I suggest canned. A good canned food is Healthy Pet Net's "Instinctive Choice", and Castor and Pollux. Dry food is hard on their mouths - their teeth were never designed to crunch down on kibble - it was designed to rip and tear into meat and then swallow it in chunks. Dry food splinters when it's crunched onto, and the pieces get stuck in grooves of their teeth and can lead to tooth decay and gum disease.
Dry kibble also contains less than half of the amount of moisture cats need - good canned foods contain the proper amount of moisture that cats would find when hunting prey outside. Canned contains(again, depends on the brand) about 78% moisture, dry contains only 5 - 10% moisture.
Dry also contains much more carbohydrates than cats need. Don't buy into the "more carbs to store and use as energy later!" that's not how cats work. Their natural prey contains from 5 - 7 % carbs... dry foods contain anywhere from 23% carbs to 70% carbs.
Also, dry foods are incapable of truly replicating the amount of meaty ingredients that cats need to thrive. Kibble has to be baked at extremely high temperatures - so any nutrients the meat originally had, is lost with the cooking.
I haven't tried the Healthy Pet Net food yet, but I referred my mom to it for her cat, and her cat loves it. Both the Organix, and the Instinctive Choice are packed with named-meat ingredients, which is what's optimal since you should stay away from byproducts at all times. I prefer Castor and Pollux's Organix canned foods. As their Ultramix contains apples, and berries, both which are bad for cats. Apples because they contain both phenols and Oxalic Acid which are toxic to cats, and berries because tehy contain phenols as well, and Benzoic Acid, which cats can't actually metabolize:
Page 48 - It states that cats lack the metabolic pathway called "Benzyl Glucuronide" necessary for metabolizing Benzoic Acid. Instead, it gets excreted entirely as Hippuric Acid. Which is toxic to their systems.
It explains it right on page 34, which is the page the link opens right up to.
The source above states that, during their experiment:
"Outbreaks of poisoning affecting 28 cats have followed ingestion of meat containing 2.39% benzoic acid. The effects were nervousness, excitability, and loss of balance and vision. Convulsions occurred and 17 cats either died or were killed. Autopsies showed damage to intestinal mucosa and liver. The sensitivity of the cat may be due to its failure to form benzoyl glucuronide and toxicity may develop with quantities greater than 0.45 g/kg single doses or 0.2 g/kg repeated doses (Bedford & Clarke, 1971)."
And my final source: http://www.inchem.org/documents/cica...ds/cicad26.htm
The source above says this, "In rodents, the acute oral toxicity of benzoic acid and sodium benzoate is low (oral LD50 values of >1940 mg/kg body weight). In cats, which seem to be more sensitive than rodents, toxic effects and mortality were reported at much lower doses (about 450 mg/kg body weight)."
For the last two, just type in "cats" into the Find feature on your browser, and it will take you right to the paragraphs I copy and pasted.
This site is a bit off-topic, but it gives good insight on how a little bit of something harmful may seem fine, but after a while it becomes more dangerous as that "little bit of something harmful" starts accumulating - the actual site itself talks about Tea Tree Oil, and how essential oils are toxic to cats because of their phenols.
This is why Oxalic Acid is bad for cats:
- Beets, collard, parsley, spinach and Swiss chard are high in oxalic acid. Oxalic acid can lead to kidney stones and a depletion of calcium in the body
- Pets who suffer from or are at risk for kidney stones, gout, rheumatoid arthritis, osteoporosis and those whose stomach is easily irritated should definitely avoid foods high in oxalic acid.
- Oxalic acid combines with calcium to create an indigestible compound and since we are adding a lot of calcium to the food we are feeding, we want to avoid foods that do contain oxalic acid."
A more scientifically-researched reason why Oxalic Acid is bad:
"Ten client-owned cats with calcium oxalate (CaOx) urolithiasis were evaluated to determine the effect of diet on urine CaOx saturation. Two dietary treatments were evaluated in each cat: the diet consumed just prior to urolith detection and a canned diet formulated to prevent CaOx uroliths. This study revealed that hypercalciuria is a consistent abnormality in cats with CaOx urolith formation. When urolith-forming cats consumed a diet formulated to prevent urolith formation, activity product ratios for CaOx (which estimate the degree to which urine is saturated with CaOx) were significantly lower. These results suggest that consumption of an appropriately formulated urolith-prevention diet will reduce recurrence of CaOx urolithiasis."
"Categorized as a strong weak acid, oxalic acid can cause inflammation in the mouth, drooling, respiratory problems, and gastrointestinal upsets if a cat chews on or digests a plant containing oxalic acid."
And finally...why kibble is bad:
Another link, and the author has a really good source that she notes down at the bottom of the article:
And some general, all around, detailed information into cat nutrition and what they truly need:
That said... enjoy your fantastic new furry feline,