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What is Meow Mix Allergy?

Many brands of cat food, including Meow Mix, have become a common allergen for felines. Food allergies are the second most common reason for allergic dermatitis in cats. The allergen contained in the food is usually found to be a protein such as milk, soy, wheat, corn, eggs, chicken, or beef. Meow Mix has a large variety of ingredients in their cat food, making it difficult to pinpoint what the allergen might be. Many pet owners make the mistake of not reading the ingredients on the pet food bag, assuming the flavor on the front of the bag is the main ingredient. However, this is not true. A cat food may be called chicken flavored which does not mean it actually has only chicken in it.

In fact, the only chicken you may see in the ingredients list is chicken by-products, which include ground up feathers, beak, feet, and claws. If your pet is developing a sensitivity to the Meow  Mix brand, it may be necessary to switch your cat to another brand of cat food. This will mean reading the ingredients label to find one that only has novel proteins. However, it is best that you see a veterinary professional first to be sure that there is no underlying illness causing the symptoms your pet is experiencing.

Meow Mix allergies are common in cats. This cat food, and others like it, have been available to consumers for a long time and are quite popular. The formula for Meow Mix does not include novel proteins. Cats may become allergic to foods that they have been eating for a long period of time because their immune system is building up a resistance to the protein type being used. It is not completely understood how or why this process happens, but when the body thinks it is being attacked (by the protein), it will release histamines that cause vomiting, itchiness, and a rash among other discomforts.

Symptoms of Meow Mix Allergy in Cats

While scratching is common in all cats, if your pet is scratching more than usual and does not have fleas, it could be a Meow Mix allergy. Besides being itchy, there are other common signs such as:

  • Dry flaky skin
  • Red ears
  • Irritation
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Bald spots from chewing on skin in those areas
  • Skin rash or fluid filled bumps
  • Severe scratching at ears, face, and neck that may cause skin damage

Types

There are four types of allergies in cats, which include:

  • Type I is a hypersensitive reaction that happens immediately after eating; it is a response from the immune system that affects the skin and digestive system and can be dangerous if it causes swelling of the throat, but that is extremely rare
  • Type II is an autoimmune reaction where the body attacks its own tissues; this usually occurs in reaction to a vaccine or transfusion, but not in any kind of food allergy  
  • Type III is a delayed reaction to an allergen that does not occur until about 10-12 hours after exposure; this is a rare condition in cats that is usually caused by lupus or rheumatoid arthritis
  • Type IV is a delayed reaction that does not show up until at least 24 hours after exposure; this is believed to be a hereditary issue
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Causes of Meow Mix Allergy in Cats

An allergy in cats due to consuming Meow Mix food usually does not happen until your pet has been eating the same food for several months or years because the immune system has to build up antibodies (IgE) to attack the offending food. There are many ingredients in cat foods that can cause this reaction such as:

  • Whitefish
  • Turkey
  • Tuna
  • Trout
  • Chicken
  • Beef
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Diagnosis of Meow Mix Allergy in Cats

A complete physical examination will be done and your veterinarian will need to know your cat’s medical history. Be sure to mention if you have given your pet any medication because that can affect the diagnosis and the treatment as well. A skin sample biopsy and blood tests will be performed to exclude other causes for the symptoms.

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Treatment of Meow Mix Allergy in Cats

Treating Meow Mix allergy includes treating the skin irritation, intestinal upset, and calming the immune system. You will also have to put your cat on a special diet to perform a food elimination trial to find the right food for your pet.

Medication

The veterinarian will probably give your cat intravenous (IV) fluids first, to prevent dehydration due to diarrhea and vomiting, if needed. In addition, a topical steroid cream or ointment will be used for itching and inflammation. Antihistamines such as Benadryl will also be given to calm the immune system.

Food Elimination Trial

The veterinarian will probably suggest a food with a novel protein such as duck, veal, or venison. Another option may be a hypoallergenic food because this food is formulated so that the protein becomes too small to alert the immune system.

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Recovery of Meow Mix Allergy in Cats

You will need to keep your cat on one certain food for at least two months to get a good idea whether or not it is not going to cause a reaction. It is best to start the trial after your cat’s rash has gone away so you will be able to tell whether the new food is going to be okay. Maintain communication with your veterinarian throughout the process. If your feline is not showing improvement, another consultation should be scheduled.

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Meow Mix Allergy Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals

Need pet health advice? Ask a vet

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Ask a Vet

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Pussom

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normal

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4 Years

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Serious severity

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1 found helpful

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Serious severity

Has Symptoms

Diarrhea
Blood In Stool

Hi good day, I'm feeding my cat on meow mix turkey dry food and realised every time she poops there's always fresh bright blood in her stool. Sometimes it's diarrhea sometimes soft to hard but always brown in colour. Could u help me?

Aug. 1, 2018

Pussom's Owner


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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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1 Recommendations

Pussom may have parasites that need to be treated, or she may need a better quality diet. Meow Mix is not a high quality cat food, and she may be having some problems digesting it. If you are able to change her diet to a better quality food, that would be a good place to start, and your veterinarian or a pet store employee can help you choose one based on her health. If the blood isn't improving, she should see a veterinarian to be examined to find out the cause of the problem.

Aug. 1, 2018

Thank you I would keep u updated

Aug. 5, 2018

Pussom's Owner

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Holly

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tabby

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3 Years

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Fair severity

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1 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Fair severity

Has Symptoms

Diarrhea

My feline eats meow mix but when she poops I see some whole pieces of the food in her stool. And it’s not brown it’s the color of the food. What could this mean?

Feb. 5, 2018

Holly's Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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1 Recommendations

Thank you for your email. Some foods are made with lower quality ingredients, and are not digested completely. If you are seeing pieces of undigested food in her stool, she may not be getting as much nutrition as she should from the food, and a switch to a different food might be a good idea. A checkup with your veterinarian will make sure that she is okay, and they can recommend a food based on her health status. I hope that all goes well with her!

Feb. 5, 2018

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Kitten

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tabby

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17 Years

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Moderate severity

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0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Moderate severity

Has Symptoms

Hair Loss

Just started feeding my cat wet food becuase she seemed to be having difficulty eating the dry. Tried Meow Mix wet food with the foil lids. Just noticed today that she has lost all of the hair on one side of her neck up to her ear!

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Tabi

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European short hair

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16 Years

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Serious severity

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0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Serious severity

Has Symptoms

Diarrhea
Loss Of Appetite

My 16 year old cat is on Atenolol, Cerenia, Prednisolone, Miralax, Psyllium. He used to only eat Royal Canin Protein Venison (wet) and Gastrointestinal Fiber Response (dry). A week or so ago he ate some Meow Mix (meant for the stray cat). A day later he stopped eating his food and began having diarrhea. Within 2 days, he’d lost 2 lbs. His new vet gave him fluids, b12, and an appetite stimulant. His old vet also recommended yogurt to stop the diarrhea. As he will not eat his prescription food, I’ve had to try other foods (currently Rawz Rabbit, Instinct Turkey). He no longer has chronic diarrhea but he’s still got soft stool. So I’m thinking of increasing his psyllium since he’s not eating his fiber dry food anymore. He is on mirtazapine every other day, but he’s still not eating enough. He’s still so boney. We had gotten his digestion issues maintained for over a year and because Of Meow Mix I’ve made my baby sick again. It’s so upsetting.

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Cosmo

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Blue

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6 Months

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Mild severity

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0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Mild severity

Has Symptoms

Diarrhea
Vomiting

I have been giving my cat meow mix for a couple months now and I just realized he always has diarrhea. Its gotten worse and is more explosive now. He has been treated for worms and parasites and theres nothing like that in the feces. It started around the time I switched food but does not affect my other cat.

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