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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello there, first post here.

Anyhow, I got Charlie about 2 months ago at a shelter in Pittsburgh and originally bought a 12lb bag of Iams low-cal food. She went through that food and I did not have enough $$ at the time to replace the $14 bag of food, so I chose a less expensive Purina Cat Chow indoor formula (about $6). She likes her new food just fine, but I am wondering if she would be better off with a higher-quality food. My dilemma, of course, is I can't really afford Iams right now (I am a poor grad student) and am wondering if there are some other equally good, less expensive brands?

Little bit about the kitty: she is 3 years old, short-haired indoor spoiled baby.

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673 Posts

I don't think I've seen you here before yet, so I wanted to say welcome! :D

There are several threads on this topic already if you have a look around I'm sure you can find some more info on this.

Iams... is not really all that great of a food, and there are things the company does which I feel are so very morally wrong, and well they are illegal, so I do not buy from them or Eukanuba, Proctor & Gamble *same company*.

Often, a better quality food will have your cat eating less at each meal, and this makes it last longer, so your not really spending any extra money for a better product. Plus the amount it can save you in vet bills from having a healthier pet.

You can either spend $16.99 over 3 months for a great food like Solid Gold, or spend $30 for 3 months on something like Purina, or Frisky's etc.

Here is a listing of foods for you.

Frist Grade Cat Food:
Chicken Soup for the Cat Lovers Soul - Adult, Kitten
Evolve - Kitten, Maintenance
Holistic Blend
Natural Balance
Newman's Own Organics - Cat/Kitten
Solid Gold
California Natural
TimberWolf Organics - Serengeti Herbal

Second Grade Cat Food:
Nature's Recipe - Adult
Sensible Choice
Lick Your Chops
Natures Variety

Third Grade Cat Food:
Breeders Choice - Avo-Derm
Bil - Jac
Eagle Pack
Flint River Ranch
Natural Life - Adult, Kitten
Nutro Max
Nutro Natural Choice
Premium Edge
Pro Pac
Pro Plan
Purina ONE
Royal Canin
Wysong - Uretic, Vitality
Maxximum Nutrition

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Just as a thought, this use to be something i didnt think about until i changed foods, my cats go through a lot of dry food (i guess thats having 5) anyway i concidered going back to tinned food because it was cheaper, but in the long run it wouldnt work out.

At the moment i go through a 3KG bag a week, costing me £8.39, i was thinking of getting 12 packs of felix tinned 12x400g tins for £4.36 but when i sat and thought about it, thinking how yuk tin food is, but also when i had 2 cats alone id go through 2 sometimes 3 tins a day, a 12 pack would be gone in 3 days if not less since these are growing kittens huge the apitites of lions

I know dry food seems expensive, im a college student too but think about it, you pay this one off 8 quid a week, instead of 4.36 twice if not 3 tins for a much inferior food. I know you dont say you are thinking of feeding wet food, but its just something to think about :)

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I vote Nutro. We've started using it for our dog and cats and they're all doing well. Good food but less expensive than Wellness or Felidae.

Edit: I just wanted to add, you can only do what you can! All these brands we've mentioned are more expensive than Iams, I think. So if all you can afford right now is Purina, that doesn't make you a bad cat owner! Most cats eat that kind of thing all their lives and do okay, after all.

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Jeanie: Myself and others do not list these foods by our personal opinions, or hear say, or by what commercials, brands names, and stores want you to think. Yes it's sold as a premium commercial food, but in comparision with OTHER preimum commercial and non commercial foods through out the nation or world, it is not one of the best, ingredients wise.
Take a look at the ingredients for yourself and you will see, I have studied each one of these foods, and have fed most of them and more at one point myself.

If your only choice is royal canin vrs grocery store brands then yes, royal canin would be considered one of the "premium" brands.

Kristi: I don't know where you've been buying your Nutro, but I've never seen Nutro Max or Natural LESS expensive then Felidae, lol, maybe I'm just lucky, Wellness I do aggree with though, that's more expensive then most! :D

Edit: No, most of those brands are not more expensive then Iam's, they are either cheaper (even the better ones) or about the same. Though I know price can vary greatly depending on where you shop and where you are in the world. But typically, my statment stands true, and I have shopped online, as well as states from Maine, through Virginia, and have seen the price fluctuations.

Edit again:

I figured it would be helpful for some people to see this first hand.
These 2 are about the most widly bought formula's out of the Royal Canin Feline diets, however the contents do vary from formula to formula, but pretty much with the basica chicken and corn ingredients.
For anyone experienced in reading labels, and companion animal nutrition this part is self explanitory enough for your own conclusions. For the rest of you there are many good threads on here about former food discussions you could take a look at :D

Royal Canin Feline Nutrition Indoor 27
Chicken meal, brewers rice, chicken, corn gluten meal, corn, chicken fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols), brown rice, pea fiber, beet pulp, chicken flavor, fish oil, brewers yeast, sodium bisulfate, potassium chloride, chicory extract, DL-methionine, choline chloride, salt, taurine, natural antioxidant, iron proteinate, vitamin A acetate, vitamin D3 supplement, vitamin E supplement, zinc oxide, zinc proteinate, ferrous sulfate, manganous oxide, calcium pantothenate, manganese proteinate, niacin supplement, copper sulfate, riboflavin supplement, pyridoxine hydrochloride, thiamine mononitrate, copper proteinate, calcium iodate, folic acid, biotin, sodium selenite, vitamin B12 supplement.

Crude Protein (minimum) 27%
Crude Fat (minimum) 13%
Moisture (maximum) 10%
Ash (maximum) 7%
Crude Fiber (maximum) 5%
Magnesium (maximum) 0.1%

Royal Canin Feline Nutrition Adult 32
Chicken, Chicken meal, rice flour , corn flour, corn gluten meal, poultry meal, chicken fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols), ground yellow corn, brewers rice, beet pulp, chicken flavor, powdered cellulose, dried egg products, fish meal, brewers dried yeast, sodium bisulfate, L-lysine, DL-methionine, potassium chloride, calcium carbonate, choline chloride, taurine, salt, vitamin E supplement, vitamin A acetate, ferrous sulfate, ascorbic acid, iron proteinate, zinc proteinate, manganese proteinate, copper proteinate, niacin supplement, copper sulfate, extract of rosemary, thiamine mononitrate, vitamin D3 supplement, sodium selenite, vitamin B12 supplement, calcium pantothenate, calcium iodate, riboflavin supplement, maganous oxide, folic acid.

Crude Protein (minimum) 32%
Crude Fat (minimum) 13%
Moisture (maximum) 10%
Crude Fiber (maximum) 2.5%

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
kristi said:
I vote Nutro. We've started using it for our dog and cats and they're all doing well. Good food but less expensive than Wellness or Felidae.

Edit: I just wanted to add, you can only do what you can! All these brands we've mentioned are more expensive than Iams, I think. So if all you can afford right now is Purina, that doesn't make you a bad cat owner! Most cats eat that kind of thing all their lives and do okay, after all.
That makes me feel better :) I will start poking around Cincinnati in an attempt to find some of the other brands mentioned.

Charles seems happy with her purina, though next time I might try to dig a little deeper into my pockets and try a more premium brand (hopefully she won't mind the switching around of foods)

I'll post the results!

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28,603 Posts
sickmiller, Make sure you make the switch slowly so that you do not upset your cats digestive system. I'm sure you already know that. :)

Angel, would you please post your sources? I like to post a link when I am researching a special subject such as nutrition. I'm sure you won't mind sharing these sites with those who want to make their own educated decisions.

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673 Posts
Jeanie: Surely you must understand that providing all the links I have read, and lab reports over the years would be impossible, let alone providing transcripted converstations I've had with vets and nutritionist, and all the book titles I have read.

There is an overwhelming amount of information you can learn if you just look for it, it's not hard to find, and impossible for one person to teach you everything in one sitting. Why I always encourage people to take such things upon themselves in addition.
Here are a couple quick links before I head off to prepair for my 4 new fosters.

Where are your sources saying that Royal Canin is a great food besides hear say? Lets not start the past all over again here. You can also ask your elite group of associated individuals for this information as well, surely they must have something to provide.

We know that if requested I will provide, but it is ludacris for me to post references to everything I say, specially with the sheer amount that I repeat myself to other people every single day.

To the rest: I must stress the fact that not all premium foods are more expensive, this fact is simply not 100% true in all cases.
And while a lot of cats eat things like Frisky's or Purina, most of them do not live to their full life time and health potential while on those foods.
In comparison cats on premium foods or raw diets on average do better health wise and longevity wise then on the lower end brands.

Here is one quick link with a lot of information on it.

and a common one.

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Angelzoo i’m sure others would agree that this forum is for helping cat lovers find and share information with each other. Therefore it would be beneficial to all if we could share our knowledge about nutrition, behavior, health, etc. with positive and courteous replies. Not all statements are deemed as fact just because the writer says so. Please be helpful to your fellow forum members without sarcasm. Thank you.

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28,603 Posts
I'm sorry if you found the question impolite. It certainly was not worded or intended that way. You have been posting the ratings of various cat foods, and I'd like to have you make a link available for us. This site is used for enjoyment and education. You have been very specific about certain foods. I am not a nutritionist; none of us is. I don't have an elite group of associates other than other breeders, my veterinarian, and the members of this site. I do believe in documentation, however. My comment on Royal Canin was that I had never heard of it being a third class cat food. I don't use it personally. I am not asking for an education, just documentation.

I found this part of your second link very interesting:

Stop buying commercial pet food. Or if that is not possible, reduce the quantity of commercial pet food and supplement with fresh foods. Purchase one or more of the many books available on pet nutrition and make your own food. Be sure that a veterinarian or a nutritionist has checked the recipes to ensure that they are balanced and complete.
Check our sample diets you can make yourself.
Please be aware that API is not a veterinary hospital, clinic, or service. API does not and will not offer any medical advice. If you have concerns about your companion animal's health or nutritional requirements, please consult your veterinarian.


If you members want to know how to judge the nutritional value of the various cat foods, I suggest you check the charts at this site presented by Margaret Muns, DVM. I'm sure you'll find them very easy to read and quite helpful. Find a food that meets these requirements and is palatable to your cat.
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