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Specialist diet for one cat out of four

(8 Posts)
stainesmassif Tue 09-Nov-10 10:33:07

DH's favourite cat has just returned from an extended visit to the vet's (thank god for insurance) and has to be on a specialist diet to control urine crystals for the rest of his life - he's about 5.

We have a number of challenges in how to deal with this. 3 other cats that are still on regular food. No doors between rooms in the downstairs of our house, other than the bathroom. Cat doesn't like his specialist diet food. other cats do. So we can't leave regular food out for the other three because sick boy will eat it, and we can't shut him in the bathroom all day until he eats his specialist food. Well, we could, but it's not much of a life for him. We also can't leave his food out until he eats it, cause the other 3 would.

He's been eating the food at the vet's - obviously - he had no choice - but has a history of going begging around neighbours houses and i don't doubt he'll do that again if we don't give him food he likes. Apparently the vet has one other flavour - beef - normally meat flavoured pet food is snootily refused.

any suggestions? if the situation doesn't improve i'm starting to worry the kindest solution may be re homing, which will break dh's heart.

stainesmassif Tue 09-Nov-10 11:00:46


ClaireDeLoon Tue 09-Nov-10 11:16:10

Is it dry food?

I have one cat with kidney disease, he should have special renal diet for both the dry biscuits and the wet food (pouches) but as he won't eat the wet food I compromise and just give him the renal diet biscuits.

I have two other cats. I just let them eat the renal biscuits too. The vet assures me that it is fine for them health wise. It's just very expensive I guess.

Is this something you could manage?

If not then really you have no choice but to shut him in the bathroom while he eats. You could try leaving him in there for 10 mins at a time when he cries for food. If he doesn't eat take the food up out of the other cats reach. If he then asks for food again but him back in the bathroom with the special diet food. He will soon get the hang of it I think. Obviously feed the other cats whil he is in the bathroom and lift up any leftovers so he can't get them.

To stop him begging from the neighbours you can get a collar made up here

stainesmassif Tue 09-Nov-10 11:18:58

no, it's wet. the vet doesn't seem to have dry, though i have found it on the internet, but not available in the uk - though i could search more.
good idea re the collar!

ClaireDeLoon Tue 09-Nov-10 11:31:29

Hmm that's a pain. Perhaps because of the need to make sure he is hydrated I guess?

I buy the special diet stuff from Bestpet Pharmacy. Just a quick look shows some possibles for urinary cat food you may at least be able to get the food he has cheaper than the vets etc.

ClaireDeLoon Tue 09-Nov-10 11:33:14

Or even try different types find a flavour he likes

stainesmassif Tue 09-Nov-10 11:34:22

ah, you're brilliant! Thanks Claire you loon!

foxtrottango Wed 10-Nov-10 15:59:30

I have one cat, Lily, who needs a special diet. If she eats normal food for any length of time she has serious internal problems and has required several operations and has been close to dying. Unfortunately I also have 6 other cats. Lily is very important to me (I hesitate to say 'favourite' but she is very special ) so I have had to come up with a way of sorting this issue. She is on very expensive allergy food, this stuff costs about £25 per bag so there is absolutely no question of me feeding the rest of the tribe on it!

I have a tiny house with only 5 rooms. I used to leave a bowl of biscuits down at all times and feed them with wet food at night. I obviously cannot do this anymore. I have put the expensive food in the little bedroom and at night when I go up at some point, I let Lily in the room and feed her. I then leave her in there and go back down for a bit. She either lets me know she is done by scratching at the door or the next time I go up I let her out. The others get fed in the kitchen at some point while Lily stays out with me. The other cats have now realised that when I go in the little room something is afoot so I usually have to go in quick before they realise grin.

Its hard work (it was even harder for the 12 weeks I had to feed her on fresh food after she was ill the first time).

It is easier for me as Lily is an indoor cat so I dont have to worry about the neighbours feeding her. I did intially think it would be impossible and it is inconvenient but it is workable. If you really dont want to rehome him then you can make it work, it will just take some faffing about until you find something that works. For me, it is a bind and Id much rather not have to do it but on the other hand I would much rather do it than be without Lily! I hope you can work around it, its horrible to have to rehome when you really dont want to.

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