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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-27-2013, 02:33 AM Thread Starter
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Raw help please!

I am getting two 8 week old male kittens saturday and Im pulling my hair out trying to figure out a raw diet plan for them. I have my dog on a raw diet, but everything I have read is so much more complicated for cats. And I have found nothing on kittens. Please help! They eat kibble at the breeder currently, how do I switch them to raw? What foods do I start with? What does a menu look like for them now and one once they are adults? Thank you!
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-27-2013, 03:46 AM
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A good place to start is here - -

cat nutrition - Home

or here --

Making Cat Food by Lisa A. Pierson, DVM :: homemade cat food, cat food recipes

Both have a heap of info.

As they are kittens they may well transition over quite easily. A lot of folk start the transition using canned then mix the raw with the canned and slowly reduce the canned over time. There's info on transitioning on the above sites. As it's important to NEVER feed dry when you are feeding Raw, you might find it easier to move them over to canned in the mean time to prepare for raw whilst you do your research and figure out what you are going to do.

You feed kittens the same diet as an adult on Raw - just LOTS more of it. There are lots of different approaches to Raw. I personally use Ann Jablonski's recipe from catnutritian.org (very similar to Lisa Pierson's) and find it really good.

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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-27-2013, 12:45 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you! About transitioning, if the kittens readily eat ground meat, could I switch them over to a complete raw or should I still feed them wet cat food or kibble as well?
I switched my dog over cold turkey, all I could find about cats is not to let them miss a meal. But if they are willing to eat the raw I give them, they wouldnt be missing meals.
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-27-2013, 01:17 PM
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They are really young, if they will eat raw you can switch them over immediately. They will likely just eat what you put in front of them! I have some foster cats that I've offered raw that have taken to it immediately with no problems and others that I feed canned food because they won't switch to raw. For the younger fosters, if I've offered raw and they have eaten it I haven't had any issues switching them cold turkey.

Good luck!
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-27-2013, 01:43 PM
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As Tiliqua said - go for it! If they already eat raw ground you are most of the way there! BUT, you need to do your research and ensure that they are eating a properly balanced diet.

If you are feeding ANY Raw, do not feed ANY kibble. They pass through the GI tract at different rates - Raw = fast, kibble = slow. This means that kibble can slow the transit of Raw through the gut which can then start fermenting and cause GI upset etc. You certainly don't want that scenario!

Keep us posted!

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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-27-2013, 01:46 PM
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If they will take to it right away go for it! I use chicken and turkey but my cats seem to prefer the chicken.

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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-27-2013, 11:05 PM Thread Starter
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Ok great! I will go shopping friday to make sure I have everything for the next couple of weeks. When should I introduce bone? And which bone is a good first for kittens?
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-29-2013, 03:53 PM
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When I rescued the GoBoys, they were about 5 weeks old. I didn't know if they'd be able to handle raw meat at that age (though they probably could have), so I kept them on canned food until they were about 8 weeks old. The first time I put little pieces of raw chicken on plates in front of them, they turned into ferocious little tigers! They SNATCHED those meat pieces and growled fiercely at each other while tearing the meat apart! They knew exactly what that raw meat was for, and there was no stopping them and no looking back!

I did wait a couple of weeks before incorporating bone. I wanted to build up their jaw strength by giving them bigger and bigger meat pieces. But really, they would have had no problem shredding a T-bone!

Even so, I wasn't comfortable giving them whole bones when their mouths and teeth were so small, so I smashed pieces of chicken neck with a hammer for them. I continued that for months until they suddenly started rejecting the smashed bones. I tried offering them unsmashed chicken neck pieces, instead, and it was apparently what they'd been waiting for. They wanted to crunch those bones!

I might have offered them whole bones earlier if I'd had access to small quail or rodents - prey animals with small, soft bones. But chicken bones are substantially larger and more dense than any natural prey a feline might eat on its own. Of course if you choose to feed one of the raw ground diets, bone size will only be dictated by the power of the grinder you buy.

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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-30-2013, 01:46 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you! I just brought them home and put some ground turkey out for them. They ate a little bit, maybe half a teaspoon each. I left it out for about a half hour and then pulled it up, theyre more interested in exploring their new territory. Ill come home on my lunch break to feed them some more. Should I wait a week before introducing bone?
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-30-2013, 11:29 PM
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I'd start right away, you just need to pick the right bones. Chicken wings are about the biggest bones kits should get. Quail are perfect, and most bones on a cornish game hen would work too. I bet they'll prefer chunks to ground, they'll want to chew it
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