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Cheapest 'decent' canned cat food

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  • Cheapest 'decent' canned cat food

    So after decades of feeding canned friskies and the like, my parents are considering changing brands to something better (with a LOT of encouragement from me ) I did get them to switch dry foods a few years ago (I think the extra cost was worth having me stop bugging them).

    The food doesn't need to be top quality, just not complete crap. Cheap is good, if it's way more than friskies they won't go for it, but I know it won't be as cheap as the junk brands. What are the best options? Thanks!

  • #2
    I don't know...we have an 18 year old female cat who is, literally, the picture of health. Even her vet doesn't believe how old she is, though he's been seeing her since she was a kitten . Blood work is 100% normal, coat is thick, healthy and shiny, weight is good, eyes and teeth are good. She's still got enough energy to play and hunt. She's been eating canned Friskies and dry Meow Mix her entire life (with mice, chipmunks and (eek!) bats as occasional appetizers)...yeah, not technically the best food around, but if it ain't broke at this point, I'm not going to try fix it!


    • #3
      Purina Pro Plan is pretty good-I think its around the same price/can as Fancy Feast, my old kitteh's fave. Dont know it it comes in any size other than the teeny ones, though, so if your folks have more than 1 cat, they may only go for the upgrade if they have the normal size cans. I've tried lots of better brands on old (hypertensive, hyperthyroid, shrunken-kidneyed) kitteh, and he always shuns the others for FF and PPP....go figure.


      • #4
        If the folks would go for it, I think Nutro has reasonably priced cans and I think they have the small and larger cans.


        • #5
          Good luck getting your cat to "eat healthy." I've tried Newman's organic, Wellness and all sorts of other fancy "good" canned stuff. He acts like I'm trying to poison him. Fancy feast, friskies, Nine Lives are the only acceptable foods.
          I realize that I'm generalizing here, but as is often the case when I generalize, I don't care. ~ Dave Barry


          • #6
            Guin - I have the same problem.

            I bought my cat Blue Buffalo food and she acted like I gave her a plate of poop.

            But she loves the Market Select wet food from Meow Mix. I know it is full of crap and it stinks something awful, but she won't eat anything else.

            And healthy treats? Forget it! She says bring on the by products and fat!


            • #7
              Trader Joes has a house brand that other than a bit of liver and rice has no other by-products or grains. Better stuff than Nutro, Science Diet, or Pro-plan and is only 59 cents a can.


              • #8
                what's wrong with Friskies?


                • #9
                  Interesting discussion - my two cats eat Fancy Feast and some basic dry food; my prior two cats, same thing. One died of what must have been old age, she was about 17; one unfortunately met a car that was going too fast. My dogs have lived long - lost one to cancer @14 and one to a heart issue. The two now are 10 and 5; they eat IAMS or Purina One w/ some wet food on top. I guess I think that a lot of this food thing is marketing and I'm not buying into it myself. As one poster noted, they eat all kinds of weird stuff outside!!

                  Consider dogs: spend $$$ on fancy stuff and watch them go to the barn and eat poop!
                  We don't get less brave; we get a bigger sense of self-preservation........


                  • Original Poster

                    Originally posted by Alagirl View Post
                    what's wrong with Friskies?
                    What's right about it? It is loaded with by products, carbs, preservatives, artificial coloring, gluten and unidentified/ low quality 'meats'. Cats foods should have high meat content and low grain, especially low quality grains like corn. Animal fat and meal shouldn't be the main protein sources. The first ingredient in the dry food is corn! Corn isn't good for cat's in any quantities, let alone as a first ingredient.

                    The reason cats love it is the same reason people love junk. It is loaded with fat and other yummy junk. Any wet food is better than no wet food, but you shouldn't feed junk foods unless the cat won't eat anything else.


                    • #11
                      they eat the canned... except the Queen, she only touches the dry...unless she can fish for your chicken biscuit...

                      I gave up worrying about it. (I also gave up on 'Special Kitty' canned food...4 kinds of stuff in gravy.. they will.not.touch.pate.EVER! )

                      I don't have the time to drive across town to show for expensive catfood with corn in it...chicken byproduct meal will have to do....but they do supplement with mice.


                      • #12
                        I do force-feed Mr. Kitty the DRY Wellness diet food. He is, ahem, hefty. I figure if he wants dry food, he can eat the diet stuff. He doesn't really mind it; it must taste okay. But I got tired of throwing out those $2/cans of "organic" and "all meat" food that he wouldn't touch, so it's back to FF for wet.
                        I realize that I'm generalizing here, but as is often the case when I generalize, I don't care. ~ Dave Barry


                        • #13
                          Petsmarts Authority brand wet food is not bad for a cheaper canned food. I use it to feed a couple of ferals and my house cats get it occasionally. They think its yummy.
                          Sarchasm: The gulf between the author of sarcastic wit and the person who doesn't get it.


                          • #14
                            I just buried my 2 barn cats this year. One in January and one last month. They were 21 or 22 years old. They ate whatever dry food was on sale their whole lives until the past couple years when they were supplemented with either friskies or 9 lives canned food. They both looked pretty crappy this past year, but until then they were happy healthy cats. A stray cat has now taken up residence. He gets the same.
                            In an age when scientists are creating artificial intelligence, too many of our educational institutions seem to be creating artificial stupidity.—Thomas Sowell, Is Thinking Obsolete?


                            • #15
                              I've always fed our cats a high quality dry food and then they get to split a can of whatever wet food is on sale at dinner time. They mostly eat the dry but expect something at dinner. Have all lived to their late teens and vet has always been happy with how they are doing.

                              Whenever I have given them an "expensive" can they have turned their noses up and looked at me like I was nuts. Sometimes they don't even eat all of their wet food anyway (this delights the dogs) but they expect it and complain mightily if it doesn't show up in the dish.


                              • #16
                                ProPlan and Nutro are pretty good, not top shelf, but good.

                                Also, there is actually (I know, I was aghasted too when my SA vet told me) one variety of Fancy Feast in a pouch that is really good for diabetic and overweight cats (who knew?) Now I have to email her and find out.
                                Michael: Seems the people who burned me want me for a job.
                                Sam: A job? Does it pay?
                                Michael: Nah, it's more of a "we'll kill you if you don't do it" type of thing.
                                Sam: Oh. I've never liked those.


                                • #17
                                  Nutro is good stuff, so is Evangers but often harder to find. Newmans Own is pretty darn good pet food if you are in a bind and have to buy pet food from the grocery store.


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by minnie View Post
                                    I just buried my 2 barn cats this year. One in January and one last month. They were 21 or 22 years old. They ate whatever dry food was on sale their whole lives until the past couple years when they were supplemented with either friskies or 9 lives canned food. They both looked pretty crappy this past year, but until then they were happy healthy cats. A stray cat has now taken up residence. He gets the same.
                                    Yep. Our oldest barn cat has been on the "whatever's cheapest" diet for ten years now and she doesn't seem to be doing any harm by it. (And I'm sure the outdoor cats are 'supplementing' their diet IYKWIM.) My indoor ones get 9 Lives Plus Care and whatever canned food is cheap that they'll eat. (They're being twits about texture. It USED to be they'd only eat shredded and sliced, not pate. Now they'll only eat pate and the sliced/shredded gets left to turn to cement. I swear they do this to mess with me. UNLESS it's Fancy Feast. That they'll eat.)

                                    They usually get Friskies or Nine Lives. It's a freakin' cat. They're not getting the cost per ounce equivalent of filet mignon. I don't buy HUMAN food like that, never mind animals. The dogs get TSC's canned brand over whatever dry food I happen to have (had a coupon for Pedigree, that's what they're getting.) These are animals who eat poop if I let them (they think the neighbor's pony picketed in the yard is the all-you-can-eat manure buffet.)
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                                    • #19
                                      one of the friskies brands doesn't have grain in it (or a few years ago did not). I can't remember which one, but it's not the pate, chunks, gravy or any other fancy name. the fancy name/fake meat look usually mean gluten binder. The stuff that makes up quality cat food really does not want to hold a shape like a small chunk of alleged meat like product.

                                      That said, it's tough to explain why it's better to buy the expensive stuff, but if it helps, you can try to explain that the expensive stuff can be cheaper. I have a 22lb male maine coon and a 11lb female kitteh. Between the two of them they eat 1 cup TOTW dry and 1/4 of a large can of core wellness a day.

                                      I originally thought that was the diet plan. The MCC is fine, but other kitteh has gone from Small Black Cat (SBC) to Bowling Ball Cat (BBC). All I can say about the "diet plan" is BBC is not yet BBBC (big bowling ball cat).

                                      That's 0.63/day for canned food and the TOTW @ tractor supply is very reasonably priced
                                      Your crazy is showing. You might want to tuck that back in.


                                      • #20
                                        Ours had previously been eating the "cheap" stuff up until about 6 months ago. And Tally is 17.

                                        But switching to higher quality has virtually eliminated vomiting (we were battling 1-2 times per day at least between 2 cats), a lot of dander and for Tally, gnawing on her legs and picking at her ears. They had become sensitive/allergic to the grain in cheap cat food.

                                        For us the change is more about we're not dealing with puke and a hairless cat. If your parents' cats are puking all the time or gnawing on themselves or full of dander, there's your argument. Try a grain-free for a month.
                                        "The nice thing about memories is the good ones are stronger and linger longer than the bad and we sure have some incredibly good memories." - EverythingButWings