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Kittens - dry food left out?

August 18th, 2008, 08:55 PM
My Tonkinese kittens are just over 16 weeks. After a few hits and misses, we've been feeding them Wellness Kitten wet food 3-4x a day with Taste of the Wild and Orijen left out for grazing. Today the pet store owner recommended I give Innova EVO kitten a try and the boys licked their bowls clean. So we may have a new winner - at least for today.

I keep reading conflicting things about leaving dry food out. Should I leave out dry all day or should it be scheduled like their wet feedings? Can dry food go rancid if it's left out? Will leaving out dry food result in obesity? Rest assured, we're going to continue feeding wet into adulthood. I'm just confused about this dry issue.

Thank you for any advice you can provide.

August 18th, 2008, 09:11 PM
Mostly everyone here doesn't like the idea of letting dry food sit out. I monitor how much dry food I put into the bowl and how much each cat is eating. It's not an easy task at all since up to 7 adult cats and however many foster kittens will be eating from it. If I happen to notice one of the cats *cough MISSY cough* is by the bowl for too long, or I've caught her there several times over the course of a few hours, I will remove her from the area and put the food back into the container to keep her from pigging out. Then I just put it back out when she's not noticed so everyone else can eat.

It does not go stale from sitting out. For your kitties just grab a small handful and drop put it out on the plate. I doubt a few kibble crunchy snacks will do any harm and will just fend off any mid day hunger when you are not around. I spend alot of time monitoring how much my cats eat anymore since Missy started becoming extremely overweight.

Good luck :)

August 18th, 2008, 09:35 PM
I tend to be rather presistent in stating that cats shouldn't be eating any dry food, if at all possible (I'll make an exception for those with lots of cats though, if it's for budget reasons :D).

Honestly, if your cats are happy with wet food and their weight is good, there is no reason to leave dry out for them. That Innova Evo is probably the highest calorie kibble on the market, and could all too easily result in weight gain if you aren't extremely careful. The other thing is that it's just not appropriate food for cats: it's too dry, is too heavily processed, has ingredients that cats don't need (like potatoes), and has a big mish-mash of protein sources (turkey AND chicken AND herring AND eggs AND cottage cheese).

Cats really don't need food left out all day, but just so you know, it IS okay to leave canned out (if your kitties don't just gobble it all up at once). Adding a couple tsps of water slows down the crust-forming potential. You could also get an automatic feeder, or freeze canned food in ice-cube trays and leave a couple cubes to thaw in their dish. As long as by the next meal you wash their bowls and give them fresh canned, there won't be a problem. So personally, I would ween them off dry and give extra wet instead.

August 19th, 2008, 06:23 AM
I don't leave any kibble out for any of my cats, even my foster kittens, who do not get any kibble.

I find 3 feedings a day is sufficient for older kittens, Kitten Wellness canned in the morning and two raw feedings through out the day. I have never had a problem with weight gain or bacteria doing this.