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Reviews of canned feline feed.

Thursday, 5 November, 2009

My companion has worked through a number of commercial feeds. We are now able to offer reviews of some of these products. Kibble and water are available at all times. Bob gets canned food twice a day, or upon request. My search for exotic pet food started when this former stray simply did not recognize chicken, turkey, beef, or fish feline-feed blends as food.

A case is 24, 5½ ounce cans. A bag is 4 lbs.

Addiction Foods, New Zealand Brushtail & Vegetables Entrée

Brushtail is a rodent indigenous to New Zealand and Australia. It is considered a pest and the wild-caught animals are used for animal feed. This product arrived to the United States during 2001. Bob tired of this food before 30 days. He would eat about a third of a can at a time twice a day. His coat is amazingly soft and oily with this feed. I see even more glimmer when Bob sits in the sun. His kibble intake did not go up, and he may have lost weight.

This feed is specifically marketed to cats allergic to common poultry blends, lamb or beef. I have purchased this product locally for $2.39/can and online for $41.99/case.

Crude Protein (min.) 11%
Crude Fat (min.) 5%
Crude Fiber (max.) 1%
Moisture (max.) 80%
Ash (max.) 3%

Nutro, Natural Choice Complete Care Kitten Chicken & Liver Formula Chunks in Gravy

During our first days together, this is the only thing I could get him to eat. He was eating at least four of these 79¢ pouches per day. I am not entirely comfortable with the kind of cat food you can get at the big-box stores, especially after a series of recalls during 2007 and 2008. I am less comfortable with the fact that this is made by Mars, the same folks who bring you the Three Musketeers bar and Whiskas. The fourth ingredient on the label is wheat gluten, for Pete’s sake.

Bob did manage to survive, and even thrive on this stuff. You will note, even though this is a product branded as kitten food, it has less protein and fat than the all-life-stages feed above.

Crude Protein (minimum) 9.00%
Crude Fat (minimum) 4.50%
Crude Fiber (maximum) 1.00%
Moisture (maximum) 82.00%
Ash (maximum) 2.50%

This is Bob’s only feed not specifically marked “all life stages”.

My assessment of big-box pet feed isn’t entirely fair. Organix, Natural Balance, Blue Buffalo, Solid Gold and Wellness are available at some big-box stores and are well regarded. Not that Bob would eat any of those.

Taste of the Wild, Rocky Mountain Feline Formula (kibble)

Despite its overly ambitious name and velvet-painting packaging, this is an especially well regarded feed which is not well distributed. Among my goals with discovering a  feed for my Bob is to find something available locally. Taste of the Wild is carried by two local pet-supply chains. The primary protein is chicken, tempered with venison, salmon and a sweet potato binder. This kibble is completely free of wheat or corn. While I shop for something even more appropriate, this is Bob’s daily feed which is available at all times.

Crude Protein 42.0% Minimum
Crude Fat 18.0% Minimum
Crude Fiber 3.0% Maximum
Moisture 10.0% Maximum

A bag runs about $10 and Bob eats it in a little more than a month.

Nervous about Bob not eating very much while feeding him the Addiction Brushtail formula, I resorted to the abject desperation move of cat fanciers. The people who make the cat food you can buy at the grocery store do something to that feed which makes cats want to eat corn. During my weekly sojourn to the grocery I discovered something I never imagined I would find.

Natural Life Pet Products, Lamaderm® Lamb & Rice Platter and Chicken & Veggie Platter

Clearly these people use a different definition of platter than I do. This was more of a foam.

The first five ingredients in both formulas are inoffensive. The most concerning are flax seed and rice flour. As far as grocery-sourced formulas go, this is a spectacular product. At a mere 90¢ per can, I suspect many cats shall get somewhat better feed quite soon. I remain stunned that a low-priced, acceptable-quality feed is widely distributed. It shall not become Bob’s daily dish, but he practically inhaled half-cans of both formulas.

Please note: Natural Life’s dry formulas are pretty much the same semi-toxic crap you find under other labels at the same price point.

Crude Protein 10.00%(min)
Crude Fat 5.00%(min)
Crude Fiber 1.50%(max)
Moisture 78.00%(max)
Ash 3.00%(max)

Natural Life’s canned formulas have more protein and fat, and less moisture and ash than the much higher-priced Nutro above.

Nature’s Variety, Homestyle from the Prairie, Beef, Lamb and Duck formulas.

The contents of these cans look like food. I know that doesn’t mean anything, but it does something for me. I originally purchased a selection of Homestyle from Austin’s priciest pet shoppe. The ingredient lists offer no red flags and each of these are quite palatable according to my roommate. The reason I purchased these was they were on clearance for half price. This proved unwise as once it was established that this feed met all of my other requirements, it was no longer available locally. I found the entire line online for a mere $31.49/case

Enter K9 Cuisine. If you order $50, they eat the shipping charges. Just two cases of cat food, at 70% of the local price, tops $50 and it comes via Fedex Ground in four or five days. They also offer free samples of selected kibbles which is coming in handy as I shop for something new for young Robert. This time around we’ll try Solid Gold Katz-N-Flocken.

The only problem being where do I store 72 cans of cat food in my modest home?

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