Alternatives to expensive Urinary SO food

carriej

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Hi folks,

I have had my kitties (all boys) on Urinary SO food as two of them have had crystals. However, at 100$ a bag it's not practical for me to feed three cats this food. I am continuing to feed it - but in all honesty 100$ is a steep price for a bag of cat food that doesn't even have that great of ingredients.

Before the crystals my cats were all eating taste of the wild along with wellness wet food. I remember when one got crystals I was disappointed, but when two got them I switched to the expensive vet food.

Are there any good alternatives that will keep my kitties healthy?
 

finnlacey

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Basically wet, grain free food. I don't know why they got crystals on the Taste of the Wild but Wellness is notorious for this. I've seen this happen a lot on the FLUTD forums. I'd go back to feeding only wet food and switch brands to something else if you can, like Merrick, Weruva, Evo, Nature's Variety, any of those will do if you can. Wet food is really the best for keeping everything hydrated and breaking up. 
 
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carriej

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I will have a look for some of those brands certainly.

I like to feed dry in the morning and wet at suppertime.

I guess I am just so nervous of it happening again - one cat in particular has a sensitive little weewee it seems!
 

finnlacey

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I can understand that, it doesn't take much after they've gotten it one time. Dry food though shouldn't be fed anymore with crystals, blockages and or FUS/FLUTD. 
 

peaches08

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Mine have not had crystals, but have you checked out www.catinfo.org? Raw is cheaper for me than canned. And my guys are much healthier for it! My cats increased their urine output when I switched them to raw. Prior to that they were on canned with water added to it.
 
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carriej

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If I had the time to feed raw, I could. However due to time constraints and the fact that I spend a lot ..a lot  of time in the hospital (autoimmune disease) I would be a bit scared to make the commitment to feeding raw.

I could switch to wet if it's better for my kitties. What sort of differences will I need to adjust to keep their teeth healthy?
 
 

peaches08

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Wet food is better as finnlacey mentioned. Check out the low carb varieties for healthy options.

Their are commercial raw foods available as well if you want to give that a try.
 

blueyedgirl5946

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I had two cats with struvite cryystals. They ate Hills prescription urinary dry kibble for years and never had any more problems. I think the important thing is to find what works for your cat. Another thing that I did is give them only filtered water.
 

flintmccullough

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I-have-a-crystal-kitty,his-vet-at-that-time,put-him-on-Hills-Science-Diet-SD,then-CD,dry.The-crystals-came-back.I-said,something-ain't-right-with-this-picture,so-I-did-extensive-research,now,no-more-crystals,and-that-was-about-6-7-years-ago.

The-biggest-cause-of-crystals,is-grains,which-is-corn,wheat,corn-flour,wheat-flour,corn-gluten,wheat-gluten,which,Royal-Canin-Urinary-SO-is-full-of.

Chicken meal, rice, corn gluten meal, ground corn, chicken fat, natural flavors, wheat gluten, powdered cellulose, salt, dried brewers yeast, dried egg product, potassium chloride, anchovy oil (source of EPA/DHA), sodium bisulfate, calcium sulfate, soya oil, taurine, choline chloride, DL-methionine, Vitamins DL-alpha tocopherol acetate (source of vitamin E), niacin supplement, biotin, riboflavin supplement (vitamin B2), D-calcium pantothenate, pyridoxine hydrochloride (vitamin B6), vitamin A acetate, thiamine mononitrate (vitamin B1), folic acid, vitamin B12 supplement, vitamin D3 supplement), Trace Minerals (zinc oxide, zinc proteinate, ferrous sulfate, manganese proteinate, copper proteinate, copper sulfate, manganous oxide, calcium iodate, sodium selenite], marigold extract (Tagetes erecta L.), rosemary extract, preserved with natural mixed tocopherols (source of vitamin E) and citric acid

http://www.chewy.com/cat/royal-canin-veterinary-diet-urinary/dp/35149

They-have-to-be-fed-a-grain-free-food,I-feed-Blue-Wilderness,and-they-have-to-be-fed-wet,mixed-with-water,so-its-real-soupy,to-keep-them-flushed-out.Keeping-them-flushed-out-is-the-key,it-is-imperative.

I-took-him-off-wet,twice-a-day,and-gave-him-wet,once-a-day,and-dry-once-a-day,trying-to-save-money.In-and-out-of-the-cat-box,in-he-went.My-vet-asked,what-did-you-change?I-told-her,she-said,he-HAS-to-be-on-wet,twice-a-day.I-did,now-no-more-probs,lol.

They-also-cannot-be-given-tap-water,there-is-too-many-minerals-in-it.They-have-to-be-given-purified-drinking-water,not-spring,not-distilled,but-purified,that-that-too,is-from-my-vet.I-get-the-store-brand-gal-jugs.Some-use-Brita,some-use-PURR.

There-is-no-such-thing,as-Urinary-Food,its-just-a-marketing-ploy,you-have-to-look-at-the-ingredients.There-is-no-magic-formula.In-fact,they-are-very-high-in-salt,which-makes-the-kitty-drink-more,so-they-are-on-the-right-track,lol,but-giving-them-way-to-much-salt,to-make-them-drink-more,is-not-the-way-to-go,and-really,its-not-even-enough.

You-also-need-to-have-a-Urinealsys-done.They-insert-a-needle-into-the-bladder,for-a-clean-catch.They-test-the-urine-for-crystals,bacteria,and-the-ph-level.If-the-ph-level-is-too-concentrated,it-burns-their-bladder-walls,and-makes-them-feel-like-they-have-to-go,even-if-they-don't,hence,in-and-out-of-the-cat-box.It-is-also-very-painfull,for-those-that-have-had-UTI's-know.

Keeping-them-flushed-out,keeps-the-urine-from-getting-too-concentrated.

Blue-Wilderness-cans-come-in-3.0-(the-small-ones)-and-5.5-(the-larger-ones).The-smaller-ones-are-$1.49-and-the-larger-ones-are-$1.69.

The-larger-cans,even-tho-more-expensive,are-more-economical.You-give-1/4-can,per-feeding,so-one-can,would-last-you-2-days.

Blue-Wilderness-is-by-Blue-Buffalo,and-you-can-get-it-at-petsmart-or-petco,on-ocassion,they-are-on-sale.

http://www.bluebuffalo.com/cat-food/wilderness-chicken-canned

Finnlacy-is-right,Wellness-is-know,for-urinary-issues.All-ya-gotta-do,is-do-a-search-for-it,lol.

Here-is-a-good-site-to-read.

http://catinfo.org/

Best-of-luck.
 

angels mommy

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My cat Angel has had cystitis 3xs sense August. Not sure why, as he has been on good food for a long time. Stress can sometimes be a trigger.

I feed only wet, & also add water to it, to make a runny oatmeal consistency. Because I do this he gets a lot of water (only from the Pur filter), so he doesn't drink any, but I still always have some out for him.   It's best to feed grain free only.

I feed By Nature, or Before the grain wet. Both 95-96% meat protein, no by products. I wasn't sure about B.G because he was on this when he first started having trouble,(along w/ some raw) ,

 but sense learned it's fine, a lot of people on the FLUTID yahoo site feed it to their cats. He is eating it now, while I am waiting for the case of by nature I ordered to come in.

I also learned from LDG, that the ingredient in the Rx food that helps lower pH & dissolve the crystals is the amino acid, L-Methionine.  I am now giving this to Angel daily, (but have to keep checking his pH on it) to help dissolve crystals, w/o using that food full of bad ingredients.

 ( I would only use it if that's what you are trying to do, as otherwise, it can lower the pH to much, then you have another kind if crystal issue on your hands.)

If you are not dealing w/ any issues right now, and just trying to keep it under control through diet, I would say any meaty, grain free wet should be good.

You may also want to check out the FLUTID Yahoo group as it was suggested to me to learn more.  There is also a lot of info in my threads, sense I have gone through this 3xs now, people have given

a lot of info. LDG is also very knowledgeable!

For some reason, I can't copy & paste the links to my threads, but you can always click on threads started under my profile.
 

I hope this helps.
 
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cannegardner

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Some cats like my moon kitteh are sensitive to phosphorus and other minerals. We were feeding him the best of the best grain free wet foods and couldn't understand why he still got crystals. So it's not always about the grain or meat content.
 

angels mommy

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Some cats like my moon kitteh are sensitive to phosphorus and other minerals. We were feeding him the best of the best grain free wet foods and couldn't understand why he still got crystals. So it's not always about the grain or meat content.
That's very interesting. I didn't know that. If Angel continues to relapse. (Praying he doesn't, 3xs is enough!!), I will have to look into that & mention it to my Vet.   What do you feed?
 

runekeeper

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My two cents may not be of great help, but my older male kitty had bladder stones several years ago and he ate Purina One's Urinary Tract Health dry food ever since. Never had a kidney or urinary issue since. Of course, that could also be a coincidence. Up until his food was switched, I think he was eating some other thing from Purina. I can't remember what - it's been quite a while since that happened. But I agree that $100 for a bag of food is steep - even though your kitties are worth it, it won't do anyone any good if you drive yourself into the poor house from buying kitty food. If you're interested, I think a smaller bag of the Purina formula is $15 and I'd say it lasts a month between two cats.
 

cannegardner

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My moon had his first blockage last year. Our vet said three times and they would do the surgery to cut off part of his penis. I can't do that to him so even though I hate the ingredients in the urinary food, they are designed to correct the issue. My guy had so much mucus and gravel in him he was like a cement truck. I won't take the risk since he was eating the best to begin with. Now he's allowed to nibble Royal canin SO all day and for his canned meals he likes the science diet CD and the Purina Ur which is meatier and lower carb. We even had to stop his dental chews. No fish either ever. Too much phos. Now my outside ferals are getting the leftover cases of instinct and blue buffalo and wellness and the frozen raw I had leftover.
 
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faecat13

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How old is your main cat that is sensitive?

One of mine would get a UTI like crazy. At first I switch to a flush able litter thinking that it was the dust from the clay aggitating his weewee, I switched his food. It got to a point where I would call the vet and say I need a refill on his UTI meds. he would get baths because I thought he couldnt clean himself all that well. I tried so much and pondered why...

Then one day it simply stopped. Right around the time he turned 4. All the vet could say was that he just grew out of them. 
 

feralnomore

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I trapped a litter in Feb. 2007 and had them all fixed the next day: 3 boys and 1 girl. In spite of many ads online and posts on bulletin boards all over a 50 mile radius, I never found them homes.  All 3 boys have had urinary problems and crystals. One had to have surgery to remove a stone and he is also diabetic. 

First off, your vet is charging too much for a bag. I buy the biggest one at my vet, who charges $47.25 for the 17 lb bag. There are vets closer to me who charge up to $70 for the same bag. 

You should definitely look online for cheaper places to buy it. 

I had them on a mixture of tuna and their fave: Purina dry original, until one of the boys started straining again even after a vet visit in February. He had been squatting all over the house (but not peeing) one night, then screamed out in pain 2 times during the night, so the next morning I went to a temporary vet because when my vet clinic was closed. She told me that the tuna and all seafood, though wet, is bad, bad, bad.

I had them on the SO earlier in the year, but didn't think it was helping. They've now been on it 3 weeks, so I'll see. 

I have an income of less than $15k yearly, so I can relate to your woes, though I don't want to feed them junk that will end up costing more in the long run due to vet bills. 
 

angels mommy

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Yes, tuna is bad!  I also had to put Angel on the Rx food. I tried to avoid it, because of the crappy ingredients, but you know what?  Because of it, he had his first "all clear" no more crystals urinalysis

last month. he was on it for 3-4 wks at that point. he will have to be on it indefinitely. at this point, if it works, he will probably stay on it for yrs. if not the rest of his life.

I too am on a tight budget after loosing my job in Feb. but the Rx food was only about 10 cents more than the good stuff I was buying him. ( Before the Grain & by nature).

I went with the Purina UR, because my vet & I looked at it, & it seemed to be the best (ingredient wise) out of all the ones there. (Hills & Royal Cane).

It is 1.60/can. It cost me 38.00 & change, for a case of 24. To me, it's well worth it, & far less than more visits & ultrasounds! (Trust me, I have a care credit balance to prove it!)

He has to loose another lb. so he gets one can a day. Half for breakfast, & the other half for dinner. (&w/ filtered water mixed in of course). So, that's only .80 cents per meal.

Not bad for Rx food. The only treats I give are the pure bites dehydrated turkey. 

Good luck with everything!
 

sparklexo

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Great thread! My vet just recommended my kitty be put on Royal Canin Urinary S/O for very mild (within normal range) crystals, but the ingredients sound like crap, and it's super pricy. Not that price would be an issue, but I feel like it doesn't have anything healthy in it and it's packed with grains. I'm debating ignoring and going with a cheaper urinary food (like Purina) in combination with a grain free wet. She was being fed grain based dry food only before (not by me) so I'm thinking that may have caused the issue in the first place. I kind of feel like the whole 'urinary food' thing (aside from changing PH) is just a marketing ploy...
 

otto

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Great thread! My vet just recommended my kitty be put on Royal Canin Urinary S/O for very mild (within normal range) crystals, but the ingredients sound like crap, and it's super pricy. Not that price would be an issue, but I feel like it doesn't have anything healthy in it and it's packed with grains. I'm debating ignoring and going with a cheaper urinary food (like Purina) in combination with a grain free wet. She was being fed grain based dry food only before (not by me) so I'm thinking that may have caused the issue in the first place. I kind of feel like the whole 'urinary food' thing (aside from changing PH) is just a marketing ploy...
Skip the dry food all together and feed her the grain free, low carbohydrate wet only, no fish. If her urine is in "normal range" why on earth would the vet recommend that stuff anyway? Perhaps it's time for a new vet. Feed a high meat protein low carb wet diet, the rest should take care of itself. :)

www.catinfo.org has a list of canned foods and their carb content.
 
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