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Wet vs. Dry

5700 Views 55 Replies 16 Participants Last post by  ForJazz
Is it okay to just feed dry food or is there any reason to give cats some wet other than just because they like it?
I have been feeding Stormy just dry for some time now. Then I got Justin and I decided to feed them both some wet as a treat for getting along. I got Iams because I didn't know any better and also had some Whiskas pouches that were given to me. Justin ate it all up, Stormy wouldn't touch it. Then I got some Fancy Feast because I didn't have time to get to a real pet store. Justin ate it, Stormy wouldn't. Should I try again with better quality wet food? I'm just wondering why Stormy doesn't seem to want wet food! She has gotten much more picky lately but recently switched from Purina One to Felidae (dry) with no problems at all. She doesn't seem to want people food either, other than milk sometimes. Justin however will eat little bits of chicken and other meats that I have given him.
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juliaw- when you say 'chicken neck' what do you mean? like, the actual bone part? could you provide a link? i live next to an organic foods store, and i was thinking perhaps i could find them there, but not unless i know what i'm looking for! :D
Hi faile,

Yup, it's the actual chicken neck. It's mainly bone. You HAVE to feed them raw, cooked is dangerous. I generally buy 2 kilos at a time (they're about $2.00AU per kilo), and freeze them in bags of 4 (I have 7 cats, but not all eat necks).

Chicken necks are easy to buy here, we get them from the supermarket. I do know a friend in Canada had probs getting them, she had to ask her butcher because she couldn't get them in the supermarket there. If you can't get chicken necks, chicken wings are just as good. Most people tend to just feed the end bit of the wing....not the whole bit.

I did post a link to an article about chicken necks in a previous post, to be honest there's not much online about them, which is why I think I'll have to write an article on them. As I said, they're popular in Australia, every vet recommends them. I find them heaps better than the Hills TD (although my cats love those biccies), and they're so much cheaper. You only have to give them 2-3 times a week.
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Okay, I hope I don't sound stupid when I say this but I was always told to not feed chicken bones because they can splinter. Especially neck bones... is this just an old wive's tale? :oops: I was always told to NOT feed my dogs chicken bones because they can choke...?

Oh, and did you guys read about that study that compared cat colonies fed on raw vs. cooked food? I'm sure it's quite old but I just came across it the other day. They said that in three generations that the cats fed cooked food could no longer reproduce and some had physical abnormalities! And if you put these cats back on raw, within three generations, everything returned back to normal. :shock:
Cooked animal bones are the problem, never feed that to cats and dogs.

Uncooked is fine, if you do freeze them before their use, make sure you partically thaw them before giving them to your pet.

Nile: You must find me that link so I can read it. :shock:
Here you go...this is the best one I found. It contains quotes from a book that details the above study. I just don't know what to think! :? I will try to add some wet into my cats' diets, but Stormy is so picky. Any suggestions for some good high quality wet foods? I feed Felidae for the dry.
I have heard many things about wet food and dry food. The good things, the bad things, etc. Dry food helps clean your cat's teeth. I heard wet food can cause crystals in your cat's urinary tract and bladder. My mom had a cat that lived to be 14 and he only lived on dry food, no wet food ever.
So I think the way of this is the fact that we have to make a decision for ourselves. Call several vets and get their opinions. Do research and see what you can find. That's what I am going to do!! I feed my cat dry food, and occasionally wet, and he is VERY healthy.
My vet also recommended that I use mostly dry and some canned food. Your vet is your best resource, if you believe him to be a good vet.
most of my cats eat both.
i give them wet food in the morning and than at night (about a half a 5 oz. can each time) and they munch on dry in between.

except spyder, he has never eaten dry food, i can't even get him to smell it let alone take a bite of it!! so i give him a little extra wet food in the afternoon.
wait- is it the wet or the dry that can cause crystals?
Please read this whole post. This excerpt turned out to be written by a wet cat food company. It sounds very scientific, doesn't it?) There might be some truth here, but this article is just one more way to sell a product.

Often overlooked is the significance of protein in the acid formation in the body. A high protein diet will assure natural acid levels in the body and a low urinary pH. Contrary to common belief, a diet high in protein does not cause kidney disorders or lead to renal failure, whereas dehydration is damaging to the kidneys and, as a result of feeding an all dry diet, the long term dehydration is a possible cause of chronic renal failure in cats.
The article continues with the statement that drinking water is not natural to a cat! THIS IS A WET CAT FOOD COMPANY! So you see the problem? There may be much truth in some of this article. But I have never seen any cat that didn't drink water. Consider lions, tigers, and "house cats" that are feral. (That's a contradiction in terms! You know what I mean, same species.) So many of the sources I found had a product to sell!! Dig through the sources, but discuss this with your vet, please!
According to this source, it is not natural for cats to drink water in the wild, because they are getting enough moisture in their food-especially those dry foods high in carbohydrates, not protein. We should provide wet food and water. This is only one source of information, and it is BIASED. What we need is a non-biased source. HARD TO FIND!! You think you have a good one, and then the truth comes out. Be cautious and talk to your vet. I feed wet and dry, and always have cold water available. The whole first page of Google's references had an axe to grind. Talk to your vet, please.

Please forgive the capitals. I want to make sure you know the problem with believing every source. It just gets more and more confusing! I'm getting to the point of not trusting anything that doesn't quote a veterinary textbook!
:( My vet said to feed both wet and dry. That's what I do.
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My cat is sort of a special case. He's diabetic so he should be eating wet food because dry food has too many carbs. However, he's always hated wet foods, so I have to find him the highest protein, lowest carb dry food I can find. I had him on Purina DM for a while, but his BMs smelled so bad that I had to take him off of it. Right now he gets Eukanuba senior formula in the morning and Bil-jac in the evening. I should try to switch him to a wet food so I can lower his insulin injections, but so many of them even have rice added now.

I don't know if it matters, but his teeth are terrible even though he's been on dry food his whole life. He's had one tooth pulled. It's kind of nice, though, because when he has to have antibiotics (his diabetes makes him prone to bladder infections), I can put the syringe right in the space where his tooth would be and squeeze the liquid right in. There's no need to try to pry his mouth open.
If the vet said to feed him all wet food because of his Diabetes, ask him what he would think of baby food meat or using a food processor to make your own. (Before Gerber thought about selling it in jars, people ground up their own--and there were only hand tools!) Then you'd know exactly what he's getting. I'm so sorry you're having this problem All the more reason to get as much info as you can from your vet. Good luck!
My vet was extraordinarily helpful when Sabby was diagnosed. In fact, she saved his life. I had taken him in to be put down (he was extremely sick, bad tempered, incontinent, shabby-looking, etc.) and she asked if I wouldn't mind if she ran some tests first. She kept the clinic open late for us to get the results back the same day while we waited. She taught me how to give injections and set appointments for me every week for fructosamine tests. She only charged me for the office visits and did the tests for free. We discussed the foods that were appropriate for Sabby. When we had him stabilized we started bringing him in monthly and eventually got down to every six months. Sabby is doing very well now.

I've done everything for Sabby with the cooperation and advice of my veterinarian and I strongly suggest others do the same.

And it's with much sadness that I had to say goodbye to her when she moved away. She recommended another vet for me, though.

I miss you, Dr. Rehmer. :(

(edit) Whoops, I forgot the point of this post. haha!

That's very good advice. Thank you very much. I will talk to my new vet about that possibility.
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What a wonderful vet you had! I can only imagine how upset you were when he left. He's a real stand out!
Jeanie said:
What a wonderful vet you had! I can only imagine how upset you were when he left. He's a real stand out!
I'm not embarrassed to admit it...I cried. Ok, well I'm a little embarrassed. :oops: I haven't met my new vet yet. I think I'll take Sabby in for that paw gnawing thing he's been doing and get acquainted with him.

Sorry for the hijack...
Jeanie said:
What we need is a non-biased source. HARD TO FIND!! You think you have a good one, and then the truth comes out.
I know what you mean Jeanie.
This is a reliable, unbiased article which has been peer reviewed and published in the JAMVA:

For other reliable articles you might be interested in searching through these sites:
Thanks, Opokki. Here's a non-biased and professional paragraph that explains how a cat handles the water issue. (from, Opokki's first source.):

Cats have a less sensitive response to thirst and dehydration than dogs or other omnivores, and they adjust their water intake to the dry-matter content of their diet rather than the moisture content.37 This means that cats eating commercial dry foods will consume approximately half the amount of water (in their diet and through drinking), compared with cats eating canned foods.1 Feeding canned foods increases water intake and urine volume; thus, it will decrease the concentration of urolith-forming minerals in the urine. In older cats that tend to produce urine with a lower concentration, an increase in water consumption becomes even more important to avoid dehydration and development of prerenal azotemia. However, feeding canned foods or moistened dry foods will increase accumulation of dental tartar and the resulting periodontal disease

So, provide some moistened food or canned and some high protein crunchy, if you want to have good dental health and the protein cats need. Some cats have genetic predispositions to problems with the urinary tract. Discuss the info Opokki has provided with your vet, and get his opinion. You will be able to discuss the subject intelligently. Thanks for the sources, Opokki! :)
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What we should feed our animals is always interesting cause basically everyone says different things.

Many people think they can feed the cats half dry and half wet. However, if we analyze the food we will find problems doing this. Dry substance and wet substance are not the same and it makes a huge difference in nutrition. So we have to recalculate the nutrition in the wet food so we have the figures comparable with dry substance. Believe me, it's a whole science.

I'm just about to learn how to make my own food to the cats. At the moment I feed them high quality dry food since I have little faith in the wet food. I've seen what they make wet food of and it's disgusting.

I must say that this myth that dry food causes crystals in the urine is making me tired. It's not the dry food itself. It's the contents. To high Ph-value and too much magnesium causes crystals! High quality cat food (dry or wet) have the proper amounts of magnesium and a good Ph-value in the food.

As I said, I'm about to learn how to make my own cat food. Some people believe in the BARF-method (bone-and-raw-meat) but I don't.

People says that uncooked bones from chicken is safe. How come that many both cats and dogs dies because of raw bone splinters in their throats? And giving raw meat to cats can not be considered safe. Just because it works on dogs it doesn't mean it works for cats. A lot of meat (more than we know about) is contaminated with salmonella which is quite harmless for a dog but can be deadly for a cat. So chicken meat (that people often recommend) should be avoided when feeding cats since it's mostly chicken meat that's contaminated with salmonella.

I believe in making the food at home when you know what the contents are. But I belive in cooking the food. Of course I wouldn't give a cat (or a dog) cooked bones, but I wouldn't give them chicken bones that raw or cooked easily splinters.

I believe in giving each cat exactly what it needs, every cat has individual needs of nutrition. But if I have to choose between dry and wet food, dry comes first. All this talk about cats that eat dry food doesn't get enough water. It can easily be checked and I know that my cats drink enough water.

Remember all that you can see by the way the cat looks and acts if the food your giving it is good or not because no matter what you think it's always the cat that has the final saying in the matter :wink:
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To quote Sol: Believe me, it's a whole science.

I couldn't agree more! The more you read, the more you realize that. I feed my cats dry food, with some canned sliced chicken as a treat. My cats also drink a lot of water. The source Opokki provided (written by a vet) says that cats REGULATE their own moisture needs by drinking additional water, if needed. I agree with you completely regarding people's opinions. They vary so much, and everyone is so sure she's right! I would not accept a rated list from anyone other than a veterinary nutritionist--and my guess is that their opinions also vary. re: raw chicken necks? I learned that was a 'no no" when I was a child-from my mother. I can't believe people are actually feeding anything with bones to their cats.

It's nice to see your posts, Sol!
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