Fussy Eater

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simon+delilah
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Fussy Eater

Post by simon+delilah » Wed Feb 15, 2017 9:39 pm

I have had my cat Delilah for 9 weeks tomorrow, she had previously been homeless for a number of years.

After 9 weeks i am still yet to find a food she likes, and eat will consistently. She is very picky, she always has a good sniff first and then turn her nose up at it! They cats wont starve themselves but since i have had her i have seen her lose weight due to her being so fussy and then gain some, but she needs consistency!

I found a couple she likes to eat once or twice then no more. I found one by HiLife from the Indulge Me! range with real tuna she loves and i suspect she would it it all the time, but it is a complimentary cat food. I am in no way wanting to turn her into a tuna junkie!

I am going to continue my journey through every brand of food under the sun until i have some success.

In the meantime.. Any recommendation for fussy cats?

You would thing that having lived homeless for a number of years she would be happy with most foods and not be too fussy right!?

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Re: Fussy Eater

Post by alanc » Wed Feb 15, 2017 10:03 pm

Seems to me Delilah has got you sussed pretty quickly! Not that I can talk, Tilly regularly gives me the run around with the result I have a cat food drawer with a wide variety of cat food brands to tempt her with when needed. I often find that if I can start her eating, she will happily go and eat what she previously rejected - Tilly being a big cat requiring 3 sachets a day I can get away with this. With Tilly, I find Thrive Chicken Breast or Chicken and Liver usually works (but it is expensive). Gourmet Gold Pate (Chicken or Fish) also often works (much cheaper, as the local pet shop has them on offer at 4 tins for the price of 3). Gourmet Mon petite 50g sachets are also handy for getting her eating. Cats being cats, though, I can't guarantee this will work with Delilah! Best of luck working through all the brands of cat food available!

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Mrs Kane
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Re: Fussy Eater

Post by Mrs Kane » Thu Feb 16, 2017 1:01 am

Being a stray she's probably more at home with the cheapest food on the market and probably prefers dry food. It's up to you to change her tastes to the healthier stuff. Not an easy feat.

Mine can't stand wet food even though she's been out of a bad home for 4 years. (2 years with us) She mainly just nibbles the gravy and leaves the meat.

Luckily she came to us liking the spayed dry food but It's really hard to get her to eat anything else. (unless it's processed ham)

A couple of questions:

Is she allowed out? If so could she be sneaking another cats food?
Have you tried the 2 bowls approach? (two bowls with previously tried food)
Have you made a food schedule?
Have you tried conditioning to one food brand? (It's hard but possible, the two bowls approach works here.)

A couple of hints:
If you have dry cat food in the house then put in somewhere the cat can't smell it. The fridge works, or a sealed container.
If a cat is refusing to eat, put a little of their favourite meat on top. A little chicken or tuna will work wonders if placed right so they need to eat to get to what they want.
Persist. Cats are picky but they do still get hungry. Placing down a bowl at the right time does wonders. Schedules work well with this. If your cat hasn't seen food in 6 hours they'll want to dig in, no matter what.

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Ruth B
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Re: Fussy Eater

Post by Ruth B » Thu Feb 16, 2017 9:07 am

From what I have heard, a lot of strays will eat pretty much anything for the first week or two, but as soon as they realise that meals are appearing regularly they become fussy eaters.

My mother has two cats, both in their teens and one of which is diabetic so needs to eat regularly. She will often end up offering three of four different options at meal times as the cats know if they don't want something they only have to sniff and walk away in order to be given something else. I opt for the 'take it or leave it' attitude. I have three cats and they get fed three times a day, normally two pouches between them each meal, and if they don't like it, they don't get anything else until the next meal time. While they will try the sniff and walk away option they will normally go back and eat it half an hour or so later. Mine normally get a selection of Felix As Good as it Looks (they won't eat the normal Felix these days) and Gourmet Gold Pate and Gourmet Pearl. The also have Purina One dried constantly available. One of mine, Saturn, does seem to have a bit of a wheat intolerance so I have to be a bit choosy about what I feed them.

If you get too worried about the weight loss then the occasional treat of chicken or beef might tempt her to eat. Normally after I have cooked a roast chicken I can strip the carcass down getting all the greasy meat from the under side and some off the legs and there will be enough to give all three a good meal, I just have to make sure there are no bones in it. Recently I tried them on cooked beef mince having picked a pack up cheap and that went down a treat as well.

Alternatively you might want to look at raw foods for her as a treat. It doesn't matter if those contain bone and skin, it is actually better for the cat if they do. I can't say I have really tried it but I know several people who swear by it and with the help of a good butcher it isn't much more expensive than normal cat food.

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Re: Fussy Eater

Post by Kay » Thu Feb 16, 2017 9:55 am

Gourmet Pate seems to be quite popular with most cats, and is on more or less permanent offer at Tescos (8 tins for £3)

James Wellbeloved Turkey is also very popular

I have been feeding two strays for a couple of years now and find they much prefer gravy foods to jelly ones and as jelly is much more ubiquitous to gravy, I wonder if she has tried both

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Re: Fussy Eater

Post by Crewella » Thu Feb 16, 2017 2:07 pm

Most of mine are ex-strays, but mine all seem to be pigs that will eat absolutely anything. Apparently it tastes better if it's stolen, too! ;)

I'm like Ruth and tend to feed on a 'take it or leave it' basis. I feed a wide variety and never the same thing twice in a row, so there will usually be something the fussier cats like at the next mealtime anyway.

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simon+delilah
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Re: Fussy Eater

Post by simon+delilah » Sat Feb 18, 2017 5:56 am

Thank you all for taking the time to reply!

Yesterday I took a trip to pets at home, had a look round and bought some stuff for my fluffy friend. I took a gamble and spent a tenner on 3 boxes of Purina Gourmet Perle (was on offer @3 for £10), some IAMS pouches, HiLife Moist cat biscuits and a few other bits she ain't tried yet.

To my surprise she seems to be enjoying both! (for now) Of all the flavours that surprised me the most was the lamb and red pepper from IAMS! I thought there was no way she would eat that in a million years!

If she goes of the perle and / or IAMS you guys have given me some good suggestions worth trying. Conditioning to one brand being my favourite!

In hindsight, as suggested, maybe i have been a bit soft with her and she has got me sussed out. I couldn't help it though! She has had a hard life, homeless for the last 5 years, and all I want is for her to live out the rest of her days being happy. I guess thinking about it, her turning down all these different foods she has won! Now she is eating stuff that she wants to eat, even if it is going to cost a little bit more.

I guess if I was homeless cat being rehoused with a loving owner I would probably do the same and push my luck to get the food i liked!!

Thing that had me worried is the fact she was noticeably losing weight.. even though they say a cat will never starve itself if it has food of any kinda available... well she was giving it a bloody good go! :(

A rough list of all the stuff i have tried feeding her
Asda own brand, Sainsburys own brand, tesco own brand, co-op own brandmorrisons own brand, butchers classic, all types of felix, all types of whiskas, purina pate, sheba, purina one, plus others

not to mention the chicken breast, wild alaskan pollock, pork, and roast beef! <--- these ones baffled me!! How the hell did she survive!

Only one she goes nuts for is tuna or maybe a bit of sliced wafer thin ham!

One last thing.. I stopped treating her to tuna and ham after this was becoming an issue, so you guys think mixing some of these in with food if she gets fussy again may help and not make things worse?? I feel bad for not buying her treats! :(

Simon

Sorry for the rather long post!! :)

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Re: Fussy Eater

Post by Janey » Sat Feb 18, 2017 7:28 am

I have one resident cat and a also care for a few feral cats, ad I have for years. They will eat most foods generally, but like Crewella I rotate them so they never have the same pouch or flavour in a row, so they may get 3 different ones a day and some biscuits and or treats. They can get fussy too though, especially if I’ve recently fed them some left over salmon or steak lol! they are very spoilt and all get the same and some of our leftovers occasionally. I find they like some Felix, mainly the meatloaf one where there’s no separate lumps, it's mixed in. Also one box of fish flavour, but not sure which, I think it’s a duo one, they love all the Gourmets, pouches and pates and Whiskas fish flavour. Ocassionally I buy cheaper foods in tins, such as Classic, a few of my previous oldies have loved it, but that’s a bit hit and miss with this lot. I find they’re not keen on the lumps in food so if it’s a lumpy food I mash it up! I will give them some leftover tuna when I’ve opened a tin for myself, and ham, chicken or fish, if we’ve had that, about once a week. Best of lucl! I’ve just fed my cat a pouch (a different make I bought at B & M the other week) and my own cat, and one feral turned their nose up, the other feral has tucked in :roll:

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