It has been a long three months for Nette F over here. I took a lovely vacation to Southern California, celebrated turning 34 years awesome, and started a major dining room and living room remodel! Between the endless toiling in Corporate America, planning a wedding, and all of these other exciting endeavors, I haven’t had a chance to post as regularly as I hope to moving forward. However, I did want to provide an update on the kitties’ new diet plan. We’ve made tons of progress, and we have a winning combination at this time!
All of the foods that I originally tried out in September are now official losers in this house and we are off of them completely. Soon after I realized all of these brands were fails, it was back to the drawing board. Not only is it expensive to experiment like this, but it is also unsettling for the little guys. Cats are true creatures of habit. They love their routines, and they really don’t like change, even when it is for progress. In this way, cats would make good Conservatives (Kidding! No, I am not. Yes I am! No, I am really not though). In fact, it can be detrimental to their health when something changes. They are not afraid to let you know when you’ve crossed them either. Larz won’t speak to me and Bisquie tries to bite my hands off when they need to let me know I’ve committed a crime against felinity. I could tell that they were cross with me because I was changing their food every day. I needed to pick one and stick to it, so that is what I did and that’s where we are today.
Before I reveal the interim resolution, here are a few things I have learned during this experiment:
1. My cats are going to have a hard time adapting to a raw food diet. They are not interested in the rehydrated raw varieties such as Stella & Chewy’s or The Honest Kitchen. This was a big disappointment to me because The Honest Kitchen comes very highly rated by all of the pet food studies out there. Most studies I have read actually places this brand and the philosophy behind it as the very best way to go outside of making your own food from scratch. I so badly wanted them to devour this wholesome food, but they literally refused it, paws down!
2. After being on an all-natural, 100% grain free diet now for quite awhile, there are palpable differences in the way the cats look, feel and smell. Their coats are just gleaming and incredibly soft. I am talking softer than the finest silk and shiny as a gem. Larz’s black parts are so shiny in fact that you can see every color of the rainbow reflected when he is sitting in a sunbeam. Their poos are also barely smellable. Any cat owner will tell you that a kitty can produce a dump so foul smelling that you think that you will need to have the house professionally fumigated right meow! No longer. There is also considerably less dander to contend with as well, which is measurable by the amount of ground you can cover vacuuming before having to empty a canister or put in a new bag. As for the phenomenon of hairballs…we have had one – and only one – in months. I always read that these benefits come with a high quality, grain-free diet, but I have been impressed how much it’s become obvious lately.
3. This quest also led me to discover what I believe to be the best pet specialty store in the area. The Furry Nation is located in Lakewood, Ohio on Detroit and Brockley (pronounced like the vegetable if you are me). I love this place, and not just because it is located in a renovated early 1900’s funeral home and you occasionally leave with ectoplasm in your hair (no, you won’t). I love it because it is locally owned, only carries top quality brands, has a massive selection, and two darling Husky pups are always hanging out there. They also have samples readily available, which is great because you can take a free meal home and see if they like something before having to commit to a $27 bag of food. It was because of a sample I received here that I was finally able to get these cats onto something that works.
Where We Are Today
After months of trial and error and sample-begging store clerks, we have a food routine and it’s working! Soon after we started this journey, I was introduced to Tiki Cat brand canned foods, and I began acclimating the guys to this. To my surprise, they loved it! Tiki Cat is a very high quality canned brand that is highly rated, made with human grade ingredients and uses USDA certified Chicken for the type I feed them (Puka Puka Luau). I occasionally give them Hookeena Luau (Ahi Tuna and Chicken), Hawaiian Grill (Ahi Tuna), or Koolina Luau (Chicken & Egg).
One day I came home, my purse stuffed with trial-sized nuggets of Primal Pet Foods in Chicken & Salmon flavor, and as you can see from the photo above, Larz when nuts over it. The person at the store told me a great way to get them to accept these freeze-dried formulas is to sprinkle some on top of their wet food. I did, and they went nuts for it. Primal is also very highly rated, and all-natural, grain-free and made in the USA with USDA, human-grade ingredients. This is literally the best stuff you can buy.
So here we are with the winning menu! It’s a small Christmas Miracle!
Have you tried any of these brands yet? If so, I’d love to hear your opinion on how they have worked for you.