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Discussion Starter #1
I'm quite new to the raw food diet (as well as the board :) ), so please bear with me.

As most newbies I am very confused by the recommended daily portion size and am afraid that my kitty will not get some vital ingredients if I mess up.

Short background: adopted kitty from shelter 6 months ago, initially chubby and gaining weight gradually on a diet of dry food only. I didn't know any better since it is my first cat, but now that I do I really want to make sure that she gets the right type and amount of nutrition along with slowly shedding those extra pounds. I started feeding raw just two days ago.

She does not mind the raw food diet though for now I have make sure I chop up everything in edible pieces - her jaw strength isn't quite there yet.

Now, I know the 80-10-10 principle and that is clear (more or less :) ). However, I am still quite fuzzy as to how to ensure that I do not overfeed her but provide just the right amount of calories she needs (especially important since I do want her at a healthier weight).

For example: I went out and got chicken necks, hearts and livers (still have to get other meats). This is where the confusion starts - this morning I chopped up 2 necks, threw in a heart and a piece of liver (I'm not sure how they're divided, but I assume it was 1 chicken liver). When you look at it it seems quite a nice size, BUT how can you know that it really truly does contain all the necessary nutrients? I'm thinking that there is too little meat in there, so I'm thinking I should give her some meat in the evening - but how much??

I have been trying to find the answer on the net but it's been a frustrating search. It would be great if someone could tell me that I need e.g. X chicken hearts a week and Y chicken necks and Z grams of boneless meet :D Then I could go from there and by comparison give the kitty other types of meat in similar amounts :)

Looking forward to your advice :)
 

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Meat, fat, bones, and organs(hearts, livers) provide everything required by the AAFCO.

You may have read this already, its a sticky at the top, but it provides some answers to your questions click me

Chicken necks are about 36% bone.

Everything is done over a period of time. Like giving everything they need in either one or two week period. cats really don't need a balanced meal everyday
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thank you for the reply :)

Since I'm in Europe I'm having some difficulties with the ounces measurements in the provided link - do I still do the same calculations when calculating in grams? On average, how many grams of meat should a cat eat per day (boneless meat)? As I understand, I could feed the kitty plain meat (muscle, fat) 80% of the week as long as I ensure that some of her meals consist of the missing 20% of other stuff (liver, bones & other organs), correct?

After I'm through with this, my cat will be eating much healthier than me :D
 

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Do you have a scale you can weigh meat on? If not I suggest you get one, it's hard to do this without it. If you want, tell me your cat's weight and I'll figure out how much you should be feeding of everything. it's pretty clear cut as far as meat and organ go, you'll just weigh the daily or weekly amounts out and there you go. Bone is less clear because there is meat on the bone so when you weigh a neck you are counting muscle meat too. You can either find what percent bone these things are and from there figure out how much bone must be in your piece or you can just estimate, whichever you prefer and feel most comfortable with.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
~Siameseifuplz~ said:
Do you have a scale you can weigh meat on? If not I suggest you get one, it's hard to do this without it. If you want, tell me your cat's weight and I'll figure out how much you should be feeding of everything. it's pretty clear cut as far as meat and organ go, you'll just weigh the daily or weekly amounts out and there you go.

That would be wonderful!

Yes, I do have an electronic kitchen scale so that won't be a problem. Her weight is 6 kg and google claims that's about 13.2 pounds. Not a catastrophe but she could certainly lose around 1-2 kg for a completely healthy weight.

Thank you so much!
 

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okay here is what you should be feeding, this would be feeding 2% of the cat's body weight. If you feel that it is not enough food you can feed three percent instead, just tell me and I'll do the math for that.

So daily the cat needs 120 grams of food of that
96 grams are meat
12 grams are bone (so the actual wing/neck or whatever would weigh more because it also has skin and meat on it)
6 grams would be liver
6 grams would be some other organ


Some people prefer to feed on a weekly basis, instead of feeding organ and bone everyday they feed it every three days (or whatever). So you can weigh things out by the week instead and then make that into however many meals you want (so you could cut a weeks worth of kidney into 3 days if you wanted). So you just take the daily amounts and multiply by seven.

The cat would need 840 grams per week, of that
672 grams are meat
84 grams are bone
42 grams are liver
42 grams are some other organ

So long as you feed all the elements of the diet (meat, bones, liver, and another organ) in these percentages your cat should be getting everything she needs. Do try to vary meat sources (both by feeding multiple species and by feeding different parts of the animals) as much as possible because every part is a bit different. You don't have to be all scientific about that though, just feed lots of types of meat.

I hope this helps, if you need further explanation I'm more than happy to help.
 

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I went through this problem and I hope it won't be too long for you to read through.

My 7 year old cat was progressing nicely from wet to raw (I began the transition around Oct 09 which is 3-4months ago). I would make slow changes. Two weeks ago I noticed her appetite decreased. I was worried sick.

On dry she was eating about a cup a day and on this new raw diet months in, she's only eating about 1/4 - 1/2 cu (she is 13 lbs). I scoured the net and asked a lot of questions, no one really gave me a useful answer for my concerns. Instead of just telling me the range amount my cat should be eating, people were jumping to conclusions of fatty liver disease, accusing me of mistreating my cat etc.

In the end, I got her eating a little more by regressing to dry food because I was so worried. But then when I took her to the local SPCA to get microchipped, I asked around to get some info on feedings.

Turns out that shelters normally give cats 1/2 cup of food daily anyway. My cat's decrease in appetite was just her body adjusting to the proper amount she should be eating anyway and the reason she had refused food a few times (which concerned me) turned out to be that she didn't like the Salmon Oil I was putting in her food. People always say cats should eat about 2 - 3 % of their weight daily, it means in ounces. If you translate that into cups, it should help.

But if you want to eyeball it, some of my research said to feed a "healthy mouse-sized" portion because that would be what they'd be eating daily in the wild. Hope this helps!!
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thank you for all your replies!

We are doing quite nicely on the raw food diet - the weight is coming off slowly but surely. She has now lost 1 kg which is 2.2 pounds. Our goal is one more kg to reach the target weight of 4 kg (8.8 pounds).

I am currently feeding her ~100 grams per day, but this will, of course, decrease proportionately to her weight.

At least now, when I look at her from above, I can see her waist outline :D
 

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Good to hear! She's beautiful! :) Just keep weighing her -- once she reaches goal weight you may need to give her a tiny bit more to maintain her there. Calvin needed to lose a little earlier this year. Way back in the Dark Ages (pre-raw) he used to be a really easy keeper, but when he developed IBD he lost TONS of weight and that's why we took the jump to raw. Once he was on raw, he packed the pounds back on, which was GREAT at first, but then he kept gaining! Still an easy keeper, LOL. So I dropped him back a few mos ago and now he looks great. I'm increasing his ration just VERY slightly now to keep him from losing more.

It's mostly a matter of eyeballing it once you get the hang. The only critter's meals I weight anymore is Sophie (dog) b/c she's not easy to keep weight on. Everyone else gets a little of this and a bit of that. If they get an esp. large meal, they get a smaller one next time. It all evens out eventually. :)
 
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