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Eyren

Chicken-friendly cat food

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Since I'm trying to buy only free-range/organic chicken these days, I thought I should make the effort to ensure my cats aren't eating broiler meat either! I've been giving them Arden Grange dry food since I got them, since they state "no battery chicken" (not clear if they mean intensively-raised birds in general, or just that they don't use ex-bats) and used to have BUAV certification until BUAV stopped doing it, but the DH's moggy was used to her Felix and I didn't want to upset her routine, especially when she was ill last year.

 

However I'd like to move them all over to something a bit more chicken-friendly - as long as it's not too hideously expensive! Has anyone tried/researched this topic?

 

In the meantime, I've ordered a selection of tinned/pouched food from Zooplus.co.uk, including:

 

* Bozita - Swedish brand, cheap as regular non-premium Felix but much higher quality - Swedish legislation on animal welfare seems quite strict, judging by their leaflet. Also their tetrapak packaging is easy to recycle!

* Applaws - fairly expensive, nearly all meat, but the sourcing isn't entirely clear - they say their chickens are fed organic food but nothing about welfare standards

* Almo Nature - expensive but definitely organic, free-range ingredients

 

I've calculated that if I feed my cats about 50% Bozita and 50% of the other two, the cost will be about the same as the Felix premium ranges (Roasted Pieces/Good as it Looks), but with vastly better quality ingredients :)

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Mel suggested Burns to me a week or two ago, but I haven't had time to try it yet.

 

But I think it may be a dry cat food. Mine prefer "wet" (to them, dry is only for snacking!) and I have been buying them Whiskas organic because that is one way to guarantee free-range meat. But it's quite pricy (although no more than the other Whiskas premium range) so I am going to look for the Burns when I get a chance. I would be interested to know how you get on with the foods you have listed. I'm not too bothered about organic, but do want to get free range food.

 

Milly

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Yes, Burns is a dried food. I'd happily give mine dry only, but the elderly moggy is used to her wet food, and the Burmese just hang around watching her eat if I don't give them some for at least one meal a day :roll:

 

I tried Burns a while back and my cats weren't at all keen - they much preferred Arden Grange. And I've noticed that Burns no longer states that they use free-range chicken, only that it's from "non-caged birds", which means it's basically the same standard as Arden Grange now. Presumably the rise in demand for free-range chicken and/or an expansion in business means they can't afford enough of it without raising their prices drastically.

 

The other thing to remember is that although this type of food is more expensive, you don't need to feed as much because it's far more nutritious, not being padded out with nameless carbohydrates and Lord only knows what else. You have to phase it in, though, or your cats' tummies will rumble a bit at first!

 

I swear my Burmese get a sugar rush after eating commercial cat food - they suddenly become very lively and dash about the house like mad things! I know that in some respects this is perfectly normal for young cats, but the timing is very suspicious...

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I feed my Basset on Burns and it suits her really well. I do soak it with warm water before feeding it to her, as Bassets tend to suffer from Bloat very easily, so I have to be careful. Even the vet commented on how lovely and lean she looks and how shiney her coat is.

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I understand that they M&S organic cat food (small portions sized tins) uses only freerange chicken in it's recipes. I think it's probably the MRM (machanically reclaimed meat). never tried mine on it, but then they are hyperactive anyhow :roll:

 

I think that Buffie feeds her pusskits on the bones and raw meat diet; try PMing her and asking.

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I looked into this a few weeks ago after watching the Jamie programme. I looked at Burns but as someone has said it only stated not caged birds so I wasn't happy with that. I am now feeding them Pero dried organic catfood after reading the organic standards they keep to and feeling OK with them. The only wet food I have found has been the Whiskas which is v expensive. My cats originally turned their noses up at the Pero (they liked the tinned stuff better) but now go completely potty for it and mew constantly for more. Also they have far more energy than when they were on non-organic food - Tabitha keeps chasing her tail like she did when she was a kitten, and Florence is far more playful. So I am quite ahppy with the new regime, and the dry is less messy when they spread it round the floor.

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I'm currently sticking to fishy cat foods, until you lot do my research for me! We've had to move away from cheaper dried food as Cleo and Evie had the runs for ages, and I worked out that they were eating so much, we might as well buy the more expensive stuff, because it lasts longer.

 

Right now we're on a combination of Purina and Pets at Home premium (they LOVE it). No wet food though. I feel a bit of a brute, because I know Nero was used to it, but I cannot cannot face the litter tray smell, and I HATE the way it makes them behave. Life is much nicer without five cats who will not leave me alone in the morning until I put wet food out. They complain for the first few days, but if you hold firm, you can then graduate onto a packet split between them as a treat in the evening very occasionally.

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but isn't part of the problem that even the fishy foods can have some chicken/meat in? :? And I'm not sure that the fish ones are any more ethical *sigh* it really isn't easy being green, is it!

 

My chap will only eat fishy flavours anyway, and I'm still feeding Felix/Whiskas as he is very picky, but I would like to find something that I felt more comfortable with. My old cat was prescribed Hills when she got kidney disease, and as you say Aunty E, after a few complaints she settled down to it, and there were lots of advantages - not least of which was that I didn't have to open a packet of wet food first thing in the morning :vom:!

 

Maybe I will try Welly on dried food - if I could find Pero then I would give it a go, he used to like that.

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but isn't part of the problem that even the fishy foods can have some chicken/meat in? :?

 

Yes - most supermarket cat food is basically just MRM (mechanically-recovered meat) flavoured with a bit of whatever it says on the tin/pouch. E.g. Felix "As Good As It Looks":

 

Ingredients

e.g. Meat & Animal Derivatives (Min Chicken 4%), Vegetable Protein Extract, Fish & Fish Derivatives, Minerals, Various Sugars.

 

(frankly it doesn't look that good, but at least it doesn't stink like the Roasted Pieces :vom: ). And even Whiskas Organic has those dubious "various sugars" in it - WTF do cats need sugar for???

 

Plus the big manufacturers are often involved in dreadful testing on the animals the food is designed for :evil:

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My order came last week, and I've been feeding the cats on the various wet foods instead of Felix.

 

Results so far:

 

* Bozita - the old cat seems to like it well enough, but the Burmese aren't at all impressed. However since it's the old cat that prefers wet food, I think I'll keep buying it for her

 

* Applaws - looks like real food, disappears in seconds!

 

* Almo Nature - gave the old cat the chicken and egg variety, and you could see the slices of egg! Seemed to go down well

 

I've also been giving the old cat some Arden Grange plus a bowl of Felix milk for some breakfasts, which she seems to like as long as it's not every day!

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