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Whats the cheapest way to feed my cat?
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# 101
binz_81
Old 13-01-2010, 5:57 PM
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My kitten is 6 months old and i feed him a pouch of felix or whiskas kitten split into 2 meals a day with a couple of spoonfuls of ownbrand dry kitten.

I hadnt realised til today how little meat was in them after reading this thread and checking the labels.

Problem is i have about 4 1/2 boxes of the pouches left and cant afford to waste them.

His poos are really big, smelly and sometimes soft. Could this be down to his diet?
Do i have to wait til hes an adult/1 year before i change his diet to raw or adult food with more meat content?
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# 102
spike7451
Old 13-01-2010, 6:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by binz_81 View Post
My kitten is 6 months old and i feed him a pouch of felix or whiskas kitten split into 2 meals a day with a couple of spoonfuls of ownbrand dry kitten.

I hadnt realised til today how little meat was in them after reading this thread and checking the labels.

Problem is i have about 4 1/2 boxes of the pouches left and cant afford to waste them.

His poos are really big, smelly and sometimes soft. Could this be down to his diet?
Do i have to wait til hes an adult/1 year before i change his diet to raw or adult food with more meat content?
Whiska's did that to Orbit until they 'improved' them then they made him sick.Try Pets@Home Purely range,about the same cost as Whiska's but a higher meat content by far.
http://www.petsathome.com/webapp/wcs...0601&langId=-1

Kitten(4.59 a box)
http://www.petsathome.com/shop/purel...-12-pack-14729
Quote:
Purely Complete Kitten Food Pouches with Chicken 85gm 12 Pack are totally natural, seriously healthy and a distinctively delicious selection of feline dishes.

Each recipe of Purely Complete Kitten Food Pouches with Chicken are specially prepared for the development of your kitten into a healthy adult cat; choose from Chicken with beef, lamb, liver or duck which we have kittified for their gorgeous little mouths.

Purrrfect!

Made with no artificial colours or preservatives, our Purely Complete Kitten Food Pouches with Chicken contains no bulking ingredients; so no eggs, no dairy and no soya.

Just at least 50% chicken and natural healthy goodness packed into our pouches.

Purely Complete Kitten Food Pouches with Chicken are:

Hypoallergenic - specially formulated and wheat-gluten free, because kittens can suffer from allergies and intolerances too!

Infused with added vitamins and minerals to keep your kitten in tip top condition.
Quote:
Ingredient(s):

Chicken with Beef: Chicken (min. 50%), Beef (min. 4%), Sunflower Oil, Vitamin and Mineral Supplements, Tapioca Starch. Chicken with Lamb: Chicken (min. 50%), Lamb (min. 4%), Sunflower Oil, Vitamin and Mineral Supplements, Tapioca Starch. Chicken with Liver: Chicken (min. 50%), Liver (min. 4%), Sunflower Oil, Vitamin and Mineral Supplements, Tapioca Starch. Chicken with Duck: Chicken (min. 50%), Duck (min. 4%), Sunflower Oil, Vitamin and Mineral Supplements, Tapioca Starch.

Typical Analysis:

Moisture 84.5%, Protein 9.5%, Oils and Fats 2.5%, Fibre 1.0%, Ash 2.5%, Vitamin A 2200 iu/kg, Vitamin D3 250 iu/kg, Vitamin E (as α-tocopherol) 50 iu/kg. Copper (as cupric sulphate) 1mg/kg. Vitamin levels guaranteed until best before date printed with batch number in panel.
Whiska's kitten (mixed 3.50 a box)

Quote:
Ingredient(s):

with Duck: Meat and Animal Derivatives (min. 4% Duck), Oils and Fats,Cereals,Derivatives of Vegetable Origin, Minerals. with Poultry: Meat and Animal Derivatives (min. 4% Poultry), Oils and Fats,Cereals,Derivatives of Vegetable Origin, Minerals. with Lamb: Meat and Animal Derivatives (min. 4% Lamb), Oils and Fats,Cereals,Derivatives of Vegetable Origin, Minerals. with Rabbit: Meat and Animal Derivatives (min. 4% Rabbit), Oils and Fats,Cereals,Derivatives of Vegetable Origin, Minerals.

Typical Analysis:

Moisture 80%, Protein 9%, Oils and Fats 7.5%, Fibre 0.3%, Ash 2.5%, Vitamin D3 240iu/kg, Vitamin E 20mg/kg, Vitamin levels guaranteed until best before date. Total Copper as Copper Sulphate 1.8mg/kg, With colourants (permitted EC additives).

Last edited by spike7451; 13-01-2010 at 6:59 PM. Reason: remove smiley thing
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# 103
rita-rabbit
Old 13-01-2010, 6:40 PM
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There are providers of better kitten foods (personally I think dry is better than wet but that's your choice) check out Burns, James Wellbeloved, Royal Canine & others. The price is kept down by bulk buying in advance online. However I noticed that Pets at Home Stores were doing special deals last month (not too sure about now). I wouldn't waste the lower quality kitten food that you have as cats do not like drastic change to food & throwing away food is wrong (unless it makes a pet sick & then you could offer it to someone/charity where the animals are not as fussy/sensitive).
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# 104
Sequeena
Old 13-01-2010, 6:44 PM
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There's lots of other foods, I would avoid JWB as since it's been taken over by Mars the quality has gone down significantly and Royal Canin looks great but it's full of fillers.
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# 105
Fire Fox
Old 13-01-2010, 6:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by binz_81 View Post
My kitten is 6 months old and i feed him a pouch of felix or whiskas kitten split into 2 meals a day with a couple of spoonfuls of ownbrand dry kitten.

I hadnt realised til today how little meat was in them after reading this thread and checking the labels.

Problem is i have about 4 1/2 boxes of the pouches left and cant afford to waste them.

His poos are really big, smelly and sometimes soft. Could this be down to his diet?
Do i have to wait til hes an adult/1 year before i change his diet to raw or adult food with more meat content?
This is a moneysaving website so anyone who advises you to throw out food needs shooting! You shouldn't change a kitten's food too quickly anyway or you may find they get an upset tummy. Noah's doings changed overnight when I took him off Felix wet and JWB dry - from three stinkers to one well formed poop, so yes food could well be the culprit. For Noah I am pretty sure it rice that is the problem so he can't have any of the brands Rita Rabbit suggests or he stinks the flat out!

IMO the own brand kibble is likely to be lower quality that the kitten wet, as the dry is padded out with grains whereas the wet is padded with meat derivatives. As the derivatives come from an animal source and the grains from plants, the kitten will absorb the protein better from the pouches than the kibble. Can you afford a bag of new food now?

My suggestion would be to buy some high meat kibble such as Pets at Home Purely, Applaws, Orijen or Fish4Cats. Then mix in little by little with the own brand until you are eventually on all the high meat stuff: this may take two weeks or more which should take you past payday! Carry on feeding the Felix/Whiskas you have so that you are only changing one thing at a time. Once you have got the kitten over to high meat kibble successfully OR you have run out of the pouches you can start thinking about switching the wet food.

Edited to add: just noticed you also asked about raw - the earlier you start on a little raw the less fussy the cat should be as they get older. You can start this as soon as they are weaned according to many pedigree breeders, there are videos on YouTube of TINY kittens tackling whole chicken wings:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XA2-HhToJ_8
Otherwise you can go for the Food4Cats 10 sample pack which looks remarkably like normal coarse mince (but has offal and bone in). I think with just one kitten you may have quite a bit of waste as it takes Noah (big adult male) two days to eat just one 'sausage'. To be honest I'd stick with raw chicken wings as a treat/ to clean teeth and use up the food that you have in stock.
What a difference a day makes, twenty four little hours.

Last edited by Fire Fox; 13-01-2010 at 7:02 PM.
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# 106
paddypaws101
Old 13-01-2010, 8:26 PM
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I believe that Encore from sainsbury's is actually made by Applaws ( I know I will quickly be corrected if I am wrong! ) They had it on special offer recently and the dry advertises itself as 80% chicken.
Worth a look maybe?
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# 107
Sequeena
Old 13-01-2010, 8:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paddypaws101 View Post
I believe that Encore from sainsbury's is actually made by Applaws ( I know I will quickly be corrected if I am wrong! ) They had it on special offer recently and the dry advertises itself as 80% chicken.
Worth a look maybe?
No you're right
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# 108
Lily-Lu
Old 13-01-2010, 9:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spike7451 View Post
Whiska's did that to Orbit until they 'improved' them then they made him sick.Try Pets@Home Purely range,about the same cost as Whiska's but a higher meat content by far.
I don't actually know the answers to this, but am curious about those lists of ingredients and whether what you've said is right.

It states mim 50% chicken on the Purely, but does that mean chicken 'meat', or any parts of a chicken?......Anyone here privvy to pet food labelling regulations?

Then the whiskas - min 4% x.....I don't think that necessarily means that 4% is the total 'meat' content. I have a feeling it might be something to do with labelling a food as x and having to have a minimum amount of that stated food in there. Does anyone know if this is the case?
I've nothing against American people. But don't like to see our British/English language changing so much, due to the ever increasing Americanisation of it.

I won't buy from any British site/Ebay/manufacturer that choose to use American terms instead of British.
No cookie/cupcake, meat grinder, kibble, or shipping here. It's money saving

Last edited by Lily-Lu; 13-01-2010 at 9:49 PM.
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# 109
Sequeena
Old 13-01-2010, 9:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lily-Lu View Post
I don't actually know the answers to this, but am curious about those lists of ingredients and whether what you've said is right.

It states mim 50% chicken on the Purely, but does that mean chicken 'meat', or any parts of a chicken?......Anyone here privvy to pet food labelling regulations?

Then the whiskas - min 4% x.....I don't think that necessarily means that 4% is the total 'meat' content. I have a feeling it might be something to do with labelling a food as x and having to have a minimum amount of that stated food in there. Does anyone know if this is the case?
If it says meat and animal derivatives (which whiskas has) it's the crap left over which they can't use for humans.

Meat meal I believe is meat - though how good the meat is I couldn't tell you.
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# 110
Claire Bear
Old 13-01-2010, 9:57 PM
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Hmm, I'm not sure exactly but this is what a normal pack of Whiskas says: Meat and Animal Derivatives (inc. min. 4% Lamb),

And this is what the Oh So... packet says
Fish and Fish Derivatives (including min. 4% Sardine, min. 14% Whole Pieces of Fish)

So I'm assuming that if it's all the rubbishy parts of the chicken it would state animal 'derivatives' but if it was decent pieces of meat it wouldn't say this, it would just say 'chicken 40%' or whatever. I think that in catfood it's always going to be the cheaper parts of meat, it just depends how much there is as opposed to grains and other fillers
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# 111
spike7451
Old 13-01-2010, 10:16 PM
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I did a search on the meat used & came up with these:
The first ones from the US FDA:
http://www.fda.gov/animalveterinary/.../ucm047113.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meat_by-product
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# 112
Lily-Lu
Old 13-01-2010, 10:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Sequeena View Post
If it says meat and animal derivatives (which whiskas has) it's the crap left over which they can't use for humans.
Yes, I understand that....But what's not clear to me is what does '50% chicken' actually mean? 50% muscle meat?....Or is it just stating that 50% of the contents are chicken, and could in fact be meat and any other parts of said chickens? Sorry, but stating '50% chicken' is too vague for me.

That's why I'd like to know exactly what the labelling regulations are.
I've nothing against American people. But don't like to see our British/English language changing so much, due to the ever increasing Americanisation of it.

I won't buy from any British site/Ebay/manufacturer that choose to use American terms instead of British.
No cookie/cupcake, meat grinder, kibble, or shipping here. It's money saving
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# 113
Fire Fox
Old 14-01-2010, 12:14 AM
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Well that was an hour of my life I will never get back! Don't bother reading the Pet Food Manufacturer's Association website, it's like talking to a politician :rolleyes: .... Worryingly their membership reads like a who's who: Burns and MPM (Applaws) as well as the 'big four'.

The material of animal origin used by the pet food industry comprises those parts of animals which are either deemed surplus to human consumption or are not normally consumed by people in the UK, and derived from animals inspected and passed as fit for human consumption prior to slaughter. Animal material of this nature, which is not intended for human consumption, is classified as "animal by-products" under the EC Regulation on Animal By-Products for which Defra is responsible, and assigned the lowest risk rating. This rating requires that the material be free of any transmissible disease, which therefore excludes material from dying, diseased or disabled animals.

http://www.food.gov.uk/multimedia/pdfs/petfood.pdf

The main change has been a new European definition of meat for labelling purposes, which is different from the definition currently used in the UK. The new definition defines meat as 'skeletal muscle with naturally included or attached tissue', and sets specific limits for the amount of fat and connective tissue (i.e., rind, tendon, sinew, skin etc.) allowed (see table below). The definition specifically excludes MRM, feet and trotters, tail, and head meat but includes cheeks (Masseters). It also excludes non-muscle cuts such as liver, kidney, heart etc. Products are still allowed to contain all of these ingredients - they will just need to be described differently, and they cannot count towards the declared meat content.
http://www.food.gov.uk/foodindustry/...sguidebutchers
What a difference a day makes, twenty four little hours.
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# 114
Lily-Lu
Old 14-01-2010, 1:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fire Fox View Post

The main change has been a new European definition of meat for labelling purposes, which is different from the definition currently used in the UK. The new definition defines meat as 'skeletal muscle with naturally included or attached tissue', and sets specific limits for the amount of fat and connective tissue (i.e., rind, tendon, sinew, skin etc.) allowed (see table below). The definition specifically excludes MRM, feet and trotters, tail, and head meat but includes cheeks (Masseters). It also excludes non-muscle cuts such as liver, kidney, heart etc. Products are still allowed to contain all of these ingredients - they will just need to be described differently, and they cannot count towards the declared meat content.
http://www.food.gov.uk/foodindustry/guidancenotes/meatregsguid/meatregsguidebutchers
Interesting, thanks for the link. I'll have a look at that tomorrow.

I've found a link for the regulations, but it's like looking for a needle in a haystack. Can't find any bits that I want, and it's enough to put you off reading for life.....If anyone wants to have a go at deciphering it...be my guest
http://www.opsi.gov.uk/si/si2005/20053281.htm

Oh, just to make things clear. I've got nothing against Purely. Never used it, and am unlikely to, seeing as my two cats' are raw fed. Nor do I have a problem with 'animal derivitives', as are stated on the Whiskas label. I just have a problem with vague statements that can sway people without giving any further info.

Blimey I'm way past my bedtime, thanks to getting a bee in my bonnet and trying to sift through that lot
I've nothing against American people. But don't like to see our British/English language changing so much, due to the ever increasing Americanisation of it.

I won't buy from any British site/Ebay/manufacturer that choose to use American terms instead of British.
No cookie/cupcake, meat grinder, kibble, or shipping here. It's money saving
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# 115
ravernoloo
Old 14-01-2010, 6:44 PM
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iv just read through this whole thred, and some interesting points. I am getting a kitten at the end of this month and was wondering what food to feed her. She isnt a pedigree or anything, she has a long coat. I thought whiskas and felix were good food but after reading this it has opened my eyes. I am currently unemployed as i was made redundant last year, so am looking for the cheapest but healthiest food option. I also have a dog, we are feeding him pedigree but after reading this thread i may also change that to a better product. Iv seen some brands pointed out, like jwb and science hills, but which is the best? and which one comes out the other end a bit better!
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# 116
Fire Fox
Old 14-01-2010, 7:44 PM
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What is your budget per animal? Do you want to feed commercial wet, kibble, both, raw? With cats the high meat stuff - especially raw - tends to come out the other end best! Grains are not very well digested by obligate carnivores, dogs are omnivorous but still shouldn't have too much grain but I will leave someone else to fill you in there.

Pet food offers thread here:
http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/...html?t=1898241

Cheapest raw cat food:
http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/...html?t=2105627

Feeding cats on a budget:
http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/...html?t=2064383

James Wellbeloved is fairly low in meat: Hills is better but not all the variants so read the ingredients labels. The benefit of some of these big names for you is they do often come onto two-for-one offers. Cats are all one species, you don't need any kind of specific food for different breeds or coat types. Dogs come in a wider variety of sizes, so you may need to consider whether the breed has any risk of joint problems.

I am feeding Noah, a large adult cat, on 50p per day - a mix of ready made raw (Food4Cats), chicken wings, no grain dry (Orijen and Applaws), high meat wet (Pets at Home Purely, Feline Fayre, Bozita). I stock up when things are on offer and buy online to get the best prices.
What a difference a day makes, twenty four little hours.

Last edited by Fire Fox; 14-01-2010 at 7:46 PM.
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# 117
ravernoloo
Old 14-01-2010, 7:50 PM
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well i am on income support so i was willing to pay 5 a week as thats what we pay for if we feed our dog pedigree meat, although the biscuits are cheaper. I dont know if i could make my own food, all of that sounds very confusing. And i have no idea what to feed her, wet, dry, or commercial? i dont really know what would be best. My aun tie has had cats for years and said cats should eat meat, but then i read here that biscuits are good for their teeth, so maybe i will feed biscuits with maybe a tin of sardines or tuna twice a week? Can you even give that to a kitten? Im not getting her until the end of this month so i have some more reading to do. Iv had a cat before when i was young but never a kitten
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# 118
Fire Fox
Old 14-01-2010, 8:45 PM
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5 a week is loads of money you can easily feed a good quality diet on that, especially as the kitten will be small! There is no evidence that kibble is good for cleaning teeth, that is an old wive's tale - many vets recommend raw meaty bones to clean cats and dogs teeth. The great news is that sometimes this is FREE but definitely cheap!

For raw bones you can ask a friendly butcher for any waste bones he has, chicken wings, necks and backs for the cat and really anything for the dog assuming he is a large dog. Just give them a raw meaty bone each a couple of times a week - Noah has half a raw chicken wing. Value/ Smartprice wings are 1.80 per kilo, Sainsburys Basics also have frozen bone in chicken portions for 1.50 per kilo.

For regular meals you have a choice:
1. All Raw - if you are scared of doing this yourself (me too), this website has a sample pack 3.2kg for 10 then your 10 is taken off your first proper order. http://www.food4-cats.co.uk/
Noah has half a sausage a day, your kitten would need far less, so it is really economical. I have been naughty and ordered a sample to my mum's address as well, so I have two 10 discounts to come.

2. Kibble - first thing to say is pet food companies are VERY generous, I e-mailed loads and ended up with 2.5kg of free dry food! There is a 5 voucher to print on the Hills website, 5 from Arovit, and if you register with Whiskas or Purina you get smaller vouchers.

As your aunt says, cats need meat. Most dry cat food is very low in meat (some 4%!) so always read the ingredients. If you have a Jollyes pet shop they do Lifestage 26% meat which is 2 per kilo. I think the premium stuff in Lidl or Aldi is OK meat-wise too, but not sure of prices. Pets at Home own brands are also good, the silver bag is 25% meat and Purely is 40% meat (3.50 per kilo). If you want to go really high meat Applaws is 80% meat (5.50 per kilo but often on offer) or Fish4Cats is 70% fish (4.50 per kilo).

3. Wet Food: if you only feed wet food you must choose a complete food, if you feed dry or raw as well you can give a complementary food. Complete will contain all the muscle, bones, organs (heart/ liver) and fat that your kitten needs to be healthy. Definitely do not feed human tinned fish to a kitten except as a rare treat. It is much too salty and might stress their kidneys, also it doesn't contain all the nutrients a cat needs.

Reasonably priced wet foods include Feline Fayre - the cheaper blue packages are complementary and the more expensive black are complete. :rolleyes: Large 400g tins in Asda (70% tuna) are just 50p or 1.50 per kilo so cheaper and healthier than the human tuna! The Feline Fayre pouches (60% fish) are on offer at the moment 1 for eight, otherwise try Home Bargains or B&M where they are 1.80 for eight.

Pets at Home Purely which is complete, the small tins 160g (50% fish) work out to 2.80 per kilo, the pouches are much more expensive. Bozita which you buy online is also 2.80 per kilo, complete and up to 90% meat!! Lastly Tesco Luxury complete (50% meat) which is only cheap when on offer at 3 for a box of twelve pouches (3 per kilo) but comes on offer regularly.
What a difference a day makes, twenty four little hours.

Last edited by Fire Fox; 14-01-2010 at 8:54 PM.
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# 119
taxi97w
Old 14-01-2010, 11:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shelly View Post
I have waited until today to reply to you taxi97w because I wanted to speak to the vet who treated Coco first.
Even though I knew in my mind that my cats diet didn't cause her cancer the comment you made bothered me so I wanted to get the facts from a vet.

Having just spoken to the vet she informed me that nothing a cat eats can cause cancer. She said even if a cat ate 100% meat it wouldn't get cancer but would likely suffer from a vitamin A deficiency that can cause extra bony growths on places like the spine so the cat would become stiff when moving about.
She also said that these days even the very cheapest of cat foods give a cat everything it needs so there is no need to add anything at all to their food.
And ask a homeopathic vet and he would tell you differently.

A, C & E vitamins are antioxidents & they kill free radicals. This is an online dictionary definition of free radicals:-
An atom or group of atoms that has at least one unpaired electron and is therefore unstable and highly reactive. In animal tissues, free radicals can damage cells and are believed to accelerate the progression of cancer, cardiovascular disease, and age-related diseases.
Which brings me to mention one more thing off topic before I go- search for the information about the extaordinary number of cats developing cancerous grows at the base of their heads- the injection region, believed to be caused by innoculations.
...more euros than sense.

Last edited by taxi97w; 14-01-2010 at 11:51 PM.
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# 120
ravernoloo
Old 14-01-2010, 11:50 PM
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thanks so much, you have really been a help, i thought your could give a cat tinned tuna! i think iv been watching too much tv lol, i think i will wait until i get her as i dont know what food she will be eating from her breeders, then choose a food and slowly introduce it, i reckon i will go with a top quality kibble from pets at home, iv just had a browse on their site and a lot of the top quality kibbles are on special offer

Iv tried raw bones with my dog before (we have a staffordshire bull terrier) but he just got the runs from it, so never got it again. Can you give a kitten bones aswell or do they have to be over a certain age? Thanks so much for your help
Good things come to those who wait!


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