Originally Posted by DaniMarie
I've read quite a few threads here that mentions that wet food has less calories and is better for chubby cats.
My 16 year old cat is beyond chubby, she's obese. (I love her all the same)
My vet told me during two different visits to switch to a recommended low-calorie dry food. He never once mentioned the caloric difference.
This has been a problem for a few years now and I realize she's old but I've spent a fortune on special dry foods and cried MANY times because I fear her impending health problems.
Does anyone think I should switch to wet food for her??? We currently have her on Hills Science Diet. I measure it out daily. I'm willing to do anything to keep her around for a few more years, God willing.
Wet food doesn't necessarily have LESS calories, but rather the APPROPRIATE calories.
1. Cats are obligate carnivores that require a lot of protein in their diet. Animal protein quality in dry food is no where near as good as in canned food. It can't be in order to make the dry hard kibble, as animal proteins are not a very good binding agent. Kibble is comprised mostly of carbohydrates, plant based protein, which a cat can't metabolize very well. They are not designed to eat grains. Cats get their energy from protein and fat and need much more of both than humans do. Humans are omnivores, and as such, we get our energy mostly from carbs. High quality canned food, by itself, is typically enough to make a cat regain it's normal weight. No need to use a weight control formula, they generally don't work anyway because they are carb based.
2. Cats are descendent from desert creatures, and as such, learned that the only way to get sufficiant amounts of water was in the prey they were eating. They have a very low thirst dry and will not actively seek out water until they are in some stage of dehydration. Dry food contains little to no water, obviously. No matter how much extra water they drink, they cannot make up for the amount they should be having in their diet. Canned food has a high water content, and as such, meets their needs and much more closely mimicks their natural diet. The animals they eat are comprised mostly of water. In fact, all animals are comprised mostly of water, including humans.
3. Dry food does nothing to clean their teeth. This myth just will not go away. When they bite into kibble, it shatters and is swallowed. It does not stay in contact with the teeth long enough to clean it. In the wild, cats chew on chunks of meat, which keeps their teeth pretty clean. They do not munch on hard, dry kibble. Neither dry or wet food is responsible for the condition of their teeth.
I had the same issue my one of my cats. She was overweight when I got her, and she got even more so in my attempts to get her to lose weight. I had her on Iams weight control over a year ago, and it resulted in an even fatter cat. I found Innova Evo, which did help some, but when I started mixing in canned Evo, it has helped even more. Unfortunatly, vet's don't seem to know the proper nutrition for cats. You'd think they would, but I keep reading stories where people are told to keep their cats on crap food like Friskies, or what not. I think it's previlant in all areas of feline education as well. I have a degree in Animal Care, and I can't really remember my classes saying cat's shouldn't be on dry food. It wasn't until I started researching it on my own after I graduated that I discovered a wealth of information that just wasn't offered.