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Ingredients to Avoid in Wet Food?

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 
I'm feeding wet food only 1-2x a week, and I've looked through a million threads on this site and it seems wet food isn't as cut and dry (no pun intended!) as dry food recs.
I'm feeding them Taste of the Wild dry 2x a day most days, supplementing for a wet meal twice a week.

I see so many things recommended, and it seems I can even safely buy some grocery store foods, so I've been trying a variety of textures and brands to see what they like.

I'd like a little help reading labels. I know to look out for by-products, but what other ingredients should I be either specifically looking for, or specifically avoiding when I look at labels?
post #2 of 23
You'll get differing opinions on this. I would take by-products over grains, veggies and fruits as long as the by-products aren't the first ingredient and not the only meat source.
post #3 of 23
I personally prefer to feed a food with NO by-products nor grains/fillers. By-products are often unusable things like beaks, claws, etc. that I don't particularly want my cat eating although some folks don't mind.

I feed Merrick's wet and Orijen dry.
post #4 of 23
I told you there would be disagreement.

If the protein content implied by the guaranteed analysis is meet without including vegetable or grain matter, the by-products included can't contain a substantial amount of "unusable" matter. It wouldn't make any sense to include it if it didn't add something to the nutrient profile. IMHO.
post #5 of 23
I avoid anything with the words "animal" or "meat". I think if they won't specify what kind of meat it is then they have something to hide.
post #6 of 23
Many of us avoid foods with a high fish content as well, due to its connection to urinary problems in some cats.

I avoid all by-products and most grains. I feed some with one meat, one grain such as chicken & rice together as long as there are no other grains in it too like rice AND corn together in one food.
post #7 of 23
I will use by products as long as it is labelled ... ie chicken liver is a by product ... i have feed on occation foods with by product of a named animal if it is no higher than 5th or 6th ingrediant ( yes heads , feet and intestines are common and the highest noted % protein was given at 66% this was not the useable but the pre cooking , compare than to chicken at 90% useable protein)....

Grains I also prefer be no higher than 5th ot 6th ingrediant .. this also goes for starches like potato and tapicoa

NO artificial colors or flavors .... I do also avoid sodium nitrate and sodium nitrite ( sulfate , sulfite , nitrate and nitrite of any mineral ) ... I look for limited Phophates also
post #8 of 23
My opinion is that food is best when it contains no byproducts and no grains which can cause problems in the future. As far as the way your question is woded though, if I would even think about feeding dry food I would look for the same thing in ingrediants. However, dy food will never be allowed in my house.
Here are the definitions of what you are reading on the labels
http://iml.jou.ufl.edu/projects/Spri...ngredients.htm
http://www.api4animals.org/facts.php?p=359&more=1
You have probably seen these sites linked here before
http://www.catinfo.org/
http://www.pubmedcentral.nih.gov/art...medid=18624064
http://www.blakkatz.com/dryfood.html
post #9 of 23
I prefer by-products in cat food. I avoid wheat and corn gluten.
post #10 of 23
I avoid all corn, I couldnt see my cat choosing to eat corn Avoid any kind of gluten and by-products. Hmm, there are 2 preservatives that you should stay away from but i dont know if they are found in wet food (I know they are in some dry foods), I believe it is BHA and the other one is similar -HA? Ugh, I wish I could remember all this stuff! I also think the shorter the ingredient list the better.
post #11 of 23
I avoid Corn, Wheat, Soy (or any gluten version) and "by-products" as well as any unspecified meats. This means if it says "meat meal" or "liver" or anything where I am not aware of the animal I will not feed it. It could mean that the company changes the species for each batch or that the meat is coming from a less than quality source (roadkill, pets (I'm not joking, it did happen, it was while ago though) etc.).

Best case is that the food has no grains at all but if it has rice or something like that further down in the ingredients I would feed it if grain free were not available.

I will not feed anything with the chemical menadione, BHA or BHT.

There is actually a whole list of things to avoid that i use, it does not include corn or wheat because the author believes that technically the ingredients are not harmful or "bad" and because this is for dogs not cats so a little more veggie matter is okay. That said I would never feed corn or wheat to a dog either as it is very unnecessary and IME leads to lots of smelly poo because it has little nutritional value for the animal, it's a filler.
http://www.dogfoodproject.com/index....badingredients
post #12 of 23
is it bad to have veggies in the wet food?
post #13 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mer636 View Post
is it bad to have veggies in the wet food?
No, but a non domesticated cat would only get 3-5% veggie matter in a natural pre digested state from the prey it eats... We feed our domesticated cats usually far different than the wild ones ... ie grains, cooked and processed meats , veggies and fruits ... Truely no one diet is right or wrong it is what works for your cat...

I have five cats : one ate mostly to all dry food till I brought home freeze dried raw ... Now she begs for the freeze dried ... three eat half wet / half dry with some homemade and raw .. one due to eating the wrong food for her is now going grain free ( the drys I use 2 of 3 are ) and some wet
post #14 of 23
As others have noted, the answer to this varies quite a bit depending on your cat...

I'd LOVE to feed an all meat, no grains, veggies, or by-products diet to my cats. That said, due to UTI issues, I've had to start feeding them a dry food that does have corn in it ( instead of the grain free they were on).

As for wet foods, I look for foods with specific meats as a first ingredient, as low a grain count as possible, and no fish. Right now, I'm feeding a mix of all meat one protien source canned (EVO, By Nature), higher end w/ grain (no fish) canned (Natural balance), lower priced no by-product food (petsmart authority), and lower quality w/ by-products, but NO fish (friskies). I feed a rotation of these...i.e. 3 cans of Natural balance, 2 cans of grain free, and 2 cans of the authority / friskies a week.

I think that the middle quality cans...those without by-products, with low grain levels are sometimes the best "bang for your buck". Authority, in particular, is very reasonable, yet is as good in quality as Natural balance (at 1/3 the price).

I think the best canned food on the market right now are the 95% meat, single protien source cans... like the EVO, By Nature, and other manufacturers (can't remember who else has a line like this out...wellness has many no-grain cans). However, sometimes these can be extremely expensive, hard to come by, and hard to convince your cats to eat (my cats LOVE junk food).

In the end, I think the higher the meat and lower the grain / artificial chemeical content, the better.

Art
post #15 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by kitytize View Post
I prefer by-products in cat food. I avoid wheat and corn gluten.

Out of pure curiosity, why do you prefer by-products?
post #16 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by FuzMugly View Post
Out of pure curiosity, why do you prefer by-products?
Because I feel by-products are loaded with nutrients that are essential to a cats health.

arachidonic - most abdundant in organs and neural tissues

taurine - heart and brain have higher levels than muscle meat, also muscle meat loses more taurine when cooked than internal organs, eyes are another good source of taurine

CoQ10 - high in heart, heart is also an excellent source of B vitamins and iron

Vitamin A - liver is the richest source of vitamin A,D, and K also has many B vitamins, Iron, and most requirement of copper and zinc

calcium - bone

kidney contains vitamins A, D, E, K, rich in iron, and all B vitamins
post #17 of 23
oh alright i'm kinda confused with my cat pepe since he can't eat anything but science diet!!
post #18 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by kitytize View Post
Because I feel by-products are loaded with nutrients that are essential to a cats health.

arachidonic - most abdundant in organs and neural tissues

taurine - heart and brain have higher levels than muscle meat, also muscle meat loses more taurine when cooked than internal organs, eyes are another good source of taurine

CoQ10 - high in heart, heart is also an excellent source of B vitamins and iron

Vitamin A - liver is the richest source of vitamin A,D, and K also has many B vitamins, Iron, and most requirement of copper and zinc

calcium - bone

kidney contains vitamins A, D, E, K, rich in iron, and all B vitamins
Hadn't thought about that......
post #19 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by fifi1puss View Post
Hadn't thought about that......
that is prior to cooking and depends on what amounts of heads and feet type items vs organs meats ( and what % of which organs ) ... ie lots of MYSTERY
post #20 of 23
As far as I am concerned the only problem with byproducts is the uncertainty about what *exactly* is used. There is a wide range of things that can be classified as "byproducts", some of which are of more nutritional value than others. I'm not quite as cynical as others about the pet food industry. I believe the byproducts used are "mixed and matched" such that they add, in a positive way, to the nutritional profile of the food. At least in the case of the major brands.
post #21 of 23
Here is my problem with by-products in cat food:

http://cats.about.com/od/catfoodglos...meatbyprod.htm
Quote:
What AAFCO doesn't mention is that meat byproducts may also legally contain: "4D animals (dead, dying, diseased, down), road kill, euthanized cats and dogs, including their collars. These source products are rendered, the fat is siphoned off to be used as "animal fat," and the remaining material is extruded to form "meat by-product meal."
If it was only organs/bone/etc. I would have no problem with them in my cats' food.
post #22 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by AlleyGirl View Post
Here is my problem with by-products in cat food:

http://cats.about.com/od/catfoodglos...meatbyprod.htm


If it was only organs/bone/etc. I would have no problem with them in my cats' food.
May legally contain isn't does contain. But I understand the concern.
post #23 of 23
The problem with that is, as I have found to be true with ANYTHING in life, is if it is legal...they will 9 times out of 10 do it.
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