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Opinions on cheap foods?

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 
I need cheap, I mean cheap, dry foods. Right now, I'm feeding my 7 farm cats, plus my 1/2 farm cat(she isn't "mine" but doesn't belong to anyone else), and a few strays/ferals. So, I'm currently feeding a mix of Chicken Soup, MAX cat, & Purina Indoor. A lot ends up being Purina. Esp. since MAX cat went up in price here which I discovered today.

So, I bought a bag of Diamond Maintenance. Has by-products, but for now it will work. So, now my quest is on for a new food. I have to drive an hour to get anything real basically, which stinks. And ordering 40+ lbs of dry hurts as far as shipping goes. So my choices are:
Exclusive
Precise
Chicken Soup($25 18 lbs)
MAX Cat
Innova $$
Raw Instinct $$
Science Diet
Iams
Solid Gold $$
Nutro ($32 for 20 lbs )
Diamond
Diamond Naturals
Purina
9 Lives
Friskies

Just looking for thoughts, ideas, suggestions? I'd like to be able to get the best I can for the kitties....without much switching around.
post #2 of 20
Do you have feed stores in your area? Sharky recommended Sportmix as an entry level premium. She said it was better than grocery store brands. It runs about $7.00US for 16.5 lbs. I plan on trying it as soon as I can get to the feed store.

There seem to be several in Minnesota. Here is their website: http://www.sportmix.com/
post #3 of 20
Entry leval
Sportmix
Purina naturals

For the money in mid level premium s
Max cat
Diamond Naturals
Chicken soup
post #4 of 20
I think if I was in that situation I'd head for my most local grocery store but I would highly reccommend nothing of lower quality than Purina One or Iams. Make sure the food is not colorful. It should be a plain brownish color. If anything has dyes in it and the food is red and/or yellow IMHO it's not good enough for even farm cats or feral cats. Wallmart has a brand called Natural Life. When I went there I didn't like the dry food but the wet was ok, although my cats didn't like the wet. But it's something you can find in a place like Wallmart without by-products if you're trying to avoid them. I'm not aware of the prices of these brands but you can check them out.
post #5 of 20
John's dad feeds our barn cats, and he buys Sam's brand dry food. It's obviously not a very high quality food but has no dyes and the cats really seem to do well on it. They're healthy, active, have shiny coats, etc. He buys the cheaper food for the barn because we also have two abandoned baby raccoons that I saved after they had fallen into a large barrel (sp?) full of water and nearly drowned. There's no momma around and so the babies eat the cat food too.
Inside the cats are normally fed Chicken Soup, which I am very happy with. We also occasionally get donations from adopters of different kinds of foods and use those as well.
post #6 of 20
When I worked at the shelter we used Purina Cat Chow (the blue bag kind). It didn't have dyes in it and they seemed ok on it. Personally for cheapie foods I prefer Purina ONE. I think it agrees with the cats more than Cat Chow does.

For my own cats, we've switched back to Nutro Max cat food for dry food. With Raven's vet bills at the beginning of the summer, plus a few other events we've had to scale back our spending in several areas. Nutro Max is also the most palatable dry food according to my cats. 20 lb bags are on sale (at our Petco anyway) for $20 until Aug. 19th.
post #7 of 20
If you have a costco, their cat food isn't horrible (it's made by Diamond) and it is pretty cheap I think you get 20 pounds for $11.00
post #8 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by moggiegirl View Post
I think if I was in that situation I'd head for my most local grocery store but I would highly reccommend nothing of lower quality than Purina One or Iams. Make sure the food is not colorful. It should be a plain brownish color. If anything has dyes in it and the food is red and/or yellow IMHO it's not good enough for even farm cats or feral cats. Wallmart has a brand called Natural Life. When I went there I didn't like the dry food but the wet was ok, although my cats didn't like the wet. But it's something you can find in a place like Wallmart without by-products if you're trying to avoid them. I'm not aware of the prices of these brands but you can check them out.
Purina One is actually less in quality than naturals yet naturals is cheaper( ie no by products... IMHO

Niether Sportmix ( original) or Natural s have by products, chemical preservs or artificial colors or flavors yet both are at least here FAR cheaper than ONE or Iams .... I agree if at walmart it would be a toss up Naturals or Natural life both are about the same
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tiger1206 View Post
If you have a costco, their cat food isn't horrible (it's made by Diamond) and it is pretty cheap I think you get 20 pounds for $11.00
Curiuos is it one of the "super premuim line"???... if it is that looks good the others seem to be less than disrable ingrediants
post #9 of 20
Here is the Costco's Ingredients. I would say it is better then Purina Cat chow

KIRKLAND – Costco Chicken formula (also no corn)
Kirkland Signature Super Premium Maintenance Cat Chicken and Rice

Ingredients
Chicken, chicken meal, whole grain brown rice, ground white rice, chicken fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols), natural chicken flavor, flaxseed, potassium chloride, salt, calcium sulfate, calcium carbonate, methionine,choline chloride, taurine, dried chicory root, zinc proteinate, vitamin E supplement, niacin, manganese proteinate, Copper proteinate, Zinc sulfate, manganese sulfate, copper sulfate, thiamine mononitrate, vitamin A supplement, biotin, potassium iodide, calcium pantothenate, riboflavin, pyridoxine hydrochloride, (vitamin B6), vitamin B12 supplement, manganous oxide, sodium selenite, Vitamin D supplement, folic acid.

Guaranteed Analysis
Crude Protein 30.0% minimum
Crude Fat 20.0% minimum
Crude Fiber 3.0% maximum
Moisture 10.0% maximum
Magnesium 0.1% maximum
Selenium 0.4 mg/k minimum
Vitamin E 100 IU/kg minimum
Taurine 0.1% minimum
Omega-6 Fatty Acids 3.3% minimum
Omega-3 Fatty Acids 0.5% minimum
Calorie Content
4,008 kcal/kg (375 kcal/cup)Calculate Metabolizable Energy
post #10 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tiger1206 View Post
Here is the Costco's Ingredients. I would say it is better then Purina Cat chow

KIRKLAND – Costco Chicken formula (also no corn)
Kirkland Signature Super Premium Maintenance Cat Chicken and Rice

Ingredients
Chicken, chicken meal, whole grain brown rice, ground white rice, chicken fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols), natural chicken flavor, flaxseed, potassium chloride, salt, calcium sulfate, calcium carbonate, methionine,choline chloride, taurine, dried chicory root, zinc proteinate, vitamin E supplement, niacin, manganese proteinate, Copper proteinate, Zinc sulfate, manganese sulfate, copper sulfate, thiamine mononitrate, vitamin A supplement, biotin, potassium iodide, calcium pantothenate, riboflavin, pyridoxine hydrochloride, (vitamin B6), vitamin B12 supplement, manganous oxide, sodium selenite, Vitamin D supplement, folic acid.

Guaranteed Analysis
Crude Protein 30.0% minimum
Crude Fat 20.0% minimum
Crude Fiber 3.0% maximum
Moisture 10.0% maximum
Magnesium 0.1% maximum
Selenium 0.4 mg/k minimum
Vitamin E 100 IU/kg minimum
Taurine 0.1% minimum
Omega-6 Fatty Acids 3.3% minimum
Omega-3 Fatty Acids 0.5% minimum
Calorie Content
4,008 kcal/kg (375 kcal/cup)Calculate Metabolizable Energy
All I can say is wow for that price ... I would evan feed that formula and not just to ferals

This is FYI ... not a UTI formula ....

THe vitamins are evan Natural
post #11 of 20
If you are a member of Costco, then you can pick up Kirkland's Maintenance cat food - about $15 for 30 or 40 lbs (we are going tonite - will double check on size/price for you).

Diamond does make the Kirkland dog/cat foods but we fed our barn cats on Kirkland for years and they were very healthy
post #12 of 20
Thread Starter 
No Costco around here. We don't technically even have a feed mill. The grain elevator has food that the ingredients list runs something like 4 grains, then meat by-products, then more grains.

I checked out Sportmix's website, it says the Fleet & Farm 30 mins from here carries it, but I don't think they do? I think they only have Diamond & Premium Edge.

I can call like Fleet & the feed store sorta near me to see what they've got. I think they mostly have junk. (I am in the boonies)
post #13 of 20
I called the feed store near me and they do carry it. Let me know if your local place does
post #14 of 20
Thread Starter 
Well, only feed mill that carries cat food carries Purina & Meow Mix 20 lb bags....& 40 lbs of Tuffy's cat food.

Called Fleet & Farm, they do not carry the Sportmix. They've got treats, but no dry!

Maybe Maxximum from Wal Mart, but I think they only have little bags, which feeding 7-13 cats could get $$. Purina Naturals is $6-7 for a 6 lbs bag, which is insane to be buying so many little bags!

I get so frusterated.....nobody around here bothers to feed good food!
post #15 of 20
I know it isnt close but Petsmart has 14lb of naturals for 12or 13

the only thing is buying the smaller bags will put into the price of chicken soup and max for big bags
post #16 of 20
Thread Starter 
The nearest Petsmart is 3 hours away, so there is no way I can get to it.

I think I might stop into Fleet & Farm to see if they can order the Sportmix for me....I mean, they already carry the treats.
post #17 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by white cat lover View Post
The nearest Petsmart is 3 hours away, so there is no way I can get to it.

I think I might stop into Fleet & Farm to see if they can order the Sportmix for me....I mean, they already carry the treats.
That's a great idea. Would be good for others in your area to be able to get better food, too.
post #18 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tiger1206 View Post
If you have a costco, their cat food isn't horrible (it's made by Diamond) and it is pretty cheap I think you get 20 pounds for $11.00
That's what I was going to suggest. Their dog food is good, pretty close to the ingredients of Canidae just the calories are a little lower. I would look into Costco and getting a membership. They have a lot of other fun stuff there besides dog/cat food!
post #19 of 20
Seriously, you can probably go through the shelter to get a Costco membership.
With all the mouths you feed and foster, it'd totally be worth it in food as well as litter.
post #20 of 20
Thread Starter 
There is no Costco within 50 miles of me, I just checked on their website.
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