Considering Switching to Wet Food - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-26-2015, 02:50 PM Thread Starter
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Considering Switching to Wet Food

I've been reading a bunch, and I'm now considering switching my kitty to wet food. However, I'm not sure what wet food is good, and how to go about feeding it to her. (How much, how often, etc.) I've always been a free feeder of dry food, so wet food is kind of a whole new thing to me, I've only fed it on occasion as a treat, and I'd be worried she's not getting enough to eat.
Teach me the ways of scheduled feeding and wet food! Please.(:

Last edited by Fraido; 08-26-2015 at 02:50 PM.
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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-26-2015, 03:28 PM
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I would switch from free feeding to scheduled as a first step. I feed 3x a day. Early in the AM while I get ready for work, when I get home from work, and shortly before bedtime (and MowMow gets a 4th meal of raw beef JUST before I go to bed to up his calorie intake). Two meals per day is usually just fine. I enjoy that third meal because once they eat, they groom then go to bed and are quiet for the night.

Once they are accustomed to scheduled feedings you can start switching them to wet.

I would probably do it one meal at a time... a few weeks later switch the second meal to wet.... another few weeks switch the last meal.

I feed a grain free canned diet to my 3 boys. I have a bunch that I cycle through so they don't eat the same thing for more than a month at a time (and I feed two kinds each month).

Hound & Gato
Wild Calling
Evangers (when money is tight, but make sure the label says it's complete. Some of their food is NOT complete and needs to be fed with something else)
Dave's
Red Barn
Nature's Variety
Canidae
Merrick (this has to be watched, it was just sold to Nestle so the sourcing may become questionable at some point)
Nature's Logic
Addicton (If they'll eat it, my boys won't eat the raw or the canned)
Ziwipeak
Fromm

Most mom and pop stores will offer these by the can to test (I test for 3 or 4 days... just 'cause mine will eat it once doesn't mean they'll eat something the 3rd or 4th time it's offered). It stinks to buy a whole case and find out on day 4 they now hate it and would rather starve to death than eat it.

Mom and Pop stores will also usually offer by the case discounts once you find some the cats really love. My local store let's you mix and match a case so if they have tons of grain free brands you could get a case of mixed cans to try lots out at once with the case discount.

Last edited by MowMow; 08-26-2015 at 03:31 PM.
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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-26-2015, 03:44 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you very much, that is quite helpful! How long can the canned wet foods be stored for? Having to buy them more frequently is a concern I have, does feeding wet food cost more than feeding dry?

Also, what is a good serving size for a ~6.5lbs, lazy cat?

Last edited by Fraido; 08-26-2015 at 03:47 PM.
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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-26-2015, 03:53 PM
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It depends on the cat. Neelix is about 8lbs now and eats about 210 calories a day. He's veyr active, but also quite fat.. I should lower his calories but I feel so bad for him.

Book eats about 260 calories per day, he's about 10.5 lbs and is at a perfect weight.

MowMow is older with health issues so he eats between 300 and 340 calories per day. Basically as much as I can convince him to swallow.

Calories will depend on the brand/variety of the food.

All cans have an expiration date on the bottom. So far it seems to be a few years. Just check the cans to be sure the date is far enough out to be suitable for your needs.
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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-26-2015, 04:10 PM
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I had heard 20-25 calories/day per pound of cat. My two 8-lb girls should be getting at least 160 calories by that measure. Right now they share 270 calories (about 1.5 5.5-oz cans) of wet food a day + 50 calories of dry food a day (1/16 cup per cat lol), so they are right about at the low end of the guideline. And Nala is very active.

Jeff & Nala
Simon and Penny, waiting patiently at the Bridge
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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-27-2015, 09:58 AM Thread Starter
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Alright, awesome. Thank guys.(:
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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-29-2015, 01:17 AM
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Fraido, you should be the forum poster child. It would be great if every 17-year-old had your attitude. You want to learn everything you can so that Nugget (and any future kitties!) has the best, healthiest life possible. You aren't afraid to ask questions or to ask for suggestions or advice, and most important, you are open to listening to others and, in fact, you have followed the advice you've gotten from some of our very experienced members.

So Nugget's now been spayed - thanks to your saving up the money from your summer job! - and she's going to get a healthier diet. Really, you should be proud of yourself; you've done a terrific job, and Nugget's really benefiting from having you as her human.

Wet food will cost more money than dry. If it's not in your budget to switch over entirely, just try to feed as much wet as you can. If it costs a bit more now, in the long run, it could end up preventing a much bigger expense later, in the form of potential medical issues.
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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-29-2015, 01:55 AM
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Fraido, I think it is so awesome that you're doing all you can to improve Nugget's life, like Spirite said!

Wet can be more expensive. If you're on a budget, it's important to remember that any wet food is better than dry since it is more species appropriate since it has high protein, lower carbs, and the proper amount of hydration within the diet. That means even Friskies and Fancy Feast are better than feeding a strictly dry diet... so don't worry about obsessing over high-end wet foods if you can't afford them. A gem of the grocery store is the Fancy Feast "Classic" varieties, which are grain-free, wheat-gluten free, and low in carbs. A great resource to skim through on why any wet food is better than dry, the benefits of wet food, etc. is 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.

I agree with MowMow - what I would do first is switch to scheduled, measured feedings. I would probably do dry in the morning, and dry in the evening (or however you decide to do it) with wet as a meal during the day. Slowly transition to less dry, and more wet. I actually feed my girls four times a day - once in the morning, late morning/early afternoon, evening, and right before bed. They're still pretty young and hyper and seem to prefer having their food in smaller quantities throughout the day.

Like Spirite said - if you can't entirely switch over, even just adding wet food as a meal a day will help Nugget and will be a big step forward!
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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-29-2015, 02:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fraido View Post
Thank you very much, that is quite helpful! How long can the canned wet foods be stored for? Having to buy them more frequently is a concern I have, does feeding wet food cost more than feeding dry?

Also, what is a good serving size for a ~6.5lbs, lazy cat?
Canned food generally lasts a few years. If buying them frequently is a concern, you can buy big cases of it on websites like Chewy.com so that they're just easily delivered to your door! Or, if you have picky cats like mine, you can go to the store once a week and pick out a variety of flavors and brands
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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-29-2015, 02:17 AM
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Fraido, good for you making a switch to improve your kitty's health! I also made a somewhat recent switch to canned food for my 3 year old kitty, and he's doing much better on canned than dry.

Sounds like you've got plenty of good feedback for serving size. My only two cents for you is this:
Initially, I was feeding Onyx different flavors of canned food, though they were the same brand. My vet cautioned me against doing that and told me it is gentler on the cat's digestive system to stick to one flavor. My guy eats Nature's Variety Instinct Rabbit Formula 2x a day, and he's doing very well on it. More energy, lost weight (he was chubby), more playful. I think you'll notice some positive changes as well!!
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