Diet time for Daisy

catloverfromwayback

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I took her to the vet today to talk about getting her weight down. She’s over 5kg at present, or about 20% overweight - the vet recommended she be about 4kg, which is what I’d been thinking would probably be her ideal weight. Now of course the trick is to get her changed gradually to all wet food. The maddening thing is that she’s gained weight regardless of what food she’s on - Hill’s Perfect Weight and Macrobiotic did no good at all, and no, I wasn’t free feeding her and yes, I was trying to get her on the recommended amount for her size, but she just screamed for food all day. She’s been on Fussy Cat for a while, but the vet said grain free foods have been associated with enlarged heart issues, so I’ll be getting her off that! The vet said any wet food that is labelled as 100% complete balanced diet will do. The main problem with her eating wet food is that Miss Social Eater wants me to be right there while she eats, or she comes out to see what I’m doing, and then Phoebe pinches her food. Which wouldn’t be such a problem except Phoebes is supposed to stick to her king’s-ransom anallergenic food!
Oh and the vet suggested adding zucchini to her food. Let’s see if she likes it. She‘ll be the only one in the household I cook from scratch for if she does!

Ransom Daisy pic, just because:

42355AC0-68C8-46A2-9BBC-50361438FED8.jpeg
 

maggie101

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My friend had her cat on Hill's science diet. She gained weight and is now diabetic. My cat Peaches is very healthy,10 yrs old,7 pds wet only her whole life. Grain free causing heart issues I have never heard of. She eats mostly nutro perfect portions, farmina,and wellness
I found this article
Will Grain-Free Cat Food Cause Heart Problems?
 
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catloverfromwayback

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Interesting! It’s maddening, isn’t it - so much contradictory advice out there regarding cat food. Not that I mind getting her off Fussy Cat anyway, it’s not great stuff apparently.

I’m so sorry your friend’s cat is diabetic now.
 

maggie101

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Interesting! It’s maddening, isn’t it - so much contradictory advice out there regarding cat food. Not that I mind getting her off Fussy Cat anyway, it’s not great stuff apparently.

I’m so sorry your friend’s cat is diabetic now.
I'm not sure what her cat is eating now but she has lost weight
 

daftcat75

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Grain-free isn't an issue with cat food like it is with dog food. Grain-free with cat food usually means they simply replaced a grain with a starch. In most cases, it doesn't actually mean anything. What you really want is carb-free. But that isn't something that gets advertised often--especially when nearly every food contains some small amount of carbs usually in the form of a gum or binder--or fiber. In any case, find yourself a dry matter calculator like this one. You want carbs to be below 30% on a dry-matter basis.

Betty is a nearly identical gray and white "Garfield." (She eats and sleeps and that's about it.) She's also pushing 5 kilos. Personally, I like her right where she is at about 4.7 (10.5 lbs.) Maybe 4.5 would be okay. 4 kg would be 9 lbs. That's what the vet would like. But that looked and felt too skinny to me. In any case, besides a small calories reduction (no more than 15% reduction at a time--forgot to ask what the interval was), her doc has forbidden me from making any other changes until after her dental exam next month that got pushed back from January because of her gut issues. (Oof! This cat's first year with me has been a doozy!) In Betty's case, I strongly suspect we won't be able to get her weight under control until we can circle back to her gut and reduce her prednisilone (steroids) dose once more and/or try her on a lower carb food. She loves the carb-heavy Hills I/D chicken stew.
 
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catloverfromwayback

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Four kg would probably be right for Daisy. She’s a small-framed cat, and weighed a bit over 3kg when I adopted her - too thin imo.

Yes, it’s certainly her carbs that need to come down. Hopefully a wet food diet will take care of most of that, and I’ll be interested to see if she takes to having zucchini to pad her meals a bit without adding carbs.

She’s definitely a Garfield, this one! She’ll get the zoomies at night and the pair of them will chase each other around under my bed, or she’ll go bonkers with a ball of wool, but she’s not remotely interested in playing with wand toys or laser pointers. She spends the majority of her time asleep on my bed, with intervals to eat or demand that I come and lie on the bed with her.
 

lisahe

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Lowering/limiting carbs is definitely the most important thing. I might also suggest feeding your cats in separate rooms, with a closed door between them, to help prevent one pinching the other's meal. We also feed lots of small meals a day because one of our cats has very bad food insecurity. Personally, I'd forgo the zucchini since it's not a natural part of a cat's diet and doesn't add anything but watery bulk. Adding a little water to canned foods can achieve some of the same goal. In the end, though, we find that caloric foods are more satiating so the cats can eat less of them and go longer between meals than with lighter fare.

In any case, good luck, weight loss for cats is not easy!
 

Alldara

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My friend had her cat on Hill's science diet. She gained weight and is now diabetic. My cat Peaches is very healthy,10 yrs old,7 pds wet only her whole life. Grain free causing heart issues I have never heard of. She eats mostly nutro perfect portions, farmina,and wellness
I found this article
Will Grain-Free Cat Food Cause Heart Problems?
The phenomenon was found in dogs. I don't believe it's conclusive yet in cats.
 

Alldara

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I had a good time moving to "grain free" for Nobel. Usually it means rice instead, but I think the wheat and oats were causing him to gain a ton of weight.

He's been good on Purina Pro Plan and Iams perfect portions. Those dont seem to cause any weight gain even though he's less active in his older age.

For dry he has Purina Pro Plan urinary, which the younger boys won't eat, so it can stay put for his grazing..I had to slowly move him to a wet diet as he hunger strikes.
 

lisahe

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The phenomenon was found in dogs. I don't believe it's conclusive yet in cats.
Yes to what you say about cats.

Also, the last I've seen on this whole topic is that potatoes and legumes in certain grain free foods may be causing the problem. Here's an old article on the topic. Canine heart disease may relate to legumes, potatoes | American Veterinary Medical Association (avma.org)

In the absence of real evidence of what was causing the problem, it feels like there are still a lot of vets recommending against grain free as a sort of default position, without taking a careful look at ingredients.
 

Alldara

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Yes to what you say about cats.

Also, the last I've seen on this whole topic is that potatoes and legumes in certain grain free foods may be causing the problem. Here's an old article on the topic. Canine heart disease may relate to legumes, potatoes | American Veterinary Medical Association (avma.org)

In the absence of real evidence of what was causing the problem, it feels like there are still a lot of vets recommending against grain free as a sort of default position, without taking a careful look at ingredients.
Yes it is correlation and not causation at this point.

I'll look forward to the causation conclusions later. I doubt we will see mirrored studies for cats, however.
 
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catloverfromwayback

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Lowering/limiting carbs is definitely the most important thing. I might also suggest feeding your cats in separate rooms, with a closed door between them, to help prevent one pinching the other's meal. We also feed lots of small meals a day because one of our cats has very bad food insecurity. Personally, I'd forgo the zucchini since it's not a natural part of a cat's diet and doesn't add anything but watery bulk. Adding a little water to canned foods can achieve some of the same goal. In the end, though, we find that caloric foods are more satiating so the cats can eat less of them and go longer between meals than with lighter fare.

In any case, good luck, weight loss for cats is not easy!
Thanks! I’ll give the zucchini a go since I just cooked one this morning. I’ve read good results about it. Hopefully she won go back to screaming for more food like she used to on the Perfect Weight.

Unfortunately I can’t separate them when they eat; I’m in a bedsit. The living room is the only place to feed them.
 
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catloverfromwayback

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In the absence of real evidence of what was causing the problem, it feels like there are still a lot of vets recommending against grain free as a sort of default position, without taking a careful look at ingredients.
That wouldn’t surprise me at all.
 
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