I'm on the verge, and I'm just wondering if anyone here has given it a try and can talk about whether or not they liked it.
What is it for
Is this intended for a dog or for a cat? What is the pet's issue that led you to BalanceIt? Did your vet recommend it, or did you find it on your own?
The recipes are far too high in carbohydrates for cats, but dogs can digest some carbohydrate so it might be a good thing if intended for a dog.
The idea of loading 'corrective' cat food with carbohydrate is based solely on canine studies. They are two very different animals with distinct dietary needs. Most vets refuse to address these differences.
Both. My concerns with not only the lack of standards for the quality of pet food, but also my pets' dislike of the same, led me to look at home cooked meals. BalanceIt has been recommended several times by Meghane on this site.
I appreciate your comments. I'll take this up with my vet.
have you considered raw? Our cats love it. Our vet recommended raw with the addition of Feline Instincts powder. You can make a large batch and freeze in single portions.
Here is a link that might be useful: Feline Instincts supplement
I have considered raw, but there has been a fair amount of criticism of raw.
Here is a link that might be useful: AVMA stance on raw food diet
The AVMA position on raw diets is misleading. The assumptions made are that:
-" Pets fed raw food diets have been shown to contain E- coli and Salmonella both pathogenic to humans..." Pets "contain" both e-coli and salmonella whether raw fed or not. It takes an already VERY sickly animal to become ill from salmonellosis. And commercial dry foods are a major culprit for taint including these and moulds.
-People who feed raw are too stupid to understand that certain nutrients might be missing. Raw feeders often resort to the raw diets when the veterinary prescribed foods leave pets with chronic, unbelievable conditions. Of course some people rush in to it by tossing a bloody raw roast to the dogs, but most are smart enought to research first, then add appropriate supplementation.
-People who feed raw are unfamiliar with basic sanitary practices. Really? Do we not wash our hands when handling raw? And apparently we pluck feces, crawling with pathogens that only appear in raw food, from the litter pan with bare hands which are then involved with preparing our own foods without washing.
-You don't know that veterinary students are often sponsored by pet food manufacturers, creating reciprocity. Manufacturer pays some of your specialty studies, you prescribe and otherwise support the inferior foods. Would you expect your internist to prescribe your diet? Does she keep a rack of bags of 'prescription diet' foods for you at her practice? Of course not, and we'd be darned suspicious of a doctor who does! The veterinarians add to their bottom line by prescribing these foods. It's not a lot of money but this is a conflict of interest.
As counterpoint to the above AVMA assumptions about their clientele:
The lack of 'science' supporting raw feeding is also lacking in support of dry foods, tinned foods, and especially 'veterinary' diets, which are comprised of low-quality and inappropriate ingredients (but with a hefty price). The only ''science' accompanying these are heavily skewed studies sponsored by the manufacturers designed to support narrow definitions, and from which any derogatory information is carefully avoided. It's not too hard to design studies like this.
Something that you may find interesting is a little research on your own comparing recalls, imposed or voluntary, on the commercial pet foods that the AVMA supports; with commercial raw diets.
Another thing is that if you feel you must prepare raw from scratch, you can easily buy the correct supplementation to add to the raw.
I like a particular commercial raw diet, which saves me having to mix supplements then apportion correctly. None of us, people or cats, have been ill since the raw became the mainstay of the cats' diets.
Take some time to read Dr. Lisa Pierson's informative site. She is a practicing veterinarian who bucked the AVMA trend. I read anger veterinarian who refutes many of AVMA popular opinions when they make no sense nor contribute to our pets' health.
This was a very long way to say that you can't just skip off with a political opinion. You need to unearth as many facts as possible. Good luck with your decisions and good health to you and your pets!
Here is a link that might be useful: CatInfo.org
Ok, whoa. Are you saying that I'm skipping off with a political opinion? How so?
I absolutely agree with everything you say.
Will you email me privately on another matter? I have enabled "contact me" on my page?
I love catinfo.org, and I agree re vets' reciprocity on their in-house brands. I admit that I didn't read through the entire AVMA opinion, but I'd like to believe that the majority of vets are good, well meaning people. However, having read your post, I do wonder what the criteria is for an AVMA opinion.
I feed both my dogs and cats the most expensive brands of canned food available - no dry. Even so, they are often sick and they all (5 cats) turn up their noses at some of the canned food consistently and other flavors inconsistently. It makes me wonder whether the quality and/or ingredients are consistently prepared according to the same standards. On the other hand, they all LOVE any kind of real meat that I give them so much more. We all know the horrible standards for food produced in cans. I never eat anything out of a can. It just makes me wonder.
What commercial raw food do you use? Have you compared the cost to that of a canned food such as Wellness or Evo or Fromm?
I have books on how to create homemade diets, but they are way too involved.
And believe me, I do read a lot. It seems I can never read enough, and I only have so much time..... I try not to "put all of my eggs in one basket" tho, and get some sort of consensus. I will look more deeply into catinfo.org.
Using ground turkey and the Feline Instincts supplement it costs about the same as feeding Wellness for us. A little less than $5.00 a day for four cats. Commercial frozen was more. Probably around $6.00 +.
I feel lucky that our foursome pretty much eats what I put in front of them but they do prefer raw meat to canned.
DH just recently found out what I spend on cat food. My argument is that we don't spend much at the vet office. :)
Harebell said: The recipes are far too high in carbohydrates for cats
I tried Balance It for my small dog for allergies and weight issues. I purchased two recipes and their supplement. They told you what to buy to make the supplement--too involved--or you could buy theirs. My dog would NOT eat the food with the supplement! She liked the food, but not the supplement. It was not inexpensive, and , of course, they would not take it back once opened!
I have tried the free version. I was disappointed that it did not have more options for meats used.
My vet is a big fan, of the site and of their supplements. I may try to work with them more.
My latest kick is Dr. Becker's book, Real Food. I haven't started the book yet - just got it. With her recipes, you can do either raw or cooked. I tried the raw, with Feline Instincts, and my animals did really, really well on it. At first, the whole process seemed daunting, but after you get into a routine, it's fine. But, I just can't do raw anymore. I work, so I'd have to put the food out in the a.m., and then take it up bc you can't, of course, leave raw chicken sitting around. My cats are all grazers and by the time I got home, they were ravenous. When I was home on a weekend, I'd have to keep taking the food in and out of the fridge all day long for whomever was hungry at the time (I have 5 cats), so it was just tooooo much. I really wanted to like B.I. and tried for a long time to get things set up with them, but their website had too many issues and they, too, are expensive. I look at sites like catinfo.org, and naturalcatcareblog.com for info often, too. I'm hoping Dr. Becker's book can give me some better, current info on meat sources. All I usually feed my cats is chicken. I've read that beef doesn't agree with a lot of cats, so I don't give them that. And I've read that you have to be careful not to give them certain kinds of fish or too much fish, plus they don't care for fish most of the time. No pork. I've seen on the Inet that you can buy rabbit and other odd sources, even live mice (can't do that) but, again, sooo expensive. In the meantime, I use Evo, esp for my kidney cat, and Weruva. Thankfully, I've got a really great vet that is affordable, so I can spend the $ on food that I need to, but even so....sheesh! I just cannot believe people still feed their cats dry food, tho. It's like having kids and letting them eat cheetos all the time.
Ok, I am cracking up here, at the idea of buying live mice and letting them go in the house for the cats to catch :).