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Discussion in 'Cat Health and Nutrition' started by Lyceum, Jun 2, 2010.


  1. Lyceum

    Lyceum PetForums VIP

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    Okay, so I think I may have the fussiest cats known to man when it comes to wet food. I want them to have a decent diet.

    Currently use purely more meat for their dry but finding a decent wet is a nightmare.

    The only thing they'll eat with any consistency is applaws, and even then they'll turn their nose up at everything besides the plain chicken and the chicken and cheese. Everything else they'll eat maybe half a pouch and leave the rest, then not touch it if I put the same type down the next feed.

    Trouble is applaws is pretty expensive, and unless sainsburys have it on offer it's a struggle to afford.

    Here's what I've tried and had no success with.

    Hilife, Feline fayre, bozita, purely pouches and purely trays, almo nature, deli cat (from p@h), natures menu, animonda carney, raw prawns, chicken wings, chicken minces, tuna, cooked chicken (god knows why they wont eat this since the applaws plain chicken is just this). And I'm sure there are some I've forgotten.

    They wont even entertain any pate type foods, nor will they so much as lick anything in gravy.

    So, I thought I'd ask if anyone knew of any different foods that are more cost effective than applaws but have a high meat content? Or am I just resigned to buying applaws?
     
  2. hobbs2004

    hobbs2004 PetForums VIP

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    Oh my - they are keeping you on your toes!

    I am surprised that they wouldn't even touch almo nature, considering that almo nature and applaws are deceptively similar! And like you, I am puzzled that they turned up their noses to freshly cooked chicken, considering that that is what applaws is! The mind boggles! Did you also use the cooking broth?

    I know that you are feeding your dogs raw. Your cats not eating that? Even if it is not chicken but lets say lamb or rabbit minces? Are they fixated on chicken? Not even tuna?

    Boy! Right, you could try Porta 21 - they do one with just chicken. 65% meat. On zooplus. They also do a sensitive - chicken and rice, with 35% meat. It is a complete food but really light on fat. Ok, since you are feeding dry that is not an issue but you could always see whether you could mix in some goose fat to bump up the fatt. The 400g are the most cost effective and there is often a bulk deal. They also do pouches, that are frequently in a by 10 get 2 free. 6 400g tins cost £12.90, that is £0.54 for 100g (compared with applaws £1.07 for 100g on zooplus).

    Zooplus also do Schmusy - which is pure meat in jelly. They do Vollwertflakes, which is 80% meat and animal byproducts, and some rice in pouches (though it may not be a full 100% of chicken that makes up the 80% meat (if that makes sense). They do a just chicken one for that. 20 pouches are £8.90 (£0.44 for 100g). This is also a complete food.

    There is also Cosma Original - that comes in a 85g tin and is shredded meat like applaws also in broth and a little rice. 45% meat. Like applaws it is not a complete food, but since you are feeding dry that is less of an issue. 6 tins of cosma is £3.99 on zooplus (£0.78 for 100 g).

    Zooplus also sells Schesir - again shredded meat in broth, with a great selection of chicken flavours (pure chicken, with surimi, with ham - not sure whether they would eat that). Comes in 85 g tins and 6 are £4.79 - so not cheaper than applaws. About 60% meat but like applaws and co light on fat (£0.94 for 100g).

    I think I would try Porta 21 and Schmusy first before trying the other two. There is also shinyCat, also zooplus, but that is expensive for what it is (only 36% meat in the chicken and £0.99 for 100g).

    Hmm, those are the only ones I could think of that are in consistency like applaws. I will have a think and post back if I can think of some more.
     
    Dally Banjo likes this.
  3. billyboysmammy

    billyboysmammy PetForums VIP

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    Hiya hun

    Are they having enough dry to make a complete balanced diet?
    Are they free-feeding the dry? or set meal times?

    What are you trying to achieve? e.g. just complimenting their dry diet with a bit of wet, or full meal replacements of wet

    If your trying to just give complimentory treats then stick with the applaws/encore (just buy in bulk when on offer). Remember that although its ok to give daily you need to monitor their weight, too many sweets (even good sweets) will expand the waistline.

    If your trying to do a full daily meal replacement then you do need to move away from applaws, but in order to do that you will need to reduce their dry intake.

    Other than that i echo hobbs suggestions. I do think you might find more success though with other foods if you reduce the dry.
     
  4. Tje

    Tje Banned

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    My cats (3yrs and 9 yrs) were pretty addicted to their dry food and it wasn’t easy back around Christmas New Year time when I decided I wanted them on wet (they still get a tiny portion of dry at night time, but 45% of their diet is wet now, and the other 45% raw). I found I really had to remove the dry food completely. If your cats prefer dry food, and they know it will be forthcoming if they don’t eat their wet, then I can understand them digging their heels in and waiting for the dry to come back out. Obviously you can’t starve them – they do have to eat something. But you also have to make sure you don’t give in too quick and get the dry food back out. I set myself a limit of “they must eat at least 30% of the recommended daily intake for their weight”… and I watched and weighed like a hawk how much food I put out, and how much of that they actually ate. There were only two days (in the first month) that one cat really didn’t eat that 30% of the recommended amount, so I decided to “top her up” with Orijen biscuits, but made sure I didn’t allow her a belly full of those… I only gave her 15 grams if I remember rightly (just enough to make sure she wasn't starving, not enough that she had a full feeling). Sure, she wasn’t getting enough calories inside to maintain her on a longterm basis. But she was getting enough to survive (and it was only two isolated days)… and I think in that way we kinda twist their arm to accept they are not getting dry food and they must eat the wet.

    On the days where she really dug her heels and “refused” to eat the wet (and I topped up slightly with dry)… well the next day she was obviously quite hungry and would dig into the wet. But bear in mind, she was hungry (though not starving), so she had incentive.

    My other cat, although she wasn’t delighted with the transition from dry to wet… even on her worst day she ate 50% of the recommended daily amount… so I didn’t bother topping her up with dry. I figured rightly that the following day she'd be hungry enough to eat.

    I also weighed my cats once a week initially to make sure they weren’t loosing weight. When they got better on the wet I went to fortnightly weighing… now they're fine with their wet food I weight them once a month.

    Neither of them lost weight (in fact both gained slightly).

    One thing I feel I should add here… cats aren’t like us humans… they can’t fast completely, if they do they will die. They must eat. But if a cat is eating 30% one day, 50% the next day, 40% the day after… I wouldn’t panic and give them dry (providing this was a short term thing).
     
  5. LKelly

    LKelly PetForums Junior

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  6. Lyceum

    Lyceum PetForums VIP

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    The Schmusy looks great, I might order some of that and see how they go. I wish they sold them locally, I find myself wasting god knows how much bulk buying food for them not to eat it lol.

    I've tried them on lamb mince, chicken mince, tuna, raw prawns, chicken wings and each time I've been looked at like a complete mad woman lol. I even tried tying some string around a chicken wing and making it a toy (I know, I'm sad) hoping they'd see it as pray, but once they realised what it was I was giving the most disturbing looks lol.

    I'd be happy to change them to wet full time if I can find an affordable food they actually eat lol. I do free feed dry, but measure out a tiny amount, don't give them any where near the daily amount and have meal times for the wet.

    Obviously I'll stick to the dry and complimentary applaws if I can't get them to eat a wet food, as I'd rather they had that than no wet at all.

    I weight mine often too, they've maintained the same weight for about 2 years now, Chyna is minute and is just under 4kg, Bodie's weight has always varied between 5.5kg and 6kg depending on the time of year. It did go up last year when he was on steroids, but went back to normal when he came off them.

    Do you feed this? I can't find the ingredients anywhere, if you do feed it would you mind posting the ingredients from the tin.
     
  7. LKelly

    LKelly PetForums Junior

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    I don't feed this, my gran used to feed this to her Gourmet A La Carte cat and I just remember her saying he enjoyed it and he was really fussy. I've looked on the website though and posted the information below:
    Ingredients: Vegetable, Rice, Pasta
    Nutritional Info: Protein 14%, Oil 2.5%, Ash 2.2%, Fibre 0.5%, Moisture 79.0%, Copper 3mg, Vitamin A 1110 IU/kg, Vitamin D3 140 IU/kg, Vitamin E 10 mg/kg

    Hope this helps :)
     
  8. Tje

    Tje Banned

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    Have you tried stopping the dry altogether... forcing their arm to eat the wet? I know with my own two (more so with one than with the other)... if I hadn't point blank refused to give them dry, I don't think I would ever have got them on to their now wet & raw diet. Again though, you can't starve them, but they deifinitely sound like mine in as far as... they're gonna have to feel quite hungry before they'll grudgingly accept the wet. If the "safety blanket" of dry is too readily forthcoming, they're gonna wait it out for their dry food.
     
  9. Janee

    Janee PetForums VIP

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    Have you tried Butchers Classic?

    This is a 400 gm tin available from Sainsbury, Waitrose, some Asdas and maybe Morrisons and Wilinsons and Waitrose.

    No additives. Chunks in jelly.

    £5.30 ish for 12 tins
     
  10. hobbs2004

    hobbs2004 PetForums VIP

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    I am going to sound like a cat food snob now but I disagree re Butchers. Imo Butchers Classic is not a great food, based solely on their ingredients - not their price: With Haddock contains Meat And Animal Derivatives, Fish and Fish Derivatives (Haddock min. 4%), Minerals, Contains EEC Permitted Colourants. Not much better than some of the Whiskas and co varieties. Though if anyone has anymore info on that food, then please post it!
     
    #10 hobbs2004, Jun 2, 2010
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2010
  11. Lyceum

    Lyceum PetForums VIP

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    Thanks very much for the suggestion, it's appreciated, but they don't look like the best ingredients. I'm hoping to find something with quite a high meat content.
     
  12. Lyceum

    Lyceum PetForums VIP

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    Again, I very much appreciate the suggestion but I have to agree with hobbs on this, I'm looking for something with better ingredients.
     
  13. Lyceum

    Lyceum PetForums VIP

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    I haven't tried stopping the dry all together. I don't mind them eating some dry, I know I shouldn't, but I like the dry because I know they've got something to eat if I'm going to be out all day, I'd feel awful leaving them until I got home. I would be happy swapping to wet, but right now finding a happy medium between wet and dry would be fantastic.

    Bodie does seem to prefer the wet to the dry, he'll scoff a whole tin of applaws and not touch any dry all day so I'm pretty sure if I found a complete wet food he liked he'd be happy to do without the dry. Chyna on the other hand is almost 11 now, very stubborn and set in her ways. Since up until a year or so ago I had zero idea about pet nutrition she pretty much had nothing but dry until then. I didn't realise it wasn't good for them to have dry only diets (god I feel awful saying that - feel bad knowing what crap I fed the poor things), so I know she'll be much more stubborn as she only eats a tiny amount of wet, no matter what wet it is.
     
  14. Lulu's owner

    Lulu's owner PetForums VIP

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    I'm not sure about the quality, but I did contact them about the colourant and they told me it was just caramel, naturally derived.
     
  15. Colette

    Colette PetForums VIP

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    Maybe you could compromise and try a treat ball?

    Many animals will go for the easiest option when it comes to getting the things they want, inc food.
    Feed the wet in the usual easy manner (in a bowl), but maybe feed the dry in a treat ball. This way they still have access to it - if they can be bothered - so you don't to worry about them going hungry. But it may help encourage them to eat more wet, if they can't be bothered with the hassle of working for dry.
     
  16. hobbs2004

    hobbs2004 PetForums VIP

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    But caramel is just sugar, isn't it? To my mind, there is no need to put sugar into cat food (not to aid the cooking process, the appearance of the food or as an energy source).

    So in addition to only having 4% flavour meat and the rest not being declared but hiding behind the terms meat and animal by-products, I personally think that you can get better food. Obviously, if one is feeding it and the cat is doing well on it, then why change but the op is looking for high-meat food - and this one isn't one!

    Unless it is similar to Bozita. Bozita tetrapacks declare that they contain 93% food but when you read the label and it only mentions 4% flavour meat (because it is produced to Swedish standards it needs to contain the 93% meat it openly declares on the packaging).

    A few of us have emailed bozita to find out more and they were able to give the ingredients (though not the ratio of those ingredients). So with Bozita we now know that they contain mostly chicken and some pork with a specific bunch of offal.

    Hope that helps!
     
  17. Tje

    Tje Banned

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    Chyna sounds like my 9 yr old girl. I know for a fact if I put my eldest back on Royal Canin dry with half a pouch of whiskas daily, she’d be delighted. And Bodie sounds more like my younger one… likes wet, but knows which brands, lol (my youngest only wanted applaws/almo/porta/cosma type wet foods in the beginning).

    I also understand completely where you’re coming from on keeping dry a part of their diet. I give mine a tiny portion of dry at night times, and I’m going to start giving them dry every now and again when I’m out all day. I don’t want them to loose the taste for dry completely. When I’m on holiday my cat sitter will only come in once a day, so dry during those weeks dry will be the mainstay of their diet. I really don’t want them to get to a stage where they don’t like dry. (mind you, I seriously doubt this will ever happen with mine, lol).

    I discovered a trick by accident that might help you be able to leave wet food out when you’re gone all day. In the transition period with my own cats… things that come in big 400 gram packs or tins (like Bozita tetra packs or Animonda Carny)… well I simply couldn’t get rid of 400grams in 2 days, and I hate wastage, so after asking in this forum about the safety of freezing cat food… I started freezing half the pack/tin in. I made little meat ball sized balls and wrapped them in cling film and popped them in a plastic box in the freezer. I have experimented with this (but bear in mind defrosting times will differ with each home, but my living room is generally around 20 degrees) but basically if I feed my cats around 8am, then leave 2 of these Animonda Carny or Bozita frozen meatballs out, they’re defrosted around lunch time. This is what I do when we’re gone all day. I feed them in the morning as usual (say 7am)… then I leave their frozen meat balls out which they should be able to eat around 12-1pm ish, then when I get home about 7pm I feed them again. It seems to work perfectly. Now my own cats are finally being reasonable with wet food and accepting it, I can stop doing this… it was more just in the transition period I didn’t want to spoil all my efforts of getting them off dry, by giving them dry when I wasn’t home… and like you, I feel if cats have been free fed for years, I couldn’t leave them all day with nothing. Getting used to a new food is bad enough, without the added stress of 2 daily feeds with nothing in between. The frozen wet food seems to work perfectly for this.

    I recently had a very skinny foster cat who really needed fattening up. I didn’t care what she ate, as long as she ate lots of it. Each night at bed time I left her about 30grams of dry food and one of these frozen meat balls (they weight about a 100grams) …. Most mornings the meat-ball was gone and the dry food was left uneaten. (I wouldn’t be able to give my own cats this choice as I know they would choose the dry food).

    If nothing else, cats teach us to be creative, lol. :lol:
     
  18. Tobacat

    Tobacat PetForums Senior

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    I can't comment on the quality of Butchers classic meat, but I have recently written to Butchers about their ingredients and they state, "our foods are completely free from all cereals, soya, gluten, emulifiers, bulking agents, preservatives, artificial flavourings or colourings which may cause problems with some cats". I guess the EEC permitted colouring Hobbs2004 refers to does not cause problems problems in cats.
     
  19. Lyceum

    Lyceum PetForums VIP

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    That's a great idea, might very well give that a try, they are lazy so and so's so will always go for the easier option.
     
  20. Lyceum

    Lyceum PetForums VIP

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    Isn't butcher 4% meat?

    If anyone feeds it or can find the actual ingredients online I'm pretty sure it contains 4% animal derivatives. And to be honest, I wouldn't feed that if butchers paid me.

    I think the rich in chicken might contain a higher percentage of meat though, but I can't actually find the ingredients.
     
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