Six diseases caused by dry cat food: switch to canned or homemade now!

Cancer, digestive problems like chronic diarrhea, kidney failure or disease, urinary tract disease, diabetes and obesity are the main diseases that could be eliminated by feeding your cat moist, canned or homemade cat food.


Dry cat food may be convenient and inexpensive, but the time and money you save may end up costing you more to keep your cat healthy. Recently, more and more studies show that dry cat food is too full of grains and fillers to be considered healthy for your cat. A common mistake that vets and common people make is to treat your cat like a little dog. A cat's physiology is completely different from a dogs. What works for dogs, kibble with a bowl of water, does not work for cats. Cats are carnivores, unlike dogs, cats can't be healthy with a lot of grains and fillers in their food.

Here are six diseases that have been directly linked to dry cat food:

1. Cancer - intestinal cancer in cats is a huge problem that could be solved if only people didn't feed their cats dry food. Stomach cancer is also a very common diagnosis for cats that are fed a primarily dry cat food diet. The processing of the grains creates toxins like acrylamide and others that have been known to cause cancer.

2. Digestive problems - people (vets included) seem to think it's normal - cats and digestive problems go hand in hand - but it doesn't have to be that way. Chronic diarrhea in cats, vomiting, bloody stool in cats, are all caused by the poor nutrition in the dry cat food. Those symptoms, chronic diarrhea in cats and vomiting are just your cat's body trying to eliminate the toxins and unhealthy food quickly. The dry cat food is essentially poisoning your cat and the cat's body is reacting by trying to get the poisons out.

3. Obesity - cats are not meant to be fat. I know the media portrays a funny image of big, fat, lazy cats, but it's no laughing matter when your cat starts getting other weight related illnesses and your vet bills go up or your cat dies. Basically, there are too many carbohydrates in dry cat food. The little cat's body can't process all that starch and it turns directly to fat. If you have a fat cat and you are trying those dry cat food "weight-loss" formulas and they just aren't working, try switching to canned food, your cat will eat less and will get better nutrition, the weight will come off.


4. Kidney disease in cats - Cats are not big on drinking water, think about it, in the wild, cats get most of the moisture they need from the animals they kill and eat. The blood, meat and organs all contain moisture so it is rare that cats need to get a drink. So here we go feeding cats dry food with very little moisture and hope they drink enough to compensate. It just doesn't happen, so cats are dehydrated, stones and kidney disease develop more often than it should.

5. Urinary tract disease - closely linked to kidney disease in cats - not enough moisture in the food causes inflammation and disease. Just feeding your cat canned food, even non prescription canned food protects your cat from Urinary Tract Disease.

6. Diabetes - high carbs in people and in cats causes diabetes. Even the so called "low Carb" formulas are still too high for your cat. All dry food requires starch to make it dry and the processing makes it like "candy" for your cats rather than nutritionally sound meals. So feeding your cat dry food is like feeding them candy all the time and we all know that no one can live on candy alone!

lots-of-cats-eating.jpg Please, for the sake of your cat's health and for your pocketbook, start feeding your cat canned or homemade food. You'll save money in the long run and improve the quality of your cat's life. Read about Duke, a cat whose life was saved by switching from dry cat food.


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Cameron Fay said:

What a load of rubbish your article is. I don't have the time or inclination to pen a huge reply, but here is what concerns me about your one eyed, alarmist article:
- "dry food causes stomach cancer". Which types? I just need to know, because as a veterinarian, when I am advising people on health, this is important. I need the proof too.
- "A common mistake that vets and common people make is to treat your cat like a little dog" - no actually I am well aware of the differences of the species.
- "people (vets included) seem to think it's normal - cats and digestive problems go hand in hand" - no actually I spend my professional life trying to solve these issues, rather than convince people it's normal.
- "Obesity...blah blah blah" - obesity is caused by too many calories, not enough exercise. This can happpen with dry food, canned food, home prepared, whatever. Just another example of the rubbishy information that the internet has spawned.
- "The dry cat food is essentially poisoning your cat and the cat's body is reacting by trying to get the poisons out" BULLSH1T. Just plain bull. Airy fairy waffle from someone who got their knowledge from the back of a ceral box.
- "start feeding your cat canned..." - yep, and vets will be so busy pulling rotten teeth out we won;t have time for all the cats 'poisoned' by dry food.
Cat owners beware. There is a reason why information on the internet is free.
Cameron (a well qualified vet)

Alex Dumar said:

Hi Cameron.

You are a vet? Cool. Perhaps you can tell me from what clinic you are from and what university did you study from. Because from your comments you sound more like an idiot rather than a well qualified vet.

Start commenting properly and perhaps I would look at you as an intellectual. But until then, you sound like that moron who has an attitude problem that I keep bumping into on my foray in the online gaming scene.

I am a cat owner and I have been warned. I have read numerous sites and some specialist have commented that dry cat food is a major source of diseases in cats. Look at the way these food are processed. Logic alone would dictate that its bad. For a vet not knowing... hmmm are you sure you are a vet?

Even then ... Who are you to dispute? And you are not THE authority in pet care. Grow up or go away. You are going to cause a lot of pets to die.

Melanie said:

Hi Cameron,
While your swearing and emotional answer discredits your argument, you do bring up some points that I’d like to address. I still remain adamant that dry food is dangerous and causes the six diseases I mentioned.

Dry cat food contains grains as fillers and to help the kibble dehydrate. That is a fact that you nor the cat food industry can deny. Poisons applied to the grains is what caused death and disease among several cats in the spring 2007. But aside from that fact, cats do not easily metabolize grains. This, as a vet, you should know. You can’t feed what is essentially birdseed to a carnivorous animal without having some kind of negative reaction. No cat that ever walked this planet harvested grains and ground them up and ate them. Humans did that, and then fed it to cats in the form of dry cat food.

A cat’s body was designed to eat freshly killed animals, bones, sinew, internal organs and all. A cat’s body has not evolved to accept grains as a food source. These grains are causing cats to develop the diseases. If there were a way to make dry cat food without the grains and fillers, perhaps the result would be different, but as yet there is not and cats are suffering and their owners are suffering.

But I can understand your emotional response to my article. I have threatened your livelihood by making people think about what they are feeding their cats. I suppose dry cat food is single-handedly keeping you in business. Pet owners have to come to you to ‘cure’ the diseases caused by the dry cat food you say is ok for cats to eat. That must add up to a pretty good income. And you know that people will pay the price for the tests, medicine, check-ups, and treatments because they love their pets.

Clearly there is a rift forming in Veterinary Medicine between those who truly care about cats by recognizing that dry food is dangerous, and those who are trying to profit at the expense of innocent lives and the people who love them by saying it is ok to feed your cat dry food. I take it you are in the later category, Cameron Fay, a vet who is trying to profit at the expense of innocent lives. In contrast, there are several vets out there who support my point of view and were an integral part of my research:

Dr. Lisa A. Peirson, DVM

Dr. Shawn Messonnier, DVM

Dr. Jean Hofve, DVM

Dr. Hofve is North America's Leading expert in cat nutrition. Read her article “Why Cats Need Canned Food”

To address your concerns about pulling cats teeth please read “Does Dry Food Clean Teeth?”

Thanks for your comments Cameron. You have confirmed that some vets don't always look out for the best interest of cats. You are a prime example of why cat owners need to know this information. I will continue my research and continue to get the word out about cat health and nutrition.

Jozette said:

Just stumbled across your post, and even though this was posted almost a year ago, I still find this very helpful!

I'm having a problem with my 11 yr. old male cat frequently vomiting, and so I started to do a little research, and your post got me thinking:

My cat has been on dry foods all his life. I've had to switch to 3-4 different types of brands over the years, due to vomiting. My cat would get used to one brand, eat it for a while, and start to vomit. On a side note, he's always had weight problems, and he actually GAINED weight when I switched him over to a weight loss dry formula.

I've taken him to the vet several times, and he did say that as cats get older, they sometimes will develop the inability to digest dry foods, due to dehydrating the cat and / or the inability to digest all the extra chemicals that are found in dry food, and actually suggested that I switch over to wet / canned foods.

So I switched over to "Science Diet" canned, and it seemed to help, but he did start vomiting. I read some of the references that you provided, and I found Dr. Hofve's information most helpful. If your cat is not used to eating canned food, add it to the diet slowly in small amounts. "...[Canned food] is so different in composition from dry food that it may cause tummy upset at first." I didn't realize this, so I will try to gradually ween my cat off of dry to canned.

Sorry if my comment seems to jump around so much. I'm just so excited to have come across your post, and after frustrating attempt after another of trying to fix my kitty, I think that I may have actually found a solution! Thank you so much!

Melanie said:

Thank you Jozette,

You brought up good points about switching your cat's food from dry to canned. And I find it very interesting that your cat actually gained weight on a weight loss formula!

I am so pleased that your vet suggested canned food, many vets just say dry is fine or that the vomiting doesn't have to do with the food, but is caused by something else.

Your point about weening your cat off dry and slowly introducing canned is very important - thank you for mentioning that. It's hard on their little bodies to change what they eat and we big humans forget that sometimes. I wish you all the best with your kitty and the food and I'd love to hear how it goes - send me an email or post another comment to let us all know how Kitty is doing.



Todd Haslett said:

As a cat owner for over 25 years and having 5 cats during that time, my experience tells me to feed cats a combination of the two foods.
Most of my cats lived to a ripe old age of at least 18 years old after being fed a lifetime of both dry and canned cat food.
However, my two current cats, Kelly and Penny, will absolutely will not eat anything other than dry food. So your theory-and I say theory because you have not mentioned any scienctific studies that back up your thesis-is a little unrealistic if you can't get a cat to eat the kind of food you want it to.

FedUp said:


When you furnish the PROOF that a feline (oh, that's a cat, by the way) is NOT an Obligate Carnivore, please let every publisher of every Encyclopedia ever written know to change their information on the species?

(Oh, and go revisit the second grade while you're at it.)

Pity the POOR pet owners conned by "vets" pushing Disease-in-a-Bag and Heaven help the poor animals!!
(Yes, they will END UP POOR with "vets" like you conning them blind!!

"Cats are carnivores, unlike dogs"

dogs ARE carnivores!!! what are you talking about?

Cameron said:

I have asked the blog owner to remove my original post, but as that has not been achieved, I would like discuss the following items, and see if she is brave enough to put these items up:

- unless I hear otherwise, I am the only person on this particular page who is actually a qualified vet (Sydney 2001). Do you want proof: http://www.rcvs.org.uk/Templates/system/SearchResults.asp?SearchType=Surgeons&NodeID=89806&int1stParentNodeID=89634&parentsiteid=89626&Forename=cameron&Surname=fay&Ref=&Location=&orderby=Surname&Submit=Search

- my opinion is based on 5 years of study, including subjects such as physiology, biochemistry, nutrition, internal medicine, among others. If any of you can tell me what the Krebs cycle is, without googling it, I will be surprised.
- Furthermore I have been in practice 9 years. In this time, I have probably dealt with (in a healthcare setting) over 50,000 animals.
- This is about 49,980 more than the combined experience of all of you, if pet ownership is to be construed as 'healthcare'.
- Unless proven otherwise, I am qualified to such a degree more than yourselves, it is like a weekend investor arguing with Warren Buffett.
- I won't have my credibility undermined by you lot. I have chosen to safeguard animal health as my lifetime profession. It's what I do, EVERY DAY OF MY WORKING LIFE. Again, I'm certain none of you can claim anything even remotely similar. You probably do something trivial or meaningless. How many of you have saved a pet's life? And you think you can judge my commitment to animals.

- One unfortunate side effect of the internet has been the spawning of 'Google Warriors', people who spend 30 minutes online, and then decide they know better. Most of you will decide that by (a) being a cat owner and (b) trawling the net for a bit, you are well positioned to refute what I have learnt through years of formal study, daily experience, and referencing peer-reviewed, evidence based veterinary textbooks. This is what sucks about the internet and society in general.

Take the original post. This person clearly loves cats, clearly means well. Has done some basic googling. But that's about it. She has accepted the first things she has read, without the slightest shred of evidence.

The section about diabetic cats & carbs..that's just about the only part I agree on. But here's the difference. I have treated diabetic cats. I have diagnosed them. I have studied the disease at university level. I have counselled many, many owners on how to fight the disease. I didn't google it.

Where the blogger goes wrong is with wishy-washy, incorrect statements like "Chronic diarrhea in cats, vomiting, bloody stool in cats, are all caused by the poor nutrition in the dry cat food" Are they? So is Giardiasis a myth? FIV? FIP? Isospora? Inflammatory Bowel Disease? Protein allergy? Roundworm? Chronic Pancreatitis? Hyperthyroidism? Or is dry food responsible for all of those too? Do cats on canned food NEVER get hyperthyroidism?

How about this little gem: "intestinal cancer in cats is a huge problem that could be solved if only people didn't feed their cats dry food" Oh OK then, that's the solution!!! (can you sense my sarcasm). Such statements discredit the author. If that were the case, don't you think (a) it would be universally evident already (b) the moral backlash would force food companies to discontinue production? Brainless.

To answer a few replies from above:
Alex Dumar "I have read numerous sites..." . There you go, Google Warrior.

Melanie & Jozette...where do I start. Jozette, you have put your cat on canned food & he still vomited. Melanie can you explain this? And Jozette you claim you are so excited to have found this blog, yet you followed it's advice, and you still have a vomiting cat. Are there any brain cells left in your head? Could it be a possibility that maybe other causes exist for GIT dysfunction, OTHER THAN food?

Todd Haslett. You have actually asked for scientific proof. I like it.

FedUp: Congrats for typing in www.wikipedia.org. And I didn't say cats aren't obligate carnivores.

dog insurance: love your work

My point: You may own cats, you may even love cats. But none of you people up on your soapbox are remotely qualified to comment on the matter at hand. That is more of a fact than anything on the original blog.

Cameron said:

Oh, and by the way, your 'experts' that you mention.

Dr Jean Hofve, "North America's leading expert in cat nutrtion" LOLOL. She's not even board certified. She has ONE book she's flogging on Amazon. Some expert. Did you notice she only worked in full time practice for 5 years? Hardly an authority. Did you also spot she does 'distance reiki'. Have a read up on that and see if you still have the same respect for her when you find out what that mumbo-jumbo is. I'll save you time. A distance reiki practitioner believes they can heal people or animals without actually even being in their presence, or touching them, or talking to them, or giving them medicine. It's as close to medical fraud as you can get.

Dr Shawn's link you supplied is a page where he is flogging an ear wash? Impressive. He is also an author, and appears on radio. Read between the lines: self promotion & financial incentive. Kind of dampens his message a bit.

I didn't get as far as your 3rd vet, I stopped at these 2. If they have formed an 'integral part of your research', I would suggest the following has happened: (a) you decided what you wanted to believe (b) you went and found remotely qualified people with the same opinion (c) you used their opinions as absolute proof of your beliefs. I bet you could find someone on the internet who believes Elephants have 2 heads, and that Marilyn Manson is the son of Bill Clinton. But it doesn't make those opinions correct.

Cameron Fay said:

You won't post any more of my comments, do me a favour. Get rid of the original post & we'll call it quits.

Jenny said:

The subject of cat food has interested me for awhile. It is difficult to find trustworthy information because as a pet owner, I am often confronted by contradictory information.

I have a cat that developed urinary tract problems while on vet recommended food purchased at the vet clinic. From my research I see that some cats are just more disposed to these problems and food may or may not help the issue.

I don't believe that feeding a cat canned food is a cure-all for every feline ailment, but from what I have seen, it makes more sense to feed them canned than dry.

Cameron is obviously passionate about what he does and I respect that. While I am hesitant about vets taking kickbacks for Prescription food sold at their clinics (I don't trust their objectivity when making recommendations), I am also aware that vets are not in the field for the money because if they wanted to do that they could easily have gone into the human health field.

Cameron here is my question: Petowners go to the vet trusting that what they recommend is the best thing to be done for their pet. Then they get home and realize they have been paying out the wazoo for food for an "obligate carnivore" where the main ingredients are "corn, corn meal and wheat."

I do not have a medical degree but I do have enough thinking ability to wonder if corn is the best thing to feed my cat. Now corn MAY be okay for cats, and some may be able to live a long time eating it. Some smokers also are able to live a long time but you don't buy smokes at the doctor's office. I'd rather not take the risk that my cat is going to have a blockage that I'm not going to catch in time.

When I did go to my vet with questions about food, I asked for objective studies about what is best to feed my cat. I was basically told to feed them what I wanted and deal with the consequences. I wanted them to take the time to go over some ingredient lists of food to tell me what to look for and what was best for my kitty.

I don't doubt my vets' competence and sincerity, all I want are some scientific studies or even better for the vet to explain a study to me (as I said I am not a medical professional, but will wade through a research paper if I have to).

I WANT to have confidence in my vet. So Cameron, in all your experience (I'm not being sarcastic, I really want to know because I really am tired of researching the subject) what would you say is better to feed a cat - corn or meat? If you have any specific studies that support the argument that would be even better.

You deride Google Warriors. I get that. You must also understand that we dont' have access to the medical journals and training that you do. When our vets dont' answer our questions and back up their responses with "trust me, I'm a doctor" it just doesn't cut it.

Anna said:

Here's an interesting (and imo well-informed) website about pet nutrition written by a vet in the UK.


He obviously has no vested interest in Hills/science diet or any other commercial pet food, as most vets seem to these days. I think he just wants pet owners to be better informed about what to feed their pets.

Its got tables showing the protein/carbohydrate content of catfood as well as links to other really informative pages.

He does have a page showing the raw frozen meat that he sells at his vet practice, but it costs slightly less than i pay at the butchers/supermarket, so i don't thinks he's motivated by massive profits.

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