. apparently cats don't need such big storage containers ;)
http://www.argos.co.uk/static/Product/p ... 707453.htm" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
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Re: Which food do you use?

Post by Eliz+Cats »

I fed my lot Science Diet dry food (on the advice of my vet) until one of them became diabetic at the age of 8....

I then learned that the Science Diet was no good for my diabetic for two reasons; firstly, it was choc full of carbohydrates (which sends blood glucose sky high) and secondly it is...well...'dry', and diabetics can have a hard time staying hydrated.

Then I read up about cat food and decided that all my lot would probably be better off on good quality wet food. Cats have a low thirst drive and don't always drink enough when on dry food. Male cats in particular are much more prone to urinary problems and blockages when eating a dry diet. (Some cats with reocurring urinary problems find that the problems don''t reoccur if the diet is switched from dry to wet).
I transitioned all my cats to wet food and noticed a considerable improvement in their over-all condition. I guess I've now become almost evangelical about feeding wet food!

Years ago I thought dry food was great. It's convenient. There's little waste or mess. I could chuck it in a bowl and forget about it. Now that I'm feeding wet I'm having to wash icky cat food bowls for 6 cats every day. But I wouldn't have it any other way now.

I also buy food from Zooplus. They have a great range and great prices (but sometimes their packaging is dodgy and tins can arrive dented). The Happy Kitty Company is fab too. It's a lovely little company importing some truly excellent foods from Germany (wet and dry food), and the people are so helpful.

Eliz
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Re: Which food do you use?

Post by bobbys girl »

sarie wrote:Hehe this will open up a whole can of worms - everyone has differing views but there is a general agreement that certain foods are best avoided due to their poor quality - GoKat for example :)
Ohhh yes! We all have our different views on this.

I use to feed mine on whatever was on offer at the supermarket. They seemed fine on it. But then when Bobby came along I wanted the best of everything for him - to give him a fighting chance. I started reading up on food and then I joined CC.

Mine now get Felix AGAIL, Coshida (Lidl) and sometimes Gourmet pouches. They all love Applaws Ocean Fish and get that as a treat every now and again. As for dry food, I have recently switched from Iams to James Wellbeloved - they LOVE it, (it does smell very nice). Purdy loves prawns and gets a few for breakfast.

I'd say the ratio of wet to dry food was about 50/50. There is always plenty of water available.
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Re: Which food do you use?

Post by greenkitty »

I have four cats with various dietary needs, meals times can be interesting, they're supervised and don't have free access to food, much to their annoyance.

Firstly Hector has Inflammatory Bowel Disease, he has dry Purina HA plus cereal free wet foods such as Encore, Hi-Life, Lily's Kitchen and Applaws (some of these are complimentary foods so shouldn't be fed exclusively but are ok when combined with complete foods). These all suit him and don't give him an upset tummy.

Secondly Pip has no health issues, she has wet food Gourmet or Felix plus a handful of Hills T/D dental kibble each evening to help the plaque on her teeth. She'll pretty much eat anything except Sheba.

Thirdly Noodle, Noodle has FGS which is an oral virus made worse by sugars in foods, Noodle should be on a cereal free diet except she won't eat any of the foods!! She has Gourmet but does like the Lily's Kitchen Dry Kibble so has a handful of that each evening.

Last but not least is Tig The Tabby Terrorist, he has the same oral virus as Noodle but like Noodle he won't eat any of the foods!! He loves his Felix so predominantly has this with occasional bowls of dry for a change (either Hector's Purina or Lily's Kitchen). I have to be careful with Tig, some foods have upset his tummy in the past so we stick to what we know he's ok with.

It is a minefield of trial and error, obviously all new foods should be introduced slowly with a gradual switch over not a sudden complete change. The mogs always have their own views obviously, all new food is sniffed suspiciously as if laced with arsenic...
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Re: Which food do you use?

Post by andybriz »

Wow, thanks for the great responses. I will definitely be rethinking putting him on dry food only. Sarie, your post is brilliant! What food do you use now Eliz?

I'm with you greenkitty. As one of mine is on prescription food and can't eat anything else we have to be in the same room and watch them while they eat (we tried putting them in separate rooms but they both just meowed and wouldn't eat), so there can never be grazing or treats which is a shame. If one doesn't eat all their food, we have to put the bowl in the fridge until they meow for more food and then have to watch out for the other one - or give them more food. It's quite tiring. I'm jealous of friends who just put food down once a day and their cats can come and go!
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Re: Which food do you use?

Post by meriad »

I feed mine a mix of wet and dry. In an ideal would I'd like to have all mine on a raw food diet, but my cats aren't as keen on that as I am :D

I have a cereal free dry food down at all times (either Arden Grange or the green James Well Beloved) and usually feed Felix As Good As It Looks wet, both in the mornings and again in the evenings. I've tried so many other wet foods that they just turn the nose up at so I tend to mainly use that. There are a few other foods some of mine will eat (I have 6 cats in total) but others won't touch etc... fun and games :lol:

Personally I'm not overly fond of a dry food diet only - it's not normal and most dry foods have a surprisingly (and worrying) large amount of carbohydrates in them to bulk up the food; not the right food for cats who are obligate carnivores. If you are feeding dry only then my recommendation would be to find one that has as high a meat content as possible.

As everyone says - cat food is a mine field and ultimately the best cat food there is, is the one your cat will eat and be healthy on.

Good luck!
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Re: Which food do you use?

Post by bobbys girl »

Last week I bought a small pack of Pets at Home Advanced Nutrition (chicken) just to try it out. This morning Purdy was being picky (nothing new there). I tried her with a few things, including some of Tommy's fresh chicken - not interested. So I opened the trial pack and gave her a few biscuits. Shewolfed them down and came bck for more, smacking her lips and making num num sounds. :lol: Now it might just be the novelty of something new, or I might be on to something!

It says it is wheat gluten free. But has 'maize gluten meal' in it - what's that? Also sugar beet pulp. I'm afraid I fell for the blurb on the pack. But if I've found something that Purdy will happily eat, do the pro's outweigh the con's?
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Re: Which food do you use?

Post by greenkitty »

There are some treats which are just freeze dried chunks of chicken, fish or duck, no nasty additives. Thrive do them and I think Sainsbury's do their own "Taste The Difference" version. Useful for sensitive tummies that would still like a treat.
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Re: Which food do you use?

Post by Vick7000 »

We've switched our old lady cat to Evolution Naturally by Pets at Home. She seems to be thriving on it. I'd been looking for a completely grain free food for ages because she started to be sick and suffering from loose stools after eating 'regular' brands like Felix. It's high protein too, and she's a recently diagnosed diabetic who was losing weight even though she was eating loads. It is a bit pricey, but it seems to fill her up for longer, and stops the constant demand for food. I wish she'd stop pushing the biscuits out of her dish when she's eating though. She won't eat them if they've been on the floor! :D
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Re: Which food do you use?

Post by Joanne_ »

I need to read all these replies. Mine usually have a big mix of food. I find they get bored easily on one brand. They currently have applaws wet and dry, purina wet and dry, iams dry, hills science plan oral dry amd goemet wet. I usually mix all the biscuits up togeather.
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Re: Which food do you use?

Post by KittyWitty »

My two get fed Natures Menu adult pouches. They did get Acana dry for a few months just before xmas as my partner wanted to try them on some dry food (I refuse to buy dry food for them) they enjoyed it but they are the sort of boys that would enjoy any food that was given to them!
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Re: Which food do you use?

Post by Nigel »

Mine get a mixture of wet food (Felix AGAIL, Applaws, Lilys Kitchen, Sheba) so they don't get bored, and usually a bit of James Wellbeloved or Applaws dry food for them to snack on during the day when I'm out at work. It took a bit of trial and error to find which foods they liked, and even now they can turn their noses up at something they scoffed down in seconds the previous day.

I usually check on this site http://www.petmoneysaver.co.uk" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; to see who is the cheapest, although they don't list all the foods my cats like at the moment.
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Re: Which food do you use?

Post by CakCak »

My cats are very fussy.
Sky wont eat anything other than Sainsbury's own at the moment. And only the gravy ones at that. Before that he refused to eat anything other than Whiskas, before THAT it was the specialist stuff at our local pet shop (cant remember the name). He goes through phases of turning his nose up at each cat food brand, and god forbid it's the pate 'supermeat' style food, that ends up spread all over my floors. He will however, eat cooked real meat. I.e, chicken, lamb, turkey. So whenever we come back from the butchers with a leg of lamb, he ends up with some. Usually about once a month, as a treat, mixed with his actual food.
Harley on the other hand will eat anything you give her, jelly, gravy, super-meat, but wont go near 'people' food. Not even fresh fish! So I always feel awful because even though we try her with it each time, Sky gets this special treat and she doesn't. So she ends up with extra kitty treats, which then HE gets jealous over. Cant win!

But yeah, dinner time is always nerve-wracking, as Sky can change his tastes any moment, and then we have to rush out to the shop and bring home all different brands again to test him. We're just his slaves! Though to be fair, we have got a huge stockpile of different food in the cupboard for emergencys now!
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Re: Which food do you use?

Post by Mollysmummy »

we currently feed our cats Tesco finest wet food in gravy. Our eldest Molly is very, very fussy and won't go near fish or poultry foods, even fresh fish and chicken gets turned away. She also won't touch food in jelly. However, give her beef, lamb or duck and she gobbles it up! Tesco is the only brand we've found that do a box of lamb, beef, duck and Turkey; she eats the turkey with reluctance! She also won't touch dry food unless there's no wet left and we're out or asleep.

Kevin doesn't really seem to be bothered, except he clearly prefers dry food to wet. He currently gets a bit of the tesco food and Iams dry.

We've recently needed to tighten the purse strings, and while we've not yet made any changes to our babies food/litter etc, I wonder if anyone has any recommendations of a cheaper dry food that's good quality? If we're feeding the best for our money at the moment then we'll stick with it, but any alternative suggestions are welcome!
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Re: Which food do you use?

Post by bobbys girl »

Ours won't touch Tesco food (stopped shopping there last year, so it doesn't matter!) and they like food in jelly more than gravy! :roll: Some will eat tinned or fresh tuna but none like 'cat' tuna, which is unfortunate as an awful lot of boxes contain at least 3 tuna. Hey ho!
Mollysmummy wrote:We've recently needed to tighten the purse strings, and while we've not yet made any changes to our babies food/litter etc, I wonder if anyone has any recommendations of a cheaper dry food that's good quality?
From my experience I'd say that Iams is your best bet for a reasonable quality at a reasonable price. It does have cereals but my lot seem to do well on it. I'm always trawling around for offers but still seem to spend half my budget on cat food! I sometimes think they eat better than me!
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Re: Which food do you use?

Post by Mollysmummy »

I've read a lot about cats not needing dry food at all, that they should only eat wet. There's so much differing information out there it gets confusing!

One idea I quite like is to mix Kevin's dry food in with wet so we can control how much dry he eats.

My husband has bought some Lidl premium dry food, they went mad for it! So we'll see how they go for a couple of days with that
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