Is canned tuna good for cats? - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-27-2006, 12:00 AM Thread Starter
Kitten
 
ying's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Bangkok, Thailand
Posts: 20
Is canned tuna good for cats?

Hi, our cat has always been a finicky eater but in the last 10 days, she has become almost impossible. We fed her some tuna chunks in spring water, the kind that we humans eat also and she enjoyed it so much.

So, we got her a can of tuna for cats but she didn't like it that much. Is it ok to continue giving her tuna chunks that we humans consume?

Is the lack of appetite something to worry about?
ying is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-27-2006, 12:05 AM
Cat Addict
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Peterborough, Ontario
Posts: 2,088
Send a message via MSN to vanillasugar
No, canned tuna is not good for cats. Not only is it not nutritionally balanced, but it is very high in certain things (can't remember off the top of my head), which is why we also should limit the amount of tuna we eat in a week. Also, feeding tuna on a regular basis is likley to cause a cat to turn their nose up at normal food because it has such a strong smell and flavour. They become "desensitized" almost, to regular foods.

<--Julia
vanillasugar is offline  
post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-27-2006, 12:22 AM Thread Starter
Kitten
 
ying's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Bangkok, Thailand
Posts: 20
Hi, thanks for the quick responses.

Our problem is how do we convert her to normal foods now that she's discovered tuna. We've stopped tuna for about a week now and she's still refusing to go back to normal cat food. We've tried Iams, Nutro and a thai brand of wet food. sigh.

Sheng Mei, the selection of cat food in Thailand is pathetic. I'm certain I haven't seen that brand you recommended.
ying is offline  
post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-27-2006, 01:23 AM
Senior Cat
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 707
Be persistent. Because the truth about tuna, especially the kind for human consumption(and they shouldn't even eat cat food tuna exclusively either) is that it's empty calories. Cats rely very highly on their sense of smell to be attracted to their food. They actually have a relatively poor sense of taste compared to people. Tuna is very smelly and often the stuff that smells most offensive to people, cats love. Tuna fish doesn't even have the nutrients that cats need, can cause vitamin E deficiency leading to yellow fat disease, and while it is high in protein, that is not enough. Cats need a lot of vitamins and minerals in their diet and they need those in the right ratios and proportions. They especially need taurine for their heart and their vision. Without taurine they will go blind and eventually die of heart failure. Tuna fish for human consumption is very low in taurine. There is also much concern about mercury levels in tuna that can be harmful to both cats and people if too much of it is eaten. Tuna can be fed to cats occasionally as a treat as long as they don't become addicted to it to the point where they don't eat anything else. Unfortunately your cat is a tuna junkie. You will need to take her to the vet if she continues to starve herself. In the meantime here are a few things you can do.

To get her on cat food, try buying fishy cat foods that are formulated to be nutritionally complete, containing all vitamins, minerals and taurine that the cat needs. One food to try for cats that are really finicky and stubborn is Fancy Feast. And while there are people here who will say that Fancy Feast is not the highest quality food you can feed, Fancy feast which is formulated to be nutritionally complete is better than tuna. And plenty of cats have lived long on this type of junk food anyway. In fact often when a cat has a reduced appetite a vet will ask, "Have you tried Fancy Feast?" If you don't have Fancy Feast in Thailand, then try Friskies, 9 lives, whatever it takes to get her eating. Once she is eating those you can try buying cat food cans that contain some fish but also contain other ingredients such as chicken, turkey, beef or lamb. You may not be able to get your cat completely off fish but the important thing is to get her to eat cat food. Has your kitty been eating anything at all besides tuna? For example, dry cat food? Not that cats need dry cat food, canned food is actually better for them, but dry cat food, even the fish flavored dry cat foods are better for your cat than tuna fish simply because the vitamins and minerals and taurine are in there.

Most importantly don't let your cat go more than 48 hours without eating. If this happens, take her to to the vet. She may be sick.
moggiegirl is offline  
post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-27-2006, 02:21 AM Thread Starter
Kitten
 
ying's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Bangkok, Thailand
Posts: 20
Thanks for your advice moggiegirl.

Yes, we give her one meal (wet) in the morning and Iams kitten (dry) or Nutro (dry) when we leave for work. On weekends and bath days, she may get treats. We try to vary her choices so she doesn't get bored.

Strange thing is, she turns up her nose at cat tuna/sardines! Just this morning, we were at our wits ends. Decided to open a can of cat tuna/sardines with aspic. Almost seemed too smelly for her. By the way, what is aspic? The packaging on the can is mostly in Thai but the english words say "Tuna and sardines with Aspic".

Here's another question: Can animals tell the difference between fresh and stale dry foods? My husband thinks the reason she's not eating the Iams kitten dry is because we kept it in its resealable packaging which may not have kept the food fresh enough.

Oh, and she likes Ben & Jerry's ice-cream - always on the lookout for us when we eat. I thought I read somewhere an article that said cats couldn't taste sweet, sugary foods. Here's one with a sweet tooth.
ying is offline  
post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-27-2006, 02:39 AM
Tom Cat
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 558
She probably likes the ice cream because of it's milk content, which is bad for many cats because they are lactose intolerant. I would try mixing tuna with her dry or wet food.. then gradually adding more cat food in it so she will associate the two.
badet is offline  
post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-27-2006, 12:56 PM
Senior Cat
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 707
You can definitely mix the tuna with her wet cat food to slowly transition her to eating canned cat food. But I wouldn't mix it with the dry food because it's not good to get dry food wet. When dry food gets wet bacteria will grow so I would feed the wet and dry separately. Glad to hear your cat does eat some cat food, the dry food. That means she's not malnourished.

Yes, they can tell if food is getting stale. Their noses can detect it. Unlike dogs who are scavengers, the cat is a hunter with an instinct to eat fresh food. And when dry food sits in storage for long periods of time it tends to lose some of it's nutrients. Although large bags are economical for those with multiple cats I like to buy the small bags more frequently so I'm using only as much as my cats will eat in a month and that keeps the food fresh and up to date. Also the bag of cat food should have an expiration date on it but once you open it it's best to use it up. You can keep a bag of dry food for about 3-6 months but I wouldn't keep it longer than 3 months and 2 months or less is better.
I think your kitty is just finicky. Maybe she likes the Nutro better than the Iams. Some cats don't like Iams. Can you get the Nutro kitten food in Thailand?
moggiegirl is offline  
post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-27-2006, 07:17 PM
Tom Cat
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: up North USA
Posts: 385
I am in agreement, tuna is not good and people have made good suggestions. Another thing to try, I don't think anyone mentioned it, is to warm up the cat food you are transitioning your cat to. That will make the smell more intense. It's worth a try. Much luck to you!

Mom to Marcellus, Wallace, Lewis, Winston and Corky, our dog.
ihave4kitties is offline  
post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-30-2006, 05:35 AM Thread Starter
Kitten
 
ying's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Bangkok, Thailand
Posts: 20
Hi everyone,

I mixed the Iams and Nutro dry foods and guess what, she picked out all the Iams kibbles first. That means, the Iams is not stale - she's just finicky. Iams smelled stronger than Nutro, so you are right abt cats going for stronger smelling foods.

I think we're just going to have to persist with this 'lil tuna junkie until she forgets how wonderful tuna is.

Oh yes, we can get Nutro in Thailand. Still looking for Fancy Feast...

Thank ya all. Hope you had a great weekend!
ying is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in









Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome