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Need your opinion on what to feed (me vs. the vet)

Discuss ways to improve the quality of your cat's life and longevity through proper nutrition; a place for all of your questions and answers about feeding your kitty!

Please keep discussions fun, friendly, and helpful at all times. Non-informative posts criticizing a particular brand or another poster's choice of food are not allowed in this Forum. References to any brand of food as "junk," "garbage," or other harsh names will be removed.

  
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Pickles &- Cinders

Look at me! - Look at me!
 
 
Purred: Wed Aug 11, '10 6:54am PST 
Hello All,

I really need some advice here. My cat Pickles, just had 4 bladder stones removed. They are currently being tested for either struvite or oxalate, though my vets thinks both. My cat is almost 11 years old, and has been fed Chicken Soup for the Cat's Soul Light Dry, and recently I switched them to Nature's Balance Chicken and Pea because my other cat is having some sort of allergy, biting her fur and scratching.

Now in the past vets were not taking xrays, and we always thought she just had cystitis which was being treated with antibiotics but obviously not what she needed.

I really like this vet, she seems very smart and specializes in cats. Before we knew it was stones, she was talking about switching her to all canned food, whatever high quality, high protein, no grain food I liked. I completely agreed with this. Then when she found crystals, she said she would need to be on a special diet for the rest of her life or the stones would come back. Now I really want to feed both cats either the Nature's Balance chicken, venison and duck/Pea canned or Innova Evo 95% meat canned.

How can any of these prescription foods with by-products and corn, be good for them? She couldn't even tell me what's special about the "special" food.

Should I tell her no thanks, and stick with either of those 2 foods? Any help would be appreciated. Sorry about the rambling.

~Kericonfused
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Alex (sweet- angel girl)

Angel on a- mission!
 
 
Purred: Wed Aug 11, '10 8:04am PST 
Hi Keri, yes, that's exactly what you should say to her. Thanks but no thanks. But I will tell you that Chicken Soup for the Soul is far from grain free and in my opinion looking at the ingredients is just as bad as those prescription diets. People don't realize this but gluten is a protein that's found naturally in barley, rye and other grains. Gluten is often the cause of food allergies in humans and in pets. I would stick with anything grain free. Check out this page on my website www.ibdkitties.net/food.html, this has a complete list of all grain free foods and JUST the flavors that are grain free.way to go
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Shadow

Education is the- Key
 
 
Purred: Wed Aug 11, '10 10:34am PST 
Alex is right..... and tell them "no thanks". Shadow had struvite Crystals too. After educating ourselves about feline nutrition, we had to to tell the vet " no thanks" too. Shadow has been clear of crystals for about 4 years now. Though I will tell you that you have to get both your cats off the dry cat food. A high protein grain free wet food is what you want to look for. Also try to limit fish intake to once a week.
The foods that the vet are offering you are full of salt this makes them drink more water, this is unhealthy and unnatural. It also contains powedered cellulose (sawdust), by products, grains, and sometimes BHT/BHA (known carcinogens).
If your vet does suspect that there is both kinds of crystals, you may feed the prescription wet food for a couple weeks, this will dissolve the Oxalate crystals, but you do not need to be on this prescription food for life. Your cats however need to be on an all wet diet.
A great site to read is catinfo.org there is a section in there about UTI'S and Crystals.
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Pickles &- Cinders

Look at me! - Look at me!
 
 
Purred: Wed Aug 11, '10 11:15am PST 
Thank you so much for confirming what I was thinking. She's really been making me feel bad about the food thing. I will keep her on the prescription diet for a while, but Pickles doesn't even like itfrown.

As for the dry food, I am totally pulling them off of it. In fact, my other kitty is already snubbing the few pieces of kibble that are left in the dish! The Chicken Soup food is what I WAS feeding them, until I changed them to the Limited Ingredients Natural Balance kibble, which I now have the canned of. I'm gonna switch between the 3 flavors, chicken, venison and duck. No fish. Now I need to find some EVO so I can add that to the rotation.

The vet just called and told me she's got some really nasty bacteria in the urine which are going to need special, heavy antiobiotics. Some about Staph. possible leading to Mersa if not gotten under control. So far Pickles is feeling good, I just hope this doesn't get worsecry

Thanks for your help, please keep it coming if there's anything I need to know.
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Alex (sweet- angel girl)

Angel on a- mission!
 
 
Purred: Wed Aug 11, '10 11:47am PST 
Whoa! That's serious that bacteria. I know of other kitties that have had this. But it's definitely treatable and I think because you caught it in time it shouldn't be a problem. I'm guessing they'll prescribe either Flagyl or Baytril which are both strong. What I would suggest is to use some Eaglepack Transition Solution, http://www.petstore.com/Eagle_Pack_Holistic_Transition_Supplement_2. 2oz_Adult_Dog_Food-Eagle_Pack-QG59300-DGFDAD-vi.html. This will replenish the good bacteria that the antibiotics will kill and believe me, she's going to need it. Plus that is a chicken flavored powder and grain free so it will entice her to eat the new food much more as a side benefit. Continue using it while she's on antibiotics but don't overdo it because she'll get sick of it. I would also agree highly about watching salt content as it's just as easy for kitties to get high blood pressure, dehydration, all kinds of things from high salt. So get off that prescription stuff as soon as you think you can do it. You can definitely rotate brands and flavors even in the course of one day! That's what my mom does for Finney and Lacey.
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Gumpy Sweet- Boy

Love wrapped in- fur
 
 
Purred: Wed Aug 11, '10 11:51am PST 
Hi Pickles,
The other catsters are right - you need a quality, high protein, wet food (grain-free). Yes, the RX food is full of grains and by-products (and urine acidifiers). That sounds weird the possibility of both oxalate and struvite crystals. The stones usually form in opposite conditions (struvite in too alkaline urine; and oxalate in too acid urine). thinking

Most cats with urinary issues can be dealt with change to a wet food (though there may be a few cats who have a strong propensity for urinary problems/blockages and may need more than just wet food).
Oxalate stones can't be dissolved with diet, but struvite stones can. Quote from Dr. Lisa Pierson, "Remember, CaO (oxalate stones) will not dissolve with diet manipulation and acidifying diets promote the formation of CaO."

IMHO, we would be seeing a lot less urinary ailments (cystitis and crystals/stones) if cats were eating a diet closer to their natural diet - a high protein, meat-based, moisture-rich diet. The moisture is a big component in urinary tract health, along with the problems of grains/ carbs creating an overly alkaline urine.

Here is a link to the Catinfo.org Urinary Tract Health section, click here. Very detailed, but excellent information.
And, Here is a link to another more concise article by a vet, click here.

Best wishes to you!


wave

Edited by author Wed Aug 11, '10 11:55am PST

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CHARLEY- BLEAU EYES

I\'M HAVING- FUN!!!!!!!!!!!!1
 
 
Purred: Wed Aug 11, '10 12:33pm PST 
All you folks who answered this question are amazing. I'm going to sort of hijack this thread to ask another food question. Someone mentioned fish once a week. What about something with liver in it. We feed grain free wet Wervua and Wellness mostly, with a little (very little) Taste of the Wild venison and salmon dry as treats.

Thanks

laugh out loud
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Lacey

Backflips are my- specialty!
 
 
Purred: Wed Aug 11, '10 12:47pm PST 
That's fine because if it's in the canned food, they only put a very, very tiny portion in it so it's not as if you're free feeding raw liver. They don't add enough to come even close to any toxicity. I wouldn't give only that and not every day, mix it up with other stuff like chicken or beef or soemthing. But that's a very GOOD question! Ask anything! Ask away!
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Pickles &- Cinders

Look at me! - Look at me!
 
 
Purred: Thu Aug 12, '10 10:44am PST 
So here we go.....the vet just called to let me know what meds she needs to take and I told her she's not eating any of the wet she sent me home with, and she tells me I'll have to put her on the dry prescription diet food so she eats. She says something to the affect that cat's always want what's bad for them, but my food is good for them! Grant it, it's dry, but at least it's Natural Balance grain free, versus that filler crap! Ugh. She says "but there's other stuff in there that makes it so the crystals don't form." I'm like, what "stuff?"

Anyways, so I'm on my way over there to pick it up, for the time being. When she's feeling 100% I will work on switching her back to canned. Thoughts? She's really pressuring me on this.
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Shadow

Education is the- Key
 
 
Purred: Thu Aug 12, '10 11:41am PST 
Can you find out exactly what crystals she has? struvite, or oxalate?
Do not feel pressured by her. I really would not advice using that dry prescription food. Maybe there is another brand of wet precription that she could offer? the Veterianry formula Royal Canin is better than the Hills.
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