DRY CAT/KITTEN FOOD?

Milady

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my new kitten Oliver, is coming home to me this weekend. He is being fed Iams dry food atm.
In your honest opinion is the best branded dry food?
Is 'EXPENSIVE' food more nutrition etc than more economical brands, or are they equal?
 

Maurey

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Expensive dry food is generally going to be inferior to even cheaper wet food, to be honest. Some expensive dry foods does manage to reduce carbs and raise protein levels to acceptable range, but that doesn’t do anything for the fact that kibble, being very lacking in moisture, isn’t biologically appropriate for cats.
If you’re on a tight budget, FF Classics and other more budget wet brands are going to be better to have on rotation than any dry food — as long as the wet food is free of sugar, carrageenan, fish (should be fed no more than twice a week), and have high protien/low carbs,it’s fine on a budget, if your cat tolerates it.
Nowadays, a number of budget wet foods achieve this by being more ambiguous with their ingredients (e.g. poultry rather than turkey thigh) without sacrificing a biologically appropriate nutritional profile (high moisture, high protein, mid fats, low carbs).
 
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Milady

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Expensive dry food is generally going to be inferior to even cheaper wet food, to be honest. Some expensive dry foods does manage to reduce carbs and raise protein levels to acceptable range, but that doesn’t do anything for the fact that kibble, being very lacking in moisture, isn’t biologically appropriate for cats.
If you’re on a tight budget, FF Classics and other more budget wet brands are going to be better to have on rotation than any dry food — as long as the wet food is free of sugar, carrageenan, fish (should be fed no more than twice a week), and have high protien/low carbs,it’s fine on a budget, if your cat tolerates it.
Nowadays, a number of budget wet foods achieve this by being more ambiguous with their ingredients (e.g. poultry rather than turkey thigh) without sacrificing a biologically appropriate nutritional profile (high moisture, high protein, mid fats, low carbs).
thank you so much TBH I dont much fancy him being only on dry food BUT thats what he is on now, perhaps I can introduce better wet food over the next few weeks
 

Maurey

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Definitely transition slowly,especially while the little one is settling in. You can start by offering a small amount of wet food on a seperate plate (something like a teaspoon) and see if he shows interest. If not (kibble can be addictive, or he might not realise it’s food), try grinding up a couple pieces of kibble, and sprinkling it on top — often entices cats to eat :)
 
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Milady

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I will do that thanks
 

klunick

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thank you so much TBH I dont much fancy him being only on dry food BUT thats what he is on now, perhaps I can introduce better wet food over the next few weeks
Yes, don't do just dry. Will cause problems later on. I learned the hard way with previous cats. Even a little wet food in their diet is better than none. But more is better.
 

Java Lady

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I am feeding my kitten Acana dry kitten is not expensive or the cheapest $21 for a 3lb bag , its easy on tummy
 
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Milady

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thank you Im taking it all in
 

di and bob

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I have my cat on both dry and wet because we like to get away for one night every six months and they need to have dry out. I have had my cats do this for over 40 years and have not had any problems. I do feed a better dry now, Purina Pro. Some cats live to ten, some to fourteen, and some to seventeen. I think genetics has more to do with a cat's health than what they are actually eating. Dry has gotten a bad rap these last few years, but as long as they drink enough water they will be fine. That can be encouraged with a fountain.
 

Maurey

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Dry has gotten a bad rap these last few years, but as long as they drink enough water they will be fine. That can be encouraged with a fountain.
It’s been known since research in the 80s that a cat can make up for only 50% of their needed water intake by drinking if fed kibble.
 

CatladyJan

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I’ve fed my cats dry food forever and they drink plenty of water. So, why is dry food harmful to cats? FTR- I’ve been feeding Nutro kitten to my kittens.
 

Maurey

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I’ve fed my cats dry food forever and they drink plenty of water. So, why is dry food harmful to cats? FTR- I’ve been feeding Nutro kitten to my kittens.
Kibbles are largely high carb, low protein, low moisture, and tend to have many filler ingredients that increase stool bulk and provide empty calories. With high end kibble, you can get minimal filler, high protein, and low carb, but at that price point you’d be better off feeding wet food, where they can get crucial moisture.

ETA: review article by a dvm and board-certified nutritionist describing the nutritional requirements of cats, with sources https://sci.bban.top/pdf/10.1016/B978-0-323-22652-3.00062-1.pdf

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Water
Water is the single most important nutrient in sustaining life, yet frequently the least discussed.Water serves multiple functions including serving as the solvent wherein the vast majority of intracellular and extracellular chemical processes occur.4 Water is the major component of body tissues and fluids, facilitates the transport of oxygen and nutrients via the blood, and is needed for normal digestion, thermoregulation, and excretion of urine and feces.4
The cat evolved as a desert animal with the ability to highly concentrate its urine under low environmental water conditions (i.e., specific gravity up to 1.080-1.085).18 Water balance in dogs and cats comes from water content of food, water derived from metabolism, environmental losses, and drinking. The amount of water in food varies greatly, from 7% to 10% in dry extruded diets and up to 80% in canned diets. Dogs adjust their water intake in response to changes in the water content of their diet. Unlike dogs, cats do not adjust their water intake based on the water content of their diets. When fed a dry food, cats replace only half their total daily water intake with drinking, in comparison to being fed a canned diet.19 Studies have shown that dry diets are a risk factor for feline lower urinary tract disease.20 Consumption of canned foods leads to increased water consumption and diuresis, which results in lower supersaturation of stone-forming minerals.21 Canned diets have also been found to result in lower energy intake and body weight in cats; thus, canned diets may help promote weight loss.22
 
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CatladyJan

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Kibbles are largely high carb, low protein, low moisture, and tend to have many filler ingredients that increase stool bulk and provide empty calories. With high end kibble, you can get minimal filler, high protein, and low carb, but at that price point you’d be better off feeding wet food, where they can get crucial moisture.

ETA: review article by a dvm and board-certified nutritionist describing the nutritional requirements of cats, with sources https://sci.bban.top/pdf/10.1016/B978-0-323-22652-3.00062-1.pdf

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Ah, so how do they get their fiber?
 

Maurey

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Ah, so how do they get their fiber?
Cats don’t need that much fiber in their diet, if they’re not used to having high caloric load from carbs. Mine are on a PMR (prey model raw) diet and they get largely animal sources of fiber, like rabbit ears with the fur on. Fermented grasses (to emulate the digestion in a prey animals stomach) or freely available cat grass can work as well, given in small quantities. Some cats can benefit from a small amount of puréed pumpkin (half a teaspoon, once a day, as needed) in their diet, however — there are even fairly decent wet foods that have small amounts of pumpkin in them precisely for this reason.
 
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