or Connect
TheCatSite.com › Forums › Our Feline Companions › Cat Nutrition › My cat won't eat cat food
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

My cat won't eat cat food

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
I have a problem that I hope someone can help me with.
We received a rescued Birman cat about a month ago. She is 7 yrs. old and very sweet. But all she will eat is cooked chicken and baby cereal. We took her to the vet and they said she must eat cat food for the vitamins and minerals. I've tried several times to give her cat food(Purena)both dry,watered down and canned. She won't touch it.
How do I change her eating habits?
post #2 of 10
That can be tough - my girl would eat only chicken if she could! I would suggest, if you can, go to Petsmart or Petco (especially on a weekend, when there often are food reps around) and ask for helping in getting samples or the smallest sizes of various brands and textures of food in different brands. Just look for the AAFCO certification that it's a maintenance diet on the side of the can/bag.

You might try to sprinkle just a bit of the chicken or cereal on top of the cat food - see if you can sort of lure into into trying the food a bit. With wet cat food, have you tried warming it slightly so it's got more of an aroma? A lot of people will stir in warm water - you don't want hot, just warmer.

The vet is right - as yummy as the chicken in, it doesn't have all the nutrients she needs.


Bless you for rescuing an older girl, and for trying so hard to get her something she likes. If she still refuses to eat, don't feel shy about calling the vet for more advice.
post #3 of 10
Hi!
Changing a diet can take a while - i know as i am doing the same thing at the moment. I agree that a good quality wet food contains the vitamins that your cat needs. Have you tried mixing a tiny amount of cat food in with what she eats at the moment ? Then you could add a little more over a few weeks until its all cat food.
Oddly i am in the opposite position to you. I am in the process of moving my kitten from a not very good brand of food to a semi raw diet. As you are finding, its tough going but last night i discovered a great product for making unliked food into very yummy food for him. On the fantastic advice from another poster on this site (Gloria) I sprinkled his food with a little Fortiflora supplement (i had a free sample) . The result? The same untouched food became a clean bowl. He went crazy for it and he has not had it before. Its a probiotic so it has other benifits!
Good luck!
post #4 of 10
I had a cat that wouldn't eat cat food -- it took me a week of opening can after can to find her lifelong permanent menu. She ate thin slices of ham and turkey and cheese the first week.

What if you buy every brand of chicken cat cans and try them on her until she chooses one? Baby food is my best veterinarian's choice for cats recovering from illnesses and I have seen the fancy cats at Fancy Cat Shows eating this between presentations to the judges. You might try every brand of chicken baby foods also and see if she chooses one.

How about a vitamin supplement? I gave my cat Hi-Vite for cats and she continues to have this every other day to make up for her odd eating habits. She would rather eat Cheetohs and Doritos then her Friskies cans. She eats only Turkey & Giblets, Mixed Grill and Liver & Chicken blends. And in all her 16 years of life, she has never eaten a single kibble.

There are many vitamin & mineral supplements for cats to choose from also.

post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 
Thank You all for the great advice. I will try the different brands of canned cat food first, if that doesn't work I'll try the dry mixed in with chicken and cereal. I'll also ask the vet for a supplement.
Again, thank you!:
post #6 of 10
Actually, there is no need to feed your cat dry food. An all wet diet is quite good for cats!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Turks rule! View Post
Hi!
Changing a diet can take a while - i know as i am doing the same thing at the moment. I agree that a good quality wet food contains the vitamins that your cat needs. Have you tried mixing a tiny amount of cat food in with what she eats at the moment ? Then you could add a little more over a few weeks until its all cat food.
This really is excellent advice. You can try to make the quick switch, but it will be easier on your cat's digestive system to make a slow switch. I think adding a very small amount of cat food to the food she's currently eating is a great idea. If she eats it, then very gradually increase the amount of cat food and decrease the amount of chicken and cereal. But as I said, there's no reason the cat food you use has to be dry food! Some feed only dry, but it's actually healthier for the cat's bladder to use at least a mix of wet and dry. We FINALLY, after YEARS, were able to make the switch to all wet food.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jazzmin_Flower View Post
<snip>What if you buy every brand of chicken cat cans and try them on her until she chooses one? Baby food is my best veterinarian's choice for cats recovering from illnesses and I have seen the fancy cats at Fancy Cat Shows eating this between presentations to the judges. You might try every brand of chicken baby foods also and see if she chooses one.... <snip>
While the suggestion to try different cat foods is a good one (if she won't eat the very small amount of whatever food you initially try adding to her chicken & cereal, keep trying others!), unless Jazzmin means trying chicken kitten food (as opposed to chicken baby food), I would like to point out that human baby food does not have the necessary nutrition for a cat, and is no better than what the cat is already eating.

Just an FYI for Baby Blue. Cats do have very specific nutritional requirements One VERY important one is that they need taurine, an amino acid. Humans and other mammals can synthesize taurine from the building blocks of other amino acids, but cats cannot. It must be obtained from their food. The lack of taurine can cause them to become blind (among other problems. It is also required for proper digestion of fats). Another important nutritional issue with cats is that they cannot turn beta carotene (like from carrots) into Vitamin A, like humans and most other mammals can. They require a direct source of vitamin A. So if you look at the ingredients of cat food, you'll see taurine and vitamin A listed as a supplement in all of them.

Here's an article that you may find helpful: Cat Food: Feeding FAQs

I'm so glad you'll be switching your kitty to cat food, and if you have more questions along the way, please ask!!!!

Good luck!
post #7 of 10
Another transition trick is to sprinkle the canned food you want your kitty to eat with 100% meat freeze-dried treats. "Stella and Chewy's" makes several varieties, as does "Whole Life".

I've been using Whole Life's freeze-dried chicken as a food incentive for years now and it has never once failed to get the recalcitrant cat eating.

And I second everything LDG mentioned, especially going canned (and NOT kibble).

Good luck!
post #8 of 10
Once a week, Mimosa, the cat I mentioned in my previous post, eats Gerber Chicken baby food jar with Barley Cat greens mixed in, and Goldfish snacks on top in a little heart shaped bowl for breakfast. My favorite veterinarian of over 30 years (who just took my Spooky to his his geriatric kitty makeover) told me to do this for Mimosa as she always had a minor digestive difficulty of dark, hard poops. It keeps her very smoothe and regular and her poops come out just right now.

Yes, try all canned kitten foods also of chicken flavor also. You might mix in tidbits of boiled white chicken meat into the canned foods and/or the baby food.

Is it possible your cat has a small health problem?
post #9 of 10
Sounds like a wonderful treat for Mimosa. But it's not cat food, nor nutritionally complete, which is where the o.p. is trying to get to with her kitty.
post #10 of 10
Thread Starter 
I really appreciate everyone's response to my cats eating problem. Thank you all so much.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Cat Nutrition
TheCatSite.com › Forums › Our Feline Companions › Cat Nutrition › My cat won't eat cat food