Topic: For experienced cat owners and vets,what's a really good healthy diet for cats?
June 18, 2019 / By Alma Question:
my cat is a 7 year old female calico, most of her life shes been eating dry cat food, occasionally some treats and canned foods for cats like fancy feast,etc. shes a normal looking cat is this a rich healthy diet for her or are there other things you can do to make it even better health wise? i don't want her to eat the same exact food for the rest of her life so i don't want to take away the variety.any suggestions?
Uzziel | 6 days ago
HI there again... many people are truly unaware that most of the commercial brands sold in the marketplace are actually not as nutritious that manufacture's would have you believe.
Most commercial grade cat foods contain corn, corn meal which are fillers (carbohydrates) that bind the dry food together as a way of keeping foods lasting longer. Try finding cat food products which are devoid of these ingedients. The first ingredients should show chicken, chicken meal, etc. Most show the first ingredients as corn on the ingredient labels. IAMs, Science Diet, Purina, Whiskas, Friskies ...all have corn listed as the main ingredient. Cats who eat these tend to always feel hungry because the carbs don't metabolize fast enough and cats are obligate carnivores so they need a diet devoid of these types of carbs. Products such as Innova EVO, Nature's Variety Prairie, James Wellbeloved (UK), are premium brands. Most cats who eat these find that they do not eat to eat as much because their appetite is better satiated.
One of the most helpful answers written by darksong17 recently is very informative and will help you learn more about feline nutrition that you may like to consider for your cat: http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index;...
Fun fact... We are omnivores... which means we can eat and survive on plants, meat, or both. Cats are Carnivores. This means a cat CANNOT survive without meat. And I dont mean protein, I mean meat. A cat on a vegetarian diet even with other forms of protein added would be like trying to quench your thirst with the water you get from chewing on grass. A cat on a vegetarian diet is cruel. If you really want your pet to be a vegetarian with you dont own a carnivore. They are made to eat meat.
I use Purina One for my cats there are many different formulas to choose from I use the Purina One for Urinary Tract Health...the reason i use this formula is because I have a male that is susceptible to Uti's and blockage and this food has been great. Last year around this time I rescued a pregnant stray cat and she had 4 kittens and the Purina One for Kittens was great...by the way they have/had a 30 day challenge where you try their food and see how your cat likes it I think they still have the challenge and you will see a dramatic difference in your cat's texture of her coat ...my cats have beautiful, soft and silky coats and I attribute it to their diet of Purina One
I do the following for my cats:
oral care dry food in the morning-about 2 table spoonful for each cat
raw meat-chicken necks/wings/chopped meat or canned food (alternate every night)
grass-cats go out eat as much as they want
raw fish whenever available
My suggestion is to switch to a high quality wet food! All dry is very unhealthy and Fancy Feast isn't a very high quality cat food either.
Not all pet food is made equally. A lot of it is full of corn, by-products, dyes, unhealthy preservatives, filler grains and all sorts of nasty stuff. A lot of pet food companies are perfectly happy to the dump cheap leftovers and things that aren't safe for human consumption (from human food processing plants) into their foods. Will it kill your cat? No, it has to be nutritionally complete and safe to even be marketed. Is it healthy? Not by a long shot.
Corn is a low quality ingredient you never want to see in your pet food. Corn and low quality grains are two of the biggest culprits when it comes to food allergies in our pets.
Thankfully, there are some excellent cat foods being made these days that include organic, human grade ingredients rather than trash not fit for human consumption.
Examples of low quality foods to avoid: Anything you can find in a grocery store will be low end, Purina, Iams, Eukanuba, Science Diet, Royal Canin, Whiskas, Fancy Feast, Friskies, Meow Mix.
Examples of high quality foods to look for: Innova, Wellness, Solid Gold, Felidae, Fromm Four Star, Merrick, GO Natural, Nature's Variety Prairie, Nature's Logic, Artemis Fresh Mix, Timber Wolf Organics.
Although the high quality foods are more expensive, you're getting what you're paying for. Less filler material means more concentrated nutrients... this means you typically need to feed far less of the high quality food than you would of the low quality one. Which also means less poop!
Before following your vet's food recommendation, keep in mind that vets get /very/ little nutritional training during their schooling. Besides that, what training they /do/ get is usually sponsored or taught by the crappy pet food companies! They also often get paid to sell some of their products at their clinics (Science Diet, Royal Canin etc.)
A great option is to go with an entirely grainless diet. Diets high in grain have been attributed to problems with diabetes in cats. Cats are obligate carnivores, so why should there be grain in their diet? Many of the high quality foods now put out grainless formulas. Some good grainless diets include: Innova EVO, Wellness CORE, Blue Wilderness, Nature's Variety Instinct, Orijen, Horizon Legacy, Merrick Before Grain, Fromm Surf & Turf, Now!, and Sold Gold Indigo Moon, Taste of the Wild.
Some pretty decent foods can even be found in common pet stores. Petsmart carries Blue Buffalo products (such as the excellent grain free diet Blue Wilderness). Petco carries Wellness, Solid Gold, Natural Balance, Eagle Pack Holistic, Blue Buffalo, Castor & Pollux Organix, Pinnacle, and Halo. If you can't find a food, most of the high quality food brands have websites with store locators on them.
Another option, if you can't find anywhere around you that sells good foods, is to order your pet food online. Here's an excellent place to do so: http://www.petfooddirect.com/store/
Remember that foods should be switched gradually (mixing new slowly in with the old over about a two week period), especially when switching to a higher quality one, so as not to upset tummies.
Another option for feeding cats is to feed raw. This is something that should be thoroughly researched before being attempted:
Now the question is, do you feed wet or dry? Wet is the correct answer. The reason is, in the wild, cats normally get most of their water content directly from their prey items and drink very little. Domestic cats are no different, and because of the fact that they are designed to take in water with their meal, they have a very low thirst drive. Cats often just don't drink enough. This leads to urinary tract infections and crystals. The bit about dry food being better for teeth is a myth and has not been proven in the least (cats barely even chew their dry food and, really, does a pretzel clean /your/ teeth? Cats should have their teeth brushed with cat toothbrushes and cat toothpaste at least a few times a week as well as see the vet for dental cleanings when necessary /regardless/ of what they are being fed). Canned/wet food is better because it more closely mimics the cat's natural diet. More on why canned food is best:
http://www.catinfo.org/ (Excellent cat nutrition information by a vet)
Another option to get cats to drink more would be a cat fountain. Cats tend to like to drink from running water and cat fountains see to that need, encouraging cats to take in more water.
http://www.dogfoodanalysis.com/dog_food_reviews/ (Dog food reviews. It's for dogs, but most of the high quality brands also put out excellent cat foods. Four stars is a decent food, five stars is a great food, and six stars is an excellent food.)