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Thread: Food for kidney cats

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA

    Food for kidney cats

    I have a question sort of along the line of the one Candace has just posted on food for diabetic cats.. sort of but not quite the same..

    First, the background:

    Sydney and Bob are both kidney-challenged. Their main meal has been Hill's K/D with Chicken wet food for a LONG time. This was the one that back some time ago they kind of decided was the best of a bad lot, after I'd tried all the available prescription kidney foods on them). They've always pretty much eaten it, or eaten enough of it for me to keep giving it to them. They of course preferred it fresh from a new can rather than one that had already been opened and then refrigerated.

    Well, lately they seem to have gone off the K/D with Chicken almost completely. Sometimes even when I've just opened a fresh can. They turn up their noses and turn away from it.

    As for the others, the two Mature ladies get old-cat wet food mixed with warm water, and the "babies" (Poppy, Elmer, and Sparkler) get kibble in the morning (Taste of the Wild Venison and Salmon and Holistic Select Radiant Chicken Meal have proven to be the most acceptable so far) and wet food (Chicken Soup for the Cat Lover's Soul seems to be the best so far).

    I fix them all up in bowls on the kitchen counter. Sydney and Lavinia and Elmer and Poppaea are right there at my feet and get theirs first. Then I give Poppy (the most particular of the regular-food eaters) hers under the table, and Bob his in whichever of his huge beds he's in. Then Sparkler, who wants to be served in the bedroom.

    Then I come back to the kitchen, and what has most likely happened is Sydney is now eating Elmer's food and Elmer is eating Sydney's! Elmer is young and healthy and can eat ANYTHING (and does), and he certainly does not need prescription food costing almost $2 a can!

    I switch them back, and by then Lavinia is eating Sydney's and Sydney Lavinia's. I don't mind that as much because Sydney is as old as she is, and she probably could use kidney-adjusted food too.

    Anyway, there is a lot of milling around, and usually they each get something that is good for them, but it takes a lot of chasing around on my part.

    What I am concerned about is, WHY have Sydney and Bob gone off the K/D so drastically just recently? I'm thinking this may have started about the time that the two new girls joined the family, but I don't know why that would affect the taste of the food to them.

    Sometimes I wonder if Hill's has changed their formula.. I can open one can, and they'll both eat most of what they're served. But much more often, they just DON'T want it. They used to usually eat most of it.

    Anyway, at this point I am just sick and tired of spending all that money for the K/D and then it not even being eaten by the cats it's intended for.

    SO... FINALLY... here are my question to you all:

    I have been trying out all kinds of high-quality foods to find the ones the most of them like the best.. and do any of you have any thoughts on which or what sort of food might be most suitable for cats with kidney issues? I'm going to call their vet on Monday and ask him too.

    Another thing.. I have a whole lot of supermarket brands like Friskies Wet that Simon gave me.. I'm also trying to pin down the good-quality elderly cat food that Lavinia and Poppaea like best. ..but they have lived to the ages of 17 and 20 on the supermarket brands.. maybe I should just let them all have that... ? I don't really think that's a great idea, but again, they've thrived on it, so it seems.

    So.. your thoughts, your experience, your expertise will be most greatly appreciated.. Thank you so very much!

    Pat, Sydney, Bob, and the others
    I meant," said Ipslore bitterly, "what is there in this world that truly makes living worthwhile?"
    Death thought about it.
    CATS, he said eventually. CATS ARE NICE.

    -- Terry Pratchett (1948—2015), Sourcery

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Methuen, MA; USA
    First, the feeding.

    The ones who get the same food should be in the same room, with the door closed. This will stop you chasing cats between dishes. So Syd and Bob eat in one room; Poppy Elmer and Sparkler eat in one room. I put them in their rooms and close the doors FIRST, as I find it too hard to maneuver them when I have the full dishes in my hands. So, um, Bob and Syd in the bedroom, the 2 old ladies in the bathroom, and the other 3 in the kitchen. Do you think this will work?

    Now, the food. My RB Mr. Amber Cat refused the prescription food from the get go. So he never had it.

    Cats (and humans) w/ kidney disease need a low protein food, and a moist, high water content food. You can try adding some chicken broth to the prescription food, shouldn't need too much to tempt them.

    Other good add ins: tuna water from the can, salmon water from the can (so if you are having tuna or salmon, save the water for them). A bit of cottage cheese mixed in can be quite tempting. The oil from olives

    As for started cans, cats do not like cold food. You can try taking the can out of the fridge in the morning so it is room temp when you feed them, or if the food bowls are microwaveable, try nuking it for 20 seconds and stirring it around before you feed them.

    Hope this helps! And I'll be interested in any ideas others have, too.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Delaware, USA - The First State/Diamond State - home of The Blue Hens
    I know that Myndi is no cat, but she is on the canine K/D canned. Miss Priss doesn't do dry. I thought I would have a problem getting her highness to eat it, but so far, so good. With her vet's okay - I add some veggies to the evening meal - just for a change in taste and so she doesn't get bored with it. Vet also said it would be okay to add just a small spoonful of a tastier dog food to it that she liked previously if she starts getting too finicky about it. I do that a couple of times a week, just to keep her interested, since I don't want her to suddenly stop eating it one day, and not fall for the trick of me doctoring it up.
    Can you maybe add just a smidgen of something tasty to it to trick them into thinking that they're getting something different?? And I always nuke what has been in the fridge, rather than feeding it cold.
    Wolfy ~ Fuzzbutt #3
    My little dog ~ a heartbeat at my feet

    Sparky the Fuzzbutt - PT's DOTD 8/3/2010
    RIP 2/28/1999~10/9/2012
    Myndi the Fuzzbutt - Mom's DOTD - Everyday
    RIP 1/24/1996~8/9/2013
    Ellie - Mom to the Fuzzbuttz

    To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.
    Ecclesiastes 3:1
    The clock of life is wound but once and no man has the power
    To know just when the hands will stop - on what day, or what hour.
    Now is the only time you have, so live it with a will -
    Don't wait until tomorrow - the hands may then be still.
    ~~~~true author unknown~~~~

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    If the senior ladies have survived this long on super market brands, I'd keep on with the same thing.

    As for the special diets, I empathize. Grady has bladder issues at times, but will he eat any of the prescription brands - not on your life. So I feed him lots of juicy canned, and add an extra teaspoon of water to his dish.

    The dry stuff - they all eat Royal Canin dental, and I mix in some Purina Healthful Life because it has cranberries - good for urinary tract problems.

    There are days when they eat better than I do

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA
    Thank you for all the good suggestions.

    I put the two oldies-but-goodies in the bathroom to feed them there this morning. Then I got the food ready for all. Sydney and Elmer were at my feet, Poppy nearby. (I'll get to segregating all food-eater groups later.) I served Sydney, then Elmer and Poppy, then Bob and Sparkler in the bedroom, and then took the food bowls in to the Ladies in their private dining room. When I got back to the kitchen, Sydney and Elmer had of course switched. I switched them back. This was a new K/D can this morning, and Sydney actually ate most of his (what Elmer hadn't eaten, anyway, so I gave Sydney a little more, and he ate that).

    Chicken broth and other tasty juices, what a good idea! And often I do add a bit of a tastier food to the ones that are not liked. Sometimes a dose from each others' food cans, sometimes some of the Friskies gravy.

    I take the semi-used cans out of the refrigerator about an hour before I start serving it in the afternoon. Maybe that's not quite long enough. That's a good idea, Sandie, to take it out early.

    I can't do that in the morning because the instant I wake up (in fact, before, and they help me along then) they want to be fed immediately.

    The microwave might help too, thanks!

    Royal Canin Dental and Purina Healthful Life, maybe I'll give those a try too. I add warm water to the oldies' food and stir it all up, and the K/D Chicken is pretty moist already. I've added water to that, but that did not go over. (Chicken broth though.. ?? I'll pick some up the next time I go food shopping.

    Thanks again, everyone!

    I meant," said Ipslore bitterly, "what is there in this world that truly makes living worthwhile?"
    Death thought about it.
    CATS, he said eventually. CATS ARE NICE.

    -- Terry Pratchett (1948—2015), Sourcery

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