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Discussion Starter #1
Okay, I'm really sorry to bring up the "by-product" issue again but I would like some help. I am trying to convince my boyfriend to switch our cats' food. He will not listen to the testimony of "forum people" so having him read that old thread won't do any good. What he needs is scientific evidence that "chicken by-product meal" isn't good for cats or that the premium cat foods are better. Can anyone direct me to studies or a vet website that will state this?

He also believes that even the premium cat foods have by-products in them, they are just called something different so as to convince the consumer to buy them. I also need evidence to prove this argument of his to be false too. Showing him the ingredient list that says "Chicken, Chicken Meal, Brown Rice, Duck, Lamb Meal..." etc doesn't work for him because I tried this yesterday at the pet store heh.

He is a scientist. He won't take hearsay as evidence so I need to direct him to the information so that he can read it and decide for himself.

Thanks for your help,
tanyuh
 

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There's a few sites I know that go into depth about cat food but me thinks your boyfriend might even be skeptical of anything he reads on the net. After all most .com sites, anyone can state anything they want regardless of the truth.

If he's really interested in finding out about cat food then he should contact a feline nutritionist and get the scoop from someone who studies cat food and nutrition for a living.

But here's a couple links that go into cat food for ya. http://eattheapple.com/drjean/

http://cats.about.com/cs/nutrition/

I tried to find some articles through Tufts but you have to pay to read their articles. :?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Jessica,

Oh my god...I can't believe some pet food companies use dead cats and dogs. Haven't they learned ANYTHING from mad-cow disease??? You should NEVER make an animal a cannibal! I almost threw up when I read that.

There is also some information that made me even MORE confused. From the "Tips for Choosing Cat Food":

What to avoid

Words such as "By-products," "meat and/or bone meal," "animal digest," most other descriptions including "digest" or "meal" and added sugars.

³Chemical preservatives, including BHA, BHT, ethoxyquin, and propyl gallate

Corn meal as a filler

Excess of carbohydrate "fillers" (Dry food can contain as much as 50 percent grain)
Okay, it says avoid "meat meal" but the first ingredient in "Nutro Max Cat" is "Chicken Meal" and then "Corn Gluten Meal"...so, this is bad news, no? Another premium food I have been looking at is "Natural Balance" and it's first ingredients are "Chicken, Chicken Meal, Brown Rice, Duck, Lamb Meal, Potatoes, Chicken Fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols, Vitamin E)" so is this better?? It still has "meal" in the ingredients though. Its all so confusing!! We definitely cannot afford to make their food myself - *we* can barely afford to eat ourselves!

I haven't read the article from you yet Aine, but I'm going to right now.

Thanks!
tanyuh
 

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Tanyuh, to be honest with you, I don't know if I buy the fact that some pet food is made from cats and dogs. I mean I'm sure it's possible, I've just never read anything really solid on that subject. Maybe I just like to think that something like that would never happen in the first place. :?

As for Nutro Max, it does contain lower quality ingredients than Nutro Natural Choice that's why it's cheaper and that's why I recommend their Natural Choice over their Max Cat food. You will find however one or two ingredients "wrong" with every type food even the most expensive brand of food.

I always have felt that the absolute best thing I could fed my cats is a homemade diet so I know what's going into their food but it's very time consuming and costly. The huge downfall to making your cat's food is that if you do not know what you're doing you can endanger your cat by not adding enough of the vitamins it needs or even by adding too much of one thing.

So most of us have to settle on feeding them commercially made food. While I know people don't give it much thought but I feel choosing a food is a very important decision. It'd be nice if there were one type of food that was right for every cat but since food doesn't come as a one type feeds all we will sometimes find ourselves searching for the food that is good for them, palatable to the cat, makes you feel good about feeding it and is in your price range.

Who ever said cats were easy to take care of? :wink:
 

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Not to shock anyone, but even people eat chicken by-product unknowingly. I know someone who works in a chicken plant.

Chicken products that used ground chicken are the culprits. Always look on the ingredients. When it says 100% white meat it's just that - chicken that would otherwise become boneless skinless breasts and such just goes another route (nothing "wrong" with the chicken - white meat isn't ground cause it on lower quality). Dark meat added (or something along those lines) has dark meat thrown in, like leg meat and such.

However "chicken cutlets" is what to stay away from. There's really nothing wrong with it, but the leftover carcass - excess meat that couldn't be stripped, bone and cartelidge - is ground up and voila. This is offen what's in cheap chicken nuggets (also accounts for the more brown colour of the meat).
 

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Bean- I've heard some awful things about the meat industry. A friend of mine used to work in a super market packaging meat and shared some nasty stories about the meats that were put up for sale. :shock:

(I won't repeat them because for a while they deterred me from buying chicken. **shudders**)

And now with all the genetically modified foods that we unknowingly eat, pesticides on the produce and the trans fatty acids in most packaged foods.... What's left for us to eat?!
 

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When it says to avoid "meat and/or bone meal" I beleive they are referring to just that - labels that list unspecific meats. Since you have no idea what type of "meat" this is...it is recommended to be avoided. When the source of the meat is specified it is fine (i.e. Chicken Meal). Chicken meal is chicken with the water removed.

Here is a link with some of the AAFCO definitions:
http://www.bulldogbytes.com/recipes/foodguide.htm
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for all your help guys.

Bean, sometimes I *want* to hear all the meat industry horror stories so that I will be able to give up meat for good. As it is, I can't convince myself not to eat a delicious Alberta Beef t-bone steak when my dad cooks it up on the bbq for me...

I think I am going to go with Natural Balance. We are going to have to drive a little ways to buy it (it's only available at 2 stores in the entire city according to their website) and I hope I can convince my boyfriend that it is a good decision to stop feeding them by-products (Iams). It makes me ill to think that they could be eating feathers, heads, beaks and blood. Maybe it will ultimately stop Samhain from throwing up so much.

And Jessica, I am just like you - I don't like thinking that dead pets end up in our pet food. I hope and pray that this doesn't happen often, especially in premium foods. And, like you, I also do not want to take on the responsibility of making my cats' food because they may not get what they need and I'd hate for any health problems to be caused from something that *I* fed or didn't feed them...
 

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opokki said:
When it says to avoid "meat and/or bone meal" I beleive they are referring to just that - labels that list unspecific meats. Since you have no idea what type of "meat" this is...it is recommended to be avoided. When the source of the meat is specified it is fine (i.e. Chicken Meal). Chicken meal is chicken with the water removed.

Here is a link with some of the AAFCO definitions:
http://www.bulldogbytes.com/recipes/foodguide.htm
Really? I didn't know that's what meal was. I thought meal was from where they rendered the fat and oils from the meat, like the skin you get from chicken noodle soup! My kitten's food's first ingredients are: Chicken; Chicken meal; and Brewer's rice. Those sound pretty OK to me.
I've been feeding Misty Purina Kitten Chow because the vet told me it was best for her sensitive stomache while she was sick, but I'm thinking about switching her over to Iams or Nutro. Any suggestions of food along that line?

PS...just read the link....they put Kangaroo, Ostrich, and Rabbit in foods? GROSS! What food has those?
 

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Here's the ingredients to Dr Foster and Smith Kitten food. They look really good:
Chicken, Chicken Meal, Brown Rice, Rice, Chicken Fat (naturally preserved with mixed tocopherols, citric acid, and rosemary), Whole Barley, Chicken Liver, Fish Meal, Whole Ground Flaxseed, Natural Flavor, Egg Product, Herring Oil, Pea Fiber, Whole Sweet Potatoes, Whole Blueberries, Whole Cranberries, Kelp, DL-Methionine, Potassium Chloride, Taurine, Tomatoes, Vitamin E Supplement, Sodium Ascorbate (source of Vitamin C), Garlic, Dehydrated Lactobacillus acidophilus Fermentation Product, Dehydrated Bacillus subtilis Fermentation Product, Dehydrated Bifidobacterium thermophilum Fermentation Product, Dehydrated Bifidobacterium longum Fermentation Product, Dehydrated Enterococcus faecium Fermentation Product, Choline Chloride, Zinc Proteinate (source of chelated Zinc), Iron Proteinate (source of chelated Iron), Zinc Sulfate, Iron sulfate, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Manganese Proteinate (source of chelated Manganese), Vitamin A Supplement, Niacin, Manganese Sulfate, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Calcium Pantothenate, Cobalt Proteinate (source of chelated Cobalt), Riboflavin Supplement, Copper Proteinate (source of chelated Copper), Beta Carotene, Biotin, Thiamine Mononitrate, Folic Acid, Ethylenediamine Dihydriodide (source of Iodine), Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Copper Sulfate, Menadione Dimethylpyrimidinol Bisulfite (source of Vitamin K activity), Sodium Selenite.

Here's the first ingredients in Iams Kitten food:
Chicken, Chicken by-product meal; corn grits; Ground Whole
Grain Sorghum; Chicken Fat with BHA


Here's Science Diet Kitten Food:
Poultry by-product meal; ground corn; Animal fat(BHA); corn gluten meal, dried egg product. - won't be feeing my kitten this food!

Here's Eukanuba Kitten Food:
Chicken; chicken liver; chicken by-products; brewer's rice; fish meal; corn grits; chicken by-products; chicken fat.

More on this link:
http://www.showcatsonline.com/x/cat_food_comparisons.htm

From what I see, I'll probably buy Eukanuba or Dr Foster and Smith. Both look good enough to me.
 

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they put Kangaroo, Ostrich, and Rabbit in foods? GROSS! What food has those?
A lot of prescription foods contain those types of protein for animals who are allergic to chicken, beef and lamb.
 

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Never knew that....the Kangaroo though....that's just....freaky....
 

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Well - most offen food is ok to eat - you just have to read up on what things mean. For the chicken things - he said things are very clean, even the stuff that includes bone.

And as for the turning of herbavores into carnivornes - I think that's sick and twisted. I think that most of that cow feed containing "recycled" cows is now illegal, in Canada anyway. but I could be wrong.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Blah, lost another post to the void.

Okay, I'll try and type it again...

Begin Post:
Ya Bean, it's supposed to be illegal because of madcow disease but unfortunately some farmers cut corners, like that recent scare in Grande Prarie Alberta.

Well I went to buy Natural Balance today but they were out, GRRRR. So I bought a can of their soft food for them. They both liked it a lot. Psi was even digging around his bowl when he was done hahahaha. He only does that with wet food. I guess because it is smellier. He is cleaning himself as we speak and Samhain is gulping down the rest of her portion. I hope this is a sign that they will like the dry because the only bag the PetCo has is a MONSTER 16 lb bag!! I also bought some dried salmon treats. They weren't as thrilled about them as I thought they would be but we gave the treats to them right when we got home so maybe they were still too excited. I put one in Psi's bowl and he ate it up though, and Samhain tried to eat it but I think she found the texture a little weird. I hope they will like them. They are delicious 100% dried Canadian salmon, yummmy.

Good day,
tanyuh
 
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