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garlic bad? in cat food

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
Well, I had finally made up my mind to switch my cats from IAMS (corn and by-products-yuck!) to Wellness which sounded like a great food. Last night, I happened to be on a forum on Yahoo where they were talking about garlic being toxic for cats. (onions too) It can lead to "Heinz body" formation which can cause Hemolytic Anemia. I don't think this is a common thing but it can happen. I did a separate search for Hemolytic Anemia and found a reference to cats eating garlic. (cooked or raw it doesn't matter) Of course, wouldn't you know, Wellness has garlic in it. Now, I don't know what in the heck to feed my cats. I really don't want to take a chance with the garlic ingredient I don't think. Anybody feed a food with garlic and just not worry about it? Or do any of not even know about the garlic thing?
post #2 of 22
I won't feed my cats garlic, I have had to many heartsick emails from cat owners whose cats have died after eating steak with garlic, or shrimp with garlic, or eaten a garlic pill that dropped to the floor. Made my mind up for me.
post #3 of 22
Hissy, do you know if oregano is harmful? Whenever I have pizza bagels, Tillie begs pitifully for some mozzarella cheese. I am careful to find her some with no oregano on it, just in case, but I was wondering, if it is safe or not.
post #4 of 22
Sue I found this in one of my files:

Essential oils which contain phenols are particularly toxic to cats and cause liver damage. These include Oregano, Thyme, Eucalyptus, Clove, Cinnamon, Bay Leaf, Parsley and Savory

Essential oils which contain ketones cause neurological symptoms. These include: Cedar Leaf*, Sage*, Hyssop*, Cyprus*, Lavender, Eucalyptus, Mint ,Caraway*, Citronella ,Clove*, Ginger*, Chamomile, Thyme and Rosemary (those marked * give particular cause for concern).

Now this is off a Tea Tree Danger Alert I got and is talking about oils not the same as the straight herb. So I really couldn't say. I would be more inclined to buy a small block of mozerella cheese and give your kitty about 1/2 tsp of grated cheese once a month.
post #5 of 22
Thanks for that info! they can live without mozzarella cheese, these spoiled brats get tuna once a month as it is!
post #6 of 22
I would be careful with tuna as well. Tuna contains high amounts of unsaturated fats and cats can't absorb them. They actually can get a disease called "yellow liver disease" by eating to much human tuna.
post #7 of 22
I had read that, which is why they are only getting it once a month as a treat. Before we knew that, they were getting it weekly. I immediately cut them back to once a month!
Is that safe, monthly?
post #8 of 22
I think so, as long as it isn't a lot? When I was growing up, my cats always got human food and human tuna a lot. My mom and dad never had to run to the vets much, and we didn't spay and neuter our cats either. Boy times have sure changed.....
post #9 of 22
I feed my 3 furkids 4 different kinds of dry food a day. Wellness, Solid Gold, Drs Foster and Smith Chicken and Brown Rice Forumula, and Chicken Soup for the cat lovers soul. All foods have garlic listed as an ingredient except Chicken Soup. From what I have read about garlic it is there for two reasons. One it helps fight desease, and it helps repel fleas. The scent of garlic goes out through the animals pores, and fleas are said to hate it. I really would not worry about it as I believe it is in the food in very small amounts. If you give it to your cat like Hissy said on a piece of garlic steak, or a piece of garlic toast then It would be considered toxic and unsafe. I also believe if you read the ingredient list on most premium cat food labels you will find it listed for the same reasons that I have stated above. If you still insist on not having it in your cat food, I would highly recommend Chicken Soup. It has "5" protein sources with NO by-products or cancer causing perservatives. It is also about 1/2 the price of the Wellness dry.
post #10 of 22
Thread Starter 
I called my vet and he said he wouldn't worry about the small amount of garlic in the food. Course, I don't know how well versed he is about cat food either. Vets have so much to keep up on. I liked the ingredients in Chicken Soup a lot but they have no kitten formula. My vet says he wants my 4 mo. old kitten to be on a kitten food. On the fanciers health forum on Yahoo there were quite a few breeders who were rather worked up about garlic-said they would NOT feed it to their cats. One said she gave up Wellness because of the garlic. Interesting.
post #11 of 22
Speaking of tuna, we don't give out cats the actual tuna, but the tuna water (we only get the "Packed in Spring Water" not the oil). Is that still risky for them? They don't get it very often, and most of the time more ends up on the floor than in the kitties.

Also, I thought I read somewhere that the garlic used in pet food is processed differently than the garlic we humans eat? Anyone know if that's true?
post #12 of 22
Many of the cat foods I feed contain garlic. At first, I was very concerned about it but after speaking to a few of the manufactures, some vets and a canine nutritional consultant (this can be a problem for dogs too) this is no longer a concern of mine. According to them there are only very small amounts of garlic in pet foods...not enough to cause harm, it is large quantities (depending on the weight of the pet) given frequently that can be dangerous. I also rotate brands so while many of the foods I feed do contain garlic there are also some that don't so my pets may consume small amounts of garlic for 4-6 months but then won't have any for another 4-6 months.
If garlic is a big concern for some of you I do not in anyway blame you for avoiding it, even the small amounts found in pet food....Im just stating my opinion on the matter.
post #13 of 22
Originally posted by valanhb
Also, I thought I read somewhere that the garlic used in pet food is processed differently than the garlic we humans eat? Anyone know if that's true?
I've never heard anything about that but even if its true...processing does not remove the toxic properties of garlic. Kyolic garlic is "supposed" to be safer for pets than fresh garlic because some of the toxic properties are reduced during the aging process.
post #14 of 22
Thread Starter 
According to the breeders on the forum I was on- cooked or raw didn't matter. It was all supposed to be bad. I'm thinking that I may go ahead and try the Wellness anyway. I'll probably always wonder a bit about the garlic but Wellness seems to be the best food in my area as far as not having corn and by-products. Maybe when my kitten reaches adulthood, I may try Chicken Soup for the Cat Lover's Soul-it sounds good but there is no kitten formula.
post #15 of 22
I am sorry I should have clarified, I meant raw garlic in food- not cat food. Lots of pet food manufacturers as stated add garlic to the food.

My concern is people who want to put garlic on top of the cat's food, or feed them pieces of meat that has been laced with garlic. I recently got an email from a lady who left some table scraps down for her kitten of garlic chicken. The kitten ate the small bowl of scraps and later on the woman had to rush the kitten to the ER clinic where it died. I saw the post, garlic and food and responded that way. Sorry about that.
post #16 of 22
I beleive you can safely feed a kitten Chicken Soup cat food as it is formulated for all life stages. On the bag under the Feeding Guide it states:" For kittens or Pregnant or Nursing Adult Cats we recommend free-choice feeding".
According to the back of the bag:
" Animal feeding tests using Association of American Feed Control Officials procedures substantiate that Chicken Soup for the Cat Lover's Soul Adult Cat Formula provides complete and balanced nutrition for all life stages."

Im not trying to sway you from feeding a formula specifically designed for kittens if thats what your more comfortable with...just thought I'd share this info. in case you were interested.
post #17 of 22
...thanks for clarifying Hissy.
post #18 of 22
Thread Starter 
Thank you Nern. The funny thing is I called Diamond who makes Chicken Soup and the woman who answered said she thought it would be fine to feed a kitten. Then she said "Well, let me go ask our resident vet". She came back and said the vet told her I probably shouldn't feed it to my kitten. So, it's interesting that the bag says that.
post #19 of 22
Your welcome. Yes, very interesting that the bag says that yet the Diamond vet says you should'nt...wonder why. Anyway, good luck with your baby.
post #20 of 22
Well I guess in minute amounts, if it doesn't harm them, at the very least, it will keep the vampires away...
post #21 of 22
The two vets that I have dealt with do not seem to be up on the newer premium cat foods at all. They both are brain washed into believing that Science Diet which they sell is the best for your animal. I just had a long talk with my vet with 10 years experience about by-products and BHT, and BHA in pet food and the dangers of it all. He had NO clue what I was talking about. He was alittle concerned after I provided some paper work for him to read This is why I like this vet...if he don't know something he won't pretend that he does. He is honest. The bottom line is I really don't think alot of vets are really up on the modern day nutrition. This is my own personal opinion. I trust my own research when it comes to what is good for my 3 furkids and what isn't!
post #22 of 22
Thread Starter 
Slave2_Ragdolls, I know what you mean. My vet recommends Science Diet and IAMS. He doesn't sell either one. He isn't big on the retail end of things because he has a small practice. I don't think he had a clue when I was telling him about by-products and about corn in th cat food not being good. You're right, we need to do our own research on some of this stuff.
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