We have a 16 year old spayed female tabby, Tigger, who has a tendency to be overweight. We got her down to 9 lbs. but this is still a little heavy for her frame. It is imperative to keep her weight down as she has arthritis.

We also have a 1-2 yr. old long hair spayed female, Isabel. We recently adopted her from a local shelter and she appeared to be grossly overweight (her picture was in the dictionary next to bowling ball). We are trying to get her down to a healthy weight.
Our third cat, Boots, is 12 weeks old. He is the last of a litter of kittens we ended up bottle feeding when Mom took off and left them on our property. The last of his siblings were adopted last Saturday.

Now to the feeding question. Since Boot's siblings have left he has decided he doesn't want to eat the kitten food. He wants to eat the same food as the adult cats. How long should he be on kitten food? I hesitate to ask as I gather there is a debate over dry and wet food but should he be on more "wet" food because he is a male? He doesn't seem to want to eat much at one sitting but would rather munch during the day. This is a challenge as Isabel is a total chow hound and must be watched like a hawk or she'll eat the kitten food if left out.
Any suggestions how to handle the needs of all these guys so that they all get what they need?
W
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You could feed the kitten separately and usually kitten food is fed until the cat is 1 year old. Or, you could feed an "all life stages" food for all the cats. Canned is definitely better for them than dry food which tends to be more cereal than meat.
Lauren

See my cats: http://community.webshots.com/album/56955940rWhxAe Raw Diet Info: http://www.holisticat.com/drjletter.html http://www.geocities.com/rawfeeders/ForCatsOnly.html Declawing Info: http://www.wholecat.com/articles/claws.htm
Or, you could feed an "all life stages" food for all the cats.

That is definitely NOT good advice. All life stage foods are formulated for kittens and may contain nutrient levels (of fat, phosphorus, calcium, magnesium, sodium, etc.) not appropriate for senior and/or adult cats.
Canned is definitely better for them than dry food which tends to be more cereal than meat.

Canned is a good idea but not because of the "cereal vs meat" argument. (what kind of cereal is that? Frosted Flakes?? lol) Canned foods are mostly water and getting enough water into the cats should be a goal of proper nutrition.
We have a 16 year old spayed female tabby, Tigger, who has a tendency to be overweight. We got her ... is still a little heavy for her frame. It is imperative to keep her weight down as she has arthritis.

It's so hard to get a cat to lose weight, isn't it? I feel for you, believe me! Emotion: smile
We also have a 1-2 yr. old long hair spayed female, Isabel. We recently adopted her from a local shelter ... Any suggestions how to handle the needs of all these guys so that they all get what they need? W

Wendy, since you have two cats that are needing to lose weight, I would feed them seperately on the same food. I would try to choose a light food with a higher amount of protein and less carbs (canned food will help with this too, there are light formulas available). Give them controlled portions 2x a day, say morning and evening. They will get used to the feeding times. Keep the food down for say, half an hour, then take it away. Feed them where the kitten cannot get to the food.

For the kitten, you really should be feeding a kitten food til 1 year. Kitten foods contain more fat and protein than other foods, which they need for growth. An all-life-stage food many times won't have as high percentage of these nutrients as a actual kitten food, so I would stick with that. As for brand, that's something your cats will have to decide ), I would just stay away from supermarket brands and choose a higher-quality food. You can keep the adults out of the kitten food by taking a milk crate or heavy box or something similar, cut an opening big enough for the kitten but too small for your more "robust" two, and keep the food in there. That way kitten can have free access to her food.

HTH,
Karen M.
Karen, you're wrong. Haven't you been reading the all life stage food posts? Any food whose AAFCO label states that it is for "all life stages" IS a kitten food. "All life stage" foods have to contain nutrient levels appropriate for kittens, not adult or senior animals.
Karen, you're wrong. Haven't you been reading the all life stage food posts? Any food whose AAFCO label states that ... a kitten food. "All life stage" foods have to contain nutrient levels appropriate for kittens, not adult or senior animals.

G, please keep your insane need to argue away from this posting. This person wants help. I think this person is smart enough to take what is written and go look into appropriate foods for her cats.
Karen, you're wrong. Haven't you been reading the all life stage food posts? Any food whose AAFCO label states that ... a kitten food. "All life stage" foods have to contain nutrient levels appropriate for kittens, not adult or senior animals.

Dear Chris.
You are wrong.
Very, very wrong. And it's getting on my nerves. No emoticons here.

In fact, post proof or retract your statement that ""All life stage" foods have to contain nutrient levels appropriate for kittens, not adult or senior animals."
Regards,
Alison in OH
But if you are providing WRONG information, I would hope that the OP would want to know that. Keep your wrong information to yourself and no one will have to correct you.
Dear Chris. You are wrong. Very, very wrong. And it's getting on my nerves. No emoticons here. In fact, post proof or retract your statement that ""All life stage" foods have to contain nutrient levels appropriate for kittens, not adult or senior animals."[/nq]What's getting on my nerves is that this is SO easy to understand. ANY food that is labelled "all life stages" (according to the AAFCO statement) has passed the minimum requirements to sustain the most demanding stage of life the growth (kitten) stage. An "all life stage" food may contain levels of nutrients that are more appropriate for a kitten and not appropriate (excesses of nutrients) for an adult or senior cat (which may require lower levels of certain nutrients, not higher).

That's just the way it is. It shouldn't be hard to understand. Kittens REQUIRE (for proper nutrition) higher levels of fat, protein, phosphorus, calcium, etc. Adult and senior cats do not require the same levels of those nutrients as they did when they were kittens. Don't trick people into thinking that feeding an "all life stage" food to an older cat is okay. It may NOT be. That's all I'm saying. For anyone to come on here (especially after reading all of the info that has been posted about all life stage foods) and then ADVOCATE feeding this type of product is not being responsible.

Will feeding an "all life stage" food guarantee problems? Of course not. Are you avoiding risk factors by feeding this type of food? No.
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