Best wet hypoallergenic food for cat allergies

poivre

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I have been apprised of both Science Diet and Royal Canin as being possible brands but they are dry food and my cat only takes wet. Is there such a thing as a wet hypoallergenic food for cat allergies? Norma-Jean is scratching and licking herself quite frequently.
Any advice or help would be appreciated.
(I am not too thrilled with the "animal by-products" as listed first on these products, but what's a mother to do?)
 

Maurey

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I'd personally recommend trying a high quality novel single protein wet food, isntead of hypoalergenic food -- hydrolysed food tends to be really garbage in quality, and only helps cats with protein intolerances.

Cat Person is a really great Limited ingredient food to try (though expensive), and they have a large variety of novel proteins. Other options are Koha (a bit high in carbs in some formulations, imo), Instinct, Rawz, or Merrick (they all have limited ingredient lines).
 
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poivre

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The problem is that my vet is the one who recommended the hypoallergenic for my cat's licking and scratching. Even if the ingredients are sub par, at this stage of the game I have to weight which is more important-- giving her below par food and getting rid of the allergies or letting her live with them in discomfort.
If that dry food stuff is what it takes to eradicate the allergies then I guess that is the way I am forced to go.
So, of the two recommended, which is the least junky? Hills or Royal Canin? Or am I missing a better one?
 

Maurey

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The problem is that my vet is the one who recommended the hypoallergenic for my cat's licking and scratching. Even if the ingredients are sub par, at this stage of the game I have to weight which is more important-- giving her below par food and getting rid of the allergies or letting her live with them in discomfort.
If that dry food stuff is what it takes to eradicate the allergies then I guess that is the way I am forced to go.
So, of the two recommended, which is the least junky? Hills or Royal Canin? Or am I missing a better one?
The limited ingredient novel protein diet will get rid of your cats itching, most likely more effectively than a junky dry food. Vets not specializing in nutrition or holistic care know next to nothing about nutrition, so you’re not obligated to follow their advice. If you have doubt, regardless, tell your vet that your cat refuses to eat dry food, and ask for a referral to a vet nutritionist.
 
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poivre

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Interesting you would say that because she has been on a limited Instinct cat pate which she is not crazy about (she prefers the original) and it has not helped her one bit. It's hard to get some cats to like any foods and she has been liking the Instinct original fairly well. (at least her weight shows that she's doing ok)
I tend to agree about Vets and nutrition but nothing out there is helping her get rid of the itching.(sigh!)
He warily suggested steroids which he and I both agreed was not a good idea.
She does not take well to drugs is the problem. She was on Apoquel (normally quite harmless in most animals) but she freaked out from it after 5 days (nightmares, howling, whimpering, hugging me close -- and she's not an affectionate type cat) so I stopped it and she went back to her normal self.
I am tempted to do that hypoallergenic thing for maybe a week out of her life with lousy diet food just to see if it stops her discomfort of scratching and itching. (ugh!)
 

Maurey

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Interesting you would say that because she has been on a limited Instinct cat pate which she is not crazy about (she prefers the original) and it has not helped her one bit. It's hard to get some cats to like any foods and she has been liking the Instinct original fairly well. (at least her weight shows that she's doing ok)
Most likley means she's allergic to either the protein or some of the additives in the Instinct (like the chickpeas). Is she on a novel protein (i.e. one she hadn't had before?). Could be worth trying a different novel protein from the Instinct line, and see if she improves. Did her previous food have chickpeas in it? Also, it can take some time to relieve itching after a diet change.

Are you absolutely certain it's a food allergy, and not parasites or something environmental?

I am tempted to do that hypoallergenic thing for maybe a week out of her life with lousy diet food just to see if it stops her discomfort of scratching and itching. (ugh!)
Sadly, a week generally isn't long enough to show significant improvement, but she may. If you really want to relieve the itching because it's bad, it may be worth an attempt. Keep in mind, though -- many cats will outright refuse to eat hydrolysed protein food, as it doesn't taste very good.
That said, if it does help, you can start challenging her with good quality LID foods (probably without chickpeas + novel protein), and see if she has a reaction. That said, some cats will be allergic to the fillers IN the Hypo food -- many dietary allergies will be to additives, rather than proteins.
 
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poivre

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I am going to try another food to see if it improves. She is sick of Ziwipeak rabbit, Puka-Puka chicken, she dislikes Weruva chicken, she eats Instinct original and even eats some of the Ultimate Protein.
There are no chickpeas in the Instinct foods we give. There are peas and carrots.
 
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poivre

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Maury: I am very grateful to you for all of your suggestions.
Thanks so much for taking the time to fit some pieces of the puzzle together.
We'll get through this.
Big smiles.
 

Maurey

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Best of luck! Hopefully you’ll find a food she likes and stops scratching on! If it does come to it, using a hypoallergenic food to reset her system, if she does stop scratching on it, is a good jumping off point. Hills is probably the lesser evil out of the hydrolysed wet foods. Blue buffalo also has a formulation, but it has both agar agar and guar gum in it for some reason, which is excessive, imo.
 

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My cat has food allergies. I’m 80% sure it’s chicken and turkey but idk for sure bc I have fed her any since we discovered this. My vet told me hydrolyzed food, 100% no questions about it. My vet dermatologist told me nah any food where chicken/turkey isn’t listed on the ingredients and you’ll be fine. Fortunately my Derm vet was right. Hydrolyzed is expensive and not great nutrition wise.

her allergies symptoms were ear infections, patches of fur loss throughout Her body (so itchiness for cat), and asthmatic coughing fits- super aggressive. There’s a video of it somewhere on this site...but all that went away after two weeks on the new food definitely for the coughing, the skin and ear stuff was longer but that was more filling in time then new patches developing or anything.

Korra is on now On rawz rabbit, ziwi lamb, ziwi venison, & Koha duck (not a fan, just need to get rid of it and don’t want to waste it). I’m still trying to find something more economical, which we’re getting there but boy it’s been tough. Everything has chicken or gums in it. Bleh. I also tried whole hearted beef, but i couldn’t do it more than once bc the food just looked so weird to me compared to all the other stuff I typically fed her.

when she was on her medication she would absolutely not eat wet food, I fed her dry for some months after we figured all this out, and was so sadden she wouldn’t eat wet anymore despite being a big fan before the allergies happened with the meds and all that stuff. Well many months (4?) after it all ended and we were on a normal routine, i introduced wet food again and she started devouring it. So I like to think the whole sickness phase while we were figuring it out she developed an aversion to wet food and couldn’t get over it until many months of “forgetfulness” lol maybe your cat is being picky bc they aren’t feeling their best...

sorry if I missed it in my quick skim of the thread but what is your cat allergic to? I’ve seen ppl on here talk about litter allergies before as well...
 
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poivre

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Thanks for the info Katdog.
It cannot possibly be chicken because she's been on it all of her 14 years with a break with rabbit for a while -- got tired of that -- and then back to chicken. We really don't know what this allergy is due to. It's not fleas, etc. I comb her with a really fine teeth kind of thing and nothing ever comes off -- not even her fur which is like smooth velvet.
Back to the wars.
 

Maurey

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It cannot possibly be chicken because she's been on it all of her 14 years with a break with rabbit for a while -- got tired of that -- and then back to chicken.
Allergies can develop in later life to anything, including foods the cat previously ate a lot of when younger. Did she itch on the rabbit? Was the rabbit the same brand as the chicken?
 

Katdog

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Yeah I second Maury. Allergies are developed after a lot of the same one thing; so it very much could be chicken or rabbit or both. It could also be environmental like dust but that’s really hard to treat I hear; not to mention idk where to start. It sounds like you already confirmed it’s not ring worm.

I would try a totally new protein like duck lamb or venison and see how that goes to rule out the chicken or rabbit protein.
 

Maurey

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It could also be environmental like dust but that’s really hard to treat I hear; not to mention idk where to start.
I've not had personal experience with it in animals, but they now have allergy shots for cats, similar to human allergy shots, which is particularly great for environmental allergies. What generally happens is that an allergy blood test is done (only time the things are useful, with their accuracy, imo), and every allergen that spikes high + any established or highly suspected allergies are treated.

It's really hard to search for, given that 'cat allergy shots' and many permutations result in shots for humans or cats for allergies to cats, but here's a good jumping off point. Anti-Allergy Therapy in Cats - Conditions Treated, Procedure, Efficacy, Recovery, Cost, Considerations, Prevention
 

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Hill's does have a wet version of their hydrolyzed protein diet, z/d. I know it's worked wonders for some pets' allergies, so it might be worth considering. It is definitely quite expensive, though. Like Maurey and Katdog said, allergies are typically due to a protein and often develop over time; chicken is one of the most common allergens in pets. A novel protein that your cat has never had before might clear up her allergies (if they are food allergies).

You could maybe either try a novel protein diet for a few weeks and see if that helps, then try the z/d if it doesn't, or do the z/d for a few weeks to hopefully clear up the itching and either stick with it or switch to a novel protein. If the allergies don't clear up with either food, then it's likely something in the environment.
 

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Try these single protein LID foods:

100% Rendered Free Cat Food | RAWZ
BLUE Basics® Limited Ingredient Cat Food | Blue Buffalo
Limited Ingredient Diet - Grain Free Cat | Merrick Pet Care
Cat Food - Limited Ingredient Diet - Kohapet
Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet | Instinct Pet Food
Grain Free Wet Recipes - NutriSource Pet Foods (not exactly an LID food but some of the canned are novel protein


The problem is that my vet is the one who recommended the hypoallergenic for my cat's licking and scratching. Even if the ingredients are sub par, at this stage of the game I have to weight which is more important-- giving her below par food and getting rid of the allergies or letting her live with them in discomfort.
If that dry food stuff is what it takes to eradicate the allergies then I guess that is the way I am forced to go.
So, of the two recommended, which is the least junky? Hills or Royal Canin? Or am I missing a better one?

It's ok to disagree with the vet's recommendation about food :agree: Prescription foods are really junky and expensive. The vet can't force you to feed it. It's YOUR cat after all. If you don't want to feed a particular brand the vet is recommending / pushing, just be firm and say No.
 
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poivre

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Katdog:
The problem is she won't eat duck (I just tried it) she won't eat venison or beef either (same thing). She ate mackerel for a long time but finally gave that up too. The only consistent taste that she'll eat is chicken. Probably turkey, though I have not yet tried it. That's my next thought. I've spent a fortune on all the top companies and have cases of unused cat food. (4 cases of rabbit and lamb alone!)
I thought to try Merrick next, which seems to get a decent rating.
I just gave her Instinct ultimate chicken pate this morning and she walked away. She likes the original. (crazy cat but I adore her)

Maurey:
Been there done that with the allergy med in a pill pocket which Norma-Jean took fine but after 3 days she freaked out, had nightmares, whimpered, clung to me like I was the last safe place on earth (rare because she's not normally outwardly affectionate) I dropped it fast and 2 days later she was back to herself again.
This cat does not take well to medication and drugs. That's why he suggested the Science Diet.
I will be speaking to the Vet this evening and will ask for a prescription for that horrid Hills Science Diet. It's got to be tried. If it works then she can eventually go back to the healthy makers of cat food (is there such an animal??)
Hill's does have a wet version of their hydrolyzed protein diet, z/d. I know it's worked wonders for some pets' allergies, so it might be worth considering. It is definitely quite expensive, though. Like Maurey and Katdog said, allergies are typically due to a protein and often develop over time; chicken is one of the most common allergens in pets. A novel protein that your cat has never had before might clear up her allergies (if they are food allergies).

You could maybe either try a novel protein diet for a few weeks and see if that helps, then try the z/d if it doesn't, or do the z/d for a few weeks to hopefully clear up the itching and either stick with it or switch to a novel protein. If the allergies don't clear up with either food, then it's likely something in the environment.
Thanks Ellis. We just got the wet version from our Vet and she hates it. She eats a little bit and leaves the rest.
Gave her the dry kibble version tonight and she hated that worse. Will stick to it for 2 more days and then back to a new canned food (Merrick this time) and try it. Life is tough :-(
 

Maurey

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Been there done that with the allergy med in a pill pocket which Norma-Jean took fine but after 3 days she freaked out, had nightmares, whimpered, clung to me like I was the last safe place on earth (rare because she's not normally outwardly affectionate) I dropped it fast and 2 days later she was back to herself again.
Allergy shots aren’t anything like antihistamines, they simply build up tolerance to an allergen by slow exposure through injections, more or less. It’s not really something commonly done for food allergies, anyway, as, even with a reduced reaction to a food, you don’t really want to be feeding it, anyway.
 
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poivre

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I've not had personal experience with it in animals, but they now have allergy shots for cats, similar to human allergy shots, which is particularly great for environmental allergies. What generally happens is that an allergy blood test is done (only time the things are useful, with their accuracy, imo), and every allergen that spikes high + any established or highly suspected allergies are treated.

It's really hard to search for, given that 'cat allergy shots' and many permutations result in shots for humans or cats for allergies to cats, but here's a good jumping off point. Anti-Allergy Therapy in Cats - Conditions Treated, Procedure, Efficacy, Recovery, Cost, Considerations, Prevention
Maurey:
There is no way I will subject my normally skittish cat to shots. Getting her to the Vet alone would do her in stresswise.
I am at the stage of doing the Z/D diet which looks like a clump of clay. I might try softening it a bit with some water. She eats a 1/4 of it.
Same with the dry kibble.
And after another day I will abandon all that stuff and try a new cat food (Merrick first - Blue Buffalo next -- ugh!)
 

ladytimedramon

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Have you tried the Lotus Just Juicy Pork or Polluck (they also have a venison).

It's pricy, but another option. I used the venison when we were allergy checking Delilah (problem wasn't allergies though so we went back to other foods).

Lotus Pet Foods
 
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