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I've read very good words on the raw diet. Theoretically it sounds great, cats did evolve to eat meat plus, when you make your own food you can be sure that they are getting proper nutrition assuming you get the proper recipe.

My vet is very much against raw diets. She says the risk for bacterial infections is too high especially for things like Salmonella, Camplobacter, and E coli. I can understand that as well. I'm actually a medical student and although the human stomach's pH can go down to 1 during digestion, raw foods are also risky for humans.

But assuming that I am very careful with the source of the meat (I'm thinking of getting whole rabbit carcass cut into chewable pieces since much of the bacterial infection is from grinding meat and mixing meat from an infected animal with meat from other animals), storage, and get a proper recipe, is this ideal compared to highly respected cat food brands like Wellness?

What were the opinions your vets had?
 

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I have had vets yell at me and say that I will be doing harm to my cats. I just leave them with information that they can't disprove and ended up taking my business elsewhere. To a holistic vet

One thing you have to remember about vets is that they are trained in school to feed commercial dry food. Because they think that is the best. Which as most of us know is a bunch of crap. When they hear raw they panic, for one they are minimally trained in pet nutrition and two they think the risk of possible bacterial infections out ways the benefits that they see in raw if in fact they see any.

If you handle the meat properly you will have no problems. Raw is far more better than any commercialy made product especially dry. There are too many problems with cats these days as a result of feeding dry food. To name a few gingivitises, periodontal disease, obesity, kidney/bladder problems such as UTI, Irritable bowl disorder. If you think about it these are all the risks that you take feeding a dry food. With raw the only real risk is bacterial infections. But do cats get this in the wild, likely not because of good stomach acid.

Now for commercial diet the only thing that can be feed without too many risks is a no or low grain canned food. holistic ones

As for a comparison with raw and holistic diets. Well there are no cooked prey in the wild. Cooking destroys enzymes and vits/min which are found naturally in raw meat and organs. One of the reasons why there is a full line of vit/min added to commercial foods. Also most commercial pet food have high amounts of vegetables or grains which are hard for cats to process and they take very little nutrients from them if any.

So in my opinion raw is the best but next in line would be a good holistic no or low grain canned cat food.

Sorry for it being long. Check your area for a vet trained in holistic care especially raw. Mine tells me she should never have to see my cats just for their yearly checkups. She only wants my business once a year and then doesn't try to sell me any food. Goes to show you how confident she is about raw food. Awesome vet
Take care
 

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Vets are normally against raw diets simply because they don't know anything about them. Didn't learn anything about them in vet school and have no experience with them in practice. So when it comes to something they don't know about and have no experience with naturally they're going to toe the company line.

The whole thing about bacteria is grossly overstated, in my opinion. I'm feeding my cats self-prepared raw, and have for some time now, and other than a couple upchucks at first when they were getting used to it -- which is quite typical of a diet change, especially when done too fast -- I've never had any signs of gastro-intestinal distress AT ALL, and I've gotten less rigid in my preparation with more experience. Cats are much less prone to being affected by bacteria in their food.

BUT......you do have to know what you're doing because straight ground-up meat is NOT nutritionally complete for a cat, so if this is something you want to do, go for it, but do your research first. You might like to do as I do and just feed part raw. Then if you're a little short on the proper nutrients, the commercial food will make up for it.

My primary caveat would be that if you have a cat that isn't in good health, esp. some type of G-I disorder like IBD, or is immune-compromised, then raw might not be appropriate. Consult with a vet, first (if you can find one that knows about raw diets.)

And be prepared for a more active cat. If you don't like your cats flying around the house full of vim and vigor, then don't feed them a raw diet!! :D
 

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coaster said:
The whole thing about bacteria is grossly overstated, in my opinion. I'm feeding my cats self-prepared raw, and have for some time now, and other than a couple upchucks at first when they were getting used to it -- which is quite typical of a diet change, especially when done too fast -- I've never had any signs of gastro-intestinal distress AT ALL, and I've gotten less rigid in my preparation with more experience. Cats are much less prone to being affected by bacteria in their food.
Yeah, that :wink: Cats have both a shorter digestive tract and a more acidic body pH than we do, and when healthy, are only very rarely susceptible to bacterial infections from their food.

But of course, our vet thought it was a stupid and irresponsible thing to consider :roll: It's one of the reasons he's no longer our vet :wink: A raw diet completely cured three of our cats of chronic UTI's, so clearly it was a very irresponsible thing to do :p

I also have to echo what Tim said about energy levels. In addition to a multitude of other health benefits, our cats have been incredibly vibrant since switching to a raw diet.
 

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Thanks, Emily. ;) Nice to see you back on the board. :) And your beautiful cats, of course. (I'm still in love with Stephie) :D
 

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My vets have respected my choice to raw feed my cats and they haven't made any attempts to try to convince me doing otherwise. My current vet is all for feeding cats meat and canned food (absolutely not dry food) but he's sceptic towards raw meat, because of bacterias. I respect his opinion and he respects mine. Respecting each other is the key. You don't have to have the same beliefs, you just have to respect each others opinions.
 

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coaster said:
And be prepared for a more active cat. If you don't like your cats flying around the house full of vim and vigor, then don't feed them a raw diet!! :D
This is so true. Before raw mine would race around a few times a day, after raw they now bounce off the walls for most of the day. I saw my 4 year old go from a semi active adult to a very active kitten.
 

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I love to see cats flying around the house full of vim and vigor. It is so entertaining!!! :lol:

How can I find a vet in San Diego who will respect my choice to feed raw and canned? Somehow I just know the vets in my nearby area will not support the raw so I'm afraid to even mention it.
 

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I just PM'd you with my vet's info. :D
 

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I feed my cats raw, my previous cat was also on raw, my friends' cats in Russia were all on raw/homemade, I read cats forums lately - honestly, I cannot remember one case of cats bacterial infection due to raw diet. So I just wonder whether any of you know/heard of any cat who was on raw and got bacterial infection? There is lots of "smoke" around it, that's true, I just would like to know what's going on "in practice" not just in theory :D

I've heard (dont' know whether it's true) that cats digest food in 12 hours or so and it takes at least 24 hours for salmonella to develop, and therefore cats cannot get salmonella. Again, I haven't heard of a cat who got salmonella but would love to hear your experience.

One more thing to consider. I do not know anybody who gets the meat when the cow was killed in the morning, and the person got the meat late this morning :D . I'm sure the meat we get from Costco, supermarkets, butcher's stores etc. were deep frozen long before they came to us. So I hope most if not all parasites and bacterias died before the food gets to us.

I think (may be certanly mistaken) that many vets are NOT really interested in our cats staying healthy till the end of their lives, if our cat is sick the vet financially benefits from it... So IMHO if commercial food diet is bad for the cats, especially in the long run (!) then this is what vet should recommend us in order to stay in business and be successfull. No offence to vets, it is all generalizations, I'm sure there are wonderful vets who love cats etc.

If dry food is so healthy for cats then I wonder why they don't feed lions, tigers and other "big wild cats" in the Zoo with dry kibbles? It would be so much more convenient and cheap, right? Nevertheless they feed them raw meat.
 

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My cats behavior is enough to convince me I have made the right choice in the last 3 weeks. Jack and Harley have only been on one raw meal a day and I now have two very rambunctious kittens in my house. Seeing Harley play for the first time ever (we've had him for 9 months now) is enough to have brought me to tears twice in the last week.

I'll admit our vet doesn't know yet and I'm apprehensive to tell him--we'll see how that goes. The boys are due to go for rabies vaccinations--but I usually just take them to the shot clinic on Saturdays where they only see a vet tech--perhaps she will comment on their health and I can slowly bring up the bigger topic.

Leslie
 

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I have only been feeding some raw for a short time so my vet doesn't know yet, I bet they'll tell me to stop but I don't care, I just have to prepare whichever parent comes with me to the vet's office that "okay, the vet will probably tell me raw is bad, but don't worry, they don't know what they're talking about, it's just fine for them". This is the type of vet that pushes Science Diet for everything and thinks wet food rots teeth.

I have heard one story of a cat fed raw dieing from something that the owners think was a bacterial infection. I heard this on another forum from a member that was not the owner of the dead cat and this member didn't give ANY information on how they knew what the cat died from, how the cat diet, how the food was being prepared etc. The member said it was not their place to tell me, but would not tell me the member's name either so I'm skeptical.

IMO prey model raw is the best you can give your cat. I personally do worry about my cat's teeth and jaw on an all wet food diet (and after seeing my cat chew raw i don't think dry food does anything to help that) not because I think wet food rots teeth and dry food cleans it but just because the cat never has to chew, ever so I like that raw not only allows the cat to chew but it allows the cat to REALLY chew and clean his teeth. raw bones are of the only things I've heard that actually CAN remove the hardened tartar and not just the softer plaque that brushing takes off.

Cats are designed to eat raw meat, humans are not. Cats have short digestive tracts that prevent bacteria from having the time to grow to dangerous levels. I've heard of cats with IBD completely recover on raw, I've heard of diabetic cats going off insulin on a raw diet. Lazy, aging seniors with flaky coats become sleek and active again. Everything tells me that this food is the fuel that is supposed to be powering our cats and dogs.

I am still struggling to get Willie to eat enough, so he still gets dry food with his raw. He really LIKES the raw, he wolfs it down, snorting and attacking but he only actually consumes a little. once I have him eating a safe amount at his dinner meal I'll try him on both meals raw and see if he eats enough. This boy can't loose any weight or he'd be too thin.
 
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