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how much to feed

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
My apologies if this is seems to be an overly-simple question, but our cat is being tricky about this. We've got her on Wellness wet food, twice a day. Getting her to eat wet was a huge ordeal, and the only two flavors she'll eat are Turkey & Salmon and Chicken & Herring (I've heard that it's best to stay away from the fishy flavors, but we tried absolutely every flavor offered and she turned her nose up at all the others).

Audrey is an indoor cat, but pretty active. She races up and down the stairs regularly and plays with us a lot. We think she's about 11 pounds. This is about a pound and a half less than when we first got her a few months ago. She was a bit overweight at the time, so we're glad that she's trimmed down.

Here's the thing. Even with these two flavors that she liked, she was never that enthusiastic about eating. She used to go through about 6 oz a day, generally with a bit of leftover. If we gave her dry food she would devour it.

All of a sudden, just in the past few days, she has become ravenous. She would eat her breakfast and immediately start meowing for more. At this point she's eating about 8 oz a day without leaving any behind, and seems pretty happy with that. We were worried about this sudden increase at first, but are thinking that maybe she's just finally eating enough.

So what do you all think?

11 pound, indoor cat, pretty active, eating only Wellness wet. Any suggestions on how many ounces a day she should be getting?
post #2 of 12
It's not overly simple, I have struggled with the same issue myself ...but I have 8 of these complex little beasts.

Except for some variety that I'm trying to get back into their routine, I have 4 cats that eat Wellness wet food exclusively.

3 of them are young (1 year) and active.
1 of them is middle aged (9yrs) and not so active.

The short answer to your question is I think the 8oz is fine. I think 6 would have been OK, but given the vast range of metabolisms and activity levels between different cats, the whole range (6-8oz) for Audrey sounds fine to me.

Paisley is 11.3lbs - for her this is about 2lbs overweight. She gets 6oz a day at this point, and is losing weight but verrrry slowly (as it should be).

My 2 8-9lb girls are maintaining their weights on 6oz/day.

Leopold (the older but bigger one - correct weight though) is maintaining on 6oz a day.

Even though they are different weights and ages, the average of 6oz each seems just right for them at this point. Given Audrey's age (? - can't remember), weight and activity level I think she will be ok w/8oz a day. Might just watch her weight and let that be your guide.

Do you have a regular "people" scale you can step on with her in your arms...then weigh yourself and subtract?
post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 
Thanks so much for your detailed response. I forgot to mention her age. Audrey is between 16 and 18 months (we think). It's hard to be sure, because she was a stray before we got her, and still very kitten-ish, though she's full-grown.

And 11 pounds is probably healthy for her, since she's loooooong.

We don't have a scale, but I'm sure we could get a cheap, reasonably reliable one so that we can track her weight.

So is Wellness just more concentrated than other brands, since the ingredients are high quality? When I tried googling I was finding some brands that suggested ten or more ounces a day.
post #4 of 12
I thought I remembered her being about the same age as my little girls.

If she's at a good weight @ 11lbs I think you're doing fine. I like looooonng cats - Beandip is like that. I know what you mean.

Yes, the quality of the food is the main issue and some of the recommended amounts are just wacky. Some foods recommend an ounce per pound for an adult cat. I haven't had an adult cat yet that would eat that much and maintain their weight. Paisley would happily eat that much, BUT... that doesn't work for her!
post #5 of 12
If you have a normal bathroom scale (for yourself) its easy to weigh the cat - just hold the cat and step on the scale (record number); then you stand on the scale alone, and subtract the difference.

That's the easiest way to weigh cats
post #6 of 12
well, this is going to sound really dumb of me, but I never measure the food, I just fill up each bowl in the morning, and then bring in whatever is left in the bowl at dusk.

Tigger is 13.2 pounds
Cricket is 8.7 she is a very petite girl.

They seem to be fine, my vet is real happy with their weight and condition.
post #7 of 12
Thread Starter 
Some cats are good at maintaining their own weight. Audrey's not too great at it. She came to us a bit overweight, and eager to eat any and all dry food we left in front of her. My boyfriend and I do feral colony feeding for a local rescue, so we keep some dry food around, and you should see Audrey come running when she hears that bag rattling.

We'll have to pick up a scale (we don't own one right now).

Beandip, I'd never seen a cat built like her before! She doesn't look that big when she's just lying around. In fact, she still looks overweight, until she stretches out all the way and you realize that she was just scrunched together. She can stand on her back legs with her front paws on the dining room table and her head almost reaches the tabletop.

Thanks everyone for your help.
post #8 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by happy cat View Post
well, this is going to sound really dumb of me, but I never measure the food, I just fill up each bowl in the morning, and then bring in whatever is left in the bowl at dusk.

Tigger is 13.2 pounds
Cricket is 8.7 she is a very petite girl.

They seem to be fine, my vet is real happy with their weight and condition.
If they are maintaining a good weight then that is fine. Aaargh something happened to my apostrophe key. LOL. Anyway, I think you are talking about dry food? Your method sounds like it is working fine for your cats.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NicoleGray View Post
She can stand on her back legs with her front paws on the dining room table and her head almost reaches the tabletop.
Beandip does that too...its too cute to discourage, isnt it?

I think I need a new keyboard.
post #9 of 12
Thread Starter 
She's actually really good about not jumping up onto most things, and she leaves our food alone. It's just that our dining room table is pushed up against the only window that overlooks our front yard, so I can't really blame her. So many interesting things to stare at! I have no idea how she survived as a stray for any time at all, because whenever there's a bird nearby she gets really excited and starts making all sorts of bizarre noises in her throat. What a goof.
post #10 of 12
While 8 ounces sounds like a good amount based on her weight and activity, I'm a little concerned that she suddenly started wanting more. When was her last vet visit? Does she go outside? Even if she's inside only have you checked her for fleas? Fleas can transmit tapeworm, and a sudden appetite or weight loss might be indicative of a problem.
post #11 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by cloud_shade View Post
While 8 ounces sounds like a good amount based on her weight and activity, I'm a little concerned that she suddenly started wanting more. When was her last vet visit? Does she go outside? Even if she's inside only have you checked her for fleas? Fleas can transmit tapeworm, and a sudden appetite or weight loss might be indicative of a problem.
Ditto


oh and the very general rule of thumb is 1/2 oz to 1oz per lb of body wt ... so anything from 5.5 oz to 11oz would be normal
post #12 of 12
Thread Starter 
She was actually treated for tapeworms at her last vet visit, which was just a few weeks ago. She's not an outdoor cat and doesn't have fleas, which means that she must have picked them up while she was a stray (back in January). She had horrible fleas then, and was in fact missing a large patch of hair.

We didn't have any idea she had tapeworms, since the vet had run a fecal and dosed her with a basic dewormer, but apparently it had flown under the radar. They noticed when she stayed overnight after her spay.

Is it possible that the meds didn't completely knock out the tapeworms and they're returned?

She wasn't eating like this before she was treated, btw. The vet had asked us if she seemed ravenous, but she was still turning her nose up at wet food at that point.

The other possibility we've considered is that she finally realized that she actually likes wet food.

Any ideas would be appreciated, though. If it's something to be concerned about, we'll of course talk to her vet.
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