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Desperately Need Ideas Re: How To Pack As Many Calories And Nutrients Into A Syringe Feeding

MissClouseau

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Feb 20, 2019
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You know taurine naturally exists in meat. Some parts more than the others. If a "complete food" doesn't have taurine as an additive in the ingredients, it means the taurine in it comes naturally enough from the meat and can be still seen under Guaranteed Analysis. More wouldn't hurt but it would be unnecessary and increase the price. In a can food that is mostly meat I wouldn't be surprised there is no need for extra taurine as an additive.
 

daftcat75

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You know taurine naturally exists in meat. Some parts more than the others. If a "complete food" doesn't have taurine as an additive in the ingredients, it means the taurine in it comes naturally enough from the meat and can be still seen under Guaranteed Analysis. More wouldn't hurt but it would be unnecessary and increase the price. In a can food that is mostly meat I wouldn't be surprised there is no need for extra taurine as an additive.
If you were feeding fresh, raw meat, that would probably be true.

Taurine is supplemented because it is one that can vary a lot depending on how the animal was raised, where the meat came from (dark vs light meat), and how it was cooked and processed. It's water soluble so a lot of taurine can be lost through normal handling if proper care isn't taken. This is why it is almost always supplemented instead of relying solely on what may be in the meat.

This article explains it well enough.
Taurine: Please Make Double Sure Your Cat Gets This Daily

Long story short: I would never trust that meat alone has enough taurine when it is so easy for that taurine to be lost in cooking or processsing.
 

MissClouseau

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Feb 20, 2019
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If you were feeding fresh, raw meat, that would probably be true.

Taurine is supplemented because it is one that can vary a lot depending on how the animal was raised, where the meat came from (dark vs light meat), and how it was cooked and processed. It's water soluble so a lot of taurine can be lost through normal handling if proper care isn't taken. This is why it is almost always supplemented instead of relying solely on what may be in the meat.

This article explains it well enough.
Taurine: Please Make Double Sure Your Cat Gets This Daily

Long story short: I would never trust that meat alone has enough taurine when it is so easy for that taurine to be lost in cooking or processsing.
I don't see why you wouldn't trust the US control on this. They test the food to check if it's a "complete food" and that includes taurine. Usually the problem about commercial food isn't that a food doesn't have what it's supposed to have but where the nutrition comes from (and its potential side effects) and some things being too much, like phosphorus in some foods. Not any deficiency.

If a commercial food, especially a popular one made it to the shelves in the USA or EU, I think it's fair to assume it has enough taurine.
 

daftcat75

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I don't see why you wouldn't trust the US control on this. They test the food to check if it's a "complete food" and that includes taurine. Usually the problem about commercial food isn't that a food doesn't have what it's supposed to have but where the nutrition comes from (and its potential side effects) and some things being too much, like phosphorus in some foods. Not any deficiency.

If a commercial food, especially a popular one made it to the shelves in the USA or EU, I think it's fair to assume it has enough taurine.
I don't know that it is tested. I think it's only tested if you want to include the AAFCO statement of a nutritionally complete and balanced food. But as My Little Lion (or Blue Ridge Beef) has shown, it's not necessary to have that statement to sell "cat food". Whereas My Little Lion does include a "supplemental feeding only" statement, Blue Ridge Beef, at least on their website, makes no such statement.

We also currently have an administration who favors (and prides themselves on) eliminating regulations to favor businesses and government over consumers and the environment. All my trust in the government as a safety backstop has been suspended.
 
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cheeser

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I dunno, I just put some in, whatever felt right. No particular measurement. But, yeah, it comes with a scoop.
Great! Thanks again. I'll go add that to my Chewy basket. :)
 
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cheeser

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MissClouseau MissClouseau and daftcat75 daftcat75 , back when I was still very new to feline nutrition, I contacted several companies to ask why they didn't include taurine in their products. They all gave me pretty much the same answer, that their products naturally met or exceeded AAFCO guidelines, so they didn't need to add any supplemental taurine.

To be honest, I made a personal decision to give them the benefit of the doubt if the company had a good reputation (as far as I knew anyway, e.g., Ziwi Peak). But just to be on the safe side, I only fed those products as part of Buddy's rotation. Bless his heart, he has so many health issues and challenges, and there are so many other options that (supposedly) are nutritionally complete, I figured why tempt fate. So that's why I had previously shied away from My Little Lion, because I wasn't familiar enough with the company and they wouldn't response to my inquiries to give them the benefit of the doubt. But that's just me. Right now, I'm pretty darned desperate, and am willing to be more flexible to help us get past this latest health hiccup. :wink:
 

MissClouseau

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Feb 20, 2019
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I don't know that it is tested. I think it's only tested if you want to include the AAFCO statement of a nutritionally complete and balanced food. But as My Little Lion (or Blue Ridge Beef) has shown, it's not necessary to have that statement to sell "cat food". Whereas My Little Lion does include a "supplemental feeding only" statement, Blue Ridge Beef, at least on their website, makes no such statement.

We also currently have an administration who favors (and prides themselves on) eliminating regulations to favor businesses and government over consumers and the environment. All my trust in the government as a safety backstop has been suspended.
It isn't very difficult to have enough taurine in wet food, especially in poultry. I will even go ahead and say I get the hunch some brands add extra taurine not because it's needed but it's just so well-known by consumers, it's appealing to the consumer to see taurine as an additive too.

If the effects of phosphorus was just as known for example, there would be mention of that too. And right on that, I would be more concerned of the phosphorus levels of any commercial food than taurine. AAFCO and such are strict about the minimums but not so much with the maximums. Probably why personally I have never heard of a recall about a deficiency but it was always something was too much --like toxic levels of vitamin D-- or something that wasn't supposed to be in the ingredients were there. Besides a consumer could sue "My cat got sick and I got this food tested it didn't have enough taurine like AAFCO says." but no lawsuit would be possible with a maximum when AAFCO or anywhere doesn't make a statement there.
 

daftcat75

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I'll add that probably most, if not all, of the foods implicated in the taurine deficiencies that have resulted in DCM in dogs were also labeled "complete and balanced" foods.

In many foods, pet or human, water soluble nutrients are supplemented precisely because processing, cooking, and canning can all deplete naturally occurring water soluble nutrients. Except in the case of electrolytes (sodium, calcium, potassium, chloride), I don't worry about over-supplementation of water soluble vitamins as those are easily lost but also easily excreted.

I did hear back from My Little Lion and their response was very unsatisfying. It reads almost like they don't know or don't bother with AAFCO standards.

Thank you for your email. We at American Nutrition, Inc. are always happy to hear from our customers. We are sorry to hear that our label has caused some confusion.

The Supplemental Feed only note on the label, is there because the product is 96% meat and as we cannot guarantee the protein content is high enough to be considered fully nutritional without adding extra ingredients, we chose to keep the ingredients limited and note that the product is for supplemental feeding only.
 

daftcat75

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AAFCO says DMB protein must be a minimum of 26% for adult maintenance or 30% for growth and reproduction. At 8% as fed with 78% moisture, the My Little Lion chicken recipe is 36% on a dry matter basis. I think the other recipes only go up from there.
 

MissClouseau

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Feb 20, 2019
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I'll add that probably most, if not all, of the foods implicated in the taurine deficiencies that have resulted in DCM in dogs were also labeled "complete and balanced" foods
If you are talking about the recent investigation about dogs and grain-free, it’s an investigation and doesn’t necessarily say anything about taurine. The focus is more on the substitutes.

But seeing they say theirs is supplemental food then indeed it might not have enough taurine. I was only talking about “complete food”, not complimentary/supplemental ones.
 

daftcat75

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If you are talking about the recent investigation about dogs and grain-free, it’s an investigation and doesn’t necessarily say anything about taurine. The focus is more on the substitutes.

But seeing they say theirs is supplemental food then indeed it might not have enough taurine. I was only talking about “complete food”, not complimentary/supplemental ones.
This whole discussion stems from my recommendation of a food labeled for supplemental feedings only. But no-one could figure out why it's labeled that. It has arguably one of the best ingredient lists out there. Even the response I got back from them seems unsatisfying. If they pride themselves on nutrition, they should know whether their food meets or exceed AAFCO standards or not. If it doesn't, why is it trying so hard to look like a balanced and complete food? Why add taurine and the other supplements if you aren't going for the AAFCO statement? The whole thing baffles me. But for a short-term, get some calories in Buddy kind of thing, whatever the deficiency, this still looks like a better option than baby food and nutri-cal. And really, the recommendation was because of how high the calories are. If Buddy is only going to get so much in his mouth at a time, or if it has to be "watered" down to push through the syringe, then you'd like to start with a high calorie food. This is the highest I've seen from a wet "food." (balanced or otherwise.)
 
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cheeser

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This whole discussion stems from my recommendation of a food labeled for supplemental feedings only. But no-one could figure out why it's labeled that. It has arguably one of the best ingredient lists out there. Even the response I got back from them seems unsatisfying. If they pride themselves on nutrition, they should know whether their food meets or exceed AAFCO standards or not. If it doesn't, why is it trying so hard to look like a balanced and complete food? Why add taurine and the other supplements if you aren't going for the AAFCO statement? The whole thing baffles me. But for a short-term, get some calories in Buddy kind of thing, whatever the deficiency, this still looks like a better option than baby food and nutri-cal. And really, the recommendation was because of how high the calories are. If Buddy is only going to get so much in his mouth at a time, or if it has to be "watered" down to push through the syringe, then you'd like to start with a high calorie food. This is the highest I've seen from a wet "food." (balanced or otherwise.)
Oh, I'm definitely willing to give My Little Lion a try! I just wasn't too keen on it before because I couldn't get an answer from the company as to why it wasn't considered nutritionally complete. So I very much appreciate you sharing the response you received. :heartshape:

The funny thing is that there are other products that are marketed as having 90%+ meat (e.g., Hound & Gatos, some items from Dave's, etc.), and they include a notation on the label that they meet AAFCO guidelines for all life stages. So I was just confused, and had wanted to err on the side of caution.

My concern was that sometimes when Buddy takes a liking to something, that's all he wants to eat for a while. I was afraid that if he fell in love with My Little Lion and suddenly started to refuse to eat anything else, I wouldn't know how to "fix" it to make sure he got all of the vitamins and minerals and whatnot that he needed. And the poor baby has enough problems, without me accidentally creating any more due to a nutritional deficiency! :wink:

However, we're in a bit of a pickle at the moment, so I want to consider as many options as possible, especially since I really want to get away from having to rely on the Nutri-Cal to get more calories into him. I always use different foods for syringe feedings so Buddy doesn't develop an aversion to his regular menu options, so now it won't matter if he falls in love with My Little Lion! We've already had to temporarily abandon his allergy diet just to get him to eat something, and we'll try to manage his symptoms as best we can until we can get back on the proverbial horse.

On the bright side, Buddy did eat a decent breakfast this morning, and I found a piece of a lizard. So maybe we're finally starting to turn a corner. Sometimes we just to have to round several corners before things finally get back to normal. :)

Thanks again for all the info and your help. I greatly appreciate it. :hearthrob: :redheartpump: :hearthrob:
 

Kieka

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I recently tried My Little Lion with my guys. I have one with chicken sensitivity and one with a turkey sensitivity so poultry is out. I've tried a lot of different proteins and settled on rabbit or fish as the only two they will really go for. So I got the My Little Lion Salmon and Rabbit. The Rabbit is a hit with all three while the Salmon is a mixed reaction. One seems to be okay with it while the other two aren't sure.
 
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cheeser

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I recently tried My Little Lion with my guys. I have one with chicken sensitivity and one with a turkey sensitivity so poultry is out. I've tried a lot of different proteins and settled on rabbit or fish as the only two they will really go for. So I got the My Little Lion Salmon and Rabbit. The Rabbit is a hit with all three while the Salmon is a mixed reaction. One seems to be okay with it while the other two aren't sure.
It's so funny how cats are so different as to their likes and dislikes. Sometimes we're lucky, and what one cat won't eat, another will. And sometimes we just wind up with a bunch of food that no one will eat! :gaah:

But it's good to know that your kitties like the rabbit. That's encouraging, because that's one of the proteins that Buddy tolerates really well. :)
 
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