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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 09-02-2015, 04:54 AM Thread Starter
Tom Cat
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meal-plan for cats help

I have 3 known ferals and a possible fourth (not sure if he gets meals elsewhere as a latchkey cat), but I'm also not sure if it is limited to that many since I fill a big bowl of food in the morning and it is completely clean by the next morning. Even bits of kibble that spilled from the bowl are gone.

In the mornings I also find a water bowl (just one particular one out of three) gets tipped to where it is standing on it's side. Does this suggest there is a raccoon snacking at the feral snack bar?

The amount of dry food I'm going through is astonishing and it's not even cold yet! A 5 lb. bag of $16 quality food isn't lasting a full 7 days.

I need a way to go through less dry OR find a brand that is more affordable. Even though they are ferals I want them to have non-damaging food. No junk stuff, no fish etc. I don't mind processed meats but I TRY to stay grain free- though if my only option is to buy non grain-free I will do it if it means the cats will not have to starve for my next paycheck.

It is important to note that the ferals are given wet food whenever I see a cat out there in order to have it eaten before the yellow jackets get to it I'm putting out between 2-3 cans of wet sometimes more depending on how many of the cats show up.

So, I'm just perplexed at how much dry they are going through. I don't know what is normal because my indoor cats only eat wet.

Can anyone give me some advice about how much dry I am going through-is it a raccoon, night ferals I haven't seen, just mine building fat for winter?
And, of course what dry food is a good quality but much cheaper than what I currently use ($16/ 5 lb bag)?
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 09-02-2015, 08:04 AM
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A 5lb bag of dry food contains about 15 cups of food...give or take depending on the kibble size. A cat eating nothing else should eat about 3/8 to 1/2 cup per day. Given that it's being free fed, they may eat more. But let's go with 1/2 cup per day.

That means there are 30 meals in a 5lb bag. Divided by 4 should last 7.5 days. All of this can vary depending on whether they're hunting or the amount of wet food they get. But a bag lasting a week isn't so far off.

You can reduce your cost by buying larger bags...most foods come in 12-15 lb bags and the price per oz is less. The best bang for the buck is Taste of the Wild. There is some fish in it, but pretty far down the list. It does contain some pea and potato protein. But in general it's a decent food for the price. A 15 lb bag should go for about $30.

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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 09-02-2015, 07:01 PM
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I know canidae used to be a good value, not sure if it still is as it's been a long time since I've fed it.

Do you have a camera you can put out to check for raccoons? I wonder how else you'd be able to tell...Maybe put down something that will show their foot prints around the feeding area?
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