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My cat won't chew. Need recommendation on new food, larger kibble.

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
My 6-6/12 month old young cat, Trixie, won't chew her kibble hardly at all. She will if it's a piece of meat that I give her, or if it's a kittie treat that is of large size. She used to chew her regular kibble as well. But now she devours her meals without chewing hardly any of them. We recently started cutting back on her food because she started to gain too much weight and ate what my grown-up cat eats in a day, in a single meal and wanting more. I know she's not fully grown, but she is spayed and not a very active cat. She IS active and playing, but not as much as many cats her age; the 6 mo. mark is usually the peak of activity and they can be extremely active in this age. But she's a pretty calm cat. She is indoor only and was treated for worms etc. at the time we got her. She's just loving food, that's all.

I am currently using the Kirkland brand from Costco, which is high quality (meaning a lot of meat and no by-products) and still quite inexpensive if you compare to other high quality ones, like Neutro natural.

I am needing to switch to a kibble that is larger in size. The Costco brand is small and my other cat does great on it. But because Trixie won't chew it, I'm wanting to switch her on something else. I am wanting to find a brand where the kibble is larger so that she has to chew, that is also high on meat, low on by-products and still realatively inexpensive, if it exsists. If not, what else can you recommend?

Cost is definitely a factor for us, but I do understand that food with little meat will result in the cat needing more of it, so the cost on cheep food goes up because you use more of it. But still, is there something out there that compares to Neutro natural and Kirkland brand without being as expensive as Neutro?

Edited to give you a piece of info that may help you to understand why she all of a sudden started to eat so much: We went on a one week vacation, but someone came every day for the two cats, spent time with them and took care of their needs. But of course, there wasn't much action there during the day since we were gone. They were still free fed, both of them. My 2 yro cat still is eating her normal amount and is staying very slim but healthy weight, but this is when my then 5 mo. old started to over eat. Up to this point she ate what I would expect; snacking small meals several times a day and staying slim. But when we came back she was a bit heavier and will eat full meals several times a day, if I let her. I don't want her overweight, so we are monitoring her intake now, cutting back to a more normal amount. HTH!
post #2 of 13
I got a sample bag of Science Diet Hairball/Indoor formula free from my vets and I was amazed at how big the kibble was. I dont know if all science diet is like this? Its not the 'best' food, but its better than most... just an idea Hope you find something your kitten likes.
post #3 of 13
California Natural chicken and rice has a larger kibble that would have to be chewed before swallowing.
post #4 of 13
My youngest male rarely crunches his food either. This is a trait of his breed but my female crunches her food. I don't worry about it though since he doesn't vomit and is growing well and seems to be digesting the food properly. The Nutro NC (kitten, not sure about the size of the adult kibbe)are small and he swallowed it easily. I think I remember the Nutro Max kibbles as being larger and a different shape. I am switching them to California Natural right now. I do think the shape encourages crunching but my boy still manages to swallow the majority of them. The price is not bad. It costs slightly less than Nutro (at least it is in my area). What is the shape of the kirkland brand? Royal Canin makes a Maine Coon formula that are large kibble.
post #5 of 13
HOw about not changing food

Cats by design are tear and shredd not chew... even big kibble which for most Natural choice is the cat will only bite it in half ....

Have you tried evelvating the dish >>??? laying the kibble out on a flat dish??


all foods mentioned outside of SD I would say are good... but for price you may not et big but it is a different shape chicken soup or nutro s max cat with a hole in the middle might work and are in the Costco price range
post #6 of 13
Two of my cats don't chew their food either. As long as it is being digested and the cat is healthy and eating and not choking, then I wouldn't worry. Try some of the other suggestions given like elevating the food bowls.
post #7 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thank's for the suggestions! I'll try to change to plate and elevate etc. She seems to digest the food just fine. So that brings me to the other concern I had about it, which is the condition of her teeth; they are nice and healthy at this point, but won't she have problems if they don't get "excersised" by chewing? With swallowing kibble, she doesn't have to tear or shred it either....

Please advice me on whether this would be a concern or not. Other than this, I would love to keep her on the Kirkland brand. And I'll talk to dh, he's the one who's the most concerned about it; funny enough, cause he's the one who is supposedly not really into the cats... Yet they love him and he's pretty protective of them for someone who "doesn't care"! LOL! Isn't that funny? He's so sweet... Just can't admit he loves them too!

Anyway, the shape of the Kirkland brand is round, but with flat sides; looking like they shaped it into a skinny roll and cut up into individual pieces. They are almost round but not quite. Size wise, slightly larger than a popcorn cernel. I think maybe Iams is that size as well? Or was it Science Diet? She was on SD when we got her, and I quickly switched her to Neutro kitten, but over to Kirkland when she got older. I do know that the Neutro N was quite a bit bigger and she did chew those. But Kirkland brand seems to be almost half the price...? So I'd love to stick to that.
post #8 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by sharky View Post
HOw about not changing food

Cats by design are tear and shredd not chew... even big kibble which for most Natural choice is the cat will only bite it in half ....
I've read a couple of articles on the best foods for cats. It's wet foods because they don't chew dry food enough, if at all, to clean their teeth. Wet foods tend to be more natural with a good quality one having no grains Grains are used to hold the kibble together. Wet food doesn't stick to the teeth like dry does.
post #9 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kalikat View Post
I've read a couple of articles on the best foods for cats. It's wet foods because they don't chew dry food enough, if at all, to clean their teeth. Wet foods tend to be more natural with a good quality one having no grains Grains are used to hold the kibble together. Wet food doesn't stick to the teeth like dry does.
Very true ... but some cats arent wet fans .. and some pet parents have a small$$ for feeding
post #10 of 13
This is slightly off topic, since the main reason for your post was to inquire about larger-sized kibble. But have you discussed Trixie's alleged overeating with your vet?

I say "alleged" because, while I can certainly understand your concern about her gaining too much weight, she is still just a kitten. And I was under the impression (and any member is certainly free to correct me if I'm mistaken) that in general, kittens should pretty much have as much food as they want until they reach a certain age. There's probably some disagreement as to what exactly that age is, but I think that it's later than 6 or 6.5 months.

Again, I'm not saying that you're necessarily wrong for wanting to restrict her food intake. Most cats are able to stop themselves from overeating. Trixie might not be one of those cats. And you know what she looks like; I don't. I guess I'm just of the mindset that dietary changes should typically be discussed with a vet, espeically when kittens are involved. Not that most vets are overly knowledgeable about nutrition, mind you, but to me it's still better than nothing.
post #11 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thank you for your input, Roger. I can see why you would be a little concerned about that. The thing is that her "over eating" happened while we were gone on vacation, which makes me think that she was bored, started eating to have something fun to do, and then continued this pattern after we got back as well. My dh thinks maybe it stretched her stomach so she may not feel full when she actually is. This did happen (excactly this way) to a previous cat that we owned, and she became heavily overweight and it was very difficult to get her weight down again. We never succeeded.

The second thing is that she now is getting a pooch on her, you can definitely grab the fat under her belly. (Don't get me wrong, most cat's have this and more, but she's still a kitten and it seems abnormal to me for her age, also I DON'T want it to get worse.) I also just weighed her; she was about 7.5 Lbs around 1 1/2 weeks ago, and today she's at 8 Lbs. That alone doesn't seem right to me, especially since she is a relatively small cat. My adult female is at a very steady 7.5 Lbs and of medium height /length, so she is slim but at (in my opinium) an optimal weight. Trixie is smaller in height / length but significantly heavier in the look and feel of her.

She looks and feels overweight to my dh and I. But she behaves as if she is starved. Constantly by the pantry where her food is at, and meowing like she hasn't seen food all day.

Dh and I decided to feed her the same way she was used to eating when she free fed and stayed slim; small amounts several times a day. That seems to be a normal pattern for cats who free feed and self regulate and who stay at a healthy weight.

I wish she would be content with what we're giving her. The feeding suggestion for Nutro natural, which is very similar in ingredients (sorry, threw the Kirkland bag away and don't have the info) is 1/3 c - 2/3 c a day for this weight group, and Jasmine eats less than 1/3 (she free feeds under supervision) and we give Trixie 1/2 c at this point. The reason I give her more is because she is under growth still, and I obviously want her to get enough for healthy growth. But now, today, as I found that she gained 1/2 Lb in less than 2 weeks, it really makes me think we're feeding her too much still.

Oh, and you suggested taking to the vet about it; I appreciate this suggestion. However, my country vet is likely to say that what we're already doing is fine and good. I am not able at this point, to take her in for something we probably can figure out ourselves. If she starts to show symptoms that something IS wrong with her, like a thyroid problem or whatever, then I would take her in for an excam. But at this point I believe it to be a waste of time and money. Thank you though, for taking the time to think this through for me, it is very appreciated!
post #12 of 13
the vet will be able to say for certainty if she is in fact heavy... have you seen any of the charts to help you figure it out for sure... lmao.. off topic but guidelines are just that ... My Gigi always ate under , Kandie always at right at and Zoey eats like a 15lb cat she is 8-10
post #13 of 13
Thread Starter 
Yes, I have seen charts. She looks overweight.
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