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Old 12-14-2011, 10:05 PM
 
Location: Cambridge, MA
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...what comparable foods can be used instead? Weasie devoured all the Wellness flavors for over a year but now turns up her nose. No way are we going back to Purina or Iams. This 19-year-old cat is being pampered for the rest of her days, but I want a healthful product for her primary diet all the same. (She still loves the canned Wellness so that's not an issue.)
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Old 12-14-2011, 10:41 PM
 
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Wysong Epigen

Wysong Epigen™ Starch Free™ Dog Food, Cat Food, Pet Food

I started with the Epigen 60 formula to ease the transition, then went to the 90.

I'm trying to get my shelter kitties off dry food by offering Stella and Chewys freeze dried raw Stella and Chewy's FRESH from the FARM Pet Food :: all-natural frozen and freeze-dried raw petfood for dogs and cats :: Food Safety before I rehydrate it, so far no go, but they are starting to eat the Stella and Chewys reconstituted and mixed with their Fancy Feast.

The inclusion of "flavor enhancers" used in most cat foods seems addictive (like children wanting candy instead of fruit) and is, I believe why it can be so hard to transition them to real food.
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Old 12-14-2011, 11:56 PM
 
6,224 posts, read 6,643,979 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goyguy View Post
...what comparable foods can be used instead? Weasie devoured all the Wellness flavors for over a year but now turns up her nose. No way are we going back to Purina or Iams. This 19-year-old cat is being pampered for the rest of her days, but I want a healthful product for her primary diet all the same. (She still loves the canned Wellness so that's not an issue.)
FYI: try going ALL canned, as it'll hydrate & do her best as most people here seem to agree.
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Old 12-15-2011, 05:25 AM
 
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My cats like Evo. It's very low in carbs. Whatever you try, if you have a Pet Supplies Plus near you, you can return open bags of food your pets didn't like (just so there's more than half left) for a refund and they give the rest of the food to shelters. They aren't in all states. I'm glad there's one near me, for their selection and for reasons like this.
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Old 12-15-2011, 05:33 AM
 
Location: Pittsburgh area
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There's nothing wrong with her eating all canned if she'll eat it. That is far more ideal than the dry anyway.

If what you find is you can't get her to eat enough if there's not dry (sounds funny to some, perhaps, but this is what I find with my own cat) then the ones I'd try are Wysong Epigen as mentioned, Orijen or Nature's Logic. Amber is also eating some Blue Buffalo Wilderness right now, but I consider that temporary and it's not really a food I would otherwise choose. I ran out of Epigen when none was on the local shelf and had to get something. That store didn't carry Orijen, which is a food I've used in the past. Nature's Logic is just one that's impressed me recently given their method of getting all nutrition from food instead of synthetic supplements. I intend to try it but haven't located it around here so will probably have to order it.

It's still hard to sort through what is real and what is marketing bs, even for me though I've generally been trying to figure out better choices for the past few years. Check out the web site Truth About Pet Food. Also check catinfo.org for some background on why dry food is really never ideal. Grains are one thing cats can't use, but even grain-free dry food replaces that with potato and such that aren't really any better. Wysong manages to get Epigen starch-free (still contains some potato, etc, but they take out the starch), and Epigen 90 is somehow 90% derived from meat which is quite an achievement. Orijen is 80% meat/fish. Nature's Logic takes a different road, choosing to use millet, which is a grain technically but very grass-like and closest to what a cat (or dog) might actually eat once in a while. And these are still big compromises, though, because your cat would be better off getting moisture in the food because of their naturally low thirst drive.

Anyway, the point isn't to say "Hey lay off the dry food" necessarily. At age 19 especially you really have to gauge the value of any changes vs the value of consistency. Cats are big creatures of habit as I'm sure you know. But it's always good to know more background. Hope this helps a little and maybe encourages you to learn more. Good luck.
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Old 12-15-2011, 10:42 AM
 
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You're lucky your cat likes wet food as that is healthier for them.

My cat is soooo stubborn and picky and contrary. She likes her Taste of the Wild grain-free kibble, but is very iffy about wet food. Sometimes she'll eat a little, sometimes not. Sometimes she likes one then decides she doesn't like it the next day. I rotate among Wellness Core, Trader Joe's, Halo, and once in a while even a can of Evo, all the chicken or Turkey formulas. I hate wasting food and the stuff I feed her is not cheap.

I end up freezing 1oz chunks of wet food since she refuses to eat more than 1oz of it at any given time and it otherwise dries out or goes bad.

Sigh.... did I mention stubborn?
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Old 12-15-2011, 11:13 AM
 
Location: Pittsburgh area
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Mine will eat about 1/2 can (small 3oz can) of wet food in a day, and it's tuna/salmon still. Better than nothing, I guess. I think the fish is sourced fine contaminant-wise, and I know the food processing there is fine, but I've since heard that the Thai fishing industry is not necessarily great for sustainability issues. Hmph. Always something.

Anyway, so she'll eat half the can but of course she won't even eat that much if the dry food is around, so part of the key is to stop leaving the dry food around. How I get her to eat half that can is to put that out at night and remove the dry food at that point. Then I give her the dry food in the morning and leave that out all day.

I did have her to a point where she would eat around a can and a half or so of wet food (I put it out as two cans, one can's worth twice a day) but it wasn't clear this was enough intake. She was still losing weight and was already at a good weight. She's due for her checkup now so I'll find out what's happening. It's quite possible that it has reversed and perhaps even she has gained back more than was necessary. I haven't been checking her weight myself.

Waiting to get out of this holiday rush then I will have more time to tinker again with the food. I might try more enforced mealtimes and such but I'm loathe to take away her food overnight. I need sleep. But right now it's the canned food I leave overnight, and she doesn't bother me worse than usual.

In other words, stubborn, I hear ya!
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Old 12-15-2011, 11:44 AM
 
Location: Near Nashville TN
7,201 posts, read 15,026,598 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goyguy View Post
...what comparable foods can be used instead? Weasie devoured all the Wellness flavors for over a year but now turns up her nose. No way are we going back to Purina or Iams. This 19-year-old cat is being pampered for the rest of her days, but I want a healthful product for her primary diet all the same. (She still loves the canned Wellness so that's not an issue.)
If she's consume enough canned food, I would keep her on that. It's better than the best dry kibble.
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Old 12-15-2011, 08:36 PM
 
Location: Cambridge, MA
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Thank you all for your replies. Right now the issue isn't only her being finicky, it's the fact that she's lost half her body weight since April and continues to drop ounces. I'm calling her the "greyhound cat" these days - there's hardly anything to her but fur, skin, and bones although she's perfectly healthy. Her vet has prescribed methimazole, which she grudgingly consumes when it's "tucked into" wet food. Despite her thyroid readings' now falling within the normal range her metabolism is still out of whack.

The vet said that in light of this she should be given more of a "mixed" diet rather than strictly canned food. Because of that recommendation I started this thread. Too bad I can't just put her on steroids to help her bulk up...
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Old 12-15-2011, 09:03 PM
 
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Well I can tell you that Taste of the Wild is calorically heavier...I had to cut my cat back on it.

Tonight I put away her dry kibble and just left out the wet she nibbled on before.

I'm not kidding...less than 10 min later she goes into the pantry to look for her kibble to munch on, doesn't see it, realizes it's gone, and came right into the livingroom to give me what for! She actually lectured me! Meowww--Meowwww! I think I heard "I want to speak with the management of this place, NOW! This is unacceptable!"

She walked me back into the kitchen, into the pantry, and then turned around and meowed at me again in protest. I marched her over to her wet food and pointed right at it and she stuck her nose in the air and gave me her best "WTF" look.

sigh...

This could be a long night.
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