Thriving Cat

What is The Best Natural Cat Food?

What is the Best Natural Cat Food?

This is a huge question. Here is my experience and what I feed my cats!

Cat food needs are based on the individual cat to a certain extent. Some cats can be sensitive to certain ingredients. Kittens and senior cats need different nutrition. Then there is also the matter of what we can afford. A cat food that is amazing might be out of our price range!

The best mix of value and amazing nutrition that I have found is Solid Gold cat food. It is also the only kind of dry food that works for my orange tabby boy with a sensitive stomach. Solid Gold brand has kitten, senior, grain free and many other options.

Reasons I love Solid Gold cat foods:

  • Superfood ingredients to give your cat the best nutrition
  • Probiotics included
  • Grain free options
  • All natural
  • No added fillers like corn, soy or wheat
  • Options for all cats such as kitten formula, senior formula, adult, grain free etc.
  • Great proteins such as salmon, Pollock, venison and rabbit
  • Works for sensitive stomachs caused by food allergies and intolerances
  • Affordable compared to other high-end brands!
  • So much easier than attempting to feed a raw diet requiring pre-freezing meat to kill potential parasites, getting organ meats to add for proper nutrition, adding separate supplements, storing the raw food etc.

What are the Superfoods in Solid Gold Cat Food?

Superfoods are foods that have strong nutritional properties. They are rich in vitamins, minerals or other nutrients. They give you more bang for your buck nutritionally by offering concentrated nutrition.

Superfoods in Solid Gold Cat Food:

There are at least 20 superfoods in every formula of Solid Gold cat and dog foods. A few of these superfoods are listed here:

Blueberry –contains vitamin C and Vitamin B6 as well as potassium and antioxidants.

Cranberry — contains antioxidants that support urinary health in human and pets.

Rosemary –contains antioxidants and naturally aids preservation of food eliminated need for artificial, chemical preservatives.

Thyme –contains vitamin C and vitamin A for immunity and growth

Almond oil — contains omega fatty acids and vitamin E.

Watercress — contains phytonutrients, vitamin K and vitamin C which support immunity.

Salmon oil — contains vitamin E, and DHA for overall health and healthy fur.

Celery — contains vitamin K, lutein and zeaxanthin carotenoids for immune health.

Pumpkin –contains fiber for digestion.

Parsley –contains vitamin K which supports bones, vitamin A and vitamin C.

Carrot — contains beta carotene for healthy eyes.

Egg protein — contains essential amino acids for metabolism and muscles.

Probiotics in Solid Gold Cat Food:

There are three stands of probiotics in every formula of Solid Gold cat food. These help with digestion, prevent diarrhea, support immunity and provide many health benefits. Just like probiotics help people and we eat them in yogurt, they help replace natural beneficial bacteria that would be found in nature but is stripped out of most modern cat foods. The probiotics in Solid Gold food are “protected” during the cooking process according to their website.

Lactobacillus Acidophillus

Lactobacillus Casei

Enterococcus Faecium

Perhaps this is part of the reason Solid Gold food helped with my tabby’s diarrhea and food intolerance. If you want to learn about the differences between food allergies and intolerances, please see my post here.

We feed our cats the Fit as a Fiddle with Alaskan Pollock variety

 

There are many other great varieties available such as:

Let’s Stay In, Indoor Cat with Salmon, Lentil and Apple (sign me up!)

Touch of Heaven With Chicken for kittens

 

Indigo Moon with Chicken and Egg Grain Free

 

Forever Young with Turkey for Less Active and Senior Cats

Solid Gold also makes wonderful wet cat foods and dry and wet dog foods as well as nutritional supplements.

Should I Just Feed My Cats Raw Food that I Make Myself?

A raw diet may be the ultimate bar for cat nutrition but that requires knowledge of the nutritional needs of cats, adding extra supplements, pre-freezing food to kill parasites and adding organ meats etc. for complete nutrition that muscle meats alone cannot provide. In the wild cats would eat bone and fur, not just meat. Raw fish can be dangerous for cats, tuna contains too much mercury. There are so many requirements to feed your cat a raw diet that many people won’t be able to do it practically. That is why I feed my cats high-quality Solid Gold brand dry food as well as canned food.

Try a bag of Solid Gold and Let me Know What you Think!

Please tell me if you feed your cat Solid Gold cat food and what you think of it. I would also be interested if you have a dog and feed them Solid Gold food! Keep in mind, cats often need their food to be switched gradually, so mix a small amount of Solid Gold into their existing food and increase over the course of a few days to transition them over. This avoids stomach irritation due to switching food too suddenly.

I have tried many brands of food and I really believe Solid Gold is a superior brand. If I didn’t, I would not feed it to my three babies every day!

Jessica

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34 Comments

  1. Don

    Jessica, I don’t have a cat. But a neighbor does and I often feed the cat. He’s at my place as much as he’s with his owner.

    I make superfood smoothies and eat a lot of superfoods in my diet. This is the first time I have read about feeding superfoods to our pets and it makes sense. From now on I will be serving the neighbor’s cat superfood. In fact I will tell them about this article and send them here! Great article!

    All the best to you,
    Don

    Reply
    1. Jessica (Post author)

      Thank you so much Don! There are many brands that claim to be great nutritionally but many still have tons of grains and fillers. Most all of them cost a fortune also! This brand seems to find that balance of real ingredients and a more reasonable price. It still costs more than the cheap brands but it is like feeding your cat a gourmet meal with real food vs. empty calories from doughnuts every day!

      Solid Gold makes dog food with all these great ingredients as well.

      Thanks for the recommendation.
      Jessica

      Reply
  2. Sam

    Thanks Jessica,

    I did wonder what you thought of actually preparing un-packaged food? Me and my partner make a mish of various fishes (salmon and tuna) in with vegetables and give that to our cat in measured portions obviously. A bit over the top I know, but I did wonder on what your thoughts about this approach might be.

    Thanks,

    Sam

    Reply
    1. Jessica (Post author)

      Hello Sam,
      This is a complicated issue. First of all, ocean fish is not a natural food for cats. Most fish in general are not a natural food for cats. Raw fish can often have parasites also, so I would not feed my cat raw fish. Cooking foods diminishes the nutrition so that can leave nutritional gaps as well. I have read that feeding fish alone is NOT a good idea also due to it containing thiaminase which can cause a Vit B1 (thiamine) deficiency. I don’t know how this works exactly. Also, fish like tuna have extremely high mercury levels now and it should not be fed to cats more than once a week.

      Feeding a raw diet is probably a great idea but you really have to do your research first. One way to get around the raw contamination vs. cooked lack of nutrition problem is to freeze raw meats first to kill parasites, then serve the thawed meat to your cat later. You should buy good quality meats and grind them yourself or get your butcher to grind them fresh (I have read). I have not taken on the task of figuring all this out myself yet so I am not an expert.

      You also need to have a proper mix of muscle meat and organ meat (in the wild, they would eat the whole animal not just the muscle so they would be getting bone and fur as well). Muscle meat alone would not be nutritionally complete and your cat would suffer from nutrient deficiencies and serious diseases. For this reason, a homemade raw diet includes added minerals and vitamins as well as the proper mix of meats and organs as well as eggs.

      The supplements often added to a raw cat food diet are taurine, vitamin E and a B vitamin complex.
      I would suggest a site like this for details: http://fnae.org/raw.html

      Feeding these foods for a treat or every now and then is fine but don’t make it your cat’s whole diet or they will not be getting the nutrition they need without all the above preparation and supplementation. That is why I have not embarked on doing the raw diet myself! It is a serious commitment in buying the right ingredients, preparing them, storing them etc.

      Thanks for your question!
      Jessica

      Most vegetables would not be in a cat’s diet either so they would need mostly these meat, organ, egg ingredients with a small amount of vegetables.

      Reply
  3. Justin C.

    Hi Jessica, i also believe in feeding my cats the food they deserve. I have a Bombay named shadow and a Tonkinese named neptune.

    Neptune was a stray kitten that i found under my car one day leaving work. I was sitting in my car getting ready to turn in on and head home when i started hearing a “meow” I was like “what the heck?”

    I got out and looked under my car and there he was.. cute little ball of fur. I picked him up and we drove home together.

    I wasn’t really in the know when it came to high quality cat food so i was feeding them Meow Mix and sure as heck the little one starts throwing up. I thought it was just neptune over-eating because who knows how long it was since the last time he ate. But it kept up and before you know it took him to the vet and got him checked up.

    The vet mentioned that it might be the food hes eating and almost immediately i felt terrible.

    Well, turns out it was as simple as switching the food to something that was organic and not the junk i was feeding my crew.

    I love what i read about the Fit-as-a-fiddle cat food. It is truly astonishing how much effort they put into their product and makes me wonder why i had ever feed anything lesser to my squad.

    I really liked your article it was very informative

    Reply
    1. Jessica (Post author)

      Hello Justin,

      My husband was in the Marine Corps…picture a big, burly Marine doting on his kitties. Sounds like you are similar!

      Our first cat was a rescue. He is the sweetest creature and my husband’s buddy. This boy has a very sensitive stomach however and we tried many different foods before we found some that worked. Solid Gold has worked so well for him that I doubt we will get anything else. We may switch up the variety but not the brand! He still has some issues but I don’t think they are caused from his food. He is so much better. I feel bad that it took us so long to figure it out!

      I hope I can help many other pet parents find this great food to keep their cats (and dogs) healthy as well.

      Thank you so much for your comment! Let me know if you get Solid Gold and what you think.

      Jessica

      Reply
  4. Craig

    Thanks for the recommendation on the Solid Gold food, I actually hadn’t heard of it before. I would like to ask though how easily you get your cats to eat it. The biggest problem I have when I am to feed my two fur balls healthy food is they kind of stick their nose up at me! They are picky little turds and only like the unhealthy stuff.

    While I don’t love feeding them dry food, I have started splitting their diet between some of the really high quality dry foods and some of the mid range wet foods to ensure they get enough moisture in their diet. Have your cats just dug right into the Solid Gold?

    Reply
    1. Jessica (Post author)

      Hello Craig,

      Yes! All three of them LOVE it. I know what you mean. Mine can be picky too, though maybe not as picky as yours. They are pretty hungry little beasts and one in particular will eat anything. I was surprised how all three of them love it though. Our boy who has the sensitive stomach is very picky, but he adores this food.

      When we got the rabbit kind, he still had stomach issues so I am glad we tried other varieties. The chicken and Pollock ones (Indigo Moon and Fit as a Fiddle varieties) both work great for them.

      I do the same with a high quality dry food and mid-range wet also. I like the Solid Gold wet but it is still pretty expensive so I stick to Authority brand wet which I get by the case on sale. It works out to about 80 cents (U.S. currency) per can when it is on sale and these are the large cans, not the tiny ones. Many of the other brands can be twice that much per can. I need to see if the Solid Gold wet food goes on sale as well.

      Thanks for your comment and question. If you get Solid Gold, let me know if they like it.
      Jessica

      Reply
      1. Craig

        Great, thanks. I’ll give this a try next time I order up some food 🙂

        Reply
        1. Jessica (Post author)

          Sounds good. Thank you for stopping by.
          Jessica

          Reply
  5. Taetske Guillaume

    Good afternoon Jessica,

    Now, this is a website after my heart, I absolutely love cats!
    I live on a big farm in the south of Spain since 1981 and as there is lots of space I have always had cats and also dogs. They have always loved each other, I wish people would do the same. Of course, I cannot find the brand you are talking about so I mainly do dry food for them. At the moment I have 4 cats. Old Missu who came walking in as a baby in 1995. Sasha whom I saved at the age of 4 weeks in 2010. He had been dumped at the main gate some 500m away from my house. Then comes little Jasmin whom I saved from the middle of the road Sept. 2013, she was also only 4 weeks old.
    Shugar is Michaels cat, they both emigrated from the US to Spain last year Aug.
    My cats come indoors, each having their own place, for breakfast. Only if the weather is bad they stay inside or with Cindy my dog in the garage. They spend a lot of time hunting, very exciting things for them outside. I am not always happy about it but that is nature after all. They might catch a bird, mouse, frog, grasshopper, lizard, praying manta, or a fish from the many ponds, sometimes even a snake. There you see, a lot of fun.
    I love the photo of the cats sitting in the window and your website is a treasure trove for all cat lovers.

    Regards, Taetske

    Reply
    1. Jessica (Post author)

      Thank you so much Taetske. My first cat was able to go outside all the time. He spent days outside all summer when it was not raining. He would go sit by the lake or on the trails or by the gardens and hunt voles (like mice) and everything else. He was an amazing hunter. He caught a wild snowshoe hare (our version of rabbit, but with huge feet and long legs and very strong and agile and extremely fast) once that was 14 pounds! He caught young ones often but that was a record! He even got a duck once.

      Now that we live in the city out cats are not allowed outside. It is just too dangerous. The last cat I had that was outside was a stray who ended up losing an eye. I felt so bad that I didn’t take him in before that happened. Our neighbor’s cat was almost killed by a dog also and required extensive surgery. Cats are always getting lost and killed so we just won’t let them out here. I take them out but only with supervision. They don’t go out alone.

      If I lived in the country I would let them out still. I know they are so happy to be outside!
      That is wonderful you have a cat who is 22! You must take good care of your kitties!

      Thank you stopping by.
      Jessica

      Reply
  6. Kevon

    Hi Jessica,

    I’m not really a cat person. But I do understand the importance of having a healthy and balanced diet. If this is true for humans, it should not be any different for cats or any animal for that matter. It seems that Solid Gold has all of the key ingredients to give cats a healthy, balanced and delicious option for feeding time. I’m sure your post will help cats and cat lovers.

    Reply
    1. Jessica (Post author)

      Thank you for your comment. Yes, I really believe in Solid Gold pet foods. It is logical, but surprisingly the concept that high quality food is important for pets is still catching on!
      Jessica

      Reply
  7. Carol Burns

    Hello, Jessica
    I am not really a cat person although I love animals, my sister loves cats and has 2 Manx cats (born without a tail) and my grandchildren have a Ragdoll cat called ‘Diesel’.
    I found your article extremely interesting regarding super foods which I will pass onto my sister and son. I am a great believer in the importance of super foods for humans so why should it be any different for cats!
    Your website is very interesting with beautiful pictures and I’m sure would please any cat lover and I certainly will pass on this information to any of my cat-lover friends and family!

    Reply
    1. Jessica (Post author)

      Thank you Carol,
      Yes, good nutrition is important for everything, not just people! Thank you for passing this information on to your family who have cats!
      Jessica

      Reply
  8. David A Sweney

    Hi, Jessica…

    I have two cats, sublings that I took in off the street when they were very young. Here in Dubai, we have too many strays, and they get run over or captured by the local pet police and then euthanized…

    These two were hanging around a friend’s workplace, their mother is a catmaking machine, and after the friend starting feeding them, they stuck around….

    She had to get them out of the school area, of course, can’t be adultarating the kids with pets while at school…This is how I got them…

    Over time (now almost 2 years) we have gotten to know each other, I have watched them grow up, and they have watched me watching them…

    Since they were street cats, at first it was trial and error as to what to feed them. I tried all kinds of different brands of cat food, some went well, and others….not so well…

    I will give the brand Solid Gold cat foods a try. I am always looking to add a bit of variety to their diet, one or two brands just isn’t enough I think.

    Of course nutrition is also a concern, so it is good to know that the food you recommend is so good for them. I will let you know my cat’s reaction to this food, and thanks for letting us all know Solid Gold cat food!

    Dave
    : )

    Reply
    1. Jessica (Post author)

      Thank you Dave, I am glad you are helping the kitties of Dubai! Yes, I truly believe Solid Gold is a superior food. There are some others out there but they are so expensive I can’t afford them. So, I really appreciate Solid Gold! I didn’t realize until recently they make supplements also. I need to try those.

      Just be sure you mix the new food in a little at a time if they currently eat only a certain food or foods. And of course cats need lots of water if they eat dry food.

      I hope it works well for you and I look forward to hearing what your kitties think of it!
      Jessica

      Reply
  9. Melissa

    I do not have any cats but I own dogs and I am very picky about the food I feed them. I was not aware of superfoods for pets, that is very interesting. I am sure a lot of cat owners would be very interested in this brand because of how natural it is and the fact it contains probiotics. I have to share this post. Thanks for the detailed info!

    Reply
    1. Jessica (Post author)

      Thank you Melissa, if I had a dog now I would be feeding them Solid Gold brand dog food as well as feeding the brand to my cats. When I had dogs I did not know about this brand! It is so nice to find such a high quality brand that doesn’t have a ridiculous price!

      Thank you so much for stopping by and I would greatly appreciate any social media shares!

      Jessica

      Reply
  10. Yvonne

    Hi Jessica,

    In addition to Solid Gold cat foods and other packaged cat foods, is it advisable to feed our cats with home-cooked food? Is eating Solid Gold cat food enough to provide all the necessary nutrition for a cat? Thanks for sharing!

    Reply
    1. Jessica (Post author)

      Hi Yvonne,
      Adding fresh food to your cat’s diet is fine as long as it is a food they can have and they still get a good cat food as well. Some cats are more sensitive than others but there are many meats and vegetables for example that they can have. It is not advisable to feed only homemade food though unless you really do your research. It can be daunting to give them all they need since simple meats are not a complete diet for a cat. For example, we generally eat muscle meats but cats in the wild would be eating fur, bone, brain, and organs as well. These are necessary for a complete diet. In order to replicate a complete diet we have to add supplements such as taurine if we make homemade food. We also have to add organ meats and some vitamins and minerals.

      Fish is also not good in large quantities since fish is not a natural food for cats. It can have too much mercury as well so fish like tuna should only be given once a week at the most. Here is a link if you are interested in cooking a homemade diet for cats. http://fnae.org/raw.html

      Some people feed their cats a raw diet of fresh meats but that takes extra preparation such as freezing the meat to kill potential parasites. Cooking food makes it safer but it also degrades the nutritional value. The variety of organ meats have to be added as well.

      Feeding homemade foods for a treat or every now and then is fine but don’t make it your cat’s whole diet or they will not be getting the nutrition they need without all the above preparation and supplementation. That is why I have not embarked on doing the raw diet myself! It is a serious commitment in buying the right ingredients, preparing them, storing them etc.

      Yes, to answer your second question, Solid Gold is a complete diet. This is why I love the Solid Gold brand. My cats get complete nutrition in a convenient food. I also feed them wet food but that is not for nutrition, that is so that the wet food can be a vehicle to give them extra supplements for specific conditions. For example, they get PetAlive brand “Gumz-n-Teeth” to keep their teeth healthy since my boy needed teeth pulled every year at the vet! This has kept their teeth so healthy and they don’t have bad breath any more. They also get PetAlive “Immunity and Liver Support” to help them fight off kitty colds (upper respiratory infections). I review both of those supplements in my blog.

      Thanks for your questions!
      Jessica

      Reply
  11. Linda Watson

    Jessica, thanks for the great information. I don’t have a cat, I have a dog. One thing that is of the utmost importance is their diet. The food you mention looks extremely high quality. The most important thing is that it is grain free. Cats are prone to diabetes and who needs to make their blood sugar go through the roof with unnecessary and harmful grains? Anyone who has a cat should read your blog, some very helpful info!

    Reply
    1. Jessica (Post author)

      Thanks Linda,
      It is amazing how many people don’t think logically about why grains are in pet food! It is a cheap filler! There is no natural reason for grain to be in cat food and it causes lots of problems such as throwing up and constipation as well as diabetes and weight gain. Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment!

      Jessica

      Reply
  12. Steve T

    Very happy to find this post, Jessica. Cat food is a constant challenge for us, as our cats have different tastes and a range of feeding issues. We were recently concerned that neither of them were eating the dry food, so my wife (who generally feeds them) asked me to pick up higher quality food than the Iams and more pricey food we had. I got blue buffalo, and they seem to like it, at least for now.
    We can try solid gold, but I do have several questions:

    >How large a bag should we open for feeding a big (15 pound) male short haired tiger (Chip) and a medium sized (10 pound) long haired female calico (Alberta), who also eats some wet food (mostly the gravy). They are both about 9 or 10 years old. They seem not to like their food after a time, so I suspect it gets stale or spoiled after the bag is open too long…

    >How should the food be stored after the bag is open?

    >We’ve generally selected cat food looking for high protein and low ash… is that a good approach, and does Solid Gold do well on that basis?

    I really value your input on feeding our cats. Our vet is very well educated, but I trust your experience more on this topic.
    Steve

    Reply
    1. Jessica (Post author)

      Hi Steve,
      I have been looking into the ash content in order to answer your question. I do not worry about it for my cats and the Solid Gold food has been absolutely miraculous for them, especially my boy with all the digestive problems. Some reviews claim the ash content of Solid Gold Katz-n-Flocken variety cat food is max 5%. Other varieties of Solid Gold dry cat food have 7% or 7.5% from what I can find.

      I would read this post about pet food myths. It is from a good website I trust. https://www.onlynaturalpet.com/holistic-healthcare-library/food-diet—general/147/top-10-myths-about-pet-food-and-nutrition.aspx See #8 about Ash Content. I don’t claim any knowledge about this but they say protein content is more important than ash content and urinary problems in pets started with high grain foods rather than the ash itself. It also addresses the concept (or “myth”) that high protein foods can be harder for pets to digest when they get older. They explain that the problem is protein from plants vs. protein from meat. So of course the protein in a high protein cat food should be coming from meat.

      We discovered our cats do well on Solid Gold Winged Tiger variety food. I review this here: https://thrivingcat.com/whats-the-best-cat-food-for-sensitive-stomachs
      I had not tried it yet at the time I wrote this post on Natural Cat Food. I ran out of their usual Fit as a Fiddle and tried Winged Tiger instead since that was all I could get at the pet food store here. It was the first time ever that I gave them a new food and they had no problems transitioning. I was so low on their regular food that I did not have enough to do a slow transition but they were perfectly fine! No problems at all even for my very sensitive boy who used to have diarrhea all the time before we found Solid Gold foods.

      If weight loss is a concern, I recommend Fit as a Fiddle which is made with Alaskan Pollock. It has 30% protein and low fat. It is grain free.

      If you want highest protein, then Indigo Moon is the best with 42%. It is made with chicken and is also grain free. This was the first type we tried and it was great but we wanted to move to the weight loss variety.

      If you are concerned about the Ash content, then maybe you could try the Katz-n-Flocken which has a max 5% ash. It has 34% protein and claims to be highly digestible. It is not grain free but uses high quality grains.

      If you want the easiest for digestion, I would recommend Winged Tiger which is made with quail and pumpkin! Pumpkin is supposed to be good for cat digestion. Winged Tiger has 30% protein but a high 13% fat!

      I must say I have not used Katz-n-Flocken for my cats personally but they do great on these others as well as Indigo Moon which was the first variety of Solid Gold we tried. The rabbit variety did not work for my sensitive boy however.

      The large bags of Solid Gold have zip lock seals built in! Our cats have never grown tired of Solid Gold even after 6 or 7 years! The small bags do not have the zip lock. I would get the large bag for your cats. The large bag is actually much smaller than it used to be. They made the bags smaller last year. It is now 12 pounds. How fast they go through it will depend on how much wet food they eat also but my three cats whom are all about 15-16 pounds go through a large bag in probably a month maybe less. With the sealable bag I don’t think it will go bad. Ours never has. If you are not sure which kind to get you could just try a smaller bag however. They are available in 3 and 6 pound bags.

      I do not know how the ash level compares to other low ash brands but I can tell you I have had cats my entire life and this is by far he best food I have found. I have had cats on prescription diets, cheap store brands, regular brands and high-end brands.

      Let me know what you decide! I will be curious to hear what your cats think if you try it!
      Jessica

      Reply
  13. Steve T

    Wow – You’ve given me a lot to think about, Jessica! I think for starters, we’ll try Indigo Moon, combined with the Maze feeder for weight control; our cats need that exercise, especially this time of year. If that causes issues with excess weight, Winged Tiger looks like a good alternate choice to try – they both seem like they should be great, if there aren’t differences in our cats vs. yours that require something else.

    Related to such differences, does the fact that our cats get outside time nearly every day (minutes or a few hours, not overnight or all day) mean they will have different nutritional needs than your indoor cat family? If so, what do you suggest?

    Thanks again for all your help!
    Steve

    Reply
    1. Jessica (Post author)

      Hello Steve,

      I think it would be a great idea to anchor the Maze feeder to keep it from sliding around. I am not sure exactly what you have in mind but what you described made me think about using the lid from one of the large plastic storage totes. I think it might be Rubbermaid brand that has a lid with a lower center part and higher edges. That way, when they scoop the food out it would be caught in the lid. I don’t know exactly how it would be anchored but I suppose you could even bolt it down through holes in the lid.

      Or if that is all too much hassle (and then the footprint would be much larger and take up a ton of room) then you might want to consider a different food puzzle! The Catit Senses tower feeder is really stable and doesn’t move around.

      AS for the outside/inside food needs I think it would only be different if your cats were eating small critters (mice etc) while outside. If they were then they would not need such a complete cat food but I don’t know if your cats have access to or actually kill wild food every day. Therefore, they should probably have access to the high quality food. Solid Gold foods get really good reviews from hundreds and thousands of cat owners so I would feel pretty confident that your cats would do just as well on it as mine especially since there are different varieties available.

      I am glad you are interested in trying it!
      Jessica

      Reply
  14. Steve T

    Thanks Jessica,
    This helps a lot. I have many options for how to secure it, since I have an extensive plastic and wood shop, so doing it will be pretty easy – I was just checking in case the sliding around aspect was of importance to the play experience for cats using it.

    When these guys are outside they do hunt, but I’ve never seen them actually eat what they kill. They are more likely to bring us the trophies to show them off. I think they are a bit too civilized and accustomed to cat food to actually consume the rare chipmunk or bird they catch. In any case, they don’t get enough protein from outside to make a difference in the diet (unless they get it by begging from neighbors – wouldn’t put that past them). They do eat a bit of grass or weeds, though, except in the coldest few weeks of winter.

    A couple other questions occur to me, though:

    Chip is a dry-food only guy, but Alberta (who has dental issues) eats some wet food as well, only the kind with gravy. She used to only eat wet food, but her dental health has improved a bit (although she is missing some teeth) so she now eats both. Do all your cats eat both wet and dry, or do you have some that only eat one type of cat food? I want to ensure a long healthy life for these guys, so if they both need some wet food in the diet, we should look into that.

    We wash the food bowls often these days, and the cats seem less eager to eat when the dry food bowls haven’t been cleaned. I’ve assumed that some residue from the food and saliva is cooking up microbes in those bowls that put off smell that those powerful little noses don’t like. In a cardboard feeder I assume there is little you can do to clean it beyond shaking out old food and dusting the surface. I imagine the design keeps cat saliva out, so only food dust is there to cook up bugs. Is there any issue with lingering odors in the feeder that requires action to clean, disinfect or otherwise correct? Since your cats have used this feeder for quite a while (and I’ve seen users online whose cats have used it for years) I expect there is a simple, practical solution; I’m just curious what it is.

    Thanks again for your wonderful cat wisdom…
    Steve

    Reply
    1. Jessica (Post author)

      I had the Catit Senses tower feeder for quite a while but I have not had the Cat Amazing Maze for very long yet. So, I may not be able to answer your questions fully. No, there is no cat saliva in there since they have to reach in with their paws and pull the food out first to eat it. Therefore the only thing in there is dry cat food. I don’t know if it will get very dirty but it hasn’t so far. I wondered the same thing since I thought the oils from the cat food would soak into the cardboard. The ink used on the dividers inside may seal it somehow. That is an advantage of the Catit Senses tower, it can be taken apart and washed in water.

      I would view the Amazing Cat maze as a somewhat disposable item that you could try and see how you like it if you don’t mind spending the $15. It is not going to be a permanent investment. If you want one that lasts longer than the tower or one of the small ceramic or plastic (though I try to avoid plastic) puzzle feeders might be better. So far this one is better for my cats.

      I understand about the gunk left over in cat bowls. I try to rinse and wipe out their water bowls every day too. The same residue from saliva starts to grow stuff in there too.

      If your cats still have any dental issues I encourage you to read this post I wrote on the amazing supplement that inspired my website for cat and dog teeth: https://thrivingcat.com/revolutionary-supplement-that-keeps-dog-and-cat-teeth-clean
      I think you may have read it already earlier this year.

      Because my cats get these supplements that have to be mixed into wet food, I make sure they all get wet food every day. The wet food is the carrier for all their supplements! Wet food is also a better diet for cats anyway. Dry food is unnaturally dry and leads to urinary and digestive problems. I would prefer if my cats ate only wet food but they love the dry and high quality wet is so expensive! So I give them Solid Gold in grain free varieties for the good nutrition and wet food for the moisture and supplements.

      Thanks!
      Jessica

      Reply
  15. Carol Meador

    Hello, Jessica. Thanks so much for this informative article. I have learned a lot about cat nutrition that I did not know before.

    My “Bigfoot George” was a stray who adopted a friend of mine that already had two other cats. They did not want another brother, so George came to live with me. He has enormous feet because he is a polydactyl (or Hemmingway) and has 6 toes on each front foot and one of his back feet as well.

    When I read your article to George, he told me he’d like to try the Solid Gold. My question is: which one would be best for him?

    Since he insists on going outside and is quite the hunter, I am concerned about parasites. As far as I know, the score is George 12, Chipmunks 0; George 5, Mice 0, George 1, Squirrel 0.

    He used to bring them home to show Mama what a good boy he is, but since he would eat the whole chipmunk and then throw it up, I started taking them away from him. Now he doesn’t bring them home any more!

    Is there one of the foods that is better than the others for indoor/outdoor cats? Do you know of a natural preventive for parasites he’s probably eating when he’s outside? When he had his physical, his stool sample was negative, but I’m not sure I was letting him outside then.

    Reply
    1. Jessica (Post author)

      Hello Carol,

      George sounds like a really cool cat. What kind is he? I suppose you don’t know exactly but is he short haired, long haired etc? I don’t know of a natural parasite treatment. I could look into it.

      Tell me more about George so I can recommend a specific variety of Solid Gold. Does he have any health issues? Is he overweight?

      My cat as a child was a grey and black striped tabby boy. He was my best friend. I adored him. He was an amazing hunter as well. He killed birds, voles, Snowshoe Hares (large, wild rabbits with huge feet), weasels, squirrels and even a few ducks! He killed a 14 pound hare once. Dad made him wear cow bells to try and keep him from killing songbirds and also in hopes of keeping him safe from predators. He drug a duck back home, up the hill wearing the cow bells and all!

      Thank you for stopping by!

      Jessica

      Reply
      1. Carol Meador

        George was a stray, but he is a Hemmingway…has extra toes. The type of cat that Ernest Hemmingway had on Key West. The vet calls him a polydactyl. Sounds like a dinosaur, doesn’t it?! That’s why I call him Bigfoot George. He is a short haired orange tabby, very sweet, but bites occasionally if he doesn’t want to be bothered.

        He doesn’t really have any health issues, except that I think he might be a bit overweight now that I’m letting him outside. He eats his prey, but of course I feed him as well. He is a big boy. I think he was 10 pounds when he was at the vet last, and that was about what he should weigh. I’ll have to check on his weight now.

        I don’t think George has any digestive issues, but I am concerned about possible parasites due to his eating whatever he can catch. The vet checks him for parasites when he has his physical, but I don’t think he’s ever needed to be treated. I would prefer a natural parasite treatment if one is available because the drugs can’t be good for his long term health.

        My last cats I had before George were kittens I rescued from my vet. (she takes them from the shelter and finds them homes among her pet parents.) I was on my way to the bank, and the vet’s office was 2 doors down. They had a “kittens for adoption” sign up on their marquee. I was just going to go in and look at them. Yeah, right! Came out with 2! They were blue eyed, all white with black ears and tails. As they grew, they changed colors, but their eyes stayed blue. The vet thought they were a Siamese mix, but they didn’t have the Siamese personality, so decided they might be ragdoll. Sam E. Snuggles was long haired, and if he’d been a female, would have been considered a calico. He had patches of sable colored tabby, orange tabby, and gray tabby. Sass A. Fras eventually turned into a gray tabby. But both of them kept their white tummies and feet. Sammy died of cancer when he was 10. When she got older, Sassy was diabetic, and I had to give her insulin shots twice a day, but she lived to be 14.

        Our furkids certainly are a HUGE part of our lives, aren’t they. They add so much quality to our lives, and are such good friends and company.

        Carol

        Reply
        1. Jessica (Post author)

          Hello Carol,

          I love the names of your cats! Sass A. Frass and Sam E. Snuggles are adorable names! I will have to look into a natural parasite treatment.
          As for the food, I would go with any of the Solid Gold varieties. Since he doesn’t have any specific health issues you could pick the most affordable of the options. Right now I think that is Indigo Moon food with chicken and egg. Here is a link: http://amzn.to/2CkHfi6

          This is for the 12 pound bag on auto-ship which is the cheapest option at $28. A 12 pound bag should last him a long time but there are 3 and 6 pound bags as well for less. This is the variety our cats were on first and they loved it. We only switched to Fit as a Fiddle since it helps with weight control. Since George is outside he shouldn’t get as fat as ours! All of ours are around 15 pounds! Of course the boys are tall with very long legs and one is a Norwegian Forest Cat. They are long and tall like a Maine Coon but more delicately built and not as bulky.

          Thanks for being such a great fur parent! I like Hemmingways too but have never had one.
          Jessica

          Reply

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