Hello, I've posted a couple times in the health forum regarding our cat, Autumn, who has IBD. She's 6 or 7 years old. When this started 3 1/2 months ago I wouldn't even consider feeding her raw food... it really grosses me out! I rarely even handle raw meat for cooking for my family. Fortunately my wonderful husband does most of the cooking, so it's not something I have to deal with often. I'm blessed with my hubby!
But lately I'm convinced raw would be the best thing for her, so I'm willing to venture out of my comfort zone. She's no longer vomiting or dealing with diarrhea. The primary foods she's eating are a canned prescription rabbit diet, Natural Variety LID duck, and dry Innova. Last night I took the Innova away around 11:00. She had been off it for a few days, and I noticed her energy level was up a bit. (She's always been a lazy cat. She'd much prefer sleeping on my lap to playing, but since the whole IBD thing started she's been sleeping much more.) Then a few days ago I decided to start giving her the Innova again, since the prescription rabbit is so expensive. She seemed to be sleeping a lot more, so it finally clicked with me that the dry food isn't the greatest thing for her. I'm a bit slow.
I've read dry is bad, but she used to do ok on it, and really enjoys it. Autumn really doesn't care at all for the canned duck, so I'm back to mixing the rabbit and duck together, and she'll eat that. She really likes that rabbit! It would figure, she'd choose the most expensive food. Ha!
I'd like to try raw feeding, but the ground diet was very intimidating to me. So many supplements to buy, needing a grinder... it seemed more expensive than we could afford. But then I read somewhere online about frankenprey, and I was intrigued. Is it bad to just use one or two protein sources? I don't know what sets off Autumn's tummy, other than we've learned corn, of course, is a big no no. Terrible diarrhea and vomiting everywhere... not pleasant for the kitty or us! I don't know if she has any allergies to meats, and cost is also a big factor. I think I could get chicken without a problem, but I don't know about other meats. Ok, so here are my questions...
1. Autumn had kibble last night until I took her bowl away at 11:00. How long do I need to wait until giving her raw? Do I need to keep her on canned for a few days, or can I start this afternoon?
2. Is there anything wrong with just giving her chicken, as long as I'm giving her the correct proportions of meat/bone/liver/other organ?
3. I read on her about drying eggshells, grinding them, and sprinkling them over the food, in place of the bone. Can you do that long term? I'm just not sure how well she'll do with bone.
Autumn is around 6 1/2 pounds, although she should be 8-9. According to the formula on here I've figured she should be eating a little over 3 ounces per day, but if I can get her up to 4 ounces, that would be better, to help her gain weight. She doesn't have much of an appetite. Also, I'm not really sure I can get her to eat raw, but I really want to try. Is there anything wrong with just giving her the meat with no bone or organs for the first week or so, just to get her transitioned into eating the raw?
Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions! I really want this to work for us. Sorry for making this so long! Although I'm sure I'll have many more questions. I'm so thankful for this forum! If it wasn't for all I've been reading here, I don't think I'd even have considered raw, and would probably still be trying to keep her on her kibble.