Sorry, it’s not about my dog.
I’m wondering what the key ingredients are in a cat food that make them worthy of being called “hairball” or “indoor” formula. I’ve always been skeptical of the indoor foods, assuming they’d be full of more fillers and fewer fats/proteins/calories. Then I took a can of Natural Balance indoor and compared it to a different variety – calorie count seemed to be the same…
Our Maddy suffers from hair balls regularly (maybe 2-4 times monthly?), but I don’t want to invest in a hairball formula until #1. What ingredients qualify it as “hairball” #2. Will it really work?
Right now, Maddy is on Cat Lovers Gold dry and she gets 1-3tbsp (as much as I can get her to eat.) Natural Balance canned daily.
Should I try adding some fish oil into her canned and see if she accepts it? Right now, she gets a little brewers yeast tablet daily.
There’s a desperate need for a “cat food advisor” site!!! I’ve wondered the same thing about indoor formulas and I’m leery about their effectiveness. Sorry I don’t have any answers to your specific questions. I switch my cat’s food brands & flavors a lot. If my cat throws up more than once on a certain food, then it doesn’t work/agree with my cat, and I won’t feed it again. Good luck with your Maddy Cat. PS Your cow looks adorable
Indoor formulas typically have higher fiber. Some have mineral oil in them. They are ingredients that help hairballs to pass. I haven’t found what I would consider a good hairball formula food. I detest both of the ones that work best on my cats.
Maddy was originally on Cat Chow, so yeah- hair balls galore there!
She’s seeming to do much better on the new food. I haven’t seen a hairball in a while (well, I don’t really see them. My bare toes feel them in the middle of the night!)
It sounds like fiber and “lubricants” are fairly easy to add into a diet without getting a special extra-spendy-but-full-o’-fillers food.
I’m a little concerned about her weight right now. She’s been checked out totally healthy, and acts completely normal, but she feels pretty scrawny. I was hoping adding the canned was going to help (she hasn’t really ever had anything but dry), but she will eat no more than 1tbsp daily, even though I try to offer it to her twice a day. The worst? I honestly haven’t seen her eat the dry in a while – she only eats the canned now. I’m still keeping my fingers crossed that she eats dry when I’m not looking, since they have free choice dry.
I tried mixing dry with canned, but she refused. Picky picky girl! Are there any quality cat foods that have an extra calorie boost maybe? She doesn’t like raw meat at all, otherwise I’d try her on that.
Here’s a good article by holistic vet Karen Becker with tips to eleminate hairballs: http://healthypets.mercola.com/sites/healthypets/archive/2013/01/16/chronic-hairball.aspx
A little late but:
My cat has always had a problem with throwing up and hair balls. I have tried indoor formulas, sensitive stomach formulas, you name it! It wasn’t until I invested in much higher quality foods that it has stopped. He eats grain free Fromm dry food. He loves it and never gets sick! Maybe once a month we get a hair all but much better then puking everyday. My cat despises wet food, so that’s been hard. Again, had to invest in weruva. He picks at it but some is better then none. Cats need the moisture, in my opinion wet is better to feed then dry. I wish my guy would eat it better.
I haven’t noticed a hairball from Maddy ever since we switched her food. Finally convinced mom to get her off of Purina, and now she has. Natural Balance canned (she consumes maybe 1-2tbsp daily, she’s picky), and free choice of chicken-soup dry… I don’t think she eats very much dry at all, but I guess that’s good – gives her more room for wet.
My 13 yr old cat started getting sick with urinating problems and lots of hairballs while on indoor formulas. Switched her over to a grain free and she loved it and seemed to be getting better, but I still wanted her to eat some canned. After lots of trial and error with different brands of cat food finally figured out what she likes-Wellness/Merrick chicken pate. She does not like fish or chunky texture-lol. Started out three times a day putting a spoonful in a separate dish in front of her when she was eating kibble and finally she loves it. It was a process, took patience and some waste, but no more hairballs!
I guess I’m lucky that my cat doesn’t get that many hairballs (once every 4-6 months!). I’ve never fed her an indoor formula. She gets grain free kibble to munch on and wet twice a day. Currently, she eats either Fromm Gamebird or Annamaet dry. Her wet consists of Wellness (she likes pate and cubed), Fromm 4Star, Mulligan Stew, Instinct Healthy Weight (only Instinct canned she’ll eat!). This morning she did eat a Primal raw nugget….Chicken/Salmon for felines….and loved it, thank goodness. I’d love for her to eat all raw, but she can be persnickety with it.
I guess I’m lucky also. Haven’t had much trouble with hairballs either. Three of them have short hair and one has medium length. I think longer haired cats have more issues. I split a 6 oz can of food between them twice a day and give them a little dry also. I try to give the larger boys a little more than the small girls, but I think my chubby little girl goes around and eats everyone’s left overs. I alternate between wellness core turkey/duck and Taste of the Wild dry foods. I’m thinking of finding a dry food with a little less calories. As they are all indoor cats and getting a little chubby. I don’t give them much dry now so thought a “lighter” recipe might help with the weight. Any ideas? As far as hairballs go, I think that feeding canned and brushing the cats is the best remedy.
I agree with the other comments, cats can be so hard to please, can’t they? I also have a female, Julie, who has always seemed underweight, scrawny, to me but checks out completely healthy every vet visit. She’s 14 years old now. I feed her separately from my other 4 to allow her to eat as much as she wants without interference. Nothing you can do but keep trying flavors and textures.Mine range in age from 12 to 18 years and do well on Chick soup and Merrick brands. I swap back and forth otherwise they seem to get bored.They also like a bit of mashed pumpkin or winter squash and that’s good fiber for the hairball problem. Just a spoonful a couple of times a week. Finally, for the kitties that don’t like canned food, I’d suggest one of the water fountains. My guys love theirs, it’s ceramic and keeps the water nice and cool and they love the movement. I know they drink a lot more than they ever did before. They were a little wary of it at first but it only took a couple of days for them to get used to it.
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