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RAW diet for cats

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  • RAW diet for cats

    In relation to the RAW diet thread in the dog section, I'd like to know if anyone's done it with their own cats? My cat's young, so a food switch probably wouldn't upset him. Never has. When I first found him, I didn't have many supplies so I fed him a small can of tuna twice a day. Then I got Purina One (cheap because I'm a starving artist here), along with a few wet, canned foods. He doesn't seem to be a picky eater at all, but I feel his kibbles aren't filling him up. He begs a lot for some even though I still do feed him twice a day. I don't recall him being so food obsessed before.

  • #2
    If hes young he could be going through a growth period, you might want to try feeding him a little more three times a day instead of twice. Make sure you feed for his weight on the bag too. I never tried raw with any of my cats but I imagine it would be just like doing it with a dog, you would have to make sure you knew all the nutrional needs and met them.
    The reason dogs are great is they wag their tails, not their tongues.


    • #3
      When we got a stray kitten we first fed him milk, until we got more information then we fed him tuna. after that he left the house to go back to his mum!
      Animals always become best friends.


      • #4
        Hi. Several people who feed raw to the dogs also feed it to their cats. Age really isn't a decideing factor as to whether or not to switch. Blue was 4 years old when I started feeding raw, Brutus was 7 weeks old. Many breeders even wean their puppies onto raw food instead of kibble. We took in a tabby cat about a month ago from a friend that was military and was going overseas so he couldn't take her with him :( She is almost 3 years old, fed cat food her whole life and I feed her raw right along with my dogs. She is alot less picky than the dogs though. The first time I offered fish to the dogs they both loooked at me like I was crazy, but Sima ate it up (whole, raw, fresh fish not the canned stuff). Although most of the people I know who feed their cats raw usually buy the pre-made raw foods, I prefer to feed them just like my dogs (plus the pre-made raw mixes are expensive!). Since I buy alot of chicken parts in bulk for my dogs, there are always tons of chicken necks in the box...I save these for the Sima, they are a favorite of hers. I also found that she is more open to trying something new. The dog's had a hard time just figuring out they were suppossed to eat this stuff, but the cat will try anything and I haven't found anything she doesn't like. Here are a few links that might be of some interest. The first is strictly about cats and raw diets and the second is a basic "everything you need to know about raw" kind of site.
        "Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole." --Roger Caras


        • #5
          Thanks. C= I'll be picking up some fish and sardines in a day or two and see how KC takes to it.


          • #6

            In my experiance (a limited 5 months worth :p) It is best to start with one protien source at a time. Chicken is usually the best starting protien (from what my mentors have told me, and they have WAY more knowledge) If you introduce too many new things at once you will have a case of very runny stools. If you can find chicken necks and chicken backs that would be your best starting point. These are not too big for a cat and are real nice and boney. The rule of thumb that I have learned so far in feeding raw is "If the stools are loose, you need more bone in the diet. If they are extremly firm, or turn into a white powder when they hit the ground then you need more meat"....and yes I gave Blue too many boney meats in a day and when he went potty it looked sorta like chalk when it hit..very dry. lol And yes be prepared to see a little bit of digestion upset...that's normal when you make big changes. Sima had normal stools and was doing pretty good after 8 days. After they adjust to one source of protien, (usually after a week or 2) then you add your second protien a little at a time. This method helps avoid huge stomache upsets, and is also good for determining if there are any food allergies because you are able to specifically pick out which thing caused an upset. We discovered that Blue doesn't do well on beef so the only beef products he gets are beef necks (not very meaty). Also.....kibble takes alot longer to pass through the system than raw does. On the first day of Raw, we had the last kibble dinner the night before, we skiped breakfast (dogs were mad at me) and they had their first raw feeding that night. It seems to make things easier on them if you give them a little fast before starting.

            Have you considered joining a raw feeing group online??? I am a member of a Great dane forum that has tons of raw feeders and they are a very big help. You might consider joining a few. But beware...there are lots of people who have their own ideas of how things should be done and if you don't do it their way they throw a hissy fit! lol Alot of people use veggies, but I don't. So please do your research and learn all you can that way you are able to comfortably make desicions for your pets. D

            Did you check out this website???

            You really should! Bill is so smart when it comes to feeding raw and there hasn't been a question he couldn't answer for me...he's been doing this for ages! His email is listed at the top of the page. Send him a email and tell him you are trying to get started feeding raw for your cat and ask him what his recomendations are. You can learn pretty much all you need to know to start out with on the page, but if you have any specific questions, he's always willing to help out. Good luck!!
            "Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole." --Roger Caras


            • #7
              Oh yea..also wanted to add that not all pets eagerly take to this right away. Some are a bit confused! Sima took to it pretty good...she had to figure out at first that it was really food, but once she realized that she ate it up. Brutus also did very well in the begining. He had a bit of a time getting used to how slimy chicken quarters are but he ate just fine. Blue on the other hand turned his nose up and pouted. He didn't eat for a day and a half before he tried it. He loved the chicken backs (very meaty and not as slimy as the quarters) but it took him another week to figure out the chicken quarters, and there were about 6 days total (not in a row) that he didn't eat at all. I put the food down left him and Brutus for a while and if Blue still hadn't touched his food after Brutus had finished his, then I put it in the fridge and offered it again at the next feeding. he soon got the point that it was food and if he didn't eat when offered then he would have an empty tummy. Now he loves it. It was just a matter of getting a dog who was very set in his ways to try something different and once he gave it a solid go, everything went great. Just wanted to warn you though, that way if you do decide to do this you wouldn't quit after one failed attempt. I made myself a promise in the begining that I would at least stick with it for 6 weeks...if things didn't go well I would try kibble again. There were some trying times in the first 6 weeks (with Blue being difficult!) where I almost wanted to quit, but my husband said I had to stick it out for my 6 week promise. I am so glad I did now. Everything goes nice and smoothly, I have hardly any yard cleanup (I used to clean the poop in the yard 3 times a week!) And I honestly believe it has made a big improvement on their health...especially Blue. :)
              "Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole." --Roger Caras


              • #8
                Hi...I asked a few people on the Dane's forum for some advise on switching cats to raw and I learned a few things. Cats have a few extra requirements than dogs do when fed a raw diet. I would like to stongly urge you to join this group and have them help you in your switch since these people are way more knowledgeable than I am and know of some precautions that you need to take during the switch to raw. It is an online group on yahoo specifically for raw feeding cats and it some highly recommended from a fellow raw feeder who has done this alot longer than I have. Good Luck.
                "Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole." --Roger Caras


                • #9
                  Well, I haven't gone to the store yet, and I joined the group. I'll see about the availability of chicken necks around here. I'm not too concerned about him rejecting the food, to be honest. lol

                  I thought I'd take it slow at first. Only once a week. I hope that fits right?

                  Thank you for the constant replies and advice. I really do appreciate it.


                  • #10
                    I don't know very many people who switched by starting out with once a week, but since I am not extremly knowldegable in cats, I think your best bet would be to post a question about how to start out with your cat on that yahoo group....also ask them for a "sample shopping" list so you know what to look for. I have joined a few of the yahoo groups and most require you to send an email to get accepted in. Usually they reply quickly (within the day or the next morning) so when you are able to post, tell them everything and they will point you down the right path (and shoppin isle lol :lol: )
                    "Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole." --Roger Caras


                    • #11
                      I ask because in the RAW diet for dogs thread, I looked at one of the links you gave me in which that site not only suggested sardines, but people feeding it to their cats and dogs once a week.


                      • #12
                        I found this website this morning searching for something and I thought you might like it, or be able to get something out of it. It doesn't really go into any great detail but if you find something that's of interest it'll give you more to search under.

                        It's by a vet named Jeff Feinman in Connecticut.

                        "Harmony in life and living, homeopathy for health and healing " ©
                        How To Raise A Holistic Pet

                        Feed the freshest, most natural diet possible. Use bottled or filtered water. Try not to rely solely on highly processed (canned or dry) food. 100% fresh food (like beef, poultry, fish, vegetables, fruit or Bravo) is best. As a bare minimum use a high quality natural diet (like Wysong Archetype, ZiwiPeak, Honest Kitchen, Precise, Petguard, etc.) mixed with fresh food (at every meal).

                        Minimize vaccinations. Overvaccination is harmful and may predispose to allergies, autoimmune disorders (like thyroid disease, anemias, etc.). The scientific research is just now being performed to see how many, and how often vaccinations actually are needed. This research was stimulated by the direct correlation between malignant cancer and vaccination in cats.

                        Maximize fresh air, exercise and mental stimulation. This is an extremely important and often overlooked part of raising a pets. Certain animals will not thrive without sufficient activity and exercise.

                        Adopt a broader view of health and disease. Becoming healthy (or getting ill) is a process. An individual symptom is only one small part of the disease gestalt. Never suppress the body's attempt to express itself through symptoms. This greatly lowers the level of health and predisposes to more serious problems later.

                        Assume control over your pet's health care. Learn the difference between suppression, cure and palliation. If you don't have a local veterinary homeopath find a veterinarian who will respect your desire to work through your pet's symptoms instead of suppressing them. Consult by phone with a homeopath who will use all of the information gained from all sources to appropriately treat your pet.

                        Read Drs. Pitcairn and Hamilton's guides to nutrition, homeopathy and holistic healing for much more detailed insights.

                        There is a link on the home page for raw feeding and natural dieting but when I clicked it it said the page was no longer available. But here's another one. This recipe says it came from a cat/dog book but this recipe itself looks more for dogs. Maybe you can find that book somewhere though.

                        There's a lot of information on this website. Maybe you can get some more questions answered going through this stuff though.



                        • #13
                          I can recommend that anyone considering feeding a raw diet should review it carefully and run it by their vet to be sure it is nutritionally stable and how to slowly begin to feed their cat. Find a good butcher (and not your local supermarket) that will provide absolutely super FRESH meat so that you are not feeding reject raw meat that may have salmonella or other diseases to your cat.

                          The website directly below mentioned feeding canned tuna several times a week in addtion to other foods. Anyone considering that should read the link at the bottom of this page about fish and tuna and consider that further.

                          I read the site below a while back and was surprised that fish although closely associated now with cats, was not part of a cat's diet in the wild. We apparently introduced our domesticated cats to fish. Here's the link and I think it's interesting.
                          Cats, as a class, have never completely got over the snootiness caused by the fact that in ancient Egypt they were worshipped as gods.
                          P.G. Wodehouse (1881-1975)


                          • #14
                            Thank you both for the websites. I've been lately giving my cat bottled water and he seems happy with it. I used to give my cat canned tuna but it was a battle between me and him since I love tuna, too. lol. I think I'll go pick up some more of that then since they come in huge packs a heck of a lot cheaper than kibble and individual fish.


                            • #15
                              I don't give my dogs bottled water. But then again if I was to buy enough bottled water for Great Danes I would go broke!! lol I have one of those water dishes that constantly filters the water and all seem to like it...of course the Danes still stick their heads in the kitchen sink and turn the water on to drink from, but the cat and the smaller dogs use the filtration bowl thing. :)

                              As far as Tuna goes...I don't feed alot to the cat I do have. He gets maybe one can per week. My dogs don't get Tuna because of the high mercury levels. I do however feed canned mackrel or Salmon when I can't find it fresh. I don't go crazy trying to find fish for the cat...if I find it at a good price then he gets it...if not then he doesn't. I do buy whole game birds like cornish game hen and feed those absolute favorite here. :) The cat also loves beef heart! All my fur kids get very excited when I get the beef heart out...even though I think it smells awful! lol
                              "Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole." --Roger Caras