Baffled by cats reactions to high quality vs Rachel Ray - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
 
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-26-2018, 08:01 AM Thread Starter
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Hello,

For the longest, I fed my cats Wellness Core dry indoor or turkey/duck formula. I noticed that the quality changed & they were all throwing up too much so transitioned them to Merrick Purrfect Bistro indoor grain free dry (they always get fancy feast wet too). I know many cats throw up from eating too quickly (I tried slow feeders but the plastic caused my cats to get acne so vet had us go back to regular bowls--however, they still barfed some w/ slow feeders). Soon after switching them over from Wellness to Merrick, they are barfing again. In the middle of this, I got a new cat. A good friend passed away and I took her in. She came with a big bag of Rachel Ray Indoor Complete Grain Free. I slowly transitioned her by mixing. Initially, I noticed she didn't barf at all. My cats also snuck and ate her food w/o barfing. The minute she's switched over completely to the Merrick, she's thrown up a few times. What is in the Rachel Ray that limits the barfing? Is it the smaller kibble sizes? Also my friend who passed away had 4 cats total. They all ate Rachel Ray. I've never seen cats with a healthier appearance/weight in my life! Their fur was super soft too. I have always tried to feed my cats high quality food but I've been impressed by the limited exposure I've had w/ Rachel Ray. I would like to add that the barfing isn't every meal or even every day but enough for me to groan when I hear it. Also, none of my cats have health issues, they are seen yearly by the vet and all have a clean bill of health. It could just be that they simply eat too fast. I guess I am wondering if the HQ food is truly worth it?

These are the bowls they eat put of.

A few things:
- I'm not sure I could afford a higher quality food due to cost
- An all wet diet is not an option for us at this time.
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Last edited by kiesha; 11-26-2018 at 08:05 AM.
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-26-2018, 05:42 PM
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Merrick was bought out by Purina in 2015, and it's not the same quality that it used to be. I used to buy their lamb lung treats for my dogs, and can tell a major difference now.

I'm not familiar with Wellness Core at all, but I know Mother Hubbard treats and they're a very good quality. Their dog food gets 5 stars, too:

https://www.dogfoodadvisor.com/dog-f...food-core-dry/

Rachael Ray gets low marks because of the junk food filler:

https://www.dogfoodadvisor.com/dog-f...rish-dog-food/

Of course those are dog food ratings, but I couldn't find cat food ratings. So just consider that a general guide, with the assumption that quality would be the same.

The increased water could be what's making your friend's cats healthy, that's always a challenge! Or it could also be unrelated and just genetics, who knows? I had a Chihuahua that I gave the best foods, and my parents took her cousin and only fed her table scraps, Ol' Roy Walmart food, and my mom smoked around her. My dog lived to be 14, but their dog made it to 19!

The puking could be that she's allergic to a specific ingredient, or there could be a contamination (mold has been known to grow inside of bags). I would definitely not feed her something that makes her throw up!


Quote:
I'm not sure I could afford a higher quality food due to cost
FWIW, the Chihuahua was my first pet as an adult, and I started out buying cheaper quality food like that. As I got older and learned the quality differences, though, I moved her over to Blue (which was a great brand, but has since gone way downhill). It was more expensive upfront, but I quickly learned that she was eating far less of it, so it lasted longer... and at the end of the month I was actually saving money!

Before Charlie (my kitty) passed and I moved Mojo (his brother) to soft food, I would buy a 15lb bag of Chicken Soup for the Cat Lover's Soul to feed 2 cats for $15, and the bag would last for 2 - 2 1/2 months.
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-28-2018, 04:19 PM
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Hi kiesha,

There are tons of brands of high-quality foods out there, so it wouldn't be possible to base any conclusions on just two brands. Plenty of kitties do very well on them - mine were on both Merrick and Wellness and had no issues with either. As csdude said, it's far more likely that your kitties are sensitive to a particular ingredient in those specific brands. Have you compared the ingredient lists to see if you can identify one or more ingredients in those foods that aren't in the Rachael Ray?

BTW, I looked but couldn't find a Rachael Ray Indoor Complete that's grain-free - there's Indoor Complete and Zero Grain, but not one that's both. ? Neither has meat by-products, which is good, though the Indoor Complete does have corn gluten meal.

I also agree with csdude that, in the long run, and in general, higher quality foods are better for kitties. But people's definition of "high quality" differs, and I wouldn't consider the Rachael Ray a bad food, as it doesn't contain any meat by-products.

As for costs, Fancy Feast is actually not that cheap, because you can't buy it in larger sizes. How many kitties do you have? The 5.5-oz cans are far more cost effective than 3-oz cans, and some high quality foods come in at just about the same price on a per-ounce basis. There are also a few companies that offer foods in the large, 13-oz dog food can size, so if you have 3-4 kitties who will eat the same food, that would save you a lot of money as well. These brands are generally carried by small independent pet stores. Dave's is one that comes to mind; I think I may have listed a few others in a different thread fairly recently. I'll see if I can find it.
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 12-06-2018, 01:05 PM
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I have a female Tonkinese cat and a male Burmese cat. They both barf after eating....but mostly her. More regurgitation than barfing. I have fed cheap food, vet food and now very expensive all natural, no filler, no grain food. It has never made any difference. Wet or dry, still happens. No schedule to it as far as time of day or night nor frequency. I have just come to accept it. And she also barfs up hair balls.

Mom to Abby & Gizmo
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 12-14-2018, 04:39 PM
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Hi, Kiesha.

You don't say how many times a day you feed them. I'm wonder if you feed them more often, they will get accustomed to having food in their stomachs and not throw up as often.

I feed my cats four times a day (to avoid their throwing it up). I, also, keep snacks handy, so if there's the slightest chance they might be hungry, I give them a little. (A "snack" is, usually just a little of their regular food.) I keep a plastic bag of cat food near my bed. If I get up during the night, I, often, give them a little, just to tide them over until meal time. I, also, keep "Land O Lakes Mini Moos" handy. Sometimes, it just takes one or two of these to assure they will make it to meal time. Perhaps, just figuring out a more "even" (round the clock) feeding/snack schedule might work.

You, also, don't say "what" they throw up. Do they throw up undigested food after eating? That would indicate they are eating too much, too fast. Do they throw up, mainly, clear liquid? That would indicate they have gone too long without eating. Snacks and milk can help prevent them from being famished by the time meal times arrive (hence, they may not eat too much, too fast). They will, also, help prevent that the cats always have something in their stomachs (hence, they may not throw up stomach fluids (clear liquids)).

I tried Rachel Ray food and my cats wouldn't eat it. Total waste of money! But, I do keep several brands/varieties on hand, at one time, so they get a variety of foods, even homemade.

Well, I hope you can solve the mystery. I know how frustrating it is not to know what's going on and "hearing it" while it is.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 01-10-2019, 09:49 AM
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I agree with the other answers, it could be a single ingredient that your cats are sensitive to or they could be eating too fast or too much at a time. I am thinking these scenarios would be most common. We use these egg shaped safe hard plastic raised bowls for our Siamese and Siamese mix which I love. They only hold smaller portions, are so easy to clean and they have a solid base so they never tip over.

I have spent long hours agonizing over what to feed Loki and Kira. Cat owners are innundated with so much commercial crap it makes it difficult to sift thru all of them to even get to any type of quality cat food. Finally I have found some I deemed acceptable. We currently have two subscriptions which are renewed every 6 weeks. We feed The Honest Kitchen Prowl which is human grade, grain free dehydrated food. The main ingredient is free range chicken. It comes in a powder form and you just mix one part water one part powder. When first mixed it is kind of a yogurt consistency but after it sits for just a bit it ends up like a patte canned food. So some advantages ,easy to store as the powder when mixed will pretty close to double the food. You can mess with the consistency to please your cat and you can make it up in advance and store in the fridge. Saying my cats love it is an understatement lol. For variety we trade off with Royal Canin Siamese. Ingredient wise it definitely isn't the best but it isn't the worst. I like it because it is catered to the breed and the kibble are like cheerios.They also love this but not to the extent they love Honest Kitchen. We order every 6 weeks and I think we pay $40 or just under that.
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