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Will eat only dry food. Should I be conerned?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
My cat is almost 2-1/2 yrs old (29 mnths). She does not drink much water, about 4 oz most days. I wish she'd get more fluids since she had a nasty urinary tract infection about a year ago.
She very unfinicky (is there such a word?) about dry foods. I give her mostly premium foods other than some Chef's Blend which she loves. The only wet food she will eat is Gerber Baby Meats. Even then it takes her all day to finish a jar of that.
I've tried not feeding her any dry food thinking that if she got hungry enough she would eat some of the wet food. Several times I've gone as long as 24 hours but always give in then & give her the dry food she is waiting for.
How long can I safely let her go without food before I give in to her desires?
She NEVER asks for food. She will just check her food bowl from time to time & wait patiently for it to appear.
She was a feral kitten & I've had her since she was less than 6 weeks old. She was at vets for 4 days before I brought her home where I continued medications for URI & eye infections for 3 wks. She was already eating dry food but did eat about 1/2 wet food also. When 4 months old she just overnight stopped eating any wet food.
Am I right to be concerned about her lack of fluid intake? If so, do any of you have any suggestions for me to try to try to get her to accept wet food? (Have tried every brand of grocery store & pet store food with no success. Some of them looked & smelled good enough to pass for a nice pate on crackers though I've not really tasted them.)
Thanks for any suggestions.
Betty for Mandy
post #2 of 9
Will she drink water dripping from a faucet? If so, you might want to get a pet fountain like Drinkwell, where there is a continuous stream of water they can drink from. I just got one last month, and I am amazed how much water my cats have been drinking! Every time I turn around, it seems one of them is getting a drink from it.
post #3 of 9
I would just talk to the vet about it, and I agree with the faucet dripping a little to see if she will drink more that way...Good Luck and I hope she gets to drinking more liquids for you..maybe also try a different brand of canned food...it is possible that brand you buy isn't her preference...
post #4 of 9
I am going to give you a neat web-sight on the subject. Mine only ate dry which has a lot of calories. This web-sight also tells you which foods to buy. I have done some research myself, and Wellness, and Natural Balance are very good. I have a little trouble with one of mine as she is used to dry, but slowly I'm getting her to eat a little more wet. I give them wet and dry, little less dry for now and I'll be checking on the weight factor. Hope this helps you.

post #5 of 9
Our Jamie is also a dry-food freak, though I usually manage to get him to eat a small can of food about 3 meals a week. How many water bowls do you have? I have a "Fresh Flow" drinking fountain in the kitchen, about six feet from the food bowls, plus low, wide soup bowls full of water in the living room (I put an old dinner plate underneath to prevent drips and spills) and bathroom. Cats like to have several "watering holes" away from their food. You could also try putting some lactose-reduced milk in the water. A friend of mine freezes homemade chicken broth in ice cube trays and drops a cube in each water bowl to encourage her cats to drink more. Some people mix canned food and kibble, or add water to the kibble.
post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 
I tried posting a reply a few days ago. Wrote a long reply with thanks to each of you. That was the day there were problems with the site & I couldn't post the reply.

Anyway am trying several of the suggestions. I found the link sbd45 posted to be particularly helpful. Printed out the article & am following the advice given there.

First thing I did was switch from free feeding to scheduled feeding times. Did that for 4 days. This morning I put down a small amt of wet food for her. Since her favorite is Gerbers Lamb I got a jar of that & a tin of Sheba Lamb flavor. Mixed a teaspoon of each together and added warm water to make a gruel. She wouldn't touch it for hours. I was about to toss it & she gave in and ate it!!
Will try same thing in the AM.

I also got a FreshFlow fountain which I set up this afternoon. So far she is ignoring it but in hopes she'll eventually take to it.

An interesting thing is how affectionate she is in the morning now. So happy to see me wake up! She jumps up on the bed and purrs up a storm when she sees me moving around. This is not typical for her.

So thanks to all of you. I am now hopeful that she will start taking in more water with this approach.

Betty & Mandy
post #7 of 9
It might take her several days to decide to try out the Fresh Flow. Our cat completely ignored it for 2 1/2 days, but then started drinking out of it regularly, and has increased his water intake. I got an email yesterday from a woman who has two of his brothers. She just bought a Drinkwell fountain, and all five of her cats avoided it for a solid week. Now she is filling it twice a day. Good luck!
post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 
Mandy has not yet paid a bit of attention to it. But she has been napping in my bedroom all day. Maybe later today when she comes out to the kitchen area she may discover it.

She ate a little of the wet food again this morning though only the soupy part. I still consider that to be progress though.

Betty & Mandy
post #9 of 9
That's encouraging - at least she now considers the wet stuff edible!
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