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Old 12-27-2010, 09:16 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question What type of food do you recommend?

Hello All,

I have a 7 month old female kitten who is very healthy and active. I am currently feeding her Blue Buffalo all flavors of the Spa select canned and the Dry kitten kibble which is chicken. Her diet is about 3/4 dry and 1/4th wet because that is all I can afford to feed with the Blue Buffalo. I do add warm water to make a luke warm chunky stew to the canned hoping it will take care of the water intake issue.

My question is, her poop is often soft and not formed but never totally watery, but definetly diarrhea like....she has regular formed stools about every 4th time and seems to urinate a normal amount. She is active and playful and aside from some dry skin from the winter air (I live in Ohio) her skin and fur are in great shape. I have read about some cats not tolerating Blue Buffalo, and am wondering if that is what is going on.

What other brands are out there that are similarly priced to Blue Buffalo and also as healthy or healthier? I have come across Before Grain and it seems good and have even fed her a can of the chicken and quail which she ate but did not seem to like as well as the Blue Buffalo flavors...Thanks so much for you help. Oh and a last note, she is a totally indoor cat, except for a few adventures on a harness in the snow (which she loves!)
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Old 12-28-2010, 01:16 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I don't think the brand is so important as it's the ingredients is what you want to look at, specifically the first 5 listed.

Stay away from-

1. Any corn ingredients (if you "Google" Corn Gluten Meal for instance you'll find it's main agricultural use is organic weed killer).

2. Unnamed by-products, (poultry or meat by-product instead of chicken or beef by product).

3. Wheat

4. Soy

5. Brewers Rice (or Brewers anything)

6. BHA, BHT, and ethoxyquin, (preservatives

Look for -

A named meat source, (e.g. beef, duck, lamb, turkey etc) instead of unnamed meat source, (poultry, meat)

In the case of dry food - a named meat source "meal", (e.g. chicken meal, beef meal, duck meal) instead of just "chicken", "beef", "duck" (This is explained in the link I will give you below....)

I would suggest more canned than dry if possible as well if not get rid of dry altogether but that is ultimately your choice. I feed....fed...my cat a prey model raw diet and wouldn't give any plant based food to her...except the occasional cat(oak) grass she loved and catnip of course!

This site by Lisa Pierson DVM completely changed my ideas on cat nutrition around, I highly recommend it! It is very thorough and highly informative!

Feeding Your Cat: Know the Basics of Feline Nutrition :: healthy cat diet, making cat food, litter box, cat food, cat nutrition, cat urinary tract health

And of course check out the old posts on this Health & Nutrition thread as well as sub threads - home recipes and raw feeding...

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Old 12-28-2010, 08:13 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Your kitten could have a grain intolerance. My kitten had the exact symptoms you're describing. She was on the dry Blue Buffalo kitten formula. I've since switched her to a grain-free diet (and changed it so her diet is more wet than dry) and her stool issues improved dramatically.

Blue Buffalo makes a grain-free canned and dry food (their Wilderness line) but it is fairly expensive, so it may not be ideal if cost is a concern. I have my cats on a rotation of several different brands and flavors of wet and feed the Blue Buffalo Wilderness wet sparringly since it's the most expensive of all of them.

Their diet mostly consists of different flavors of canned Wellness (check labels, some flavors do contain grain, but I know Turkey, Chicken, Turkey and Salmon, and Chicken and Herring do not) as well as Merrick Before Grain (mine get Quail & Chicken, Turkey, and Chicken flavors) and Merric Gourmet Entrees (they dislike most of these but like the Cowboy Cookout flavor, again check labels as some flavors of this line do contain grain). Their dry portion of their diet is Wellness CORE which is a completely grain-free dry food that seems to be more cost-savvy than Blue, while still being highly recommended and containing quality ingredients.

Here's a spreadsheet I made when researching foods that you may find helpful: https://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?...thkey=CJvi09MO
This is a list of grain-free food options, dry and wet, with nutritional info (where I could find specific percentages, as the label usually only lists min/max values). It also lists price comparisons at PetCo vs. Petsmart (slots are left blank if the store doesn't carry it), all named protein sources, and I color-coded ingredients that are known common allergens so I'm not feeding too much of one of them on a daily basis, since overexposure to certain proteins can cause cats to develop an allergy.
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Old 12-29-2010, 02:41 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Thanks so much! And Saitenyo your spreedsheet is very impressivel! It will definetly be helpful! I will see what it does to her diet to eliminate grain completely as soon as this last bag of dry food is used up!

The thing that is weird is the shelter she came from said they fed all of there cats and dogs science diet and the petco where we adopted her from had changed her to blue buffalo when she got there so you would think she would have showed problems with the science diet at the shelter....maybe this is an aquired issue....
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Old 12-29-2010, 02:45 PM   #5 (permalink)
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No problem! Spreadsheets help me keep things organized!

And hmm, you sure she didn't have any problems with soft stool at the shelter? They didn't tell me Athena was having any stool and gas issues, I only knew it was happening with her before we brought her home because she happened to make a nice little *poot* right there when I was filling out her adoption paperwork.

It is also possible she could be sensitive to some other ingredient in that particular BB line of food. Either way, switching her food (gradually of course, to avoid exacerbating the problem) will let you know for sure!
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Old 12-29-2010, 04:15 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I agree. Try another brand, there may be something in BB that's not agreeing with her.
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Old 01-05-2011, 06:58 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Hey Katieb (and other feline-nutrition-obsessed folks like me),

I've been making a giant spreadsheet of many of the popular wet and dry foods out there over the past few months, based on info from all of the cat food websites and links that are always posted on this forum (catinfo.org, feline-nutrition.org, etc). I wanted to do this since Janet & Binky's chart doesn't include all of the brands or info I want, and I like working with numbers. I've mainly utilized the formulas on catinfo.org's site to calculate all of the missing numbers and percentages that the cat food brands leave to us to figure out.

On my spreadsheet I've included info such as:

whether its grain-free,
the guaranteed analysis (GA) numbers,
the GA numbers converted to a dry-matter basis,
goals as to what these converted numbers should be,
estimated carbohydrate content based on the GA (since NO brand tells you, even though this number is important !!)
estimated calories from carbs, fat, and protein based on the GA,
estimated calories per 100gs of that food,
and most importantly - the metabolizable energy profile:
- the percentage calories from carbs (keep it under 10%)
- the percentage calories from protein (keep it around or above 50%)
- the percentage calories from fat (keep it around or below 40%)

the wet food is on the first tab (click through tabs on lower-left hand side), the dry food is on the second tab, and the third tab includes info to remember when choosing a cat food as well as ingredients to avoid.

here it is: https://spreadsheets.google.com/pub?...en&output=html

I bet this is wayyy more info than you wanted, but our fur-babies deserve only the best, right?

Last edited by LucilleBluth; 01-05-2011 at 07:00 AM.
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Old 01-05-2011, 07:03 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Forgot to mention that the chart is sorted by (1) Grain Free?, and then by (2) % Protein on a Dry-Matter basis. I do this because I am only interested in grain-free foods with high protein, moderate fat, and low or no carbs. Good things are in green. Bad things are in red. Goals are at the top in blue. Good luck!! And to the seasoned pros, please feel free to correct any mistakes I may have made on the chart.

Last edited by LucilleBluth; 01-05-2011 at 07:06 AM.
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Old 01-05-2011, 11:35 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Thanks so much as well Lucille! I am new to cats, Georgia is my first but I am trying to learn all I can as fast as possible. Usually I research pets before I purchase, but she was not a planned rescue! My fiance and I fell in love with her at the local petco and just couldnt stand to leave her there!

I also wanted to give an update...We immediately stopped feeding her whiskas cat treats (which have wheat and corn in them) I was only feeding her 2 small 2 cal treats a day because she refused to eat the wellness and another good brand of treats and the shelter sent some home with us and I knew she liked them. Within 24 hours her poop turned to normal and ever since has been normal! I think even just that small bit of corn and/or wheat was the issue! So as for treats I cooked up plain chicken and broke it into small pieces and froze. She gets 2 pieces/day and I decided my cat food budget could budge a bit so she is on the slow progression to a half wet half dry diet! I am going to keep her on blue buffalo unless things change for the worse! I am so happy it was that easy!
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Old 01-06-2011, 02:06 AM   #10 (permalink)
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aww so glad it was such an easy fix! my baby girl has had loose poops ever since I got her, poor girl, so that is why I am so interested in finding the right food for her. I am about to switch her from Wellness CORE cans to Tiki Cat and Weruva because I think that the % Cal from Fat on Wellness CORE is a bit too high. We'll see!
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