Cat food for sale at an Istanbul animal market (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
A researcher, P. Roudebush, has compiled information on studies done to determine adverse reactions to foods (ingredients) in cats. Only 10 different studies, representing a total of 56 animals, have described cutaneous lesions, gastrointestinal signs, or both, associated with adverse reactions to specific foods or ingredients.
In these studies, adverse reactions to beef, dairy products, and fish accounted for nearly 90% of all the reported cases in cats.
Animal proteins were reported to cause primarily cutaneous lesions or a combination of cutaneous and gastrointestinal signs, while wheat and corn were more often associated with gastrointestinal signs. No specific food allergens have been identified in cats, thus more research is needed.
So, it’s been a while since I last posted. But I’m back. I, unfortunately, lost one of my cats last December, which I’m still reeling from. He was the most amazing creature, rescued twelve years ago from the streets. This is his picture. He was diagnosed with a brain tumor and heart condition a year before he died. I am certain that his diet is what kept him going that last year, right till the end.
Then to start the new year off, I was diagnosed with vitamin D deficiency. Let me tell you, it really sucks! Luckily, I was diagnosed immediately. Many people have these crazy symptoms (heart palpitations, erratic blood pressure, erratic pulse, fatigue, depression, anxiety, aches and pains and many more symptoms) and their vitamin D levels are never checked and they are misdiagnosed with depression, MS, lupus, autoimmune disease, etc. It’s now stated by many experts that a high percentage of people worldwide are deficient. Go get yourself tested. You don’t want to experience this – EVER!
And as though this wasn’t enough, I thought a lifestyle change would do me good. I have been feeding my cats a homemade raw diet for over two years now and the changes they have experienced are great. Well, if an ancestral diet is good for them, then of course, I reasoned it would be good for me. Continue reading
The good thing about choosing a weight loss food for cats is that the food will be used for maintenance as well. The following is a short list of requirements for choosing a commercial cat food. If the commercial food in question, meets the following criteria, then look for the quality of ingredients and question the company as to the source of those ingredients. (Percentages are on a dry matter basis – DMB*).
- Protein – from meat and over 45%
- Fat – from meat and over 25%
- Carbohydrates – 0% but not over 10%
- Water – at least 60% (not DMB) this excludes all dry and semi-moist foods!
- Grain-free and soy-free
Basically, the best cat food is a wet food that contains lots of meat and fat. It is as simple as that. Cat food should never contain any grain, soy, vegetables, fruits or ingredients from plant sources such as flaxseed oil. These ingredients are poorly, if at all, used by the cat. I also recommend canned cat food that contains some organ meat such as liver or kidney (heart is considered muscle meat); many varieties contain none. Continue reading
So, we know that the typical 4 Step Program doesn’t work. However, steps 1 (reducing quantity) and 4 (exercise) aren’t exactly necessary if you change steps 2 (changing food) and 3 (feeding mealtime), particularly step 2. It really all comes down to the type of food you feed your cat.
While reducing the quantity of food and feeding mealtime only can be helpful, it won’t be unless you change the type of food that is being fed. By feeding the wrong type of food while reducing the quantity, you will essentially be starving your cat. The cat requires high levels of protein in its diet and will begin utilizing its own organs and muscle (digesting them) if given a reduced protein diet or a reduced quantity of food thereby reducing the protein load. The majority of overweight cats are eating a free-choice dry diet. The problem is threefold: too many carbohydrates, not enough animal protein and not enough animal fat. Cats are obligate carnivores, meaning they require certain nutrients that they cannot synthesize which are only found in meat and are able to metabolize only a small amount of carbohydrates. Continue reading
It is just as likely for dry cat or dog food to contain bacteria, fungus, molds, and parasites as it is for raw food. Many people believe the dry food is safe and therefore it is not handled as carefully as raw food may be, therefore it is more likely to produce infection and even outbreaks. Small children should never be allowed to handle dry pet food without proper supervision and safety protocols.
Investigation of Multistate Outbreak of Human Salmonella infantis Infections Linked to Dry Dog Food
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has been collaborating with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and state and local officials to investigate a multi-state outbreak of Salmonella infantis infections. FDA became involved in early April when the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development reported detecting Salmonella from an intact package of Diamond Naturals Lamb and Rice Formula for Adult Dogs, collected during retail surveillance sampling. Diamond Pet Food was notified of the sampling results, and agreed to voluntarily recall this product on April 6, 2012. Continue reading
Progress report, Winn grant 09-002
Nutritional adequacy and performance of raw food diets in kittens
Investigators: Beth Hamper, Claudia Kirk, Joe Bartges University of Tennessee
This study examined the feeding of a raw diet and its effects on kittens. The feeding trials have been completed using 24 kittens and two different raw food diets (homemade and commercial). The control diet was a commercially available kitten food. Weight gain over a 10-week period was at the high end of previously determined data for all kittens. Male kittens had higher weight gain than females, but all diets performed equally well. Blood protein and amino acid levels were in the normal range. Evidence of Salmonella infection was evident in some kittens fed the raw diet, but was not clinically significant. Continue reading