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Thread: Pet food choice?

  1. #1
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    Pet food choice?

    In an effort to give what I hoped was a "better" food to the cats I switched to Halo's Spot's Stew this past summer. Everything was fine until late December when Charlie had his first bout with vomiting and diarrhea. Once that had passed I threw out the remaining food and bought a new bag ... just in case that was the cause. The next bag was fine. Then after opening another bag this month the same thing happened to both Charlie and the new cat. So no more Halo!

    For now they're both eating Science Diet and I was pleased to learn that SD will soon be offering a reformulated food with no chicken by-products. I think the canine version is already on store shelves.

    What do you feed your pets and have you ever had issues with quality control. I'm assuming that was the problem with Halo. I'm very disappointed that they have yet to respond to my email about this issue.

  2. #2
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    Our dear sweet Skitters was on prescription formula Science Diet. Miss Muffet eats Royal Canin dry - the ONLY thing she'll eat other than her treats. I've never noticed quality issues with either brand.

  3. #3
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    I sure wish I were a cat-savant and understood them...

    We used to feed them Pro-plan dry and one can of wet.
    Fast forward when we moved out here and the prices kept climbing up, up and UP...I researched cat food to death.

    I knew that most foods have some carbs in them because they (mfg) claim it is the only way to extrude and keep the kibble together. I just never realized HOW MUCH carbs went into some foods; even some canned foods are horrible at the carb content.
    Cats especially are OBLIGATE carnivores. My one cat was getting fatter and fatter...he is also the one that pukes the most.

    We used the no grain Costco dry, which they liked...and then one day..POOF, costco discontinued it.
    More research.
    EVO kibble and canned is the lowest carb food on the market for cats that I can find. Some foods claim "no grain" but they dump in potatoes and other stuff, so I have started to look at the carb count.
    EVO was bought out by P&G (same mfg. of Iams) and claim no formula has been altered or changed.

    All my cats will eat EVO. I also have some Nature's Variety Instinct, for variety, even though it is 18% carbs vs. 11% for the EVO. I cannot find anything lower.
    Sadly, all this food change has been a double-edged sword.
    They used to love their canned food, but with the intro of new canned, they are very finicky and I have tossed out too many cans to count (I have donated CASES of cat food since they turned up their noses on so much stuff).
    On the good side, my fat-boy has lost a great deal of weight. Is it because he doesn't like his food? or because he is much more satisfied on the lower carb stuff and doesn't get the glucose spikes (similar to people), so he is just less hungry. Wish they could talk.
    In any event, I noticed their bowels and litter box change quite dramatically from going to the new food, but that happens with all new food, good or bad.
    All of my cats have puked with no relation to the food. I sometimes wonder if there is a cat virus or something that spreads in the household...they all have a turn at it, but they don't look or act sick. Since mine are indoor/outdoor, especially in the spring/summer, I never know what they have eaten outdoors, unless, like STripey, he brings it indoors and leaves the bloody entrails on my white runner rug in the hallway .

    I have read a lot of sites (even written by vets) that claim science diet is the worst, but then my 22 year old wally-cat lived to 22 living on the canned stuff (and outdoor catches) his whole life.
    Some sites say only feed them canned, but what to do if they don't like what you give them....ugh.

    There are days I wish cats were more like dogs....if it doesn't move, eat it.
    Thoreau said, 'A man is rich in proportion to the things he can leave alone.'

  4. #4
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    Ah yes, cat food.... what will they eat this week??..... Casey was on SD prescription for years (dry) for urinary crystals and he loved it until the end. My previous indoor/outdoor baby, TC, ate whatever I put in front of him... small can of Fancy Feast and whatever dry was on sale.... lived to be 23. Now to Sylvester... he is SO finicky (see previous post). I started him on ProPlan Kitten as that is what he ate at Petsmart, then to Adult.... then he didn't want... so i went to Friskies Dry,,, which he loves 90% of the time. Last week, wouldn't eat it for all the tea in China... then started eating, now picking at it, but eating some. He has a bit of loose stool every now and again, but has only thrown up twice in over a year. My sister only buys natural cat foods and her's still throw up every day.... I, too, am at a loss... just want him to eat whatever I put down.

  5. #5
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    We've never had a cat that wouldn't eat dry food - with the last two, not the current ones, we had to limit the amount or they rapidly became overweight. We use Science Diet supplemented by salmon and halibut. I think I need to do some carb comparisons to see if something better is available here. The one place in town that sold Royal Canin discontinued it because the mgf started using fillers. I have not verified this.
    Anne

  6. #6
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    I know I got caught up on the "natural" bandwagon too this past year, but started to rethink that with these recent episodes. Previous kitties ate Purina and Friskies (dry and canned) their entire life. They lived to 17 and 18.

    The new kitten was eating Taste of the Wild when we got him. When I took a look at the site and realized it was mainly canine food ... seemed the feline line was an afterthought ... I decided to transition him to Halo.

    Another kitty with kidney disease has actually improved while eating Hill's Prescription Diet. I think I'm going to trust SD for now.

  7. #7
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    I've read some negative opinions on SD. The main one being the financial benefit to vets who sell it. But to think the product is inferior for that reason doesn't make a lot of sense to me. I wonder if those people would feel the same way if it were any other brand? Why trust a vet for the care they provide, but not the food they sell? Seems a contradiction.

  8. #8
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    My indoor 13-year old neuter is on dry SD C-D formula for urinary crystals. He eats with varying enthusiasm levels depending on how much arthritis pain he has but has always accepted it readily. He will not touch the canned version ever. This food, plus a strict bottled-water-only regimen has dramatically reduced his crystal formation.

    Newest arrival is an outdoor 8-year old neuter who eats Natural Choice Active Health because that's what the previous owner fed. He seems to do well on it with good stool quality and weight maintenance (15.2 pounds this morning at the vet) which is good for his very, very large frame.

  9. #9
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    My 4 yo girl is now eating the SD Prescription food for urinary crystals--same thing, will eat the dry, won't touch canned. But she doesn't like ANY canned food. My vet suggested it because it is the brand they have, but offered to recommend other foods if this doesn't work/I choose not to use it. My other cat will eat any dry food, but only canned dog food (!). I give her a TBSP of it when I feed the dog. Neither cat will eat salmon (raw or cooked) or anything else my previous cats have loved. Cats are weird.
    As the arc of history bends towards justice, it's a new, more progressive day. --Steve Benen, The Maddow Blog, 11-07-12

  10. #10
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    My cats are on what is referred to as the "catkins" diet - all meat as felines are obligate carnivores. I feed them RadCat and Instinctive Choice. They love it and they're both very lean and active. One of my girls was a chub when I adopted her, but she's fit now!
    Jill

    "Be kind to your neighbor... he knows where you live." -Brian Copeland

  11. #11
    My DH will research some subjects to the infinite max before committing to a conclusion, while I tend to quickly go into info overload. Before we brought home our two rescue kittens, he had already spent uncountable hours researching all the cat foods out there and decided to go with Wellness Kitten – both wet and dry. He made comparison charts and lists and everything else that he needed to know before choosing this brand. He mostly based it on vet findings, carb count, lack of grains, vitamin and mineral content and total calories necessary for kitten growth. The number of ounces to feed them daily is based on age and weight and activity level. Right now they are eating canned 3 times a day w/ a small amount of dry left out for nibbles. The wet is split between the basic kitten formula and the Kitten Core formula. We can tell when they’re having a growth spurt by how fast and how much they eat at a sitting. Some days every spec gets devoured immediately and some days it takes hours for them to finish. At some point we will wean them to two canned meals a day. I work from home, so it’s easy to monitor their eating and activity.

    The rescue place gets donated Science dry food and they give every adopter a small bag to take home. We varied the SD dry w/ the Wellness dry for a couple of days and were very happy to see that they were more interested in the Wellness. This is a much more expensive food than anything we have ever fed our previous cats – but it’s been the right decision for us. DH has us on a plan w/ an internet company that ships us a set number of cases each month for a greatly discounted price.

    These two kitties have brought such joy into our home after the grieving we went through with our last sweet kitty’s prolonged illness and death. As long as our two little guys are happy – we’re happy.
    "I can read and write if that's what you mean. I'm not thick or anything just don't ask me where the commas go."
    Incendiary by Chris Cleave

  12. #12
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    Our mutt has always ate Life's Abundance, which is a mail order dog food that has a 4 star review (out of 5) on the Dog Food Advisor website. My greyhound though, I was feeding Pedigree, which I really hate to admit because it has a 1 star review - but, it's what I could afford. The mutt eats between 1-2 cups a day, depending on her appetite, but my greyhound eats 4 cups a day....so it costs me twice as much to feed him.

    To feed both of them them Life's Abundance was going to cost me over $70 a month. Since we've recently paid some bills off, I had decided I was going to start feeding him a better quality food too, as I've noticed his coat isn't as shiny as I think it should be and he has some hair loss on his badonkadonk (which a lot of greyhounds have anyways!). However, I've since did some more research and found that I can purchase an equally good quality food, also a 4 star rated food from Tractor Supply called 4Health, which costs half of what Life's Abundance does. My plan is to give that a try once we need another bag of food.

    As a side note - I do like the Dog Food Advisor website because not only does it rate the pet foods, but it tells you what ingredient give it a low or high rating and what exactly makes ingredients bad or good. I read a book years ago called "The Truth About Pet Food" (or something like that), and one beef that lady had was she says the curriculum vets follow has very little focus on nutrition.

  13. #13
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    Our cat has crystals as many posters have said. Her vet has her on Royal Canin Urinary SO. Expensive but no blood. I would like to see this have less fillers and more fiber; this cat is stingy with her poo LOL. I've taken to giving her catlax a couple times a week to try to help things along. Seriously, this is our last cat! Yeah, right

    Our dog has allergies. She is on a no wheat no corn diet so she gets Natures Choice (I think) venison and potato. I will say, her coat is beautiful and we get complements all the time how soft she is. She is a white GSD.
    You can't drink rum on the beach all day if you don't start in the morning.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shugness View Post
    Our mutt has always ate Life's Abundance, which is a mail order dog food that has a 4 star review (out of 5) on the Dog Food Advisor website. My greyhound though, I was feeding Pedigree, which I really hate to admit because it has a 1 star review - but, it's what I could afford. The mutt eats between 1-2 cups a day, depending on her appetite, but my greyhound eats 4 cups a day....so it costs me twice as much to feed him.

    To feed both of them them Life's Abundance was going to cost me over $70 a month. Since we've recently paid some bills off, I had decided I was going to start feeding him a better quality food too, as I've noticed his coat isn't as shiny as I think it should be and he has some hair loss on his badonkadonk (which a lot of greyhounds have anyways!). However, I've since did some more research and found that I can purchase an equally good quality food, also a 4 star rated food from Tractor Supply called 4Health, which costs half of what Life's Abundance does. My plan is to give that a try once we need another bag of food.

    As a side note - I do like the Dog Food Advisor website because not only does it rate the pet foods, but it tells you what ingredient give it a low or high rating and what exactly makes ingredients bad or good. I read a book years ago called "The Truth About Pet Food" (or something like that), and one beef that lady had was she says the curriculum vets follow has very little focus on nutrition.
    I use that website, too, and was astounded to find that ProPlan and Purina One for dogs was a 1 rating, so took the advice of the kennel owner, who did exhaustive research, and switched to Whole Earth Farms ( a 4* rating) for my dogs! They all seem healthy.
    Kay
    I'm a WYSIWYG person -- no subterfuge here!

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by LakeMartinGal View Post
    I use that website, too, and was astounded to find that ProPlan and Purina One for dogs was a 1 rating, so took the advice of the kennel owner, who did exhaustive research, and switched to Whole Earth Farms ( a 4* rating) for my dogs! They all seem healthy.
    Life's Abundance website is where I get the Instinctive Choice cat food.
    Jill

    "Be kind to your neighbor... he knows where you live." -Brian Copeland

  16. #16
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    I feed my two indoor-cats-only Iams. I'm rather surprised nobody mentioned it? Am I missing something? I usually just switch up the flavor/kind. They are sisters, both will be 8 I believe. Neither overweight, and never poo issues. And they like it.
    Everyone needs to believe in something. I believe I'll have another beer. . .

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by PAMMELA View Post
    I feed my two indoor-cats-only Iams. I'm rather surprised nobody mentioned it? Am I missing something? I usually just switch up the flavor/kind. They are sisters, both will be 8 I believe. Neither overweight, and never poo issues. And they like it.
    Hanna ate Iams for her first 14 years with no health issues. Last year she developed kidney disease (a result of age), so she's now on Hill's Rx Diet.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by donleyk View Post
    Our cat has crystals as many posters have said. Her vet has her on Royal Canin Urinary SO. Expensive but no blood. I would like to see this have less fillers and more fiber; this cat is stingy with her poo LOL. I've taken to giving her catlax a couple times a week to try to help things along. Seriously, this is our last cat! Yeah, right
    .
    When my little fur friend got constipated on his dry urinary formula, the vet suggested I mist the dry food with water and sprinkle lightly with Metamucil (only the unflavored type, hard to find, but they won't touch the orange-flavored stuff). Metamucil is a brand name for finely ground psyllium powder, a fiber additive that is also used for humans, dogs and horses.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soupandstew View Post
    When my little fur friend got constipated on his dry urinary formula, the vet suggested I mist the dry food with water and sprinkle lightly with Metamucil (only the unflavored type, hard to find, but they won't touch the orange-flavored stuff). Metamucil is a brand name for finely ground psyllium powder, a fiber additive that is also used for humans, dogs and horses.

    In the early 90s I had a cat with chronic constipation. The vet recommended adding Metamucil to canned food (along with a good amount of water) once a day. For the other meal he ate dry. This went on for about 9 years. Took care of the problem beautifully!

  20. #20
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    Thanks for the heads up! Cleo can hear the top popping off the catlax tube and goes running lol. Rotten cat. The other night my DH asked what the commotion was when I returned to the room he was in and I said that was me trying to catch the cat when I had already had the catlax on my finger! Makes me laugh just thinking about catching her.
    You can't drink rum on the beach all day if you don't start in the morning.

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