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Discussion Starter #1
I've read a little bit on here about wet vs. dry food issues and I'm still kind of confused.

We have our cats on dry Science Diet Hairball Light formula and each day they get treats of dry Science Diet Oral Care. They absolutely LOVE the taste of Oral Care! :p

I guess I'm wondering if we should incorporate some wet food into their diets. The vet has asked us to be more disciplined with them in getting them to lose weight and they have taken off about 1 to 1-1/2 lbs. each in the last year.

I have a couple of concerns about wet food. I once heard that wet food can cause their teeth to decay and rot eventually (is this really true?) and I'm concerned about the nutritional and caloric intake with wet food. It's gotta be tasty because they gobble it up when we've ever used it as a treat but is it as nutritionally sound as dry food and will they put the pounds right back on?

Thanks in advance for anyone's input!!
 

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Dry food is about the most unnatural food you could ever think of to feed a cat. Its only advantage is convenience to the people, it is bad for cats. The carbohydrates in dry food are what causes weight gain. Dry food does not clean the teeth, and wet food does not rot them. That is complete horse-pucky propagated by the pet food mfrs, who make a lot more profit on dry foods because they are so cheap to make.

Hope you guys don't get sick of me posting these articles again and again, but evidently not *everyone* on the planet has read them yet! :wink:
Lots of info on nutrition here: http://www.littlebigcat.com/?action=library.

Cheers,
Dr. Jean
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks. I'm fairly new to these boards and most of the stuff I know about cats is either personal experience or heresay from other pet owners, so "no" I hadn't seen the previous articles before. Hope I didn't irritate you with the question. It kind of sounded that way.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
How should we go about making the switch to wet food. Wouldn't it goof up their digestive systems to take them completely off the dry stuff and go on wet right away?

Also, I'm wondering how much they should have each day. Both our cats are of a rather large build (pretty sure they're part maine coon) and they each weight just a hair over 14 pounds. Our vet would like to see them get down to at least 12-1/2 to 13 pounds and maintain at that level in order to lower risks of certain health issues, like diabetes, and so on.

Long story short, they still have a little to lose.
 

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Don't worry about asking...that's how you learn! We've had a lot of discussion on wet vs dry lately, so if you scan some previous topics you may see some other info about it. :D
I would definately switch over gradually. Give them a little wet at first and work up to more.
As for how much to feed...it depends on the weight of the cat. Generally one 5.5 oz can per cat per day *I think*. There is an interactive thing on the website for Wellness food where you type in your cat's weight and whether they eat dry, canned or both and it tells you how much to feed. www.oldmotherhubbard.com Click on cats, then on wellness and there should be a link on there to the calculator.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks. I figured there were probably other things on here but I figured they might be hard to find so I'd just start a new thread.


Would you completely rid them of dry food (maybe let them have some now and then as a treat) or let them have a variety of both from now on?
 

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It depends on the cat's needs. Dr. Jean recommends at least 50% of the diet as wet food. I would say if your cats are not losing weight with that much wet, up it even more (75% wet, 25% dry). I personally would not cut out all dry but I suppose it could be okay in some cases.
My problem now is that my overweight cat doesn't want to eat the wet! So I just offer wet several times a day and hope that he eats it. Many times he will not and I have to give him dry.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
OK, thanks! I really don't know for sure how George and Herbie will take to this but I kind of think they'll be okay with it. Every once in a while they get wet food as a treat, sometimes even canned tuna or canned chicken, and they go nuts, especially Herbie! He's to the point now that every time I take out the can opener (whether it be for the cat food or for a can of vegetables or something for me and my husband) he thinks he's gonna get a treat. So I can about imagine what will happen when we start incorporating wet food into their diets regularly. I'll probably have to come up with a quieter device that will open up a can, just so Herbie doesn't go berzerk all over the kitchen! :lol:

After talking with you guys, I think I'll call my cats' vet tomorrow and ask his opinion on the wet/dry ratio.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
OK...I called to make an appointment to talk with our "kitty-atrician" (hubby made that up!) but we couldn't get in to see him until next Thursday.

In the meantime, I went to a store and got a few cans of wet food. We feed the cats 4 times a day - 6 a.m., noon, 6 p.m., and midnight, so I figured I would give them dry food at 6 & 6 and wet food at noon and midnight, thinking that if I give them wet food right before they go to bed they'll have more protein in their stomachs and therefore sleep a little longer and not wake us up by 5 a.m. (happens now and then).

Well, Herbie took to it right away. He'll pretty much eat anything you put in front of him without a question.

George, on the other hand, can be finicky. He ate both wet food feedings just fine on Tuesday but Wednesday and today he would have none of it, so I gave him the dry stuff just so he had something to eat.

Until we talk with the vet next week I just got them a couple of cans of Friskies, in 2 different flavors. Do you think George just didn't like the 2nd can's flavor? Also, once we switch to a more expensive brand on a permanent basis are there a bunch of different flavors to choose from there or just 1 basic recipe? We've really been happy with Science Diet food so I would like to see what they have in the wet food variety.

We don't have a very wide variety of high-quality pet food products here in North Dakota (at least in the town where I'm at). Science Diet and Iams are pretty much the big sellers, and after what I've read about animal testing being done at Iams I'll never buy that! Are there any other product names that could be recommended that I should keep a lookout for?
 

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You can get Chicken Soup for the Pet Lovers Soul in:

Bismarck, ND 58502

Minot, ND 58701

Valley City, ND 58072
Wahpeton, ND 58075
Williston, ND 58801


If you go to there website:

www.chickensoupforthepetloverssoul.com

You can get a listing of the exact retailers in your area. I would recommend this food because it is a better quality than Science Diet and in most places it's cheaper too! And kitties love it!
 

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Dr Jean also told me to put my cats on a timed feeding schedule. Cats that are allowed to nibble all day are the ones that tend to become fat -- sometimes they eat out of boredom! So don't worry about "how much" to feed your cat -- just put some food out for 30-60 minutes 2-3 times a day, and take it away after that. They'll eat as much as they need -- every cat's body is different. My cats are doing really well with this schedule. I feed dry once, and wet twice a day.

If you are going to switch over to wet food, I would not feed brands like nine lives, friskies, or fancy feast -- as far as nutrition they are as good as you eating mcdonald's every day. I'd also not feed them canned tuna -- it has a very high mercury content that kitties shouldn't really be exposed to very often, if at all. Iams and Science Diet are better, but I'd take the advice about others on brands. If you can't find Wellness, Wysong, NutroNatural, Solid Gold, Innova, Felidae, Chicken Soup, etc...then is it a possibility for you to order it? I think all of these brands come in a few flavors -- I know Wellness and Wysong come in lots.
 

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shlanon said:
Don't worry about asking...that's how you learn! We've had a lot of discussion on wet vs dry lately, so if you scan some previous topics you may see some other info about it. :D
I would definately switch over gradually. Give them a little wet at first and work up to more.
As for how much to feed...it depends on the weight of the cat. Generally one 5.5 oz can per cat per day *I think*. There is an interactive thing on the website for Wellness food where you type in your cat's weight and whether they eat dry, canned or both and it tells you how much to feed. www.oldmotherhubbard.com Click on cats, then on wellness and there should be a link on there to the calculator.
I didn't find that calculator...
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks for all the tips, everyone, especially to Octoberdana for the advice on Chicken Soup For The Pet Lover's Soul food. I went over to that pet store this afternoon and got a few cans for them to try. They just got their first taste of it at 6:00 and they both loved it! Until I saw that brand name mentioned on this forum I didn't even realize it existed. Now that I know it's around I'm surprised more places around here don't carry it.

As far as feeding them on a timed schedule we have gotten them into that routine. It took quite a while as they were used to having food left out for them almost all day until they were about 1-1/2 years old. Now they get fed 4 times a day, every 6 hours. The schedule seems to work for my husband and I and for the cats. I think I'm going to start them out on half wet & half dry and see how that works.

Thanks again! <<))
 

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I'm glad they like it. My dogs really like it! My cats will eat it but they have other foods they like better.

They do make a dry formula too. Good Luck!
 

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I'm so glad to hear something worked for you! I think it's so sad when people want to buy good food for their cats but the availability just isn't there. :( Good luck to George and Herbie -- Chicken Soup is a great food. My cats love the wet AND dry!
 

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ndkittymom mentioned about trying to find a quieter can opener. Don't waste your money :) The only way I have found to open one of my cat's canned food with a can opener, so they can't hear it is to have something running that is loud enough to cover the can-opener's noise. I remember in central Calif. in the mornings when my cats were outside, they could hear the can opener as much as 70 ft. away because they would all come running whenever I got it out. :wink:
 

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Discussion Starter #17
About the quieter can opener, I know how they can hear it from a long way away. Mine have come running from afar too. That was all just a joke when I said it.

Anyway, I am sooo frustrated this morning. The cats got dry food at 6 a.m. and we ATTEMPTED giving them wet food (leftover from the portions they absolutely devoured yesterday) and neither one would eat it this time. They just sniffed it and walked away. I was really shocked when Herbie didn't even start in on it.

I don't know what to do. Could it be that the food was too cold for them? I cracked 1 can open yesterday and gave them some to eat (which they both took without question) and placed the leftovers in the fridge. That's what we tried giving them just minutes ago. I would really appreciate advice from ANYONE who may have gone through this before. What do I do??? :?
 

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I have had that happen where my kitties don't want it if it's not fresh out of the can. Do you have one of those little can covers that makes it airtight? Or you could try putting it in a tupperware container...or else you could try popping it in the microwave for a few seconds. 10 or 15 should do it. They might like it better that way.

I've found that my kitties just don't like some flavors -- but they will eat it if it's fresh out of the can. They don't refust leftovers with all foods -- only a few. Maybe yours are the same way -- and they just haven't found what they like yet.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Thanks for the reply, ForJazz. Since the last message I wrote on here, we left the food out for about 20 minutes on the countertop and offered it to the cats again. George ate his up at that point. Herbie still didn't want any though.

Shortly after this Herbie went over to the patio door and meowed, looked at my husband and I, look at the door handle, etc., etc. We figured he wanted to go out for some fresh air, so we let him. He was out for about 15 minutes, came back in, and after washing himself off and relaxing a couple minutes he, too, ate the wet food we left out.

About this can cover... I'm assuming this is something that you snap on the original cat food can, right? No, we don't have one of these but if we did get one would it mean that their open cat food could sit in a cupboard until the next feeding or would it still have to be refrigerated?

I have always heard "never store food in the refrigerator in a metal can if the can has been opened." Doesn't this go the same for cat food?

Together, they eat a little less than half the can per serving so they go through almost a can a day (IF THEY EAT IT!). We were putting the leftovers from the open can into a small tupperware-like container and setting it in the fridge.
 

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It's a little plastic cover that fits over two sizes of cans, yes. You still have to refrigerate the food. I am not aware that it's bad to refrigerate in an aluminum can...I have been doing it my entire life so I hope not. :(
 
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