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Daily food rotation...possible?

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
Food for thought....

This thread is not about flavor, or variety for my cats....
it is about their health.

I have concerns that no one company's wet or dry cat foods, whether they are a top quality brand or even a prescription food can fulfill, long term, nutritional needs of my cats.
HCM (heart failure), kidney and many other health issues may be related to a subtle form of malnutrition caused from feeding just one brand of food...no matter how great.
A raw diet, although ideal, is not a option for me.

Assuming that I could find 3 brands of food that agree with my kitties, (that is a big assumption )
I have been thinking that I might attempt to rotate my cats wet & dry food every day....using 3 different brands & flavors.
A 3 day cycle.
Another option is rotate only the wet brands daily.

I have been told that enzymes in our kitties tummies become specific to the foods they are used to eating and that is why we must introduce a new food slowly.
Different enzymes need to develop that can digest the new food.

The reason I would like to rotate daily is so that I do not have to go though the slow new food introductions and all of the problems that goes with that, every time I try a new food.

If enzymes are the issue...
do you think that a cat can produce enzymes that could digest that many different kinds of food?
Most companies recommend that we rotate between their foods, if at all.

Any thoughts about this even being possible?
If enzymes are not the reason we must introduce a food slowly to avoid tummy upsets ...
do you know why their tummies are sensitive to a food?

If you have any thoughts about his ....
please discuss.
post #2 of 21
I would recommend that Sadie and Dexter begin taking Prozyme and Acidophilus with each meal, Lei.
post #3 of 21
I know several people mix two or three different dry foods at once, and feed a rotation of wet foods. I myself fed a healthy rotation of wet foods when I fed commercial foods, and feel variety really is the healthiest way to go.

Digestive enzymes are always a great thing to add to help if kitties are having trouble with variety.
post #4 of 21
I know of several people who rotate wet foods. They don't do it for the reasons you mentioned though, they believe their cats are less likely to become finicky eaters. The only person I have heard of with dry food was a breeder who also mixed I believe four different types for her kittens. She did it so the people that took one of her kittens then had a choice of four brands, that way they probably had easy access to at least one of them.
post #5 of 21
I feed a rotation of wet foods, one dry food, and one prepared raw food.
I like my bases covered.

The wet food selections took me trying 26 different brands and flavors and requiring a spreadsheet to keep track of which cat would eat which food, but I ended up with five high quality foods that all three cats will eat.
post #6 of 21
Lei, I think a lot of people are overcautious. Jamie craves variety, and I do a lot of rotating. I use three different brands of dry food (breakfast) every week, and use one particular brand for about three months before "suspending" it for a while, and replacing it with an "approved" brand. As for wet food (dinner), I use 6 or 7 different brands, and I don't know how many different flavors. Jamie and my two "half-cats", ZsaZsa and Miezi, really enjoy the variety, and haven't reacted with any kind of stomach upset whatsoever. I do try to stick to premium or ultra-premium brands with few, if any, by-products.
post #7 of 21
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by Cearbhaill
The wet food selections took me trying 26 different brands and flavors and requiring a spreadsheet to keep track of which cat would eat which food, but I ended up with five high quality foods that all three cats will eat.
26 different brands and a spreadsheet.
But you did it.

I like the idea of beginning with Prozyme and Acidophilus Stephanie.
I researched Prozyme and a small pet supply store in my area carries it.
Can you recommend an acidophilus that I might use longer than a few days?

Thanks for your feedback everyone.
Keep it coming....
post #8 of 21
I rotate through several flavors of Natural Balance canned. It keeps them eating it. For a while, I was trying to get rid of some Precise canned that I had bought when Spot was still alive (he liked it, so I bought a case--two cans into the case he refused to eat any more of it). After a few weeks, both Willow and Odo stopped eating much of it. So far, rotating the different flavors of Natural Balance has kept them happy, and because the formulations are similar enough (though they are made with different protein sources), it doesn't seem to upset their stomachs.
post #9 of 21
I get my girls' acidophilus from a healthfood store in the area, Lei. It's important that it remain refrigerated.
post #10 of 21
I mix three to four different dry foods for my crew.
I've used 2 or 3 Nutro Natural types, Chicken Soup, Innova, Royal Canin another brand I can't remember and am trying some EVO now with plans to add Serengeti this next payday.
I buy the food in 15 to 16 lb. bags and mix them together in large cat food pitchers and shake 'em up.
None of these have caused any tummy upsets with my gang.
post #11 of 21
This may have been explained to me before but I didn't write it down...

What is the purpose or benefit of give your cats prozyme and acidophilus? What do they do?

For food, I rotate between Chicken Soup for the Cat Lovers Soul, Premium Edge, Nutro and Authority. Sometimes two are mixed completely together, sometimes a different brand is jsut places in their feeder and it gradually changes. That is probably why me cats rarely ever get sick from the change. Occaitonally I will see a tiny spot of puke but I think it is more that my one cat swallowed her food whole and eats really fast more then anything esle.
post #12 of 21
Wet I rotate all the time... Evan the raw I rotate so they get everything... Dry depends on there tummies ... slow and steady is best
post #13 of 21
In the past I have always used a variety of dry food. Started out on one brand, introduced another and sometimes added a third. Then used those 3 as a daily mix. I know many people who do this with their cats. The only problem that may arise is if your cat gets a food allergy and your trying to figure out which food is causing it.

For wet, Nakita can't tolerate if I rotate between brands but I can rotate flavours of the same brand. Each cat is different and you will have to experiment to see what works.
post #14 of 21
I rotate canned food (not every day, but every 4 days--1/4 can a day, etc). I am planning on rotating dry food every bag or so after my cat is an adult, but I am going to stick with one while he is growing. When I look for canned foods to rotate, I just get whatever is decently low in grain (or no grain). I usually get EVO, Felidae and Cal. natural herring & sweet potato (he looooves that!).
post #15 of 21
I feed Ginger a mix of dry that I keep stored in in a big popcorn tin that I got at Xmas last year. Currently included in the mix are: Nutro Indoor Adult, Nutromax Indoor Adult Hairball Formula, Royal Canin Adult Hairball Formula and some Science Diet Adult and Hairball Formula sample packs that I got for free. Also in the mix but slowly decreasing in volume as more adult is added to the mix are kitten dry foods: Nutro, IAMS & Science Diet.

She has never gotten ill from eating her dry mix "salad," and she eats only a little at a time. I free-feed her the dry so she can eat at her leisure, and as she is a wiry little thing (at or just under 9 pounds seems to be her settled upon adult weight at 13 months old) I'm not worried at this point about obesity.

I rotate the only two wet foods she'll eat at this time: Tuna & Shrimp Meow Mix or Fancy Feast. I tried all the higher quality, and she was raised on Nutro kitten pouches, but after a lot of expense and trial & error, we've settled on these two for the wet. At least she's eating wet food! And she drinks a minimum of 6-8 ounces of water a day, so far, so good!

I just don't see the point of giving her the same food every single day. Boring!!!
post #16 of 21
This has been a recent excercise for me. We had to switch from 100% dry to 100% wet and fast. His health has been the only concern. I now rotate only commercial canned foods, from of about 10-15 which he likes. In all he tried around 60. He did not like it at all at the beginning but there was no choice for him. What helped is that he was prescribed a food stimulant and that he started eating very, very little at a time (after being on IV in the hospital - long story). I change the now favorite foods daily and do not mix them. If he does not much eat one I go back to the one he last did, and so on. It was a bit hard to come to this. Whatever he once liked, he did not necessarily liked a few days later. So, it is an ongoing process. As I select and get more foods, I have him try them, but I want to stick with his top 14. In the end, he turned more open to new foods, he actually seem to prefer variety, he adores been fed by spoon, he is a lot more spoiled and, I think, he possibly has a more nourtishing diet.
post #17 of 21
Thought you may want to check this out, Lei!
post #18 of 21
Thread Starter 
Thanks for that link Stephanie...

When I was on the hunt for Prozyme and probiotics yesterday...
I discovered a store near me that carries the Eagle Pack Holistic Transition.
I ended up getting 2 separate solutions.
Prozyme and Pet Dophlius.
It certainly would be more convenient to have them both in one bottle.

Last night & this morning Dexter & Sadie enjoyed their Innova (warmed in the microwave) with an overlay of FiletMeow, Prozyme, Pet Dophlius and .....
Kitty Kaviar tucked into their food.
They ate it all at both meals.
No tummy upset so far.

After a few weeks of this....
I will begin reducing the amount of Meow Mix...

For the first time...
I am enjoying the challenge of feeding my kitties a better diet.

I did discover one thing.....
I don't have any measuring spoons.
post #19 of 21
This is wonderful, Lei! You're such a super Mommy!

That's funny you would say that about needing measuring spoons. When Sierra began getting measured quantities of supplements such as this, I had to go out and buy a set of spoons, too!
post #20 of 21
Originally Posted by dawnofsierra
Thought you may want to check this out, Lei!
OMG! I think I'm a moron! I've been using that with Damita & Chico's food for months now to help with loose stools...it never occured to me what it was! Lei, I use the Holistic Solution(I may look into the Holisitc Transition now, too!). It really works well.

How did you not have any measuring spoons? We've got 3 sets:one for people, one for dogs, & one for cats. Good luck with the food rotation & hopefully there won't be any tummy upsets. Just watch, though...about time you get things settled Nutro will get their food issues fixed.
post #21 of 21
Thread Starter 
Nutro will fix their pouch problems but I might be afraid to put my cats back on them.
They become fixated easily & they love the Nutro's pouches.

I might sneak a pouch in occasionally but I am still going to try to rotate at least their wet food.

One concern that I have about Eagle Pack is that the bacteria in their formula is not refrigerated.

If you find out why that is OK, please let us know and be sure to post about how you like their Holistic Transition.
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