UTI prescription diet rant.

greypaws

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That is terrific news. If I may ask, what did you end up deciding to feed your little one? Will all the kitties eat the same thing or are you able to feed separately?

Good luck with the roomie making the switch. I think if you ask, someone here may be able to give you scientific links that help to explain the health benefits of raw feeding.
 
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jazzyp

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That is terrific news. If I may ask, what did you end up deciding to feed your little one? Will all the kitties eat the same thing or are you able to feed separately?

Good luck with the roomie making the switch. I think if you ask, someone here may be able to give you scientific links that help to explain the health benefits of raw feeding.
For now, I'm going with Triumph, from Chewy, along with 4Health, which I can get from our local TSC.  At least for now, everyone will get the same thing.  I'd like to try the Dave's formulation you mentioned for urinary tract issues, but it's well over a dollar a can for a 5.5 oz. can, and that is really more than I can afford to spend.  Perhaps I can add it later, if I need to, for the two boys.  If not, any money over the current budget will likely be used to add some raw meat to the diet for everyone.  However, my next purchase will probably be drinking fountains, one for each room the cats visit.  I have to do *something* to encourage these guys to drink more water.  Today, I got seven small stainless steel bowls, so each cat, as well as my Chihuahua, can have his or her own dish.  The larger bowls they have been sharing will be used for water until I can get the fountains.  All plastic dishes will be tossed or donated to the shelter.  I haven't used then for food for quite a while, but I don't want to use them at all.

I found a very interesting article that listed cat foods (all forms) that avoid a list of undesirable ingredients.  They also de-listed any foods made by companies with *any* recent recalls, and any foods not made in the US, UK, or New Zealand.  Very strict standards, these folks have!  Since I'm committed to cutting out dry, I bookmarked on Chewy each of the recommended brands.  I'm not able to get them right now, but the information given was useful in ruling out the worst ingredients and companies.  Frankly, the stuff they did recommend was so expensive that if I could spend that much, I would just switch to raw immediately!  So for now, I have a list of "second string" brands that may not be perfect, but they are certainly better than kibble or Friskies.  

There's another thread here, posted by a member who is feeding 50 cats, both their inside pets, and a tame colony they care for.  Their budget is even tighter than mine, about $.33 per cat per day, I figured out.  I believe their primary goal was to find a grain-free food, not to eliminate kibble.  Nevertheless, trying to help them sort things out helped me get a lot more familiar with the math involved, and gave me a much greater understanding of what is and is not within my own budget.  I know one thing:  I don't envy their task.  That's some serious work, and speaks of great dedication to cats.  Much respect to these folks.  

I'm monitoring the cats' litter box behavior almost obsessively, to make sure I don't see any signs of UTI issues after taking them off the prescription kibble, and I have noticed something pleasantly surprising.  Not only are their stools *not* the stinky mess I had feared upon switching to canned, they are smaller.  I suppose that makes sense, as the new food should be more digestible than the kibble.  Whatever the cause, with six cats and seven litter boxes, it's a lovely development, if one can ever apply that word to a cat's toilet.   ;p

As for convincing the roomie about raw, I have a few books that could make that argument quite effectively, but links would probably be better.  I love her dearly, bless her heart, but after a long career as an English teacher she is tired of books, and anything on the Internet must be true, right?  Please give me a moment, I need to pry my tongue out of my cheek...okay, that's better.  Honestly, I'm not really anxious to have her start looking up info on raw.  She is a worrier of the first order, and a bit mistrustful of anything that seems unconventional, so all it would take is for her to read one story of someone who had a bad experience with raw, and she would be turned off on it forever.  She's already inclined to oppose it because it's unfamiliar to her.  She's a wonderful person, she truly is, but this is going to go a lot more smoothly if I can accomplish it gradually, quietly, on-budget, and just let her see the results.  She's only just recently accepted the idea that I have "gone rogue" by rejecting our vet's advice and dropping the Science Diet.  
 
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greypaws

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Well thought out plan of action


The only thing I would add, is try out one water fountain and see if any of the kitties even use it. Not all cats like them, some are fascinated by the moving water, will even drink out of a slow stream of water from the faucet. I got one for my Good Boy, he's basically ignored it. I put a pad under it so the motor doesn't make a vibration, even moved it a couple of times, not interested. I'm keeping it out and will care for as per directions. I also have 2 water bowls in other places. I think adding the extra water to his canned is what is making his thirst drive even less. His food has 78% moisture plus the extra water that I"m adding which is about 1/3 cup over the course of the day. His urine is really pale unlike when I first got him when it was a dark yellow/orange color with a strong odor. I'll know at the end of Feb, when I take back for a clean urine catch if all that I"ve been doing is successful. That test is really cheap and well worth my peace of mind. Once I'm positive I'm on the right track, I'll have his urine checked every 6 months. Last test showed no crystals and barely a trace of blood, probably from inflammation of bladder lining according to my vet and that should resolve with time.
 
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jazzyp

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Well thought out plan of action


The only thing I would add, is try out one water fountain and see if any of the kitties even use it. Not all cats like them, some are fascinated by the moving water, will even drink out of a slow stream of water from the faucet. I got one for my Good Boy, he's basically ignored it. I put a pad under it so the motor doesn't make a vibration, even moved it a couple of times, not interested. I'm keeping it out and will care for as per directions. I also have 2 water bowls in other places. I think adding the extra water to his canned is what is making his thirst drive even less. His food has 78% moisture plus the extra water that I"m adding which is about 1/3 cup over the course of the day. His urine is really pale unlike when I first got him when it was a dark yellow/orange color with a strong odor. I'll know at the end of Feb, when I take back for a clean urine catch if all that I"ve been doing is successful. That test is really cheap and well worth my peace of mind. Once I'm positive I'm on the right track, I'll have his urine checked every 6 months. Last test showed no crystals and barely a trace of blood, probably from inflammation of bladder lining according to my vet and that should resolve with time.
Starting with one fountain is probably a good idea.  I know that at least one of my cats will use it, because she loves the faucet, and she tries to drink out of the little stone fountain I have in my bathroom.  Two of my cats play with their water, slapping their paws in it and such.  One of them dips her paw and then licks the water off.  I am hoping that in time, a fountain or two, perhaps the kind that spills into a larger bowl, will satisfy everyone, but since I also have dogs, I will probably always need to have a conventional bowl or two around.  

I hope all goes well with the upcoming test.  I should probably have a couple of my cats on a six-month checking schedule, as well.  
 
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I'm planning to get some salmon oil for my dogs.  I know that I need to avoid foods with fish for my UTI cats, but does this extend do oils, as well?  I have read good things about Grizzly, and I noticed a brand called Pure Alaska Omega mentioned in another thread on here.  

Would it be safe for me to give my cats' food a little drizzle of this stuff?  
 

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I would ask your vet to be sure if additional salmon/fish oil is needed or would cause harm. The RC feline urinary so canned that I fed had fish oil in it. Dave's restricted diet low P&M has salmon oil in it. So my belief is some oils are fine in small quantity as part of a healthy food. Unless there is a specific reason why additional is needed, I personally see no need to add more.

I don't know if this helps but the 3.5 weeks that Sparky was exclusively on the RC canned, he lost almost a pound of weight and his coat became dull with dandruff. He was barely at a good weight and that pound loss had his shoulder and back bones sticking out. I made a slow switch half and half of RC and Dave's, within a week his coat looked a bit less dull. Since then it is almost healthy looking. The folks that recommended Dave's and NVI said that within a few weeks, coats should be shiny and they were right. I blame the low protein % , Dave's & NVI has a higher protein %. In all fairness, may cats that are diagnosed with FLUD are overweight and some weight loss is probably good for them. Don't know if this helps with your dilemma?

ETA I just looked the Natures Variety Instinct does not have any oils listed, neither does the Triumph that I think you are getting. It doesn't bother me that the NVI does not have salmon oil as I serve that as a bedtime snack each night his main food source is Dave's. So in light of all this, maybe I'm wrong and the better question is how much & how often?
  I'll look on the www.catinfo.org site and see what if anything is written there as you've got me interested now.
 
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Update, I went back to catinfo love that site but it is packed with so much info, it takes time to digest it all. If you key into the search engine salmon oil it brings you to her raw section, where she explains that she adds fish oil," quantity for her raw recipe", explains capsules to oil in bottle and also states "no fish oil for CKD cats'.  Maybe you can use that info to help with your decision?

Further note, I'm feeding what I am due to several folks on the cat site recommendations as to what worked for their cats over a period of years. There are many other canned foods that can be served that will accomplish the same things. I had a few parameters of what I wanted to feed, with canned only, in terms of protein%, carb %, P&M% with no carrageenan or soy, no gravy, and non fish foods. I'm also using the catinfo.org as a basis for my decisions. Everyone's cats and their needs are different. For now, what I'm doing is working and further clean urine catch will prove or disprove my decisions. I will say, so far so good, keeping our paws crossed for continued good news from the vet 
 
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I feel like I am making a complete pest of myself, but I have one more question (actually, a multi-part question).  While the cats are all eating the canned food, they are not eating nearly as much as the calorie guidelines suggest, and I think they are reluctant to give up their kibble.  Losing a bit of weight would be good for a few of them, but I know it's dangerous to go too quickly, so I am giving them a very small amount of kibble each day, until I am satisfied that they are getting enough of the wet food to phase it out.  

Right now I am stuck with the Science Diet c/d for this purpose, but I was wondering if it would be okay to replace it with Wysong Uretic.  The problem is, while I have heard good things about this company, I have also heard some truly horrible things, although, in fairness, nothing worse than what has been said about Hills.  Has anyone had experience with Wysong?  

I think I probably knew more about pet food than the average consumer when I started this process, and in spite of that, I am discovering new things every day.  That's cool, and I'm happy to be doing something to provide my babies with a better diet, but it's kind of stressful, too.  It seems like every day I hear about some ingredient or product that sounds like it will make my cats all keel over if I let them near it, or discover that just because one forumla of a trusted brand is okay, it doesn't mean they all are.  (Example:  Triumph.  Turkey formula has no fish.  Beef does, so I guess I will mix little bits of it into my dogs' food until it is gone, and then not order it again.)

I did get the cats some raw goat's milk yesterday, hoping to increase their hydration.  It was spendy, so I'll probably be switching to CatSip, if they seem to like it.  I'm ordering a Drinkwell mini today.  If the cats use it, I will be getting more later.  

Last thing, I hope.  I got some Tripett to add to the food of a very picky dog we just rescued who had been receiving Pedigree.  He loves it, and the cats keep trying to get at it.  I would let them have some (like a tablespoon per half 13 oz can), but it has a tiny bit of garlic in it.  I have heard about the benefits of green tripe for years, but I know garlic is controversial.  One site will say it's great, another will say it's absolutely deadly in any amount.  

I'm sorry if this all sounds like an incoherent ramble, but right now I am suffering from serious information overload.  I'm really wanting to get on raw.  80% muscle meat, 10% bone, 5% liver, and 5% other organs is a heck of a lot easier to remember than all this!  Soon, soon...
 

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I'm with you on the concerns, read enough you go cross eyed and find if one person says this, another says that. You are just going to have to make the best decisions for your animals you can, do recheck on urine and take those results and tweak as necessary.

According to my vet, Sparky whom should be a healthy weight of 12# should not need to eat more than 5.5 oz of canned a day. He lost weight on the 'script canned, that had only 6% protein, Dave's has 10% and he's gaining back what he lost. He eats a full can each day plus about 1-1.5 oz of NIV, every once in a while he is hungry between AM & PM feeding and I give him another 1/4 can of Dave's. When I do that, he usually doesn't eat as much dinner.

Kibble take 3 pieces of whatever you are feeding, drizzle a couple drops of water on it and let it sit. The amount it swells is how it swells and fills up kitty's tummy, which is why you can feed less kibble and the cat is satisfied. I looked at the Wysong ingredients and IMO, there is a lot of junk in it plus I couldn't find any place that gave nutritional values on P&M. I feel you are better off weaning them off the SD kibble and then not serving any more, as the kibble is filling up those tummies, so they will eat less canned.

There is a company that sells green tripe without garlic made for cats. If you want to serve tripe, I'd go get that instead of risking what garlic may or may not do to the cats.

There are some people that feed fish/seafood to their FLUD cats. I prefer not to do so as those are high in P&M. Carrageenan is supposed to cause cancer, soy is supposed to cause auto immune diseases, so that is why I choose not to feed those ingredients. Speaking of ingredients, some don't like to feed DL-methionine but I've read that this is actually helpful for FLUD cats and not building crystals. There is no perfect canned commercial food. You need to pick you battles and feed what you think is best for your cats health & your budget.
 
 
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I saw the canned green tripe for cats on the PetKind website, but it's insanely expensive, on the few websites that carry it.  In light of that, I think I will just forget buying this item in cans and order it raw from Hare Today  They have it for $2.69/lb.  I cannot be spending $4 + for a 13 oz. can of anything on a regular basis.  

Actually, I think I'm going to leave my Autoship order unchanged right now, except for removing the Triumph beef formula, and put the entire matter out of my mind for a few days.  My order isn't due to ship until Feb. 24, so I have a while to do do any other tweaking closer to that time.  

One thing that occurs to me is that the cats may be eating less of the canned food than they did of the dry is because it has less filler, and a smaller amount satisfies them.  
 

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Good idea to walk away from reading nutritional labels for a bit. I looked off & on for a month before I made my choice. You can extend your autoship with Chewy out to 16 weeks. They also send out email confirming you actually are ready for the order to be sent, before doing so. They are a great company to work with. There are other threads on here about what to feed FLUD cats, so when you feel like it, prowl those and see what others, beside me has to say
  Paws crossed for you & your kitties
 
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DL-Methionine is in both foods, and also in supplements like Methigel.  I didn't know much about it until you mentioned that some people don't like to use it, so I looked it up.  It certainly helped lower the pH of my cats' urine quickly, but I can see why people prefer for their pets to get their methionine naturally, from a high-meat diet.  

I am hoping to have all the cats completely off kibble by the time my next Chewy autoship is ready to go out, but if, for some reason, I do not, I am strongly considering replacing Science Diet with Wysong.  I have a couple of reasons for doing this.  For one, while it does have some ingredients I don't think cats really need, its ingredients are certainly better than those in Science Diet.  I wonder about the P&M, too, but this is not going to be the only thing they eat.  It will probably be a very small part of it, and I may start putting it in treat balls, those little toys that make the cat chase and slap to get the kibble out.  Second, it costs about half as much, which will free up some of my budget to start adding in really good things, like better canned food, and the green tripe from Hare Today.  

Again, no major decisions today, but I am still trying to learn as much as I can, so I can put the knowledge to good use in a week or so.   
 
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new to this site...just want to say that my kitten passed away last year from a ruptured bladder. I have 3 cats and he was my baby. I noticed that his belly was swollen so I took him to the vet and it was too late. He asked what food I was giving him and my other cats. It was Indoor Friskys Dry cat food. He told me to NEVER give my cats any dry food that said INDOOR or for HAIRBALL remedies. He told me they cause crystals to form in the bladder and kidneys. I felt awful for giving this food to my cats.  And now I have just read something about Temptations cat treats (my cats love them) and they can also cause renal failure..OMG!! I'm switching to all organic food for them. Horrified that I could be giving them something that could be hazardous to their health..AGAIN!
 
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new to this site...just want to say that my kitten passed away last year from a ruptured bladder. I have 3 cats and he was my baby. I noticed that his belly was swollen so I took him to the vet and it was too late. He asked what food I was giving him and my other cats. It was Indoor Friskys Dry cat food. He told me to NEVER give my cats any dry food that said INDOOR or for HAIRBALL remedies. He told me they cause crystals to form in the bladder and kidneys. I felt awful for giving this food to my cats.  And now I have just read something about Temptations cat treats (my cats love them) and they can also cause renal failure..OMG!! I'm switching to all organic food for them. Horrified that I could be giving them something that could be hazardous to their health..AGAIN!
I am so sorry about the loss of your kitty.  (((hugs)))

It's very interesting that your vet said that.  It reminded me of something.  The problems with my cats started when they were getting a dry food for indoor cats.  I don't know for sure, but I am guessing that both indoor and hairball formulas have more carbohydrates in them than even ordinary dry food, and that is where the problem lies.  

Please don't beat yourself up.  You did what lots of cat owners do, many on the advice of their vets:  fed a "trusted" brand of commercial food.  

Choosing safe, healthy pet food can be a daunting task.  You will find some great advice here, and lots of links to useful resources, as well.

What are your kitties getting now?
 

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​I'm feeding them Purina dry for Gentle Digestion and I give them canned cat food daily. I stopped giving them the Temptation treats after I read that article. And boy are they mad at me! Thanks for the support! Helps to talk about it.....T
 
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jazzyp

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Update!

I'm still feeding canned, but I've upgraded the quality, and am also leaving out Young Again dry food, which I decided to try out about a month ago.  I also got multiple fountains, and the cats seem to like them.  I watch the litter boxes like a hawk, and will often jump up from whatever I am doing to see how much the most recent user peed.  So far, so good.  I see no signs of the urinary tract issues recurring, and best of all, since tossing the Science Diet, the cats who needed to lose weight have started to slim down.  It's wonderful to see a fat cat getting in better shape, and really, with no effort at all on my part, other than feeding a more appropriate diet.  

My cats do tend to like variety, so I'm probably also going to let them have some Wysong Epigen 90, which I initially got for my dogs, simply because it's for both species, so I wouldn't have to worry about the cats sneaking food from the dogs' dishes.

Does anyone have thoughts about adding some of the Orijen foods to the dry rotation?  I'm a little concerned about the ash content, but I've read so many things that I wonder if ash is the problem with UTI, or is it more about unnecessary carbs, which can increase alkalinity in the urine.  I like the ingredients in Orijen, and when I gave my dogs a bit of Acana, which is also an Orijen product, recently, I had a hard time keeping the cats away from it.  It appeals to me because they do offer different formulas, and regardless of everything I've read about cats being creatures of habit, mine seem to be more of the "flavor of the week" sort.  
 
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