Alternatives to expensive Urinary SO food

otto

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I too have a cat with crystals and have been feeding dry C/D kibble for YEARS without any issue. I think it is a MYTH that one MUST provide wet food or be a 'bad' caretaker so such cats. It's an opinion of some elevated to 'need'....
Cats are strict obligate carnivores. This is fact. They were not designed to eat dry corn nuggets. Why wouldn't you want your cat to have the best quality of life he can have? Feeding dry corn nuggets is not providing him that. A cat cannot feel his best eating such stuff.

If you fed him what he was meant to eat you'd be amazed at the difference in him. How often does he puke?
 

smmm

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The issue is the grain free food. We have been marketed to think that it is best and ideally it i, but it is the other ingredients they use that causes the problems. If you read some of the ingredient info you will see min. ash content is extremely high. I have several cats and do rescue (so several more) and have tried 3 different grain free brands (Blue, Natural Balance and Whole Earth) and the result ends the same for most of them - urinary tract issues. Get them off grain free and I don't care if it is wet, get them off.

You have to use a urinary tract food formula and right now Science Diet is better than others. I tried Purina One since it is cheaper, but my cats were not satisfied with the amount they ate, so something is probably lacking in the food or increasing their appetite. I just switched to SD and not thrilled with the price or the size of the kibble - very big - but they aren't begging any longer. If yours are not drinking enough water add water bowls in other places of the house. They will drink more from those other places not by the food. Filter the water for better taste if you can. After time and issues resolved you can add a little wet food back in as a daily treat to the dry. I give my cats a teaspoon morning and night of a cheaper, non-urinary formula, and no issues.

Trust me on this.

In rescue I have come across several people that lost their male cats which were on Blue. The signs don't show until it is critical in males and people aren't educated enough to know they have to get them to the vet right away. These brands with grain free are not worth the risk if you have seen a hint of issues in your cat.
 

Ladewyn

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The issue is the grain free food. We have been marketed to think that it is best and ideally it i, but it is the other ingredients they use that causes the problems. If you read some of the ingredient info you will see min. ash content is extremely high. I have several cats and do rescue (so several more) and have tried 3 different grain free brands (Blue, Natural Balance and Whole Earth) and the result ends the same for most of them - urinary tract issues. Get them off grain free and I don't care if it is wet, get them off.

You have to use a urinary tract food formula and right now Science Diet is better than others. I tried Purina One since it is cheaper, but my cats were not satisfied with the amount they ate, so something is probably lacking in the food or increasing their appetite. I just switched to SD and not thrilled with the price or the size of the kibble - very big - but they aren't begging any longer. If yours are not drinking enough water add water bowls in other places of the house. They will drink more from those other places not by the food. Filter the water for better taste if you can. After time and issues resolved you can add a little wet food back in as a daily treat to the dry. I give my cats a teaspoon morning and night of a cheaper, non-urinary formula, and no issues.

Trust me on this.

In rescue I have come across several people that lost their male cats which were on Blue. The signs don't show until it is critical in males and people aren't educated enough to know they have to get them to the vet right away. These brands with grain free are not worth the risk if you have seen a hint of issues in your cat.
That's a pretty big claim with little to know evidence. Could you provide some sources? Why should we trust you on this? Are you a cat nutritionist, or have you studied cat urinary health?

I've heard that Blue is a particularly big culprit in health issues, however, I've not really heard anything from grain free in general; I've yet to see specific complaints about Wellness, Nutrience, or Go! brand foods. I've seen great reviews for those foods, in fact. Yet many people who boast grain free seem to say there's something wrong with Blue. So just because you've come across people using that one brand with issues, doesn't mean it's an issue across all grain free foods. So a bit more to back up your claim would be nice.
 

vakota

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Hello

I'm new to this site but came across this thread while researching food options for kittie who has urinary issues.  I've been pricing grain free wet cat food and it's very expensive.  According to what I've read, it's the grains that are causing the problems.  Couldn't you use freeze dried chicken with chicken broth and chicken scraps as an alternative?  I've found a really great deal on #10 cans of freeze dried chicken, and although it's still expensive it's cheaper than buying wet cat food.
 

angels mommy

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That's a pretty big claim with little to know evidence. Could you provide some sources? Why should we trust you on this? Are you a cat nutritionist, or have you studied cat urinary health?

I've heard that Blue is a particularly big culprit in health issues, however, I've not really heard anything from grain free in general; I've yet to see specific complaints about Wellness, Nutrience, or Go! brand foods. I've seen great reviews for those foods, in fact. Yet many people who boast grain free seem to say there's something wrong with Blue. So just because you've come across people using that one brand with issues, doesn't mean it's an issue across all grain free foods. So a bit more to back up your claim would be nice.
I agree. When Angel went through cystitis "the first time," I was only feeding good, grain free food. I think back then it was Merrick's Before the Grain, & Nature's Balance that Pet Smart used to carry. 

These did not help. After getting it a second time, i wouldn't put him through it anymore, trying to find a "healthy" grain free food. I HAD to put him on a Rx food. Even my vet agreed to WET ONLY, for the extra moisture. ( While he was going through it, I also had to give him fluids at home every other day, to help flush out the bladder). 

The vet knew how I felt about Rx food, & the crappy ingredients, so she looked at all 3 urinary foods they carried, & the Purina SO UR had the least of the evils. He stayed on that for about a year. At that point, I wanted to find a healthier alternative to the Rx food, but one that would still meet his needs. That's when I found a natural pet food store here in town, w/ educated people working there that could truly help!

The suggested the  "Dave's" brand to me. I believe it was the magnesium formula, that was for urinary.* It's a formula made to mimic the urinary Rx foods, but healthier! I bought a couple of cans for Angel to try.

He liked it, so I emailed the label to my vet to check out, view the ingredients, etc.. & she ok'd it, with scheduling a follow up ultrasound about a month after he's been eating it. The ultrasound showed still no crystals in the bladder, & all was good to continue. He stayed on that for years, until I lost him in February to lymphoma.

I have posted it on this thread before, but for any new people who haven't seen it, here is the link to the Dave's. I completely recommend it!!  My baby did well on it, & much better ings. than the Rx food.

It's also a nice small company. After having such good results on it, I emailed them to tell them about it, & thank them for making such a product, & Dave himself emailed me back! He also used my story on their page, after asking permission.  

I was lucky enough to find it at a natural pet food store in town, but here it is on Chewey.com 

https://www.chewy.com/cat/daves-pet-food-restricted-diet/dp/101617
 

otto

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Hello
I'm new to this site but came across this thread while researching food options for kittie who has urinary issues.  I've been pricing grain free wet cat food and it's very expensive.  According to what I've read, it's the grains that are causing the problems.  Couldn't you use freeze dried chicken with chicken broth and chicken scraps as an alternative?  I've found a really great deal on #10 cans of freeze dried chicken, and although it's still expensive it's cheaper than buying wet cat food.
No, that is not balanced. And if you are talking about cans of human chicken, that is not appropriate for cats, too much sodium, for one thing .

What you can do is feed a homemade raw diet, this will provide the moisture your cat needs and the meat which is appropriate for her being a carnivore. You can balance it by doing a prey model diet, or you can use a premix meat completer such as EZcomplete made by Food Fur Life.

Good quality canned food won't cost that much, and it is certainly cheaper than endless vet bills, not only now, but in the future, which feeding any dry food is going to lead to.

While it is true that grains, not only destroy the digestion, but create an alkaline urine, the most important thing, for a cat, is moisture.. Moisture from the food. A raw diet, or a canned diet will provide this. Low carb is second, and again, a raw diet will be low carb, you'd have to learn to read labels to keep a canned diet low carb. (carbohydrates are not appropriate for cats, especially cats with urinary tract issues. Carbohydrates create an alkaline urine, which is one of the many reasons those "prescription" foods are so incredibly inappropriate, especially the dry ones)
 
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hellomisskitty

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I agree. When Angel went through cystitis "the first time," I was only feeding good, grain free food. I think back then it was Merrick's Before the Grain, & Nature's Balance that Pet Smart used to carry. 
These did not help. After getting it a second time, i wouldn't put him through it anymore, trying to find a "healthy" grain free food. I HAD to put him on a Rx food. Even my vet agreed to WET ONLY, for the extra moisture. ( While he was going through it, I also had to give him fluids at home every other day, to help flush out the bladder). 
The vet knew how I felt about Rx food, & the crappy ingredients, so she looked at all 3 urinary foods they carried, & the Purina SO UR had the least of the evils. He stayed on that for about a year. At that point, I wanted to find a healthier alternative to the Rx food, but one that would still meet his needs. That's when I found a natural pet food store here in town, w/ educated people working there that could truly help!
The suggested the  "Dave's" brand to me. I believe it was the magnesium formula, that was for urinary.* It's a formula made to mimic the urinary Rx foods, but healthier! I bought a couple of cans for Angel to try.
He liked it, so I emailed the label to my vet to check out, view the ingredients, etc.. & she ok'd it, with scheduling a follow up ultrasound about a month after he's been eating it. The ultrasound showed still no crystals in the bladder, & all was good to continue. He stayed on that for years, until I lost him in February to lymphoma.

I have posted it on this thread before, but for any new people who haven't seen it, here is the link to the Dave's. I completely recommend it!!  My baby did well on it, & much better ings. than the Rx food.
It's also a nice small company. After having such good results on it, I emailed them to tell them about it, & thank them for making such a product, & Dave himself emailed me back! He also used my story on their page, after asking permission.  
I was lucky enough to find it at a natural pet food store in town, but here it is on Chewey.com 

https://www.chewy.com/cat/daves-pet-food-restricted-diet/dp/101617
Thanks to angels mommy angels mommy I switched my girl to Dave's and she absolutely loves it! I used to have to do everything I could think of to get her to eat the RC Urinary SO but she loves her Dave's! I've been it to her for close to a year and she continues to do well with it.
 

angels mommy

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Thanks to @Angels mommy I switched my girl to Dave's and she absolutely loves it! I used to have to do everything I could think of to get her to eat the RC Urinary SO but she loves her Dave's! I've been it to her for close to a year and she continues to do well with it.
That makes me SO Happy to hear!!!!!!  I have happy tears in my eyes in memory of Angel. I am so happy the Dave's is working for your girl.
  I can't recommend it enough!!  It really is great stuff!  
 

hellomisskitty

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:clap: :clap: That makes me SO Happy to hear!!!!!!  I have happy tears in my eyes in memory of Angel. I am so happy the Dave's is working for your girl. :hugs:   I can't recommend it enough!!  It really is great stuff!  
I was really struggling with getting Kitty to eat and you saved the day. Truly. I was constantly stressed out about getting her to eat this food she hated but needed to eat because of the crystal history. I disliked the RC SO ingredients and the price. Your advice has made such a difference in Kitty's life and mine. Thank you. Angel continues to work miracles [emoji]10084[/emoji]️
 

angels mommy

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I was really struggling with getting Kitty to eat and you saved the day. Truly. I was constantly stressed out about getting her to eat this food she hated but needed to eat because of the crystal history. I disliked the RC SO ingredients and the price. Your advice has made such a difference in Kitty's life and mine. Thank you. Angel continues to work miracles [emoji]10084[/emoji]️
Awwww, you have made my night!  I am so glad Kitty is doing well, & so glad she likes the Dave's. Yes, I think my little boy is doing that too. 


 It's hard to believe this Wednesday, the 5th will be 8 months already! 
 

You'll have to give Miss Kitty lots of kisses from her "Auntie Kelly" 
 

crockettvice

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Hello everyone,

Unfortunately I had to put down this poor little guy that is now my avatar for these message boards (name was Teddy).  About 10 years ago, he was pretty sick and having major anxiety issues so we took him to a Vet.  They recommended that we buy and have him eat ONLY this food (Royal Canin Uninary SO).  Well he was only eating this food and we continued to find blood in his urine, he was throwing up, then frothing at the mouth afterwords, as well as hiding in one particular room as I assumed it was due to him not feeling well.  We nursed him along and did everything in our power to hopefully give him a good life.  Unfortunately last Tuesday, we had to have him put down as he seemed to be in just too much pain and was sufferring.  As of last nighit....one of our healthest cats (ever) threw up all over and was kind of drueling/frothing at the mouth! In the throwup was that food.  I took the food away and locked it up for the time being until I can further research it and find out if anyone else out there has had similar experiences.  I swear to god that if I get findings that prove that we were more than likely killing this poor guy his whole life and he wasn't getting better BECAUSE of this food, I will not be able to live with myself.

Has anyone out there had similar experiences or know of someone who has?  Any feedback would be GREATLY appreciated.

Thanks,

CrockettVice
 

greypaws

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I am so very sorry you lost your Teddy. Were you feeding the canned or the dry version of the Royal Canin urinary SO food? All the research I've done says that canned and water, water, water is what successfully keeps the bladder flushed so crystals don't have a chance to grow. Some cats are genetically disposed to having urinary issues, so it is very possible that you've done all you can. As for your other kitty, I'd get it to the vets ASAP. Not being a vet, I feel something else is going on with them. It will probably take testing to get to the root of the problem.

I adopted an adult cat a few months ago whom came to me with FLUD and crystals/blood in urine. I only feed canned, first the 'script RC urinary, now and transitioning him to Dave's restricted diet low in phosphorous & magnesium. I add water to his canned food and he has 3 water dishes in other places in our home. His pee is a very dilute yellow color now unlike when I first got him when it was a dark yellow/orange color and had a strong odor to it. We are doing clean catch urine samples every 6 weeks, his last one had barely a trace of blood and no crystals at all. Once we are sure that the blood is totally gone, I'll have him checked every six months. The test is only 25.00 and well worth my peace of mind. The folks on this site have been a huge help in regards to feeding along with catinfo.org where there is a whole section on urinary issues by a vet. My vet is on board with everything I've been doing and he is happy with the way things are progressing. This probably doesn't help your present question but I thought I'd share what has worked successfully for us, in case it might help in the future.
 
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lazer

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Hello everyone,

Unfortunately I had to put down this poor little guy that is now my avatar for these message boards (name was Teddy).  About 10 years ago, he was pretty sick and having major anxiety issues so we took him to a Vet.  They recommended that we buy and have him eat ONLY this food (Royal Canin Uninary SO).  Well he was only eating this food and we continued to find blood in his urine, he was throwing up, then frothing at the mouth afterwords, as well as hiding in one particular room as I assumed it was due to him not feeling well.  We nursed him along and did everything in our power to hopefully give him a good life.  Unfortunately last Tuesday, we had to have him put down as he seemed to be in just too much pain and was sufferring.  As of last nighit....one of our healthest cats (ever) threw up all over and was kind of drueling/frothing at the mouth! In the throwup was that food.  I took the food away and locked it up for the time being until I can further research it and find out if anyone else out there has had similar experiences.  I swear to god that if I get findings that prove that we were more than likely killing this poor guy his whole life and he wasn't getting better BECAUSE of this food, I will not be able to live with myself.

Has anyone out there had similar experiences or know of someone who has?  Any feedback would be GREATLY appreciated.

Thanks,

CrockettVice
I am very sorry for your loss, that is awful. 

My cat had to be on this food for a while and we still use it as his "grazing" food inside a pet feeder, which he munches on inbetween his main meals. We have not experienced any of these symptoms with ours when he was eating it exclusively nor now when he snacks on it. However if your other, healthy, cat does not actually need to be on a urinary food it is certainly not the food I would pick. We only still give it to ours because he is picky and we encourage him to eat as much as possible, and this is one of the foods he will graze on. The ingredients imo are not the greatest - not to suggest there is anything suspicious about it that I've seen, I just would see no reason to keep feeding it to a healthy cat that might not need it. Hopefully you will find some answers and closure. 
 

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My 15 year old indoor kitty has eaten Science Diet CD for years when it was discovered she had a bladder stone - no issues since, however, she's refusing to eat the Chicken and not real happy about the Fish. I heard that SD has changed the formulation? True? Is there an alternative, high ph more natural food? I really hate the crap SD uses
 

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My wife and I have two boys from the same litter, they aren't but 2.5 years old. One just developed a block three days before Thanksgiving. Emergency vet at 1 a.m., overnight stay at our regular vet as well ($700+). Now the vet says that he needs to be on Royal Canin Urinary SO. Well since one had a urinary block then the other could get one as well if we didn't feed it to both. Yes, the foods expensive, right now it's $56 for a 17.6 lb bag online from Petco and expect a 5-7 day lag time for them to process your order and get with your vet. They eat roughly 3 lbs a week in the dry food. I will say we had fed them grain free Earthborn Holistic food ($32/14lb bag) because we wanted them to have protein rich diet. Now we did install a carbon filter for the kitchen sink so we could use only filtered water for them and our humidifiers. Since the vet charges $49 for a 7 lb bag and $29 for a 3 lb I shop online only. Besides the shaved parts of my cats tail, leg and private area, you wouldn't know anything was ever wrong with him. I will not be switching to another food unless directed to do so. I just can't justify experimentation since the huge pet bill. We love our kitties and they're happy again.
 

gloriajh

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First- check out chewy.com- they have faster shipping
than Petco I think (?) I get their autoship and get a discount. You’ll need the vet prescription to verify most likely—but It’s a one time only requirement unless they want to get an updated prescription later

Second - if it were me, I’d feed them both the RC urinary SO and save them from future pain (caused by crystals) and vet costs. I understand that they can eat only this food for it to work.

I stopped my quest for looking for another food, and haven’t been sorry - my oldest just had an exam and after about 11 years on this food, the tests showed zero crystals in his urine. I feed both the canned - more moisture.
Chewy.com— RC costs=$54.09 for the 17# bag of dry, with a two day delivery - mine has tax added in that total. The autoship works great.
I’m on my IPad, and typing is laborous, so I’ll stop
Btw- I strictly avoid feeding anything fish for my other cats- has magnesium- a crystal causing agent, and then there’s the mercury to be worried about.
I quit, the auto correct and keyboard have done me in!!
 
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Hi,
I have a female that got Struvite crystals years ago. In the last few years she had Taste if the Wild river flavour.
The only thing that clears them up we have tried is Hills c/d urinary health. It is expensive and I wonder if anyone has something else that works.

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?
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?
 

beckbjj

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For clearing them up, a month of s/d is more effective than c/d. For maintenance, c/d works, but Dave's Restricted Diet Magnesium/Phosphorus also works and is cheaper and significantly better quality.
 

houseofnine

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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.
Happened to us too, with one of our boys. Thankfully he was fine because we caught the blockage early, but almost $3K in hospital bills and seeing the poor little dude with an IV and catheter..broke my heart. I wanted to crawl in the cage with him.
 
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