On my street, there lives a friendly stray cat whose care has become somewhat of a neighbourhood collaboration. Recently, during a week when the nights were particularly cold, I started taking in “Sam” for the evenings.

Due to the protests of my grumpy housecat, Anya (who is strictly a one-cat-household kind of girl), we compromised on a living arrangement. Our handsome visiter only stayed in his suite in our half-bathroom overnight and returned to his neighbourhood domain in the milder mornings.

Sam was a very polite houseguest but after every brief stay, I found it curious that the waste in his litterbox was more than triple the amount of Anya’s. The mystery was solved when I next saw my neighbour and discovered they’d been feeding him a popular and cheap food from the grocery store.

Suddenly, it all made sense, but I still couldn’t believe the difference! To help Anya’s anxious attitude, she had been eating a high-quality urinary food designed to help relieve stress. Compared to Sam, her litter box was less fragrant, and only had a few small “deposits” that were easy to scoop. Sam’s box had a noxious odour and his large stools were looser and messier to remove.

I was even tempted to retrieve our luggage scale to find the difference in weight, but realized that might have been taking my discovery too far.

Of course, there are many other factors that may have contributed to these findings. However, many pet parents do report significant benefits after switching to a high-quality diet, such as:

  • Softer snuggles (due to healthier skin and coat)
  • Fewer trips to the store (a smaller quantity of food is required to meet daily nutritional requirements, so bags and cans last longer, often saving money too)
  • Less household waste (as a result of fewer bowel movements)
  • Simplified pet care (more manageable smell, fewer bathroom breaks), and
  • Most importantly, a happier, healthier life for their furry family member

Your veterinarian can help you find the best food for your pet’s species, age, health, and lifestyle, benefiting the whole family. As for Sam, we are currently trying to find him a permanent home. In the meantime, he has graduated from our bathroom to our guest bedroom…and is enjoying Anya’s kibble.

Dr. I. Wonder is here to answer your questions regarding your furry family members. If you have a question, email it to us at danielle@NeighbourhoodPetClinic.com.  Our team at Neighbourhood Pet Clinic will tap into their collective experience to answer your various questions.