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Special Diet Needs Getting More Common?

Discussion in 'Cat Nutrition' started by LTS3, May 16, 2018.

  1. LTS3

    LTS3 Thread Starter TCS Member Top Cat

    Aug 29, 2014
    Has anyone noticed that cats needing special diets of some sort is getting more common now? I have some cans of NV chicken that Leroy can't eat so I'm trying to offer them to people at work. Everyone I asked so far can't feed the NV because their cat has urinary issues and needs special food for that or has a really sensitive tummy :gaah: Not going to get into a debate with anyone on cat food and canned vs dry vs prescription :headshake: I'm going to ask a few more people before I offer the food on FreeCycle. The local shelter doesn't accept food donations anymore :sigh:

    Technically Emma can eat the NV for her bedtime snack but she leaves crumbs for Leroy to eat. Sometimes Leroy pushes Emma out of the way so he can eat even though he just had his own snack :rolleyes: It's just easiest to not feed any chicken and avoid an IBD flare up.

  2. Gizmobius

    Gizmobius TCS Member Alpha Cat

    Dec 4, 2016
    I used to think Gizmo had a digestive issue of some kind. Went through numerous stool samples, sent one out for the PCR panel, went through so many foods trying to figure out what would work, digestive enzymes, probiotics, pumpkin, s. boulardii, the works! After all this time, I finally realized he was the rare exception to the "feed a kitten as much as it wants" rule. He was eating so much at a time and so frequently that his system couldn't even digest his food, it was going right through him. Nowadays, he's over a year old now and he gets a set amount at least 5 hours apart and his "digestive issues" are nonexistent.

    One of my friend's cats did have urinary issues many years ago but he was eating all dry, which she promptly changed to all wet after that ordeal. None of the cats of my friends or family have any dietary issues but I do see plenty of threads here about it so I agree it certainly seems like a problem many people are having!

  3. Azazel

    Azazel TCS Member Super Cat

    Apr 14, 2018
    New York, NY
    I think a lot of cats have special diet needs because they don't eat appropriate diets to begin with. Most of the commercial foods on the market in my opinion are inappropriate for cats.

    I don't think we really know that much about cats' digestive systems and we are often trying to make a best guess as to what works.

  4. Willowy

    Willowy TCS Member Top Cat

    Mar 1, 2009
    South Dakota
    I think it's all about more awareness. 20 years ago, if your cat barfed every day, well, he was just barfy and you stocked up on paper towels. Now the vet is likely to recommend a special diet.

    It's the same for people. My SIL's sister has a gluten intolerance. Even when she was a baby/tiny kid, she would spit out bread and crackers, and take her sandwiches apart and only eat the insides. They just said she was "picky" and left it at that, nobody really cared what a 4-year-old ate anyway. Of course, now the parents would make sure the daycare/school and all her friend's parents knew what she could and couldn't eat.

    LOL, I had a similar experience. A friend's dog died so she asked everyone she knew if they wanted his leftover food. Everybody said their dog ate a special diet and couldn't tolerate that brand. She said "you know things are bad when dogs can't eat trash anymore!" But really it's just because we live in closer contact with our dogs now, instead of them living in the backyard, so we don't want to deal with tummy troubles.

  5. Kieka

    Kieka Snowshoe Servant Staff Member Forum Helper

    Sep 6, 2016
    Southern California

    I agree that it’s a higher level or awareness. Both in cats and in humans. We are realizing that there is no “one size fits all” approach to feeding our cats and learning more about what is biologically appropriate to feed them.

    There will probably come a better understand about how geographically of a breeds ancestors affects diet in time. Something like cats who come from more landlocked areas can’t handle fish while those where small birds are less frequent can’t handle poultry well. There also might be some determination about the effect of genetically modified foods or chemicals used in animal processing.

    For example, my Dad has a poultry allergy. Tested and confirmed by an allergist, not just a suspicion. However, we’ve found that if he eats free range, no antibiotic, organic poultry he doesn’t have a noticeable reaction. So is his allergy truly to poultry or is it to the chemicals and modification that poultry goes through on large commercial farms? Since his allergist can’t confirm which is the basis for the poultry reaction we don’t know.

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