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free feeding VS fixed feeding



 
 
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  #1  
Old February 21st 04, 08:28 PM
Amy
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Default free feeding VS fixed feeding

I've recently switched my cats from free to fixed feeding. They really
don't like it and I'm tempted to switch them back. Is fixed feeding really
all that beneficial?

Thanks.
Amy
  #2  
Old February 21st 04, 08:39 PM
Elizabeth Blake
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Default

"Amy" wrote in message
news
I've recently switched my cats from free to fixed feeding. They really
don't like it and I'm tempted to switch them back. Is fixed feeding really
all that beneficial?

I think it depends on the cat. When I only had Tiger, she had dry food
available all the time and it was fine. Then I got Otto, and I also left
food out all the time. Otto ended up being a little pig, and he would eat
as much as possible. He ended up gaining a lot of weight and puking a lot.
He would also play hockey with the dry food, and I'd find it all over the
place. Now I give them wet food in the morning and a little dry after
they've eaten most/all of the wet. Same thing in the evening. If I still
only had Tiger, I would continue to give her as much as she wanted.

At work I also have two cats. If we free fed them, Stinky would overeat.
Stinky's bowl is downstairs in my basement office. Harriet's bowl is
upstairs, and she eats so slowly she's pretty much free fed, since there's
always food in her bowl. Stinky won't go upstairs during the day, so it's
safe to leave food in Harriet's bowl. Once everyone leaves at night, I'm
sure Stinky does go up there to check out Harriet's bowl, but by that time a
lot of it is gone so I don't worry about it too much.

Liz


  #3  
Old February 21st 04, 08:39 PM
Elizabeth Blake
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

"Amy" wrote in message
news
I've recently switched my cats from free to fixed feeding. They really
don't like it and I'm tempted to switch them back. Is fixed feeding really
all that beneficial?

I think it depends on the cat. When I only had Tiger, she had dry food
available all the time and it was fine. Then I got Otto, and I also left
food out all the time. Otto ended up being a little pig, and he would eat
as much as possible. He ended up gaining a lot of weight and puking a lot.
He would also play hockey with the dry food, and I'd find it all over the
place. Now I give them wet food in the morning and a little dry after
they've eaten most/all of the wet. Same thing in the evening. If I still
only had Tiger, I would continue to give her as much as she wanted.

At work I also have two cats. If we free fed them, Stinky would overeat.
Stinky's bowl is downstairs in my basement office. Harriet's bowl is
upstairs, and she eats so slowly she's pretty much free fed, since there's
always food in her bowl. Stinky won't go upstairs during the day, so it's
safe to leave food in Harriet's bowl. Once everyone leaves at night, I'm
sure Stinky does go up there to check out Harriet's bowl, but by that time a
lot of it is gone so I don't worry about it too much.

Liz


  #4  
Old February 21st 04, 10:16 PM
MaryL
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Posts: n/a
Default


"Amy" wrote in message
news
I've recently switched my cats from free to fixed feeding. They really
don't like it and I'm tempted to switch them back. Is fixed feeding really
all that beneficial?

Thanks.
Amy


I previously free-fed my cat Holly with hairball control dry food. I
adopted Duffy a year ago. He had been at the shelter for 3 months and was
free fed on whatever dry food had been donated during the period. I also
learned about that same time that Holly (who previously had maintained
stable weight) had gained about 1 pound over the previous year -- a
significant percentage of a cat's weight. On the advice of people from this
NG, I switched to premium canned food. I used Wellness canned and Felidae
canned for Holly, and I originally started Duffy on Innova because he was
much too thin when I adopted him. After Duffy gained some weight, I changed
his diet to Wellness and Felidae. I now feed both cats approximately 1/3
can of canned food twice a day. Every third or fourth day, I give them a
small amount of Wellness dry as a treat. Both are at their "ideal" weights
and have maintained that weight under this plan.

Like you, I had difficulty converting my cats to canned food. They resisted
and did not eat well at first, and I had terrible feelings of guilt.
However, I am glad I persisted because they both are at optimum health,
their fur is soft and glossy, and both now look forward to their meals
(scheduled for 12 hours apart, or as close to that as possible). In fact,
they will come to get me if I delay too long. I do still give them a small
amount of Wellness dry every 3rd or 4th day as a treat because they really
like it. Duffy, especially, comes running as soon as he hears the
"clinking" sound of dry food dropping into the food bowls.

I would strongly encourage you to continue with your plan to switch to
canned food, but make sure it is very good quality food. I think your cats
will benefit, and you will eventually find that they will adjust (but your
heart will hurt in the meantime).

MaryL
(take out the litter to reply)

Photos of Duffy and Holly: 'o'
http://tinyurl.com/8y54 (Introducing Duffy to Holly)
http://tinyurl.com/8y56 (Duffy and Holly "settle in")




  #5  
Old February 21st 04, 10:16 PM
MaryL
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default


"Amy" wrote in message
news
I've recently switched my cats from free to fixed feeding. They really
don't like it and I'm tempted to switch them back. Is fixed feeding really
all that beneficial?

Thanks.
Amy


I previously free-fed my cat Holly with hairball control dry food. I
adopted Duffy a year ago. He had been at the shelter for 3 months and was
free fed on whatever dry food had been donated during the period. I also
learned about that same time that Holly (who previously had maintained
stable weight) had gained about 1 pound over the previous year -- a
significant percentage of a cat's weight. On the advice of people from this
NG, I switched to premium canned food. I used Wellness canned and Felidae
canned for Holly, and I originally started Duffy on Innova because he was
much too thin when I adopted him. After Duffy gained some weight, I changed
his diet to Wellness and Felidae. I now feed both cats approximately 1/3
can of canned food twice a day. Every third or fourth day, I give them a
small amount of Wellness dry as a treat. Both are at their "ideal" weights
and have maintained that weight under this plan.

Like you, I had difficulty converting my cats to canned food. They resisted
and did not eat well at first, and I had terrible feelings of guilt.
However, I am glad I persisted because they both are at optimum health,
their fur is soft and glossy, and both now look forward to their meals
(scheduled for 12 hours apart, or as close to that as possible). In fact,
they will come to get me if I delay too long. I do still give them a small
amount of Wellness dry every 3rd or 4th day as a treat because they really
like it. Duffy, especially, comes running as soon as he hears the
"clinking" sound of dry food dropping into the food bowls.

I would strongly encourage you to continue with your plan to switch to
canned food, but make sure it is very good quality food. I think your cats
will benefit, and you will eventually find that they will adjust (but your
heart will hurt in the meantime).

MaryL
(take out the litter to reply)

Photos of Duffy and Holly: 'o'
http://tinyurl.com/8y54 (Introducing Duffy to Holly)
http://tinyurl.com/8y56 (Duffy and Holly "settle in")




  #6  
Old February 21st 04, 10:22 PM
Phil P.
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Posts: n/a
Default


"Amy" wrote in message
news
I've recently switched my cats from free to fixed feeding. They really
don't like it and I'm tempted to switch them back. Is fixed feeding really
all that beneficial?


Fixed feeding reduces the risk of struvite crystal/urolith formation by
allowing more time to elapse between meals for the cat's natural urine
acidity to return and dissolve struvite that may have formed. Ad libitum
(free feeding) keeps the urine alkaline most of the day which presents a
risk factor for struvite formation.

Also, a recent (2000) ACVIM controlled, clinical, university study found an
increased risk of renal dsease with ad libitum feeding patterns.

Brief excerpt from that study:

"Similarly, being fed ad libitum increased the likelihood of renal disease."

Diet and Lifestyle Variables as Risk Factors for Renal Disease in Pet Cats.

M.R. Slater, W.J. Burkholder, C. Fitzgerald. Texas A&M University, College
Station, TX.

Phil




  #7  
Old February 21st 04, 10:22 PM
Phil P.
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default


"Amy" wrote in message
news
I've recently switched my cats from free to fixed feeding. They really
don't like it and I'm tempted to switch them back. Is fixed feeding really
all that beneficial?


Fixed feeding reduces the risk of struvite crystal/urolith formation by
allowing more time to elapse between meals for the cat's natural urine
acidity to return and dissolve struvite that may have formed. Ad libitum
(free feeding) keeps the urine alkaline most of the day which presents a
risk factor for struvite formation.

Also, a recent (2000) ACVIM controlled, clinical, university study found an
increased risk of renal dsease with ad libitum feeding patterns.

Brief excerpt from that study:

"Similarly, being fed ad libitum increased the likelihood of renal disease."

Diet and Lifestyle Variables as Risk Factors for Renal Disease in Pet Cats.

M.R. Slater, W.J. Burkholder, C. Fitzgerald. Texas A&M University, College
Station, TX.

Phil




  #8  
Old February 22nd 04, 03:23 AM
Amy
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

On Sat, 21 Feb 2004 17:22:04 -0500, Phil P. wrote:


"Amy" wrote in message
news
I've recently switched my cats from free to fixed feeding. They really
don't like it and I'm tempted to switch them back. Is fixed feeding really
all that beneficial?


Fixed feeding reduces the risk of struvite crystal/urolith formation by
allowing more time to elapse between meals for the cat's natural urine
acidity to return and dissolve struvite that may have formed. Ad libitum
(free feeding) keeps the urine alkaline most of the day which presents a
risk factor for struvite formation.

Also, a recent (2000) ACVIM controlled, clinical, university study found an
increased risk of renal dsease with ad libitum feeding patterns.

Brief excerpt from that study:

"Similarly, being fed ad libitum increased the likelihood of renal disease."

Diet and Lifestyle Variables as Risk Factors for Renal Disease in Pet Cats.

M.R. Slater, W.J. Burkholder, C. Fitzgerald. Texas A&M University, College
Station, TX.

Phil


Wow. Fixed feeding it is.

Thanks!
Amy
  #9  
Old February 22nd 04, 03:23 AM
Amy
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

On Sat, 21 Feb 2004 17:22:04 -0500, Phil P. wrote:


"Amy" wrote in message
news
I've recently switched my cats from free to fixed feeding. They really
don't like it and I'm tempted to switch them back. Is fixed feeding really
all that beneficial?


Fixed feeding reduces the risk of struvite crystal/urolith formation by
allowing more time to elapse between meals for the cat's natural urine
acidity to return and dissolve struvite that may have formed. Ad libitum
(free feeding) keeps the urine alkaline most of the day which presents a
risk factor for struvite formation.

Also, a recent (2000) ACVIM controlled, clinical, university study found an
increased risk of renal dsease with ad libitum feeding patterns.

Brief excerpt from that study:

"Similarly, being fed ad libitum increased the likelihood of renal disease."

Diet and Lifestyle Variables as Risk Factors for Renal Disease in Pet Cats.

M.R. Slater, W.J. Burkholder, C. Fitzgerald. Texas A&M University, College
Station, TX.

Phil


Wow. Fixed feeding it is.

Thanks!
Amy
  #10  
Old February 22nd 04, 03:42 AM
Phil P.
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default


"Diane L. Schirf" wrote in
message link.net...
In article ,
"Phil P." wrote:

Fixed feeding reduces the risk of struvite crystal/urolith formation by
allowing more time to elapse between meals for the cat's natural urine
acidity to return and dissolve struvite that may have formed. Ad

libitum
(free feeding) keeps the urine alkaline most of the day which presents a
risk factor for struvite formation.


That's good info. Hodge is prone to crystals, and since his food has to
be regulated because he doesn't know when to quit he's prolly better
off. Now if I could just keep him from foraging . . .


You can reduce the risk of crystals further by feeding him all or mostly
canned food. Cats fed canned food have a higher water intake and turnover
and urine volume than cats fed dry food. They also urinate more frequently.

The higher urine volume dilutes the concentration of all solutes in the
urine making them easier to eliminate. More frequent urination results in
the elimination of the solutes before they aggregate or accrete into larger
and larger particles that eventually become calculi and interfere with
normal urination. The longer that calculi remain in the urinary tract, the
larger they can grow and the less likely they are to be eliminated.

Between meal-feeding and canned food, you'll reduce the risk of crystals
significantly.

Phil.


 




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