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Discussion Starter #1
Does one exist? I feed my dogs raw and have one stubborn cat who after months of trying to switch, I decided to give up. I'm looking for the BEST quality kibble I can find. I'm looking for one that has free-range animals, grass fed animals, and nothing unnatural such as "natural flavors" which is some liquid made in a labo to make it taste like chicken or whatnot. Although, it's going to have to have preservatives in it, I suppose....

I'm buying a vitamix next week, is it possible to make your own cat food? She will eat can, so that's a plus. Also, has anyone ever made their own kibble? I have a dehydrator so I thought it might be an option.

Any advice is appreciated. Right now we've just been feeding a mixture of kibble like Evo and Innova and Taste of the Wild but I don't like the whole "natual flavoring" thing and can't seem to locate one without it!
 

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Horizon have two cat formulas without "natural flavors", Complete Cat and Lagacy Cat. Distribution near you might be an issue though. I see some of its US retailers run web stores too so that might be an option.

Canine Caviar got some cat formulas that should meet your requirements too.

Re "natural flavor", "natural chicken flavor", etc. It's just water boiled down with for example chicken scraps, in the case of "natural chicken flavour". "Natural flavor" is more vague since it can contain anything really.
 

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Cat food without "natural flavors"

Orijen (only available as kibble)
Dick Van Patten's Natural Balance (Canned Only)
Fromm's Four Star (Canned and Kibble)
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Yeah, Evo and Innova both just say "natural flavors." So for all I know it's boiled down euthanized animals!
 

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I'm not really a cat person, but my understanding is that canned food is highly recommended over kibble for cats. If you were to make kibble. wouldn't you have to buy some type of vitamin pre-mix to add or a supplement?

Just looked at Fromm's canned cat food . . . seems like its a pretty simple ingredient list without anything egregious. If your cat wasn't successful on raw, I'd be tempted just to feed something like this. Chicken Duck, & Salmon Pâté cat food - Fromm Family Foods
 

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That is very right, canned is better for cats than dry. For weight, moisture consumption. I know there are more reasons but can't think of them.
Here is a great site.
http://www.catinfo.org/
I just switched mine to an all wet diet. He was on dry grain free and very strict portions, never would lose the weight that he needs to.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
yeah, she will eat canned, but she doesn't like it and only eats a little bit so I do like to give her kibble in addition. also, we travel and it's easier to leave kibble down for a couple nights. The ingredients usually are a lot better in canned, I've noticed. I think I'm going to look into making her canned food with the vitamix and research these dry food brands people have listed. she's seriously SO stubborn and I've been trying for over 6 months and wasted sooo much food. I just hate the fact of not knowing what I'm feeding her and trusting a company! :(
 

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yeah, she will eat canned, but she doesn't like it and only eats a little bit so I do like to give her kibble in addition. also, we travel and it's easier to leave kibble down for a couple nights. The ingredients usually are a lot better in canned, I've noticed. I think I'm going to look into making her canned food with the vitamix and research these dry food brands people have listed. she's seriously SO stubborn and I've been trying for over 6 months and wasted sooo much food. I just hate the fact of not knowing what I'm feeding her and trusting a company! :(
:( sorry she is so picky and doesn't know what is best for her. What texture of canned foods have you tried? My boy apparently doesn't like pâté so allot of that has been wasted. Now I will only by him chunks, slices, or shreds.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Funny! Mine is the opposite and ONLY likes patte. She will do good some days and eat only canned and be fine. Then she will refuse to eat one bit of it and beg for kibble and the longest I hold out is 24 hours... should I try longer? Worried about it since she's a cat and i've read they have to eat. She was a little overweight when we started trying to switch, and now she's about 2lbs underweight! She's seven so maybe they can be too old to switch... I feel like a failure!
 

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Funny! Mine is the opposite and ONLY likes patte. She will do good some days and eat only canned and be fine. Then she will refuse to eat one bit of it and beg for kibble and the longest I hold out is 24 hours... should I try longer? Worried about it since she's a cat and i've read they have to eat. She was a little overweight when we started trying to switch, and now she's about 2lbs underweight! She's seven so maybe they can be too old to switch... I feel like a failure!
Your right about not letting her miss food for to long or they can get this:

Hepatic Lipidosis (Fatty Liver Disease): This is the most common metabolic liver disease of cats.* Cats that go longer than 48 hours without eating, for any reason, are in danger of developing this serious, and often fatal, disease.*Even though thin cats can end up with hepatic lipidosis, overweight cats are much more prone to experiencing this disease.*

Feeding a high-protein, low-carbohydrate canned diet helps keep cats at an optimal, healthy body weight and, in turn, makes them less likely to end up with fatty liver disease.
I do not think you failed her! Better to look out for her liver health instead of trying to feed her something she isn't going to eat.
 

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I AM a cat failure. I brought a kitten in from outside, but not right away. It took me time to decide if I was able to care for yet another living thing. In the meantime, I fed her everything under the sun. There is a window of time in a kittens life where they learn what food is. After this window, it is much harder to get them to try new things. So I gave her raw venison, cooked venison, tuna (whoops), canned cat food, and kibble (triple whoops on the kibble). I brought her in, fed her kibble and raw, trying to get her to eat raw. She did at first. And then she stopped cold turkey. So I got her taste of the wild cat food. Nope, she wouldn't touch it! She eats the crap kibble my husband brought home while we fed them outside.

My plan of attack is this. Start feeding more canned and slowly add raw into the canned. This was advised to me from a cat forum. The carbs in the kibble are no bueno for cats. Also, lack of moisture. So , when I get around to grocery shopping, I am going to stock up on canned stuff (no pate though. I have a whole case of organic canned cat food she wont touch). I have a feeling I will be donating her food to the shelter since she is a brat,

Good luck finding your cat a good food she will eat. They are not as easy as dogs.
 

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Guys, they all contain a palatant or a flavor enhancer, it just differs as to how they, they companies, choose to list them. Natural flavors can be listed as chicken liver if the company is trying to be transparent as that is the most common origin. There are many other terms for it as well, some obvious, some not. Wordsmithing again. They will typically appear in roughly the same spot on the ingredient listing as the percentage of inclusion is usually about the same.
 

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Guys, they all contain a palatant or a flavor enhancer, it just differs as to how they, they companies, choose to list them. Natural flavors can be listed as chicken liver if the company is trying to be transparent as that is the most common origin. There are many other terms for it as well, some obvious, some not. Wordsmithing again. They will typically appear in roughly the same spot on the ingredient listing as the percentage of inclusion is usually about the same.
Of course they do, but some brands choose to include the wording "flavor(s)" in there and I think that's what causing confusion (or alarm) for some.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Of course they do, but some brands choose to include the wording "flavor(s)" in there and I think that's what causing confusion (or alarm) for some.
If they're using chicken livers for flavor, why not say it? Why label it as natural flavors and not even define what animal it comes from? I feel like they're trying to be sneaky and I don't want to give myself or my pets "natural flavors." I will like 95% of the ingredients, then there's one I'm leery of. Orijen sounds good but it was some fillers I'm not exactly thrilled out. Damn cat! Wish she'd just eat what's best for her!

Thanks for all the advice, though. My problem is I'm never going to be satisfied with anything kibble... sigh...

I'm really going to push for her to get canned only and then I can make my own once our vitamix arrives. I just don't trust any company out there to feed my animals. I've been losing sleep over figuring out how get this cat to eat what's best for her!
 

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Discussion Starter #16
It is the "ick" factor. Chicken livers to a marketing person is gross versus to us it is correct.
Ha! Or a way to used boiled down euthanized animals for "flavor."
 

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If they're using chicken livers for flavor, why not say it? Why label it as natural flavors and not even define what animal it comes from? I feel like they're trying to be sneaky and I don't want to give myself or my pets "natural flavors." I will like 95% of the ingredients, then there's one I'm leery of. Orijen sounds good but it was some fillers I'm not exactly thrilled out. Damn cat! Wish she'd just eat what's best for her!
Well, they kind'a are saying it, it's just there as "chicken liver" not "chicken liver flavor" but I get what you are saying and personally I agree with you. The problem is that most are fine with, or prefer "natural flavors" as opposed to something "gross" In the end I guess it comes down to who you are targeting. The big brands will continue to say "natural flavors", "natural chicken flavor" or similar, the super premium brands will continue to be more detailed and all the inbetweens will just have to figure out what works best in the market.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I hope all the animals that are used in pet foods are euthanazied before they are "boiled down".
Okay, well euthanized canines who have been put to sleep then sent off to the dog food companies. I'm pretty the animals that aren't canines also lived, for the most part in dog food brands, a horrible life spent in a tiny space eating an inappropriate diet. I wouldn't be surprised if some of the veggies/fruits in the foods are GMOs either.

I will pay more for the super premium brands in hopes what I'm feeding my animals is clearly delivered to me.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Well, they kind'a are saying it, it's just there as "chicken liver" not "chicken liver flavor" but I get what you are saying and personally I agree with you. The problem is that most are fine with, or prefer "natural flavors" as opposed to something "gross" In the end I guess it comes down to who you are targeting. The big brands will continue to say "natural flavors", "natural chicken flavor" or similar, the super premium brands will continue to be more detailed and all the inbetweens will just have to figure out what works best in the market.
ahhh this makes some sense and gives me a better understanding. How sad people would rather see an ingredient made in a lab in their food than something as healthy as liver! I watched a documentary about "natural flavors" and it was really scary. People in a lab get together and basically make a clear substance from yes, boiled down carcuss but that's not all it is -- it's creepy to me something made in a lab, in a vial, dropped onto my food gives it flavoring. The documentary explored bbq chips and showed how they get the natural flavor... but it's not natural, let me tell you.
 
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