Crunchy cat food that doesn't support "healthy weight"?
Other day I was picking up cat food, and realized that all of the mature cat food claims to support "healthy weight" aka diet cat food. I actually have skinny older fixed cats; I would kill for their metabolism.
They like ProPlan, and the hairball control agrees with them, but keeping their weight up has always been a challenge, even though it is often like feeding a couple ponies. Any suggestions for an affordable, high calorie crunchy cat food? I was thinking about getting some kitten food for them, but thought it might be too rich.
Both are 12 yr old female siamese, and healthy other than some asthma/allergies. One is 6#, the other 7#.
Look at the calorie count on the bag; I feed Purina One Senior to my skinny old guy and it has a very high calorie count per cup. You can also supplement calories with Nutrical or a similar product if you feel that they don't get enough from food alone.
I would imagine that something better quality than PP, like Chicken Soup for the Cat Lover's Soul, would contain more usable calories, making for some weight gain.
Weight isn't always about calories, it can be about nutrition to, so going to a Sr feed might be a good choice (I think CS has a Sr formula?).
Do they have free choice food? Are they TRULY too thin, or are they just a very lean body type? My Dad has a cat who has some Siamese in there somewhere, and she is and always has been a long, lean panther body type, not even the "spay pooch" that so many spayed females get.
______________________________ The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET
is there some reason why you feel the need to feed them dry food? dry food has been linked to all sorts of nasty health diseases of cats that tend to only show up after years of feeding dry food.
Cats are carnivores, and can't really metabolize anything other than dead animals properly. In dry form, similar to what you'd see on a bag of dry kibble, a cat's diet should be at least 40% protein (from animals), very high in fat, and less than 10% carbohydrates. Most dry cat foods are primarily carbohydrates from grains, are chock-full of plant materials, and many of the lower quality foods, like Purina, use poor-quality plant-based proteins such as corn gluten and soy as the primary protein sources. Poor cats. No wonder so many develop diabetes and kidney problems.
Also don't dismiss out of hand a food that says something about supporting "healthy weight". These might not be "diet" foods- look at the labels carefully. Traditional "diet" foods for pets are often low-protein high-fiber formulas (aka very high carbohydrate content). Carnivores like dogs and cats that are fed high-carbohydrate diets tend to lose body muscle and actually put on body fat; if you cut their calories on these diets way down, yes, the fat goes away, but the muscle doesn't come back. Skinny but not a healthy weight?
Dogs and cats fed low carbohydrate high protein diets have been observed to rapidly drop body fat while maintaining/building body muscle without having to drastically cut down the calories consumed. = supports healthy weight. Of course you have to read the labels to figure out what is in there, not just read the advertising blurbs on the package.