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Help! I know nothing about cat nutrition

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 
I'm a dog person, I know a lot more about dog nutrition, training ect. But I want to learn about cats. I've got a 10 year old rescue who is about 15lbs.
He's active(ish), his eyes are clear and he's overall healthy.
Right now he's getting No Name seafood diet (free fed) and 1/4 can of wet food in the morning. Mostly Fancy Feast. I know the no name is no good but I have no idea what would be good to feed an older cat.

I'd like to make the switch to all wet food. I'll be switching him in a couple years to a completely indoor cat..

So advice, suggestions? Help!!
post #2 of 18
The same guidelines for dogs apply to dogs. Is the food smelly? Are they ingredients human-grade? Does it contain fillers like corn and wheat? Could you eat it safely? Most of the good dog food brands sell cat food, too.

For example, this is the ingredients for Friskies Indoor Delights:

Ground yellow corn, corn gluten meal, chicken by-product meal, meat and bone meal, animal fat preserved with mixed-tocopherols (form of Vitamin E), corn germ meal, soybean meal, turkey by-product meal, brewers dried yeast, phosphoric acid, animal digest, tetra sodium pyrophosphate, potassium chloride, salt, dried chicken liver, added color (Red 40, Yellow 6, Yellow 5, Blue 2 and other color), choline chloride, taurine, zinc sulfate, ferrous sulfate, Vitamin E supplement, niacin, manganese sulfate, calcium carbonate, Vitamin A supplement, calcium pantothenate, thiamine mononitrate (Vitamin B-1), copper sulfate, riboflavin supplement (Vitamin B-2), Vitamin B-12 supplement, pyridoxine hydrochloride (Vitamin B-6), folic acid, Vitamin D-3 supplement, calcium iodate, biotin, menadione sodium bisulfite complex (source of Vitamin K activity), sodium selenite.

There is no real meat and three corn products. Cats cannot digest corn. Meat and bone meal is extremely sketchy. What kind of meat? They clearly want to hide something (euthanized shelter pets and roadkill are legally allowed to go in pet food). Also look at all the supplements. To put any nutritional at all into this, they had to add plenty of artificial vitamins and minerals.

Compare this to Innova EVO:
Turkey, Chicken Meal, Chicken, Herring Meal, Chicken Fat, Potatoes, Egg, Turkey Meal, Natural Flavors, Vitamins, Apples, Potassium Chloride, Carrots, Cranberries, Alfalfa Sprouts, Minerals, Tomatoes, Herring Oil, Cottage Cheese, Ascorbic Acid, Dried Chicory Root Extract, Direct-Fed Microbials, Vitamin E Supplement, Taurin, DL-Methionine, Lecithin, Rosemary Extract

There are no fillers and many meat products. There are also plenty of nutritional veggies. You don't exactly see apples, cranberries, and cottage cheese in Friskies.

Cats also need a lot of protein and fat and very little carbs. Innova EVO is very high in protein and fat. Friskies-not so much. They barely meet the nutritional guidlines legally set.

HTH!
post #3 of 18
Thread Starter 
What would be a good grocery store based food? I'm working on a budget and buy cat food to last a month. Normally I get 18kilo bags. I'm hoping once I start working again, I can get a better cat food for him.
post #4 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by oranges81 View Post
What would be a good grocery store based food? I'm working on a budget and buy cat food to last a month. Normally I get 18kilo bags. I'm hoping once I start working again, I can get a better cat food for him.
Chicken Soup and Felidae as well as Natural Balance are pretty good as long as you're on a budget. Do you have a feed store in your area? Some Fancy Feast brands are grain-free and pretty affordable as well.
post #5 of 18
Thread Starter 
I think there's a feed store around here.. Hmmm.. I'll have to look in to it. I feed Fancy Feast wet food in the mornings and Kameo just about mauls me for his food. Lol
post #6 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by oranges81 View Post
I think there's a feed store around here.. Hmmm.. I'll have to look in to it. I feed Fancy Feast wet food in the mornings and Kameo just about mauls me for his food. Lol
Some kinds do contain wheat gluten-check your ingredients. It's a pretty dangerous product in pet food. Check out this: http://www.felinediabetes.com/printgluten.htm Those are the healthy kinds.
post #7 of 18
Thread Starter 
Thanks!! I'll look in to that site! I want to make sure that I'm feeding him as well as I feed my dogs. The BF is really attached to Kameo so I want to keep him around as long as possible.
post #8 of 18
Thread Starter 
Well I'll be danged! LOL! I've been feeding him the proper flavors all this time. Hmm.. Guess it's just habit for me now to gravitate to the good kinds of food.
post #9 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by fattykitty View Post
The same guidelines for dogs apply to dogs.
Yes.
The big difference is, dogs are essentially all-eaters, with animal-products as the major.
Cats are even more animal-oriented; being almost exclusively carnivore. They can use some vegetables as fill ups (these apples, cranberries they have much minerals and vitamins etc), but vegetables are almost useless as the bulk food (wheat, corn). Much carbohydrates in food is not good...
So observe. If cheap dry food tells about a decent high protein-content 32%, much of these percents are from the vegetables (wheat, corn whatever). Thus - almost useless for cats...

You do hint your cat does go out. Is he a good hunter? If he takes much mice or birds, he can probably manage OK even on a cheap cat food - his hunting is giving him the necessary proteins.


One useful cheap but good wet-food is the Swedish brand Bozita (or Mjau if they import this).
post #10 of 18
[quote=StefanZ;2669721]Yes.
The big difference is, dogs are essentially all-eaters, with animal-products as the major.
Cats are even more animal-oriented; being almost exclusively carnivore. They can use some vegetables as fill ups (these apples, cranberries they have much minerals and vitamins etc), but vegetables are almost useless as the bulk food (wheat, corn). Much carbohydrates in food is not good...
So observe. If cheap dry food tells about a decent high protein-content 32%, much of these percents are from the vegetables (wheat, corn whatever). Thus - almost useless for cats...
QUOTE]

Clearly they're not exactly the same-they're completely different animals. But generally-no fillers, more meat. It applies to both. Some cat foods have so little meat they're just about vegetarian. Vegetarian pet foods are another matter though....
post #11 of 18
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by StefanZ View Post
Yes.


You do hint your cat does go out. Is he a good hunter? If he takes much mice or birds, he can probably manage OK even on a cheap cat food - his hunting is giving him the necessary proteins.

.
*snort* Kameo hunt.. Ha! Most he does is lounge in the sun on the driveway. This is a cat that watches a mouse run right under his nose then smacks the dog for chasing said mouse. Lol.

Now I've heard that cats need Taruine... I think that's what it's called. How would I go about making sure he gets that.
post #12 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by oranges81 View Post
*snort* Kameo hunt.. Ha! Most he does is lounge in the sun on the driveway. This is a cat that watches a mouse run right under his nose then smacks the dog for chasing said mouse. Lol.

Now I've heard that cats need Taruine... I think that's what it's called. How would I go about making sure he gets that.
All cat foods have to have taurine or they can't be sold. My nana got a cat a few years ago (for the first time) and asked the manager at the grocery store, "Where do you sell taurine vitamins?" The guy was like, "Touring vitamins? You don't look like a rock star."
post #13 of 18
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by fattykitty View Post
All cat foods have to have taurine or they can't be sold. My nana got a cat a few years ago (for the first time) and asked the manager at the grocery store, "Where do you sell taurine vitamins?" The guy was like, "Touring vitamins? You don't look like a rock star."
That's funny! So as long as he's eating good, he's getting what he needs then?

And! I just got the BF to agree to a 100% switch to wet food once the bin of dry is gone. Just gotta stock up on the cases of wet until we need it. Lol. Trip to the pet store on Monday I think to check out prices.
post #14 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by oranges81 View Post
That's funny! So as long as he's eating good, he's getting what he needs then?

And! I just got the BF to agree to a 100% switch to wet food once the bin of dry is gone. Just gotta stock up on the cases of wet until we need it. Lol. Trip to the pet store on Monday I think to check out prices.
Buy the big cans is possible. They'll save you a lot. One Felidae can is only 11cents per ounce if you buy the 13 oz cans. So that's more affordable than the Fancy Feast in the end (which is more like 18 cents).
post #15 of 18
Thread Starter 
I was thinking about buying the larger cans. I only buy the small cases of FF right now since he only gets it in the morning with his joint supplements.

I think I'm gonna go about this the same way I did with dog food, make a list of pro/con and prices then choose a can as a taste test and go from there.
post #16 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by oranges81 View Post

Now I've heard that cats need Taruine... I think that's what it's called. How would I go about making sure he gets that.

If you really want to buy it, I know sport shops, perhaps on internet, should have it: Body-builders use it sometimes.

Taurine is an amino-acid (proteine) in meat.
All cat foods have it added.

So why it is not enough with natural Taurine in cat food?
Im not sure. The official reason is some of taurine gets destroyed in making the food.

My own theory is, dry food contains typically only 28-32% proteins, and much of that - vegetable proteins.
Thus, of course they must add taurine.


If my theory is correct, the high protein foods, like Orijen in dry foods, should not need much extra taurin,
and wet foods - usually not at all...


If someone knows for sure - please explain the details.
post #17 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by StefanZ View Post
If you really want to buy it, I know sport shops, perhaps on internet, should have it: Body-builders use it sometimes.

Taurine is an amino-acid (proteine) in meat.
All cat foods have it added.

So why it is not enough with natural Taurine in cat food?
Im not sure. The official reason is some of taurine gets destroyed in making the food.

My own theory is, dry food contains typically only 28-32% proteins, and much of that - vegetable proteins.
Thus, of course they must add taurine.


If my theory is correct, the high protein foods, like Orijen in dry foods, should not need much extra taurin,
and wet foods - usually not at all...


If someone knows for sure - please explain the details.
PM me and I will give you a through explanation


What foods do you have at the grocery stores by you?? can you get to a pet store and if so which one // what is your budget in Canadian please
post #18 of 18
Thread Starter 
I can get Iam's, Eukanuba (sp??), Fancy feast, purina.. There is a pet store here where I get my dog food every month so I'm leaning towards buying from them since they offer discounts on cases of food. They're a locally owned pet store but can order foods in if need be.
I've got about 30$ to 40$ canadian put aside for cat food. I may be able to put more aside depending on the month and whither I need dog food or not. Lol
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