Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Walk on the Ceiling Wednesday

Heeheehee! It's Walk on the Ceiling Wednesday!

From the OTW:

Pet Food recall: Check out the Cat blogosphere for the latest.

This is getting closer and closer to home for me. I get Jack special food for his struvite crystal tendencies that I get from the vet. Every cat around here eats it too because the vet said it was ok, and better than having Jack eat stuff that may cause him problems. A week ago, Hills Prescription Diet (which is the brand I was feeding them) recalled their M/D -that's the regular kibble. They ate the C/D, which is for struvite crystal prevention. But I decided, since we had just bought a great big new bag the week before they recalled the M/D, but hadn't opened it we were going to return it and switch to something else. Better safe than sorry.

I talked with my husband about switching Jack back to Medi-Cal Preventative which is like the C/D, and is what he ate for years. He sometimes eats the Dissolution when he actually has crystals. Now they're recalling Medi-Cal Dissolution. The good thing is this isn't 'regular' food even for cats with crystallization problems, because it's too strong to eat all the time. It's meant to dissolve crystals already there by radically acidifying their urine. It's actually bad to give it to them for too long. It may give them oxalate (I think that's the name) crystals, when their urine is too acidic. This means there aren't a LOT of cats who are eating this.

The bad news is, cats with this problem sure as <insert bad werd here> don't need any more problems. Crystallization is bad, and frankly dangerous enough. I nearly lost Jack the first time he developed crystallization, the day after he was neutered. He was back at the vet and home again 48 hours after his neutering. 72 hours after he was completely blocked and went back in the next day. Had I waited another couple days as advised, before 'bothering' the vet again (not the vet's word) he would be dead. He was that toxic at that point. Luckily he survived. After that, for the last 10 years, I hear Jack meow even once coming out of the box, and I stalk him for a week, trying to catch him peeing so I can determine if he's having problems.

I can't even imagine how much MORE dangerous this <insert VERY bad werd here> would be to a cat in that condition.

We didn't switch them to Medi-Cal. After the research I've been doing lately, I decided feeding them a food with grains is stupid. We decided on trying Orijen (which turns out to be a local Alberta company anyway-and luckily a new pet store opened just 3 weeks ago in our wee little town, that carries it!).

For those of you who want the quick run-down, it's 70% meat; grain-fed, antibiotic- and hormone-free, Alberta free-range chicken, whitefish from northern BC and Alberta lakes, and Alberta eggs; and 30% fruit, veggies and botanical formulas (formulated by certified holistic vets) ; flax, carrots, potatoes, kelp, tomatoes, spinach, black currants, apples and cranberries. The meat is certified fit for human consumption. They produce and package it themselves, too.

Ok, I admit, I'm curious about why fruit and vegetables and haven't yet gotten around to e-mailing and asking. It has to do with providing some vitamins, minerals and enzymes, that's as much as I understood. Why from vegetables and fruit I don't know, since most supporters and makers of raw food diets say they're completely unnecessary. Though I've lived with quite a few cats who enthusiastically and even insistantly share my fruit.

Now, I can't honestly recommend it at this point to anyone, as my beloved monsters have only been eating it a week, and are still finishing the last of the their Hills as I phase it out. I CAN say, I've never seen cats so determinedly snuffling through the bowl in an attempt to get one kind of kibbles rather than the other!

Sadly, their poops are currently pretty toxic (I believe the term 'plutonium grade' was used by my husband, Sniffs-With-Super-Sensitive-Nose), but I suspect that will clear up when their bodies have finished adjusting. At the very least, I can suggest you look into the brand. It's primarily available in most of Canada, but they also have it in stores in Florida (lots), Oregon (a few), Washington (lots) and Georgia (a few). They also have another brand, Acana (the link above will take you to the company's site where you can pick which brand you want to look at). You may have to contact them about a location if you want to try it. At least one place on the site says they sell to 40 countries, but mostly I can only find locations for Acana in Canada and the Czech Republic, and Orijen in Canada and and those 4 States.

There's also another company whose product I looked at. Feline Future is a company on Salt Spring Island (one of the islands in the Gulf between Vancouver Island and the British Columbian mainland) Their product is a dry powder mix (plus salmon oil capsules) that is meant to be added to raw meat purchased at the supermarket, so people can give their cats a raw food diet and make sure they have all the nutrients they need without having to spend hours making it. They sell online to individual consumers. I can't find a store listing on their site, but there's a link for wholesalers to arrange it, so I'm guessing there are stores that do carry it. You may have to contact the comapny to find out.

I was thinking about trying it, but am going to go with Orijen for now. Changing one food is enough stress. I may change their canned food to this mix or a pre-made raw food eventually. Jack gets really really whiny after a few days without his kibbles anyway. The other two? Frankly, those two little piggies will eat anything! Which I suppose is a good thing. One finicky cat with diet issues is enough of a worry for me. Sadly I don't have the patience of the Artsy Catsy or Forty Paws human servants......(and I'm still trying to figure out how to convince my husband that three isn't enough. I think I may have to wait until we get a house...)

I'll keep you updated.


Dragonheart, Merlin, Devi, and Chloe said...

Wow Jack, you are an acrobat! :) Are you a spider-cat?

As for food, my mom has been looking at Orijen for when we move back to Canada in 2009 (my dad is an officer in the Canadian Forces, so we know we'll be posted back to Canada in summer 2009). Mom is also curious about the fruits and vegetables in Orijen, but everything she's read about it seems positive, and all the reviews she has read have nothing but good things to say.

Right now, she's just very happy they have very high quality foods here in Germany with stringent regulations. I'm fed Almo Nature (organic, hormone-free, preservative-free, and human grade) and Sanabelle.

Then again, when she was growing up, both cats were fed Iams, and they lived to the age of 19, with one dying simply of old age, and one of chronic kidney failure.

Tiki, Kirby, and StanLee said...

Please keep us updated on the Orijen. We can't get it here yet (Ohio), but might consider ordering it if other kitties like it.

Tara said...

Love the ceiling shot!

I went to Natural Balance when this starte, we can't get Orijen here. But Mom is also thinking about Evo. This hole this is a big pain in the (insert bad word here).


Christine and FAZ said...

this pet food recall stuff is very scary but we love the walking on the ceiling picture (we're thinking of Lionel Richie - Dancing on the Ceiling). FAZ

LZ said...

Wow!! This pet food stuff is very disturbing. We eat a no grain food called Innova Evo. We've heard that the high protein can be too much for some cats and it makes their poo....unsavory. We aren't completely off of grains, we get a small amount of Pro Plan Indoor to help with my digestion.


Smeagol and Strider, Mystery (Sunnin' at the Bridge) and Gizmo too! said...

We loves the picture!

We are gettin' furry worried 'bout this food stuff, we eat Royal Canin Oral Sensitive. Mom checked the ingredients and it doesn't list wheat gluten, but she's still worryin'.
Thanks for lettin' us know 'bout the other foods, we'll haves to see if Mom can find them anywhere!

Zippy, Sadie, Speedy and M'Gee said...

Dis pet food stuff is furry worrying fur mom. I haf a sensitive tummy and she needs to pay attention to what is in da foods she feeds me. Oatmeal and yogurt seem to help and Sadie and Zippy like it. Da vet sed dat we can all eat it. We just hope dey don't poison da Fancy Feast, We'd hafta put da bitey on dem if dey did dat~Speedy

Leona said...

Ceiling walking- now that is a trick.

(insert bad words) pet food recall!

Daisy said...

WOWIE! I wish I could walk on the ceiling, that is a great trick!

I have to eat special prescription foodies because of my oxalate stones.
This whole pet food business is so scary and upsetting.

Kimo and Sabi said...

Wowy - must have been some good nip!

Just Ducky said...

Walking on the ceiling? Has Miles the Meezer seen this?

Mum says the food stuff is making her head spin.

The Meezers or Billy said...

OH MY GAWD. YOU IS WALKING ON THE CEILING!! That is my life long goal - and you didded it? please tell me how!! - Miles

DK & The Fluffies said...

Wow, we're impressed

Catzee said...

Ooooo! Furry talented!!!!!



That is fabulous!

I agrees with Derby's Mom...this stuff is making my Mom's head HURT!


Big Piney Woods Cats said...

I knew you would get a rise out of Miles on the walking on the ceiling. You better help him out, it is his life long dream, you know.

Our Daddy said one was enough, they have no concept about "too many cats."


Rascal said...

Excellent trick!