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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-19-2011, 07:12 PM Thread Starter
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Reevaluating their diet

I've been having a number of feeding issues with my cats lately and I was wondering if I could get some input and bounce ideas off people.

Apollo has been a nightmare about food lately and I'm wondering if he's getting hungry in the middle of the day. I've experimented with upping his food portions, and am considering trying to spread their feedings into 3 meals a day instead of 2.

I've really been agonizing over portion sizes (we're doing canned in the morning and raw at night) because I can't seem to figure out a good amount, so I'd welcome some input.

Athena seems fine aside from normal "I'm hungry!" meowing shortly before mealtimes...she's about 7 lbs and eats 1/2 a 5.5 oz can in the morning, and 2.5 oz of raw at night.

Apollo is about 9.5 lbs and is getting 3/4 of a 5.5 oz can in the morning and 2.5 oz of raw at night. Should I up this more do you think? I think the thing that's giving me a headache is not being able to split up things evenly since my cats are two different weights. Math has never been my strong point.

Also, somewhat unrelated, someone threw up this weekend (not sure which cat as I was out) and ever since then neither of them will touch their raw food unless it's mixed with canned. Neither have been sick since, even when eating the raw mixed with the canned, so I don't think there's anything wrong with this batch of food, but I'm kind of at a loss as to why they have suddenly both gone off the raw.

I am very limited in the brands I can get (I can get Primal and Nature's Variety locally and they only like 1 flavor of Primal and none of NV), and haven't been able to do homemade, so I'm not sure what to do. Do you think I can get them back on it, and if so, what's the best way to go about doing this?
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-19-2011, 08:24 PM
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I wouldn't be surprised in the slightest if their issue is related to the twice daily feeding. Cats' tummies get acidic when they go too long without food, and that will often lead to vomiting. Sometimes, that vomiting leads to cats going "off" their food, and it looks like your cats are following that pattern.

The amounts you list seem in line with their respective weights, so I'd just cut it into three meals. Maybe divide a can in the morning, another can in the evening and give them 2 ounces of raw just before bed? Or divide a can in the morning, give them 1.5 ounces of raw when you get home and another 1.5 ounces or so just before bed?

Good luck!!

AC
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-19-2011, 11:07 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks AC! I'll give that a shot and see if it helps.

My boyfriend is out of town right now (been gone for 2 weeks on a business trip) and I'm working an in-house contract job at the moment so it's been a little nutty around here. Fine time for them to decide to stop eating. XD
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-19-2011, 11:12 PM
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Originally Posted by saitenyo View Post
Thanks AC! I'll give that a shot and see if it helps.

My boyfriend is out of town right now (been gone for 2 weeks on a business trip) and I'm working an in-house contract job at the moment so it's been a little nutty around here. Fine time for them to decide to stop eating. XD
So you're more than usually busy, and a little out of sorts 'cause the BF isn't around like he normally would be? Well, of course that's when they're going to give you trouble!

We should all just schedule that in... anytime we find ourselves in a crunch, just automatically put "cat problems" on the calendar so we're prepared. *chuckle*

AC
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-20-2011, 01:09 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Auntie Crazy View Post
So you're more than usually busy, and a little out of sorts 'cause the BF isn't around like he normally would be? Well, of course that's when they're going to give you trouble!

We should all just schedule that in... anytime we find ourselves in a crunch, just automatically put "cat problems" on the calendar so we're prepared. *chuckle*

AC
Apollo was actually fantastic the first week Eric was gone! I unfortunately recently lost my childhood dog of 15 years, and Apollo has been really sweet, with both Eric gone and me being down, he's been unusually cuddly and calm...or was for a week anyway!

Then the vomiting episode happened and he's been a terror since. I am assuming he's just hungry since he's not finishing his food. I was mixing the canned and raw to get him to eat the raw and he was picking out the canned as best he could...sneaky little thing.

But yeah I wonder if they are picking up on my stress in general. It has been a crazy couple of weeks.

I just fed him a third meal tonight and he seems to have calmed down. Hopefully this spreading out the food thing will work. I know I get cranky when I don't eat frequently, so I can't really blame him.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-22-2011, 03:57 PM Thread Starter
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Update: The 3 meals really seem to be helping Apollo. Athena seems like she could go either way, but basically what I am doing now is:

In the morning: 1/2 5.5oz can for Apollo, a little less for Athena.
When I get home from work: Athena gets her remaining portion from the 1/2 can, and Apollo gets another 1/4 can.
Dinner: 1/2 can each.

No raw at the moment, just for a few days. I just needed to get them eating again and see if the 3 mealtimes would help. Eric comes home on Wednesday and with him there to help out, making changes again should be easier.

Now my next question: Do you think it's possible to transition them back onto the Primal? Or once they've decided they hate it, will they never eat it again? Apollo has done this with other foods before and will still not touch them, months later. What would be the best way to reintroduce it...just the usual slow transition, increasing the proportions of raw to canned?

My local store is supposedly getting a new brand of raw in soon, so hopefully I will have some more options.

I'm still keeping frankenprey in the back of my mind as another possibility...it just seems like there are so many factors making it difficult right now. I still can't find the organ meats I need and ordering organ meats online for me is even more expensive than buying commercial raw locally.
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-31-2011, 12:23 PM Thread Starter
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I've managed to get them back to eating half their usual raw with canned mixed in now. They are clever and it's going slow. Parmesan cheese and my other bribes are no longer doing the trick so I guess I will just keep sloooowly upping the raw amount.
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-31-2011, 01:29 PM
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Sorry to hear about your dog. Perhaps Apollo wasn't feeling good from that and also reading your emotions too. But glad to hear things are improving.

I just thought that cat stomachs are small so needed a higher frequency of meals. Didn't know that it could also cause vomiting from higher acidity. You learn something every day!

Hey that's pretty cool. My cats are roughly about that size as well! I think the amounts are okay. They're still getting 3 meals a day, but I give my bunch a bit less. My vet and I agree that we'd rather have them on the lean side than weigh too much.
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-31-2011, 01:36 PM Thread Starter
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Apollo didn't really know Sambu, as Sambu still lived with my parents (and the few times he met the cats, the cats were afraid of him), but I did notice Apollo (who is normally not a cuddler) was extremely cuddly the week after Sambu passed. So maybe he did know something was up. It was very sweet of him.

Both cats are being better about eating ever since Eric got back...I imagine they must have missed him too! Apollo in particular really views Eric s the one in charge, so he was kind of running amuck while Eric was gone. Apparently a 5' 97lb quiet blonde girl is not easily viewed as an authority figure...who'd have thought! Now that big tall no-nonsense dad is back, Apollo is on much better behavior!
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-31-2011, 01:39 PM
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Ha! Yeah. I guess Apollo needed his boss back to keep him in line! But that was certainly very thoughtful of him to give you extra cuddles. That's why I just love cats! They can read you like a book and you can tell them all your secrets without them telling anyone else...well asides from the other cats...
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