Cat Forum banner

1 - 5 of 5 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,398 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Have a question about Assumpta's diet...

She absolutely cannot free-feed. She ate herself from a slightly-underweight 7.5 pounds to almost 14 pounds in under 6 months when she first came to live with us (because she'd been stray and abused, we were just happy to see her eating at all, plus she's got a fairly large frame, tons of fur, and a natural pootch-belly, so she can put on a decent amount of weight before it's obvious...ok, we were lousy cat owners :oops: ). On more than one occasion, she's pried the latched food cupboard open, chewed through the bag, and eaten until she throws up (and then immediately starts eating again). Every meal is like she will never see food again. We've ruled out diabetes and hypothryoidism in the past, she just has major food issues, I guess from being a stray for so long. Vet and I would like to see her at about 9-9.5 pounds or so, but that doesn't seem to be Assumpta's plan.

After a couple of years on Hills R/D, she was down to about 12 pounds, where her weight loss tapered off. Her coat and skin were terrible, she had more hairballs, and was constipated. At the start of the year, we switched her to Hills SciDi Hairball Lite, because she had eaten and liked it before, and I didn't want to go directly from high-fiber R/D to canned. Slight improvement in coat, hairballs, and she lost 0.2 pounds in six months (she is now 11.8 pounds). After talking to the vet, we started switching her over to wet food (Wellness) with small supplements of Wellness Lite dry (for the fiber). The vet said to start with the manufacturer's recommendations and adjust accordingly.

Six ounces (as recommneded by Wellness) with an occasional Tablespoon of dry seemed like too much. She was really lazy, not her usual chirpy, snuggly catself, and occasionally didn't even finish her meals. 8O I've gradually cut her back to 2/3 of a 5.5 oz can per day (in two feedings), plus 2-3 Tablespoons of dry at bedtime after her playtime. After much noodling on my pocket calculator, this is fairly close to the 180 +/- kcal/day she was getting in prescription and non-prescription dry food per vet's suggestions (and about 2/3 of it as wet food). She is more like herself, playing, mooching food and snuggling with us. Her coat looks much better and her dandruff is almost gone, though she's still shedding more than usual (seems to be coming in waves now) and doesn't seem any less prone to hairballs (but she eliminates them much more easily).

My husband is concerned that she's not getting enough to eat and will get sick (he's the soft touch and she knows he'll share his dinner if she looks cute enough :roll: ). I am thinking that she IS getting an equivalent amount of calories per day, and better quality/more digestible calories, as well, so she shouldn't see any ill effects from her new diet.

Any ideas? It's so hard to tell when she's actually hungry because she can eat a pound of food and still think she needs more...I've never met another cat like her. I've always been amazed by how little food it seems to take for her to maintain her weight, and I feel like such a louse every time I feed her these tiny-looking meals.....
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
1,014 Posts
Don't let your husband overfeed her :wink: . The amount she is being fed is fine. The average cat will eat one 5.5 oz of wet a day, but that's without any dry food being fed. Another way to get the fiber in her, is to sprinkle a pinch of psyllium powder over her wet food once a day. In my opinion, you might as well get rid of that last little bit of dry and feed her completely wet. I found removing the last 60 kibbles from my cat's diet helped a lot with the weight loss. Just food for thought :wink: . I hope you can get this all figured out.

On another note, my cat Cleo is a dry food junkie. She will break into any cupboard that it is in. I keep some dry food as occasional treats (like when I brush their teeth or pill them) and also for my gerbils. She will even open the closet door and scramble up to the top shelf where I *used* to keep the dry food. I don't think Assumpta's behaviour is all that unusual. Cleo also used to pig out on the dry (she was 14 lbs) and now that she is on the wet, she is down to 8.5 lbs. It always amazes me how changing the diet can have such a huge effect.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,398 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Thanks...that's pretty much my thought...she's not had a drastic decrease in overall calorie consumption, plus they're better-quality calories. I'll admit that I'm still giving her some dry because she really likes it and because there are some rare occasions when I may need to leave her a dry meal because the ice packs in the feeder will only stay frozen for about 12 hours or so.

She's just a lunatic about food, that's all...and my husband doesn't help...they both have a fondness for Spaghetti-O's <blech!>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
50 Posts
Our MoonShadow kitty also was a stray and eats like every meal is his last one, with dry food. We switched to California Natural (more protein and less carbs) in three feedings, and have graduated to two wet (wellness) and one dry meal a day. He's "slowly" losing weight. It seemed like the California Natural was more satisfying, he'd even walk away with a few pieces left.

We recently got a cat tree that helps him exercise more, since he likes being on the top level! I don't know if we'll ever get him to eat just wet food, we did that once and his stool became extremely soft!

We had an animal communicator phone consult and she said he'd been put outside and not let in, didn't get his food. Makes sense!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,398 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
I can't imagine Assumpta leaving kibble in her bowl! I finally had to lock the food cupboard because when she did manage to spring the latch, she'd just eat and throw up, eat and throw up until someone physically stopped her. And, of course, it's bad manners to throw up where you eat, or to throw up in the same place twice, so I'd come home to a house that looked like a cat roller-coaster had run through it after a few too many trips to the junk food vendors. 8O I can be anywhere in the house and say the word "kibble," and she will immediately appear at full meow-alert (though if I try to trip her up by saying "Jimmy Kimmel," she just sits there and glares at me with an evil look).

She's also pretty lazy, and it's always been a daily struggle to get her to exercise, and even then it's in 15-minute spurts. Maybe I should exercise her by running around the house shouting "Kibble! Kibble!" :lol:
 
1 - 5 of 5 Posts
Top