Special Kitty Select - OK?

nuser

TCS Member
Thread starter
Kitten
Joined
Mar 5, 2014
Messages
16
Reaction score
1
Is Special Kitty Select Ultra Gourmet wet cat food OK for my cat? I'm currently feeding her President's Choice wet cat food, but Special Kitty Select is usually cheaper, so I got a few cans. But after some research, Special Kitty has had a lot of recalls in the past, so is Special Kitty Select a safe wet food if anyone else uses it? The ingredients are not too bad, and it's grain-free, but has by-products. Apparently Special Kitty Select and PC have the same manufacturer, and their flavours are similar or identical, and they're both made in Canada. There's a version that is made from tuna (made in Thailand) and it had no by-products. 

INGREDIENTS: Tuna, Tuna Broth, Ground Tapioca, Calcium Sulfate, Guar Gum, Tricalcium Phosphate, Vitamin E Supplement, Thiamine Mononitrate, Niacin, Calcium Pantothenate, Riboflavin Supplement, Vitamin A Supplement, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B6), Folic Acid, Menadione Sodium Bisulfite Complex (Source of Vitamin K Activity), Biotin, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Vitamin B12, Zinc Oxide, Ferrous Sulfate, Manganese Sulfate, Copper Sulfate, Calcium Iodide, Sodium Selenite, Sodium Nitrate, Taurine. Guaranteed Analysis: Crude Protein (MIN) 13.0%, Crude Fat (MIN) 1.0%, Crude Fibre (MAX) 1.0%, Taurine (MIN) 0.03%, Moisture (MAX) 85.0%

Not too bad for it's price (53 cents a can at Walmart), but with the recall history, I'm a bit worried about its safety. 
 

raintyger

TCS Member
Top Cat
Joined
Oct 17, 2012
Messages
1,690
Reaction score
139
Location
Long Beach, CA
$.53 is comparable to Fancy Feast, Friskies, or Sheba. Why not use one of these instead?
 

dianamc

TCS Member
Adult Cat
Joined
Dec 18, 2013
Messages
216
Reaction score
9
It is close in price to Fancy Feast Classics and they really do sound like a better choice.  Most cats find a flavor they like in them. Sheba is popular too (we didn't find any reason to choose it over FF here since the price was about the same). No experience with Friskies.
 
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #4

nuser

TCS Member
Thread starter
Kitten
Joined
Mar 5, 2014
Messages
16
Reaction score
1
Thanks for the replies. I've gotten Fancy Feast for her in the past (its usually 60-68 cents), but I've never heard of Sheba here in Canada. But Fancy Feast often has wheat in the gravy, and I'm trying to at least keep her wet food grain free. Friskies might be OK, it comes in a larger can and costs the same as Fancy Feast. PC Extra Meaty is 50 cents during sales, so I stock up on it, and my cat likes it. I usually get the chicken or turkey flavours that don't have fish.
 

oneandahalfcats

TCS Member
Top Cat
Joined
Dec 13, 2013
Messages
1,437
Reaction score
174
 
Thanks for the replies. I've gotten Fancy Feast for her in the past (its usually 60-68 cents), but I've never heard of Sheba here in Canada. But Fancy Feast often has wheat in the gravy, and I'm trying to at least keep her wet food grain free. Friskies might be OK, it comes in a larger can and costs the same as Fancy Feast. PC Extra Meaty is 50 cents during sales, so I stock up on it, and my cat likes it. I usually get the chicken or turkey flavours that don't have fish.
The Fancy Feast pates are grain-free (no wheat gluten) and carageenan-free - It's the shredded/chunky FF that contains wheat gluten. I see that you feed the PC canned as well. Have you tried the Duck and Wild Rice in the green label can? I find this to be the nicest of the lot, however for some reason, the Duck is one variety that doesn't come in the 5.5oz can.
 
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #6

nuser

TCS Member
Thread starter
Kitten
Joined
Mar 5, 2014
Messages
16
Reaction score
1
 
The Fancy Feast pates are grain-free (no wheat gluten) and carageenan-free - It's the shredded/chunky FF that contains wheat gluten. I see that you feed the PC canned as well. Have you tried the Duck and Wild Rice in the green label can? I find this to be the nicest of the lot, however for some reason, the Duck is one variety that doesn't come in the 5.5oz can.
I'll go to the Superstore on the weekend to check if that flavour is available. But can anyone vouch for the safety or quality of Special Kitty Select if I feed the cans to her?
 

raintyger

TCS Member
Top Cat
Joined
Oct 17, 2012
Messages
1,690
Reaction score
139
Location
Long Beach, CA
Cat food recalls happen all the time, so I don't think anyone can vouch for a particular food. Last year Natura recalled Evo, Innova, and California Natural - some of the most trusted brands in the industry. That's why some people elect to make their own cat food.
 

oneandahalfcats

TCS Member
Top Cat
Joined
Dec 13, 2013
Messages
1,437
Reaction score
174
 
I'll go to the Superstore on the weekend to check if that flavour is available. But can anyone vouch for the safety or quality of Special Kitty Select if I feed the cans to her?
Yes, cat food recalls happen unfortunately as Raintyger pointed out, and to some of the top brands on the market. Most good pet food manufacturers however will do voluntary recalls which is a good indication that they are proactive in fixing potential problems with food before they cause serious harm.

From what I can gather through comments posted at some forums and in news pages, there have been quite a few recalls for the manufacturer of the Special Kitty food, which is Menu Foods, as recently as 2013. You can see a timeline of the number of recalls, here : http://web.archive.org/web/*/http://www.menufoods.com/recall/

Here is a link to a Response from Menu Foods, following the most recent recall : http://www.wsfa.com/story/6976794/menu-foods-responds-to-concerns-about-special-kitty-cat-food

In looking at the ingredients of the pouch food, I do see wheat gluten which is something you said you wanted to avoid. While meat is the first ingredient which is good, there is a whole bunch of other none food ingredients that probably don't need to be there. I couldn't find any ingredients for the canned food - not a good sign. Here is a link to the canned food at Walmart : http://www.walmart.com/ip/Special-Kitty-Premium-Classic-Pate-Variety-Pack-Cat-Food-24ct-Cats/19717194

My recommendation, between the information about the recalls and ingredients, would be to avoid Special Kitty food.

There is another food that you might want to look into, which is called Authority. I have posted about this recently. Authority is a decent food, at a decent price (.75 cents for 5.5oz can), does not feature by-products or artificial colors/flavors and comes in some good varieties including Lamb. Here is a link to the available varieties at PetSmart : http://www.petsmart.com/product/index.jsp?productId=4230546
 
Last edited:

dianamc

TCS Member
Adult Cat
Joined
Dec 18, 2013
Messages
216
Reaction score
9
Sorry, we discovered that Canadian Fancy Feast labels didn't say "Classic" like the U.S. ones.  You just have to learn which flavors are the classic and pate ones and they are the same. I avoid gravies too (for the cat). Whatever thickens Sheba is sticky.  I noticed that when I washed out the dish. Not to say it's any worse than FF but it seemed to be stickier.

I am having some issues again with feeding Dandy.  I think she will be on Wellness Kitten food and FF forever because she keeps going off everything else.
 
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #10

nuser

TCS Member
Thread starter
Kitten
Joined
Mar 5, 2014
Messages
16
Reaction score
1
Went over to the Petsmart today, and Authority 6 oz cans are on sale for 57 cents each (what a good deal), so I got a can to try it out. After reading a lot about ash in cat food, is it something I should be concerned about for a spayed female cat? Does ash have something to do with the quality of the meat used, like low quality by-products means more ash, as some people say? But the PC Nutrition First wet food I sometimes get for her has 3.5% Ash, and it has no by-products? A lot of sources say ash in wet food should be kept under 2-3%, but would feeding wet food with up to 4% ash on a regular basis be safe? It's still far less than the average dry food.
 

oneandahalfcats

TCS Member
Top Cat
Joined
Dec 13, 2013
Messages
1,437
Reaction score
174
 
Went over to the Petsmart today, and Authority 6 oz cans are on sale for 57 cents each (what a good deal), so I got a can to try it out. After reading a lot about ash in cat food, is it something I should be concerned about for a spayed female cat? Does ash have something to do with the quality of the meat used, like low quality by-products means more ash, as some people say? But the PC Nutrition First wet food I sometimes get for her has 3.5% Ash, and it has no by-products? A lot of sources say ash in wet food should be kept under 2-3%, but would feeding wet food with up to 4% ash on a regular basis be safe? It's still far less than the average dry food.
That's a great deal for sure!


I think the opinion concerning Ash content may be changing in favor of looking at urine ph as an indicator for urinary tract infectionsl. A diet high in protein and low in carbs will keep the urine acidic, which in turn discourages unwanted bacteria. The ash component associated with dry food is more important I think that with wet food, as wet food contains moisture. So unless your cat has experienced crystals or stones in her urine, there should be no problem with ash content, unless its off the charts, which I don't think it is with this food.

I would be very interested in how things go with the Authority. This food is made here in Ontario, Canada, I believe, by the same makers of Simply Nourish.
 
Last edited:

meowmars007

TCS Member
Kitten
Joined
Mar 7, 2014
Messages
11
Reaction score
3
Special Kitty is one of the worst brands. I would suggest a canned food with human grade meat. Such as Tiki Cat. Cans are only .99.

In the long run? Feeding cheap food is like feeding twinkles or hot dogs to your kids everyday, and it may save you money, but their health will cost you vet bills later in the long run. Of course, there are parents that give their kids a microwaved hot dog everyday and those kids don't die or become ill. But it's not ideal or healthy.
 

catdaddy007

TCS Member
Young Cat
Joined
Jan 31, 2016
Messages
48
Reaction score
9
Just bumping this thread.

Special Kitty gets a lot of flack, but I think that is based on their regular varieties, which I would not buy. I do feel, however, that the Select Ultra Gourmet is pretty good- I'd feed it before Hills science diet or Royal Canin or some of the so-called higher end supermarket foods. Looking at Fancy Feast pates, SKSUG is pretty identical. I chose FF as a comparison because it is in the same pice range. According to Lisa Pearson's extremely interesting and informative website, certain FF varieties have great nutritional profiles. So if SK Ultra is pretty identical, it would likely be completely fine. I think PC is really great, particularly for the money, except for one thing- carageenen.  I buy the FF and SKSUG varieties without gluten, corn, wheat, or carageenan. One of my cats has some bowel issues and the expensive vet/ boutique store meals didn't do a thing. Pearson's website made me leery of carageenan for cats. but the FF and SKSUG seem to be doing well. Almost all commercial and boutique cat foods have carageenan btw. Your opinion may vary on whether it is a good ingredient for felines. my cats are now on wet food exclusively, FF and SKSUG varieties with the odd boutique meal like rabbit. I also mix a little pumpkin in and they have cat grass, both to feed their gut flora. Freeze-dried chicken breast treats. And just got them their first bag of frozen raw duck- mainly for the raw bone. Also moving them onto PC corn litter- I can't stand the dust in the house and it sure can't be good for their lungs.

One strange thing I thought I noticed at Superstore, but it might have changed- the large cans of PC Turkey and Gibs have carageenean, whole the small tins don't. Very odd, and may be worth a call to the company.
 
Top