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Old August 6th, 2007, 03:05 PM
ang.c ang.c is offline
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Vet Unimpressed with 'Nature's Variety' Brand

Hello,

I came to the boards a few months ago when my cat started to get finicky with her food. After test running some new foods, she has become hooked on the Nature's Variety brand Raw Instinct formula. She loves it.

She was a very small, lean cat for her age and she has recently bulked up and looks great since being on the food.

After taking her for her check-up the other day, the vet didn't seem too impressed with the brand of food I had her on. She was previously on Royal Canin Kitten dry and got over that and then was on Innova Evo dry and also got over that. This is the first food that I have purchased two bags for and she continues to eat without shaking her paw at.

My question is: Is this brand of food suitable? From what I know after speaking to various people, it is well regarded and good for my cat. What is the consensus here?

Thank you so much, you have all been very helpful in the past!

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Old August 6th, 2007, 03:11 PM
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Can you list the ingredients, I've heard the name, but I'm unfamiliar with what's in it.

Cindy
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Old August 6th, 2007, 03:20 PM
ang.c ang.c is offline
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Sure, no problem. This is from their website:

Chicken Meal, Chicken Fat, Tapioca, Pumpkinseeds, Salmon Meal, Alfalfa Meal, Montmorillonite Clay, Chicken Liver Flavor, Chicken Liver, Kelp, DL-Methionine, Vitamins (Choline Chloride, Vitamin E Supplement, Ascorbic Acid, Niacin Supplement, D-Calcium Pantothenate, Vitamin A Acetate, Thiamine Mononitrate, Biotin, Riboflavin Supplement, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Beta Carotene, Ethylenediamine Dihydriodide, Folic Acid), Sea Salt, Minerals (Zinc Proteinate, Iron Proteinate, Zinc Sulfate , Ferrous Sulfate, Copper Proteinate, Manganese Proteinate, Copper Sulfate, Manganese Sulfate, Sodium Selenite), Taurine, Dried Enterococcus Faecium Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus Acidophilus Fermentation Product, Inulin, Flaxseed Oil, Apples, Chicken Eggs, Cottage Cheese, Cranberries, Freeze Dried Chicken, Freeze Dried Turkey, Freeze Dried Turkey Liver, Freeze Dried Turkey Hearts, Carrots, Ground Chicken Bone, Butternut Squash, Ground Flaxseeds, Broccoli, Lettuce, Spinach, Kelp, Salmon Oil, Apple Cider Vinegar, Parsley, Honey, Blueberries, Mixed Tocopherols, Rosemary Extract, Citric Acid, Alfalfa Sprouts, Olive Oil, Grapefruit Seed Extract, Persimmons, Duck Eggs, Pheasant Eggs, Quail Eggs, Sage, Clove

It's raw, dry food in a kibble format.

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Old August 6th, 2007, 03:58 PM
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Looks like a good food to me
My vet has just started to come around to different foods, it's taken years
He was impressed with Baxter's growth and development, wanted to know what I'd been feeding him, even asked me to bring in the bag so he could see it since he'd never heard of Orijen puppy food. He was quite taken with it. I'm hoping it's the start of a whole new trend.

Cindy
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Old August 6th, 2007, 03:59 PM
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i don't think alot of vets look into foods that are available....they seem to push the hills,royal canine....my vet has never heard of timberwolf organics.solid gold or merricks. seems to me they are like human doctors...push whatever the sales reps entice them to...jmo....and i'm sure there are vets out there that have looked at what is available.....i,m sure its the same with raw feeding also.
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Lettin the cat outta the bag is a whole lot easier than puttin it back in.

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Old August 6th, 2007, 04:05 PM
ang.c ang.c is offline
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Thanks guys. I'll be sure to bring in the bag to the vet the next time I go.


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Old August 6th, 2007, 04:56 PM
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Other than I would have preferred to see one more meat meal within the first five or so ingredients and I never like to see things like "liver flavour" ~ it's a very good grain/gluten free food. If your vet questions the first five ingredients in example, the use of tapioca ~ it's a highly digestible protein binder in grain/gluten free foods and the pumpkin seeds are a natural anti-gastrointestinal parasitic.
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Old August 6th, 2007, 05:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wdawson View Post
i don't think alot of vets look into foods that are available....they seem to push the hills,royal canine....
That's right , vets will push whatever THEY are selling at their clinic.

My vet is against me giving veggies as treats to my dogs , well not against but he doesn't understand why I do it.
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Old August 6th, 2007, 05:41 PM
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mine looked at me with shock and absolute horror that i feed raw chicken with bones. she swore he would get sick from sallmonila poisoning and choke on the bones.

i ended that conversation by simply telling her that we really researched the subject and are *quite* firm about it.

-ashley
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Old August 6th, 2007, 06:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ang.c View Post
After taking her for her check-up the other day, the vet didn't seem too impressed with the brand of food I had her on.
I really wouldn't put a lot of weight in what vets have to say about nutrition unless they specialize in it. Their schooling on the subject is the absolute bare minimum and is frequently provided by Big Pet Food itself (ie Hill's, Royal Canin, Purina). Nature's Variety is certainly better quality than what they have to offer. Having said that, have you ever considered feeding your girl a good wet food? Cat's really should not be eating only dry, if any dry at all:

http://www.catinfo.org/
http://www.catnutrition.org/home.html
http://all-about-cats.com/long-life.htm
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Old August 7th, 2007, 07:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mummummum View Post
Other than I would have preferred to see one more meat meal within the first five or so ingredients and I never like to see things like "liver flavour" ~ it's a very good grain/gluten free food. If your vet questions the first five ingredients in example, the use of tapioca ~ it's a highly digestible protein binder in grain/gluten free foods and the pumpkin seeds are a natural anti-gastrointestinal parasitic.
I agree....it would be much better if it had more meat before them chicken fat. Compare the ingredients you posted to those of Orijen (http://www.championpetfoods.com/orij...cts/cat.aspx):

Natures Variety Raw Instinct

Chicken Meal, Chicken Fat, Tapioca, Pumpkinseeds, Salmon Meal, Alfalfa Meal, Montmorillonite Clay, Chicken Liver Flavor, Chicken Liver, Kelp, DL-Methionine, Vitamins (Choline Chloride, Vitamin E Supplement, Ascorbic Acid, Niacin Supplement, D-Calcium Pantothenate, Vitamin A Acetate, Thiamine Mononitrate, Biotin, Riboflavin Supplement, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Beta Carotene, Ethylenediamine Dihydriodide, Folic Acid), Sea Salt, Minerals (Zinc Proteinate, Iron Proteinate, Zinc Sulfate , Ferrous Sulfate, Copper Proteinate, Manganese Proteinate, Copper Sulfate, Manganese Sulfate, Sodium Selenite), Taurine, Dried Enterococcus Faecium Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus Acidophilus Fermentation Product, Inulin, Flaxseed Oil, Apples, Chicken Eggs, Cottage Cheese, Cranberries, Freeze Dried Chicken, Freeze Dried Turkey, Freeze Dried Turkey Liver, Freeze Dried Turkey Hearts, Carrots, Ground Chicken Bone, Butternut Squash, Ground Flaxseeds, Broccoli, Lettuce, Spinach, Kelp, Salmon Oil, Apple Cider Vinegar, Parsley, Honey, Blueberries, Mixed Tocopherols, Rosemary Extract, Citric Acid, Alfalfa Sprouts, Olive Oil, Grapefruit Seed Extract, Persimmons, Duck Eggs, Pheasant Eggs, Quail Eggs, Sage, Clove


Orijen

FRESH REGIONAL INGREDIENTS
Deboned chicken, chicken meal, turkey meal, russet potato, lake whitefish, chicken fat, sweet potato, whole eggs,de-boned turkey, salmon meal, salmon and anchovy oils, salmon, natural chicken flavour, sunflower oil, sun-cured alfalfa, dried brown kelp, carrots, spinach, peas, tomatoes, apples, psyllium, dulse, glucosamine Hcl, cranberries, black currants, rosemary extract, chondroitin sulfate, sea salt.

TONIC HERBS AND BOTANICALS

Chicory root, licorice root, tumeric root, funugreek, marigold flowers, sweet fennel, zea mays, peppermint leaf, chamomile flowers, dandelion, summer savory, rosehips.

ORGANIC MINERALS

Iron proteinate, zinc proteinate, manganese proteinate, copper proteinate.

PROBIOTIC MICROORGANISMS

Dried Lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product, dried Enterococcus faecium fermentation product.

PREMIUM VITAMINS

Mixed tocopherols (source of vitamin E), choline chloride, vitamin A, vitamin D3, thiamine mononitrate, vitamin B12, folic acid, biotin.
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Old August 7th, 2007, 10:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rainbow View Post
I agree....it would be much better if it had more meat before them chicken fat. Compare the ingredients you posted to those of Orijen
Even with what appears to be more meat in the Orijen, it actually has twice the carbohydrate content (as a % of calories) than the Nature's Variety. Those starchy potatoes boost it up to somewhere around 14-15%, whereas the NV is around 7%. The general consensus is that cats need no more than 10%. Mind you, Orijen is still better than the great majority of feline dry diets out there (which usually run in the 25-50% of calories from carbs), but it's still not as good as a wet food diet, for reasons beyond just carbs and protein.
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Old August 7th, 2007, 11:04 PM
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The majority of the ingredients are the ones before the fat...NV has only chicken meal before the fat, meaning it is mostly chicken. Orijen has potatoes before the fat, which is why the carbs is higher. The deboned chicken and whitefish in the orijen would drop down the list because of the moisture content (since they are not in meal from), probably to below the fat. So the orijen would be more like "chicken meal, turkey meal, russet potato, chicken fat". They are both good foods, imo. I agree wet food should be fed. NV Instinct does come in canned variety, not sure if Orijen does.
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Old August 7th, 2007, 11:16 PM
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no unfortunately no canned Orijen - I recently switched Duffy to Orijen dry & just today tried her on Innova Evo canned in combo w/the Orijen dry
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Old August 8th, 2007, 07:47 AM
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Ang C

I feed my two dogs and one of my cats Nature's Variety Raw Frozen Medallions. My cat LOVES it and even the dogs seem to like it pretty well. I just switched two weeks ago.
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Old August 18th, 2007, 08:08 PM
ang.c ang.c is offline
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Exclamation

I bought a new bag of Nature's Variety Instinct dry food today, but I also picked up a few cans of their wet food.

I would like to slowly introduce some wet to balance her diet as she is only eating dry food. One good thing, though, is that she drinks a good amount of water - not too much, but not a few sips here and there - so that's why her dry-only diet didn't concern me too much.

Anyhow, how do I go about slowly introducing her to the wet Raw Instinct food? Can I feed her a wet and dry combo?

She is 9 1/2 months old and about 5.4 pounds.

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Old August 18th, 2007, 09:41 PM
Mia101 Mia101 is offline
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Originally Posted by sugarcatmom View Post
Even with what appears to be more meat in the Orijen, it actually has twice the carbohydrate content (as a % of calories) than the Nature's Variety. Those starchy potatoes boost it up to somewhere around 14-15%, whereas the NV is around 7%. The general consensus is that cats need no more than 10%. Mind you, Orijen is still better than the great majority of feline dry diets out there (which usually run in the 25-50% of calories from carbs), but it's still not as good as a wet food diet, for reasons beyond just carbs and protein.
Where do you find that information? I'm wanting to know the % of meat in another brand.
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Old August 18th, 2007, 09:43 PM
Mia101 Mia101 is offline
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Originally Posted by ang.c View Post
I bought a new bag of Nature's Variety Instinct dry food today, but I also picked up a few cans of their wet food.

I would like to slowly introduce some wet to balance her diet as she is only eating dry food. One good thing, though, is that she drinks a good amount of water - not too much, but not a few sips here and there - so that's why her dry-only diet didn't concern me too much.

Anyhow, how do I go about slowly introducing her to the wet Raw Instinct food? Can I feed her a wet and dry combo?

She is 9 1/2 months old and about 5.4 pounds.

Wet food is more important for cats, especially when they are elderly. I don't know what you mean about 'slowly introducing' the wet food, it's not going to hurt her or be hard to digest.

The problem is going to be usually cats are very finicky about their wet food. Just give her a can and note how much of each kind she will actually eat.

If I could afford it, I'd give one small can per day and let her eat dry food the rest of the time. As it is, I give a can twice a week.

Last edited by Mia101; August 18th, 2007 at 09:46 PM.
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Old August 18th, 2007, 10:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Mia101 View Post
Where do you find that information? I'm wanting to know the % of meat in another brand.
Check out these handy-dandy charts that were originally compiled for people with diabetic cats: http://www.felinediabetes.com/diabetic-cat-diets.htm

They use the "as fed" analysis provided by the pet food manufacturers (not the "guaranteed" analysis that is found on the label) which are run through a formula in order to be listed as a percent of calories (makes it easier to compare different brands).

The charts are by no means exhaustive as some companies (the makers of Orijen among them) haven't been willing to share their info. If you're looking for something that isn't on the list, you can try phoning or emailing the company for the numbers yourself and then emailing them to Janet, who would be happy to add them. Here's the explaination of what you need and how they're calculated: http://www.geocities.com/jmpeerson/foodfaq.html
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