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Old 01-01-2013, 06:20 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question Prescription food comparison for crystals

My almost 4 yo Zoe is having issues with bladder crystals again and the vet is suggesting that we put her back on a prescription diet. We tried her on Royal Canin (SO I think) canned when she had these issues a couple of years ago but she refuses to eat it. Any suggestions or experience with the other brands?

My vet is great and always suggests high quality canned food, so she's not one of the Science Diet pushers we all know and loathe. She's just concerned that this will continue to be a recurring issue. Both of my cats are fed Natural Balance and Wellness canned food with very little Natural Balance dry. Some days they get no dry and other days they split 1/4 cup between the two of them. Zoe rarely drinks water and the my other cat Cosmo does not do well on food with grains. Feeding raw is not currently an option...

Any advice, suggestions, reviews are appreciated!
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Old 01-01-2013, 06:22 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Have you been adding water to their wet food?
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Old 01-01-2013, 06:53 PM   #3 (permalink)
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So, cats on good quality canned can still get bladder crystal?
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Old 01-01-2013, 06:58 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Also, are the foods you're feeding her low in phosphorus?

Lisa Pierson, DVM has made a chart with the levels: http://www.catinfo.org/docs/Food%20C...%209-22-12.pdf
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Old 01-01-2013, 07:14 PM   #5 (permalink)
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She wasn't a big fan when I added water to her food. She mostly just ate a bite or two and walked away. Looks like the food I'm feeding isn't too bad where phosphorus is concerned, most are in the low-mid 200s.

I know the Rx diets aren't great, but I'm willing to try. Just not sure which varieties are better.
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Old 01-01-2013, 07:19 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I don't know that any of them are grain-free or free of by-products.

I wonder if giving her sub-q fluids would be any use.
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Old 01-01-2013, 07:23 PM   #7 (permalink)
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My cat Cheddar has had a urinary blockage twice now. The first time it happened, we put him on Royal Canin SO to get rid of the crystals. He liked the food but he seemed to have an allergic reaction to it (developed sores around his ears and face). I switched him to Hills C/D canned after that. He liked the C/D, and it did the job of getting rid of the crystals, but I am less than impressed with the food overall. He started shedding a lot and seemed to lose some muscle mass as well. After about 9 months on the C/D, I decided to try and switch him back to a high quality canned diet (EVO and Wellness mainly, with a few other brands for variety). I gave both cats a little bit of dry food once in a while too. Well, a few months later (this past fall), he blocked again. Now he's back on the C/D.

I have mixed feelings about feeding him the C/D. I am not happy with the ingredients or the inflated price tag, and I don't like how it makes him shed a lot as a result, but on the other hand, it does seem to keep the crystals at bay, and that is what is most important to me. I am hoping that eventually I can find a food with better ingredients that does not cause problems, but right now, switching is not worth the risk. If he blocks again, I could very well lose him.

I also mix in water with his food to help dilute his urine- usually as much extra water as food if not more. I also went from feeding two meals a day to 3 slightly smaller meals since feeding smaller more frequent meals is supposed to help prevent pH spikes.

Purina also has a prescription diet for crystals, but I haven't tried that one. I'm also curious to know what other foods people have tried and what they think of them, especially for those that have cats with chronic urinary issues.
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Old 01-01-2013, 07:30 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aniela26 View Post
She wasn't a big fan when I added water to her food. She mostly just ate a bite or two and walked away. Looks like the food I'm feeding isn't too bad where phosphorus is concerned, most are in the low-mid 200s.

I know the Rx diets aren't great, but I'm willing to try. Just not sure which varieties are better.
What percentage is that on a dry matter basis?

Are the rx diets you're considering dry or wet?
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Old 01-01-2013, 07:52 PM   #9 (permalink)
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It says 1.07-1.44% dry matter.

Really only looking for wet Rx diet, wondering what other people have had success with.
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Old 01-01-2013, 07:56 PM   #10 (permalink)
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You might want to go for under 1%.

Have you read this? Feline Urinary Tract Health: Cystitis, Urethral Obstruction, Urinary Tract Infection by Lisa A. Pierson, DVM :: cat urinary tract health

She has some tips on increasing water intake. She also mentions using Sub-Q fluids. That would significantly increase fluid intake. You might want to talk to your vet about that being an option maybe like every other day?
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