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Old 11-19-2012, 11:03 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default New Cat Mom- Need Advice on Litter and Food

Hello everyone,

I am excited to find this forum. I am a new cat mom, I just adopted Katty a week ago from my vet's office. The vet believes that she is 2-3 years old and has been very loving to our family. I am writing for several different reasons, I have never had a cat before and am seeking advice.

1. I live in a townhouse with 1 1/2 baths. Currently her litter box is on the first floor by the front door. She has used her litter box from the very beginning but I am wondering what will help with the smell. I every day and have totally cleaned it out yesterday. I am using Armour Hammer litter and am also using baking soda to sprinkle on top. She doesn't seem to mind the litter or the baking soda smell. However, I can still smell the litter box from time to time. Any thoughts or solutions?

2. When I first brought Katty home she was eating Science Diet crunchy food only. However, when I went to Petco to buy supplies there was a cat rescue lady there who told Science Diet was not a good food and further more cats should not eat only dry food. She suggested that I feed her Friskies canned and dry. I told her that Katty is about 6 -8 pounds and she told me to feed her 1 can and 1/4 cup of dry food a day. So this sort of runs into the 3rd question:

3. I have been following the feeding habits above and today Katty seems listless and has not had a bowel movement since Friday. Do you think this is due to the food. Perhaps the food is not agreeing with her??? Although I do not have a ton of money to spend on food, I want her to be healthy and will try to afford the best I can. Can anyone provide advice?

Thank you,

Kattys Mom,
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Old 11-19-2012, 12:59 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Why Cats Need Canned Food | Little Big Cat

Selecting a Good Commercial Pet Food | Little Big Cat

10 Reasons Why Dry Food Is Bad for Cats & Dogs | Little Big Cat

A little light reading to help you find your way thru the maze of feeding a cat! I had to laugh when the woman suggested Friskies. Its crap food too. No better than Science diet. There are many premium brands on the market that you can afford.

There is a saying. Either pay for good food or pay vet bills.

Congrats on your new addition. Kudo for coming on CF to find what is best for your new family member.

As far as litter goes. Arm and Hammer will need to be changed often or it gets a funky smell. Esp in an enclosed bathroom. There may be differing opinion on this but the cheaper the litter and more dusty it is, the quicker it goes to smelling funky.

I like Precious Cat cat litter or Worlds Best. But they are pricey. Depending on my budget is what I get for litter. But my litter boxes are outside on a screened in porch so its not such an issue. Other members here might have some suggestions too on food and litter.
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Old 11-19-2012, 01:57 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Hi, Mitt and Tess,

Thank you for the reply and great advice. Can you please tell me what you feed your cat and do you recommend an automatic litter cleaner?

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Old 11-19-2012, 02:07 PM   #4 (permalink)
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World's Best Multi-Cat is what I use for litter. It is expensive but if you look around, you can get coupons and it's pretty cheap.

I would not recommend Friskies or Science Diet. There are many good brands of wet food such as EVO 95%, Wellness CORE (or regular grain-free), Nature's Variety Instinct, Merrick Before Grain. I'm sure others can provide more brands. If you're going to feed dry food too, I would suggest Petcurean Go! Fit + Free or Orijen Cat & Kitten. If those aren't available, Wellness CORE has some decent dry food. However, I would suggest you stick with wet only. It is better for your cat.

I don't see the point of an automatic litter cleaner. It's always good to know what your cat is doing in the litter box.
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Old 11-19-2012, 02:18 PM   #5 (permalink)
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One of my friends had an automatic litter cleaner. It was always jamming. Plus it is noisy when they used the litter box which scared some of the cats and they didn't want to use it! You have to clean out the reservoir that holds the waste so it doesn't save much time. Scott is right. You need to keep track of your cats litter box habits and what is going on in their system.
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Old 11-19-2012, 02:23 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Hi Kattysmom,

Our one and only litterbox for Murphy is right near the front door too. I just make sure to scoop twice a day, and I don't think the smell is too bad. I decided that it was more important to have the litterbox in a place that's convenient to me, since I'll be scooping twice a day, than worry about what a visitor might think or smell!

I got an automatic litterbox and ended up giving it away. All it does is sweep the clumps into a separate compartment, and believe me, cleaning the separate compartment is no picnic either. The whole concept doesn't even make sense to me. In addition to scaring your cats (and the litterbox is the last thing you want them scared of), I would much rather just scoop and get rid of stuff than save it for later!
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Old 11-19-2012, 03:22 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Yep changing the kitty litter more often will help and changin her food will also help too. There are many good food barnds in Petco and Petsmart and also kitten litter.
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Old 11-19-2012, 03:25 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I don't change Tina's litter often. Maybe once every few months. I just scoop it daily and add more litter once a week or so to maintain 3 inches. There is no odor. As stated above, I use World's Best Multi-Cat (red bag).
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Old 11-19-2012, 03:27 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I know I have six cats but I could never manage with it being every few months even though I use a good litter (I don't think the one you mention is available over here anyway). I'm impressed.
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Old 11-19-2012, 03:29 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Thank you for all of the responses. Is Halo a good brand? I read the ingredients and compared it to the "how to read a label" article that was posted and it seemed like a good brand. If so, is there a brand just as good but maybe not so expensive?
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