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Readers Respond: How much do you know about your cat's food ingredients?

Responses: 57

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A recent survey discloses that many pet food consumers do not know as much as they think they know about the food their cats and dogs eat. The pet food recalls of 2007 caused more consumers to investigate the ingredients in the food they buy for their pets. Have you changed your own cat food purchasing habits? Share your experiences here.

raw meat seems to be best for cats

i agree with dru- raw meat is what cats were meant to eat- to jasmine who is feeding her kitten cooked chicken with peas & carrots- this is appropriate for you but not kitty~! just skip the veggies & give her raw meat... with bone~! start her young & it should be easy... vary the type of meat, get it fresh from a butcher, if you go for ground you must supplement with taurine... add raw egg yolk sometimes- they love it~! & read as much as you can to be sure you are giving complete nutrition... you can provide a balanced diet over time- they dont need everything everyday but variety is one key... whole meat, bones, organs, eggs- all raw... this is what cats thrive on it seems... never feed cooked bones~!!! & really, there is no reason to cook meat for a cat... i have been reading & researching like crazy & there is so much info it can be confusing... thanx to all out there who give the right info~!!! rawfedcats.org is a good source...
—sundizzle

home made diet for 4 month old kitten

I started giving my kitten chicken, but its cooked nothing add to it expect pea, carrotts is this ok. thanks
—Guest jasmine

Feeding My Cat

My indoor-only, neutered cat is almost 15 yrs old now - I rescued him from the shelter when he was a kitten. For as long as I have had him, he has had trouble holding his food down. At the time, the vet said that it was just one of those things so I lived with it as did my cat. For the last 5 years I have rotated foods trying to find 1 that he will tolerate better. It seems that I have found a wet food, Wellness that he holds down pretty well, but I am still looking for a quality dry food that he will eat. Generally he'll eat a dry food for a few days and then get tired of it. I try to wait him out, but it rarely works... He won't eat actual meat from the kitchen, whether raw or cooked, so I don't think a raw diet is the answer for him.
—Guest Laura

Very Helpful

After reading all the articles and taking the course, I've changed my cats over to a more appropriate diet. Some raw, pork, chicken, beef, some venison, but they're refusing organs and veggies. So they also get some ground green tripe and the rest of their diet is grain free canned. I've pulled all dry away from my 9 y.o. fixed male as I realized it was making him sick. Now I'll njoin the forum, I'm so impressed. Fuzzmom
—Guest Fuzzmom

Cat Food (Comida para Gatos) a México

I'd say we're fortunate with our 3 - ages 14, 12 & 8, males - 2 strays adopted us, 1 rescue. Always in excellent health, sweet, big fun, goofy, extremely adaptable. After some chaos (foreclosure, homeless, cats farmed out for months, emigration), we're all happily settled in a mid-sized city off the tourist path in southern México. Cat food comes in limited variety & supply here: many brands of dry food including unlabeled; wet comes in 2 kinds: Wiskas (3 flavors) & Friskies rarely, always expensive. The boys ate 90% dry the last couple years till recently, have no complaints about 90% wet now. We do though - cost & future health concerns. Ok, got a kitchen, a blender, soon a grinder. My Spanish is limited. Carnicerias (butchers) abound, but dunno how they work. I can read recipes, ask for chicken & turkey, rabbit & organ meats might be available, but how to find omega-3 & taurine supps? Tiny freezer, soon remedied, so we're ready to go raw, guidance needed & welcomed.
—mrgnwilson

Already feeding holistic/grain-free diet

I feed my cats Natural Balance, a grain free, holistic dry food. Both have been thriving off of it... I switched them from Royal Canin over a year ago. With the switch, their poop/pee smelled much less, their coats got healthier, and both have much more energy now. As for the raw food diet... I am still waiting on research to be done in this area. I wish I could find more people who feed these diets... but get an UNBIASED opinion. I visited rawfedcats.org and I did not feel that the website helped at all. It was very biased and the person was writing essentially through her own experience. I have heard of cats having a lot of problems with digestion, etc with the raw fed diet... but none of those are mentioned on the website... I really wish there were more unbiased sources out there...
—Guest Shae

Feed your cats the best you can afford

Our cat Sylvester developed Crystals and was put on Prescription food. It had a lot of corn in it, to which he developed an allergy. We did some research and switched him -- first, to the Pet Store brand made by the same company and then to Felidae Senior which has cranberry for Urinary tract health and, more importantly, no corn. I had to take our other cat to the vet and he asked how Sylvester was and I told him about the allergy and he was concerned about the feeding but I took a copy of the label to him and he was really impressed. So both cats are happy campers on Felidae senior and the wet food we feed twice a day -- which is human grade. By the way, our feed bills are about the same with the more expensive food because they don't eat as much.
—Guest railbird

Feed raw.

I work in the pet food industry and I will only feed my cats a homemade raw diet. Veterinarians (in North America at least) actually receive very little training on nutrition in vet school. Ask your vet how much of their schooling was spent discussion nutrition. What information they do receive is usually provided by the companies that manufacture prescription pet foods. I have four cats on raw whole-prey diet and they are amazing. They are lean, energetic, their coats are beautiful and their teeth are in great shape. One of my boys is twelve and he's never had a problem with crystals and also has no detectable arthritis. There are not enough good things I can say about feeding a Raw Meaty Bones type of diet. Everything about it makes sense. It's also easy! Once cats learn to gnaw there is no need to grind or cut the meat. I buy my meat locally from a family farm and it works out to be cheaper than feeding commercial canned food.
—Guest Dru

My Cat Love Raw Food

After a $1,200.00 vet bill somthing had to change. He had feline urologic syndrome. His bladder was the size of a baseball. I was feeding Whiskas once a day and free feeding dry food the rest of the time. Anyway, when he came home the vet sent home dry food for him but by them I had done a lot of reading and a cat with his problem should never have dry food (and he realy LOVED his dry food) I finally found a high quaility wet food he liked and only fed twice a day with not snacks but thought I could do better. I found the web site rawfedcats.org and they made it really easy to start to fed raw and Max took to it like a duck to water. He is so happy. We are working our way up to small meaty bones like chiked ribs. He has eating some organ meats but only needs them 2 or 3 times a week. His jaw strength is improving. It does say on the site I will need to give his omega 3 supplements but other than that he gets his taurine from the organs and minerals from the bones. Happy Kitty
—Maxaimsdistructus

Cat Almost Died from Dry Food

I was one of those trusting types that thought that dry cat food was safe. Sure, there are "twinkie" brands of kibble, but all of them bad? That's just paranoid, right? One friday just last month, my seemingly healthy 3 year old male started crying; giving way to blood-curdling, ear-piercing screaming. The vet that day told us that he had a complete urinary obstruction. His bladder was like an over-filled balloon full of blood. His kidneys were shutting down. The building toxins in his bladder were going to poison his blood. He was gonna die in a matter of a few hours to a few days. I became indebted $700 to save his life. I go online to figure out how to keep it from reoccuring, why it happened, and discovered that the most likely cause of his near-death experience was his kibble. Kibble is plant based nutrition devoid of water. You've been to the zoo. They don't feed their carnivores bowls of corn, so why do we? It's absurd. I will never, never feed my cat kibble ever again.
—Guest Rae

Raw Food is the way to go

After going to several seminars and having a 'fun' time trying to figure out what to feed my cat who had struvite crystals, I decided to switch her first to no-grain high grade cat food (Nature's Variety Rabbit is her favorite) and then finally to raw food (I use Primal's prepared raw food, it's ground meat, bone and then added veg to imitate the gut contents of the animal). The switch to raw is not an easy one for most people but my cat loved the raw and it was very similar in texture to the high grade cat food. She had several rather immediate health benefits, but the 3 most impressive to me are: 1> her coughing fits, once thought to be asthma, have subsided. 2> no more dander 3> a LOT more energy
—Guest Rawfoodgood

Raw Food For Cats

I've been feeding my cat raw food for the past few months. The first few times I gave her just a tiny amount of raw chicken breast, raw beef mince, raw turkey mince, etc, then built up the amount. I think it's important to feed her a variety, and I don't give her any supplements. I feel that if she is getting the right nutrition then she shouldn't need supplements and where in nature would a cat harvest it's own cod liver oil anyway?! Since starting her raw food diet her coat has become sleeker and she has lost her fat belly! Every now and then as a treat I give her live yoghurt just in case she needs probiotics. I only feed her twice a day about 80-90g of meat each time, and I buy it and freeze it in small portions so it's easy and quick to give her. As soon as I feed her a portion, I take the next portion out the freezer and put it in the fridge ready to defrost for her next feed. The result - One happy, healthy cat : Franny's Note: Although raw chicken breast is a good source of protein, it does not contain the minimum amount of Taurine necessary for cats. You could supplement with chicken liver or chicken heart, both of which are excellent sources of taurine. I would minimize the beef - not a normal diet for cats in the wild, but turkey is fine for variety.
—Guest michelle

My Fat Kitty

I have a half tab-siamese fatso im looking to get in shape. like with humans, i figure i'll start with what she eats....right now she ONLY eats dry food...not for long after reading this info. no wonder why she is so tubby...actually thats her name..."Tubbs". she is still a cutie, but time to get her in shape so she will be around for a while.
—Guest bnperry1

mine has got allergies

When I give her "market bought food" after a couple of weeks she is chewing on her paws and they get quite red and raw. So I'm trying to giver wheat, corn, etc. free food that I bought at PetCo. I think this has helped. She gets well after the vet gives her a steroid shot, but she shouldn't take too many of those. So we have to find the cause and we think it might be her food. She is about 3yrs. She adopted us so we don't know for sure. She has turned out to be quite expensive, but we love her. So far it has worked as her allergies don't seem to be returning. She doesn't want the canned cat food there so I found she likes canned salmon and give her that as well as a wheat, corn free kibble from PetCo.
—Guest Louisa Herrmann

dry foods

I have been feeding my 9 month old kitten Royal Canin dry food which he really likes. At night time I put some dry food in a bowl and wet it down which he likes and he gets extra water in his system. I also feed 1/2 can Wellness chicken and turkey "no grain" food each day. Next week I will be changing his dry food to adult EVO
—spiritflowers

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