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crazy cat lady

When I got my cats, I wasn’t going to be one of those crazy pet owners that spent tons of money on their animals and treated them better than they treated the children. I held to it, too. I asked the vet for a food recommendation and she gave me one, for a higher-end brand you can get in the grocery store. The cats liked it, it wasn’t too expensive and so that is what they’ve been happily chowing down on for the last few years. See, no crazy cat lady here.

Then two things happened: I got Jasper and my cats got sick. Yes, the first apparently led to the second, thanks to the stress. But it also lead me to the crazy lady section of the pet food store.

When the vet tested T’s pee, she warned me that he’s at risk for developing nasty crystals in his urine that could block him up and kill him in a day. We’re lucky he doesn’t already have that problem. Then she sold me some really expensive ‘perscription’ cat food and told me he’d have to eat that forever. I read the ingredients. I really should learn not to do that.

I would have gone along with her recommendation without question, were it not for Jasper. When he came home, a friend who breeds Australian Shepards twigged us on to the differences in pet food. You can pay a little bit and get the McDonald’s of pet food, or pay more and get the almost-as-good-as-homemade. Or, you can even make it yourself.

I tried not to listen. I really did. “He’s a dog” I told myself. Does it really matter if there is indigestible corn in his kibble? Those pet food companies are putting research into this and want to make nutritionally-healthy food, right? Right?

It was right about that moment in my thinking that the news broke about a mass recall of Menu pet foods. Pesticides had gotten into the food and pets were dying. That prompted me to pick up a book on how most pet foods are made. That was scary. I’m surprised it took this long for something like this to happen, frankly.

It also didn’t take much research for me to reach the conclusion that this idea that animals shouldn’t eat ‘people food’ is ridiculous. Since when are chicken or apples reserved only for people? So Jasper eats a high-quality kibble (no corn, I admit), supplemented with whatever is around – left-over veggies, rice, meat. He also gets raw chicken necks and wings. He’s a happy dog.

Today, I took the final step. I went to the alternative pet store and bought my cats ‘raw’ cat food. Turns out, you can buy it pre-made and frozen, then just thaw out the bit you need. And it is cheaper than the perscription stuff. And it has none of the things that cause a cat to be prone to developing crystals. T loves it.

You can just call me the crazy cat lady.

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