problems with changing cat food-help!?
I just started to learn about all the gross things they put in pet food so I switched my cat's food. He was eating The Goodlife Recipe (which he LOVES- and which I can get for not very much money at walmart...) to Natural balance soft food (1 little can twice daily) and supplement that with Wellness brand indoor hard food. Since switching he has had black stools and only a small one every 2 days or so, when he used to go every day regularly & they looked very healthy. He doesn't like his new food very much and always scratches at the floor to try to "cover up the smell" is what I'm guessing...like he would in the litter box. He hasn't been vomiting as much as when he was on the old food (although i think they were mostly hair balls), but still does occasionally and its clear with loose hairs in it. He also seems to be sensitive about the area near his hips and it feels like his kidneys might be a little swollen, but I haven't taken him to the vet about this yet. No notice of increased urine output or thirst & no real changes in his behavior besides in relation to his food. Should I just switch him back to the old food or stick it out? It seems like the "healthy" stuff might be causing more problems than his old food! He has been eating this new food for about 2 months now and he will eat it but he always does the scratching thing...some flavors more than others. I would appreciate any help or adivce! Thanks
- 8 years agoFavorite Answer
Natural Balance contains MUCH higher amounts of protein. This will turn cat's stool darker and reduce volume. Cats need a certain amount of animal protein in their diet. The Good Life Recipe is made mostly with corn. Corn is light yellow in color and not easily digested by cats so it comes out much like it went in. Since your cat would keep eating the Goodlife Recipe until he got enough protein, he had to eat more of it just to get the protein he needs in his diet. Often times this would lead to overeating and vomiting.
Your cat needs a lot LESS high-quality cat food -- because it is more densely packed with the proper nutrients he needs. So he eats less.
HOWEVER -- NATURAL BALANCE is not always a cats favorite! MY THREE CATS hate Natural Balance. I do not buy it for them anymore.
I have three cats all on premium cat food. There are only a few flavors that ALL THREE cats love.
Cat 1 - large 16 year old persian
Cat 2 - medium 9 year old orange tabby
Cat 3 - small 5-year old Siamese
These are the foods that are ALWAYS DEVOURED by all three cats
1. Merrick Cowboy Cookout
2. Tiki Cat Puka Puka Luau Succulent Chicken in Chicken Consomme Canned Cat Food
3. Tiki Cat Papeekeo Luau Ahi Tuna and Mackrel in Tuna Consomme Canned Cat Food
4. Weruva Paw Lickin' Chicken
5. Instinct Canned Cat Food, Rabbit Formula (the only flavor of Instinct they all devour)
6. Fussie Cat Tuna Mussels
I've tried at least 40 other premium canned foods. There is always one cat of mine that doesn't like something. But these six flavors above seem to be the common denominators that ALL the cats eat like there's no tomorrow.
- DeborahLv 44 years ago
First off let me just say, I feel for you & your Family & I hope & pray things get better for you. It warms my heart to know that you are trying your best to care for these animals, I am no stranger to hard times & it aggravates me what some people are having to go through right now, with criticism, because there is no work. Cheap dog food isn't always the best way to go, I know you cannot afford much, but I honestly wouldn't go any cheaper than what you can buy at Wal-mart. Those Dollar Store brands are complete crap & could possibly cause unwanted VET bills. As for litter, you can use shredded newspaper or even wood chips until you get back on your feet again, may be a little cheaper than litter. You could try going to a Farm Supply Store like Rural King, they usually run deals on dog/cat food & you can buy in bulk. Good Luck to you and your family, dear. I hope that things get better for you soon.
- bloomorninggloryLv 78 years ago
Less stool output = good. That just means there's less junk filler in the food so there's less garbage for your cat to process. I've noticed this as well.. my resident cat is usually on EVO/Taste of the Wild hard food with a variety of soft foods and his stool are smaller and more firm than when he was on the junk like Iams or Science Diet (eek :) ). My fosters are on Science Diet as well and their poops are always larger.
They will scratch to cover leftovers. If he's not finishing food, just put less out. Unless he is losing weight, I'd not worry that he's eating less food. Again, this can be the result of a better quality food, less filler, means they need to eat less overall.
So I guess I don't see what's happening as problems, per se. But if your cat doesn't like the taste, don't despair. There are other good quality foods that he might like better. The one thing I can say is that some foods are coated in a fat spray to make them more appetizing. It can be hard to transition a kitty that's used to those foods. But try a few options and see which kitty likes best. If you have a smaller pet store or feed store, ask if they have samples of some foods you'd consider purchasing. Canned food.. My cat's all time favorites are Weruva and Soulistic. Soulistic is only available at Petco. Several flavors are shreds in gravy and they're basically meat shreds with a vitamin gravy - super quality. If your cat likes pate forms, check out Authority, Chicken Soup, Felidae. On the other hand, I've had several cats turn up noses at EVO.
I encourage you to stick it out, trying other foods as needed. Sometimes it takes them longer to warm up to new ideas, and sometimes it's a matter of hitting on the right food. But your cat will benefit from your efforts to bring in better quality foods. Good luck!