Don't feed your cats Friskies cat food.

kellyk173

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Hello everybody, I would just like to inform you that Purina cat food products, specifically friskies, Have given my cats severe health problems. The one who is 7 has diabetes and has to eat a special food to keep her kidneys from failing, and the other who is only 2 years old is now at the vet with a bladder swollen to the size of a baseball and unable to urinate and may not recover. And if he does recover he will also have to eat a special food for the rest of his life so that he can urinate. The veterinarian said that the cause of both our cat's problems is the food we feed them. And the only food we have ever fed them is friskies brand wet and dry food. I urge everyone here NOT to feed your cats this,and if you are, please switch. It's absolute garbage that will cause you cats problems. I hope I can prevent some future harm to cats by letting you all know what Friskies cat food will do to your pets.
 

micknsnicks2mom

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hi and welcome to TCS!

i'm so sorry your cats are having these health issues. and i can understand and identify with how you must be feeling. my two cats didn't eat friskies, but they ate grocery store brand canned cat foods until they were 9 years old, then i (got more educated and) switched them over to grain free high quality canned cat foods when they both developed IBD at 9 years old -- they were brother/sister, litter mates. our mickey crossed the rainbow bridge about a year and a half ago, cause of death related to feline diabetes. and snick has chronic kidney disease, idiopathic hypercalcemia, and has been borderline diabetic in addition to the IBD she has.

it's not just the friskies that are believed by many (including myself) to cause these and other health problems in cats. the issue is more complex than that, though you're on the right track (imo). here's a link to dr pierson, dvm's website, where she talks about feline nutrition and touches on the effects of moving cats diets further away from what they were designed to do best eating -- http://www.catinfo.org/

my personal solution is to decide that i will learn everything i need to know about preparing a home cooked balanced diet to all of my future cats, and they will rarely (if ever) eat any store bought cat foods. my feeling is that this is the very least i can do, and will be done in memory of my mickey and snick. there is a whole lot to learn about feeding a well balanced home cooked diet, and i read about this on a very regular basis, so when the time comes i'll have the info i need to do it well...do it right.
 

peaches08

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There are certainly some varieties of Friskies that are better than others.  Which ones were you feeding?
 

crazyporker101

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My cat Ace (profile pic) had the same thing happen to him as your 2 year-old cat (my cat's 2, btw) earlier this year.  His bladder got blocked from crytalized minerals and had to be taken to the vet so his urine could be drained and so that he could revert back to normal.  He's on a special cat food diet and he's managing well.  His blockage wasn't caused by his cat food, rather he drank some water that had too much mineral content.  Are you sure your cat's blockage didn't occur because he had access to unhealthy water in addition to his cat food?  
 

sheabebabe

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How can they legally sell food for cats if it causes so many problems? Are they not governed by anyone's rules? My cats usually get dry food and I treat them to the canned food sometimes. Mostly I get special kitty from Wal-mart.
 

crazyporker101

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Cat foods have to conform to AAFCO standards.  It's as easy as just saying the cat food conforms to them while subtly it turns out to be the opposite. That's why you have to be careful and read the package label on the bag to see what ingredients make up the chow.

Special Kitty is a great brand, I feed it to one of my cats.  It's got all the necessary ingredients to keep him healthy, plus it was reccomended by my veterinarian.
 

Willowy

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Friskies is higher quality than Special Kitty. . .

Anyway, sorry to hear of your troubles. Feeding a cat only dry food, or a cat not getting enough water for some other reason, can cause chronic mild dehydration, which in turn can cause kidney problems and urinary problems. I haven't had any trouble feeding my cats canned Friskies, but I do feel the dry is too brightly colored so I won't use it. And of course not all foods agree with all cats, it's a very individual thing.
 

ldg

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The type of food also matters, not just the brand. Any food with gravy in it has starch in it - most use wheat gluten, which ups the carbohydrate content, which can raise the pH and cause crystal problems in the urine if the urine isn't dilute enough to keep kitty's bladder flushed.

The pate style foods are usually higher protein and lower carb, not needing the extra starches.

I feed Friskies pate style canned foods to my feral cats and have had no problems.
 

denice

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I feed mine the occasional Friskies fish pate.  I used to feed more Friskies but Patches developed a chicken allergy and Friskies doesn't have the novel protein foods.  They are both 11 now.  Patches developed IBD when he was only 18 months old so I think there were genetic factors there.  Alice is still very healthy.
 

Java Lady

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my 5 month old kitty had an issue with Friskies pate every time I would give him the he was spaz kitty like kitty on drugs
when I was feeing other canned no reaction so going back to pet store brand instead of cheap store brands
good luck with you kitten
 

di and bob

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I have fed Friskies for over 40 years and have not had a problem. Cats will be genetically predisposed to diabetes, crystals etc, and though food does play a part, water and many other things play into it more than you think. I really think it is what they inherit. Those cereal-free foods are now proving to be not as great as they say, the fillers they do use, like veggies,etc, are proving to be harmful too. I have had cats fed the exact same thing all their lives and one develops problems and the other does not. I certainly do not blame it on the food. Cats used to be fed only dry, and cheap dry at that, and lived long healthy lives, just like the 100-year-old human that smokes daily, all are different. I have never had a cat with diabetes or many other problems.
 

Babypaws

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I’ve been feeding all 12 cats Friskies for a long time…sometimes one might vomit but doesn’t last. And all cats will do that time to time. I think a lot of times they eat too fast. I have been trying to find another wet food they’ll eat but I always go back to Friskies and Fancy Feast.
 

birdie23

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Hello everybody, I would just like to inform you that Purina cat food products, specifically friskies, Have given my cats severe health problems. The one who is 7 has diabetes and has to eat a special food to keep her kidneys from failing, and the other who is only 2 years old is now at the vet with a bladder swollen to the size of a baseball and unable to urinate and may not recover. And if he does recover he will also have to eat a special food for the rest of his life so that he can urinate. The veterinarian said that the cause of both our cat's problems is the food we feed them. And the only food we have ever fed them is friskies brand wet and dry food. I urge everyone here NOT to feed your cats this,and if you are, please switch. It's absolute garbage that will cause you cats problems. I hope I can prevent some future harm to cats by letting you all know what Friskies cat food will do to your pets.
Agreed. My 13-year old cat was on Purina One dry food and Friskies for years because that was what was recommended to me by a vet years ago. And he's suffering for it now (along with my wallet) because he was diagnosed with kidney failure. The first 6-7 ingredients in Purina One dry food (Indoor Advantage) - Turkey, Brewers Rice, Corn Gluten Meal, Poultry By-Product Meal, Soybean Meal, Whole Grain Corn, Fish Meal...

3 different sources of carbs. WHY? Admittedly, it's my fault because I didn't look as closely as I could have at the ingredients of commercial cat food and what diets are best for cats. If I did, I certainly wouldn't have chosen Purina, smh.

There are far better and nutritious brands out there that are high in protein and as equally important, low on carbs and low on phosphorus. Brands like Weruva, Tiki Cat, Fussie Cat and other brands that have better quality food and are transparent about their nutritional info. Yes, these brands are pricier, but they're saving you $$ in the long run in future vet bills, treatments, tests, and medications.
 

Babypaws

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I’m sorry to hear about your cat and his health issues but it also depends on what you can get your cats to eat. I’ve tried those expensive brands, they look good (like real food) but my cats are very picky, like most. They might eat a different food once and that’s it…..that’s why go back to Friskies and fancy feast. I’ve researched some of the RX brands and more expensive brands off the shelves and to be honest I haven’t come across “any” of the brands to be that great. Some have some good “first few“ I ingredients and then as you read more they add fillers like grains, veggies etc that aren’t necessarily good and on top of that a lot of the foods (wet/dry) use food coloring….why?? Cats don’t care about that….and then there are brands (wet/dry) that look pretty good but the carbs are very high.
But I still search to try and find a brand that’s halfway decent and one that my cats will eat.
 

birdie23

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I’m sorry to hear about your cat and his health issues but it also depends on what you can get your cats to eat. I’ve tried those expensive brands, they look good (like real food) but my cats are very picky, like most. They might eat a different food once and that’s it…..that’s why go back to Friskies and fancy feast. I’ve researched some of the RX brands and more expensive brands off the shelves and to be honest I haven’t come across “any” of the brands to be that great. Some have some good “first few“ I ingredients and then as you read more they add fillers like grains, veggies etc that aren’t necessarily good and on top of that a lot of the foods (wet/dry) use food coloring….why?? Cats don’t care about that….and then there are brands (wet/dry) that look pretty good but the carbs are very high.
Not really. Most of what you've described can be attributed to brands like Purina, who add fillers like corn and soybean and then add "caramel" coloring to make it look like meat when a good chunk of it is actually carbs, not protein. If you look at some of the better brands, they put their nutritional info right on their website - no need to hide from prying eyes what faults lie with their food (Purina, looking at you...)

Also, I don't know if "ingredients" is as or more important than the nutritional values. For example, I give my cat Weruva's Paw Lickin' Chicken which has "potato starch" as an ingredient. Huh...ok. But then you look at the Dry Matter Basis numbers of that can (on their website), and "Carbs" count for 3% total. That means the potato starch is simply used for the gravy. 77% protein with a .08 phosphorus value. All in all, great healthy food for a cat!

If you're trying to wean off Friskies, have you tried adding a bit of tuna water to the new food? Or those puree tubes? Tiki Cat makes a good one called Wet Stix, and I'll squeeze some of it right on top of the new food, maybe swirl it around a little so he has no choice but to kinda eat it all if he wants the good stuff. Trust me, my cat is picky too, and it did take him a while to like Weruva or any other brand outside of Friskies, but I kept at it, tried different flavors and textures to see what he likes (chicken pate) and what he hates (anything duck, lamb)...I'm really only saying all this because I wish I could go back and tell my 25-year old self to have paid better attention to cat nutrition, if only for my kitty's sake now.
 
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