Thinking about switching to raw... - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
 
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-18-2011, 12:58 PM Thread Starter
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Thinking about switching to raw...

Currently, I have two dogs on PreyModel raw - they get a bit more bone than the recommended 10%, but only because they like bone!

My cat is on BFF and Weruva canned, which is quite pricey over time. (Though the litter box is better!)

I've been having to cut up the one dog's food due to a severe injury and stitches (he lost his eye and the stitches are still in - hurts to chew, I think.) The cat sat and meowed at me, so I put several pieces of chicken in the bowl and he gobbled them up - was actually quite excited to eat it! But, I know from past experiments, he will not touch organ meats or bones of any kind - not even fish bones.

Can I grind the proper ratios for him, and then feed chunks of what he will eat? If I feed chunks of raw fish and chicken legs, plus the ground bones and organs, do I still need to add taurine? How much taurine do they need? I am very nervous about switching, since he is on a wet food only diet currently, I'm not sure how much benefit there is. Any suggestions and support would be appreciated.

Me and My family:
Chairman Meow
Dogs: Leela and Thomas

Oh yeah - husband and child
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-18-2011, 01:46 PM
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First, sorry to hear about your dog's injury. Hope he gets well soon.

Well, perhaps the bones might have been too big for your cat. Maybe you can try quail first before trying ground bones.

If you're not feeding organs or bones, it might be a good idea to just do a half raw/half canned food diet to round out the nutrients. I was feeding my bunch that plus a small dry kibble bedtime snack.

It's also not a good idea to have fish as a primary source. I only feed fish on occasion for mine. They primarily have whole quail with bones and organs, boneless/skinless chicken, beef. All of this is cut up into manageable chunks.

You don't need to worry about the taurine if you're on the half and half diet. If you're really concerned you can start adding hearts and thigh muscle when he's used to raw in order to up the taurine amounts.

It's definitely beneficial for both physical and mental health. You said yourself that he was quite excited to eat it. As for physical, there must be a reason why you are feeding raw to your dogs. I'm assuming because you know it's natural, healthy, human-grade and you know where it comes from instead of the processed, commercial foods.
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-26-2011, 04:12 PM
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Go raw for the kitty! I feed a brand called Stella & Chewy's... they LOVE it! I do supplement 1 can of Weruva or Instinct with it too... (but that is 1 can for 4 cats each day.. so not much of it.) The patties are very easy, and contain everything you need. I know some people say those contain too many greens, but my cats have done great on it! I can't afford a grinder, I have tried doing bones as well... no luck. So we do this... (each cat gets this)...

AM feeding: 1/4 Stella & Chewy's patty with 1/8 of a can of high quality wet food.

PM feeding: 1/4 Stella & Chewy's patty with 1/8 of a can of high quality wet food.

Treats: Stella & Chewy's offers treats called Carnivore Crunch... which is just a small piece of dehydrated meat. They gobble it right up!

It is the dog version of the S&C, but I think that's fine... since it's not cooked... the taurine remains intact.

Rad Cat, Instinct and Primal all offer these same frozen premade patties.

For clean teeth I used Collodial Silver and wipe their little teeth gently with gauze... it's taken a lot of getting used to, but it works... since they won't eat the bones. (I'll keep trying to get them to eat bones forever though... would love for them to enjoy raw meaty bones)

This is simply in my opinion, but I believe cats need the raw diet even more so than dogs, at least from a meat perspective. They eat only birds, mice, etc in the wild... they are essentially land sharks. (Not saying dogs don't need the moisture and natural enzymes provided by a raw diet... but their requirement for taurine is not the same as a cats. Raw meat provides taurine, the cooking process is what destroys that.)

Good luck and Namaste my friend!

Krystal
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-08-2011, 01:38 AM
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I have been switching my cats over very slowly to Darwin's (commercially prepared BARF). Cleo, the oldest, completely accepted it. Kira will eat it but only when mixed/topped with her old Fancy Feast. And Frida will eat maybe about a tablespoon but prefers dry food and killing small things. What actually sold me finally was figuring out that Darwin's was only slightly more expensive than all the Fancy Feast I'd been buying.

Niko

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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-09-2011, 03:53 PM
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Experts on raw feeding strongly discourage pet owners from feeding ground raw food for a number of reasons but the general idea is that:

-Ground food provides none of the dental benefits that whole raw food does
-Ground food is far more likely to encourage harmful bacteria and pathogen growth
-Less nutrient loss

The commercially available frozen raw diets are not worth your money for the following reason:

-You have NO control over the sanitary conditions of the production and packaging facilities
-Raw pet food is not regulated by any federal standards, this is a BIG DEAL!!!
-Based on the relatively low price of these raw frozen products, the companies are using scrap meat (this isn't necessarily terrible but I like to know EXACTLY what i'm feeding my little guy)
-Commercial products contain unnecessary ingredients such as fruits and vegetables.

I'd suggest the "franken prey" diet, which is simply raw parts in a butchered form. My little guy is about 3 months old and is unable to shear flesh as an adult cat would so I tend to butcher his meat and bones into smaller pieces that he can handle.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-09-2011, 05:20 PM
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I agree with the comments above, but I also realize that not all feeders find franken-prey as appealing for the following reasons:

-Not as convenient as opening a package which is already prepared into rations.

-Most people have an aversion to butchering their own meat and calculating how much an appropriate well balanced ration is...kind of the same as when people choose to eat fast food vs eating balanced home cooked meals.

-Freezer space - unless you have a large freezer reserved for this purpose, it's a challenge to keep a supply for a few weeks in advance on hand.

-It takes time to develop the cat's jaw strength. It is easier to feed ground meat, but yes, you do give up most of the dental benefits. However, I do think that even commercial raw is way better than dry any day. It's very close in comparison to regular canned.

-For some people, it's disturbing to think of their cat as a carnivore, particularly for some more devout vegetarians. They want to disassociate themselves to contributing to society's need for the evil meat industry.

-The commercial raw companies usually promise that the meat is organic or chosen in such a way which appeals to those who have an aversion to additives such as hormones, or keeping the animals in cages, etc.

-Sourcing various proteins can sometimes become an uphill challenge. I consider myself very lucky that I have several Asian markets within walking distance, but not everyone has these markets nearby. They are wonderful resources for finding all kinds of organs, meats, frozen fish, etc., and the prices are very reasonable. However, their sourcing of these animals is not as transparent as some of the American markets which cater to more new agey consumers, such as Whole Foods and Trader Joe's. The trade-off is price.

Nutritionally, yes, I do think that franken-prey trumps any commercial diet any day...hands down, but it's not feasible for everyone for several reasons.

I admire anyone who is trying to do the best they can for their pet (s) within their own means and circumstances. I remember when I first joined the raw forum, a hybrid of raw and canned was frowned upon, but with further research, and an unwavering desire to show why this hybrid diet would work, the actual facts won out. I am very happy others have embraced it, and that those that were already feeding this way, came out of the shadows, and are proud to say I am one of the many.

Last edited by marie73; 08-09-2011 at 09:32 PM.
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