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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all

I'm sorry if this has been addresses elsewhere, but I was wondering what kinds of raw meats each of you use for your raw diets?

I am in the planning stages of switching to raw. I used to feed my dog raw until he passed away, and for dogs it was optimal to use as many different meats as possible. He had no problem crushing large bones in his jaws (he was a Great Dane), but with a cat it seems that I may be limited to mainly chicken due to the size of the bones (I plan to grind the bones because none of my cats want anything to do with chewing them up...even my bloodthirsty meat loving cat).

So, what does a typical meal look like at your house? And, will being limited to mainly chicken or rabbit be harmful for them?
 

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Cats can live off of just chicken. But variety is always good. I guess meats would be chicken, turkey(might have to crush bones good before grinding), cornish hens (pretty much chicken), rabbit (I wish I could get my hands on some), beef (will need to add a calcium supp or add chicken or turkey bones, beef bones are tough to work with), lamb (again supp with different bones), fish like sardines (some say don't feed at all but I give one meal a week), rodents, and pork (this is a debatable meat, research and decide if you would like to feed it).

Some feed all of these and others will stick to what they might normally consume in the wild like chicken, mice, fish, small turkeys (probably only the bigger of the breeds of cats will be able to take them down), and rabbits.

When I ground my food this is some of the things that went into it. Turkey, hearts, livers, yolks and a few supps


Good luck
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thank you! Hey, do you get your hearts from a butcher? Because I'm having a hard time finding just hearts without a bunch of gizzards mixed in with them.

Thanks again!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I'd love to give them mice, but I think mice are just too cute...I could never kill one to give it to my cats! :(
 

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Michelle L said:
Thank you! Hey, do you get your hearts from a butcher? Because I'm having a hard time finding just hearts without a bunch of gizzards mixed in with them.

Thanks again!
Fyi, I too have not been able to find plain chicken hearts. However adding 4000mg of Taurine is an acceptable substitute as you already know. Over the past year I have been feeding Willie a raw diet, he has done very well with the taurine instead of fresh chicken hearts.
 

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Michelle L said:
Hey, do you get your hearts from a butcher?
Those hearts came from a local grocery store. Sadly their supplier stop carrying them, and no other store in the area sells them, so I am now adding a Taurine supplement. You probably could get them from a local butcher. But none of mine could get any. If your only feeding one cat and have a butcher that does a lot of business you could probably ask them to save the hearts and you will buy them every week or every other week. Should be able to get enough hearts if that option is possible. Their always is http://www.hare-today.com/product_info. ... ucts_id=66 But shipping can get interesting.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I'll probably just go the taurine route. I will be feeding 4 cats, and had hoped to be able to use hearts just because I imagine that at least one of my guys would love them. I do have an Amish poultry plant about an hour away from me where I used to buy chicken backs, feet, and necks in bulk for my dog and maybe they can help me out, but if not then taurine will have to do.

Thanks!
 

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I've also just started the raw. They've been on raw for this past month and it's wonderful! I've been feeding a 'franken prey' model, AKA whole pieces in a balanced way over time rather than balance every meal. (mostly for conveniencesake and because of prep times/what's available around here.)

So far they've had:

Chicken
-breasts (to start mostly)
-thighs (i was crushing the bones...now 3 of my 4 will knaw on them :D)
-wings (they love the little bones, my cat who won't do the thighs will crunch the little wing bones sometimes)
-hearts (i found them frozen at superstore...canada, yay lol I have a ton! they'll last frozen for a while and they love them!)
-liver (again, superstore...they love them but i'm careful not to give them too much. No problems so far.)
-thigh/drumsticks

Turkey
-drumstick (i bought it on sale to see how they liked it. well...they loved it, but it was huge! 4 meals for 4 cats...lol they liked pulling the meat off the bone and playing with the tendons too.)

Quail
it was on sale...special christmas treat. I quartered them and they ate the whole thing! Unfortunately they had been trussed, but they loved it.

Pork
I know it's controversial...but i figured as long as it had been frozen for 2 weeks it should be good. I was very careful not to leave this out if they didn't eat it. Not that that was a problem, even picky Torri loved it! mmm porkchops.

I have also tried salmon in the past...they got trimmings when i got a gutted whole one from my dad. They loved it! (minus Jitzu...fish makes her sick so she didn't get any.)

I still have some duck in the fridge to try, and maybe some lamb. I have issues feeding them lamb...it's my fav food and I can't quite get my head around feeding them something i eat as a treat, lol. We'll see.

And, just to share my excitement, I have a good way to get free/discounted raw food! I know a local pet store manager, they carry quite a few different types of raw and she has some boxes she got sent by accident. Luckily for me the company has changed their packaging and she's not allowed to sell it. I get 4 40lb boxes of ground whole chickens!!! YAY! Thank goodness for my new freezer!

Good luck with the raw, i'm so glad i switched!
 

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I have a question about feeding a raw diet...

How do you keep your floors clean? I mean, how do you feed it to the cats and keep them from carrying off pieces to go crunch/munch on the carpet under the couch? Do you feed them in a bathroom with tile/linoleum? Do you have a 'clean room' (no furniture and non-absorbent wall/flooring material) that is easy to disinfect?
I would love to give mine chicken necks and wings to gnaw on, but I don't have a way to keep them off the fabrics in the house unless I confined them to a bathroom and took up the rugs.
 

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Mine haven't taken theirs off somewhere yet. They do lift it off the plate, sometimes hide under the kitchen table. I just spray the floor with vinegar/water then wipe up when they're done. Soon i will have a plastic mat...soon. I would like to kennel them for food but Jitzu hates kennels, Torri won't eat in one, and the boys would get so distracted by their sister's fussing that they wouldn't eat either! lol, oh well. I'll settle for wiping the floor.
 

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Heidi, we discussed this back here;
viewtopic.php?f=3&t=35003

when I feed raw meat and fat, a regular dish is all I use
since the cats gobble it up long before they can mess with it.

when I give them chicken necks, I use a 26"x18"x1" easy to clean
food service tray you can buy from any restaurant supply house for $10.
http://www.globalindustrial.com/gcs/pro ... ctInfo.web
ask any local resturant own/manager to get one for you.

I find if I leave the tray in a quiet spot where the cats usually hang out,
they tend to not carry the bones off to another spot. I imagine if you
have a lot of cats that tend to steal food from each other, then this
tray idea may not be as helpful.
 

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Donaldjr1969 said:
Fyi, I too have not been able to find plain chicken hearts.
It's so d++++ hard to find hearts, and every butcher I've asked why, just shrugged their shoulders and said they had no clue. I spied a small package of giblets today at the grocery store that was MOSTLY hearts and you'd think I had struck the mother lode!! :lol:
 

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librarychick said:
Pork
I know it's controversial...but i figured as long as it had been frozen for 2 weeks it should be good.
Actually, it's the temperature as well as the duration; you might want to check on the gov't websites for their recommendations about what's necessary to kill trichonosis larvae; I checked my top freezer and discovered there's no way it can get cold enough.

Some other caveats: rabbit bones are sharp, even when ground; I suggest only deboned rabbit. (and is also deficient in taurine, so don't use as primary source). Know the sources of your supply-- meat is being imported now from China. Lamb is very rich -- go easy.
 

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coaster - do you have an older freezer?

My 6 year old freezer holds just above Zero Fahrenheit well.
(and yes, I do keep a thermometer in the freezer)
from what I've read, 3 days kept under 20°F kills everything.
of course, if something is densely packed, it may take longer,
or require even colder storage.
 

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Not sure of what your source is; the CDC says 5 F for, I think it's two weeks, and the USDA says -20 F for ?? days, too d**** tired to look it up right now; but whatever source of official info I've come across is a whole lot colder than that.
 

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I remember seeing flash freezing as -40°F to freshly preserve food.
I think 3 days at 20°F may have been for raw sushi fish standards,
so you are probably right that meat demands longer lower freezes.
 

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Well, preserving meat and killing infectious organisms in the meat are two different things. ;)

I looked at the thermometer in my freezer. It's at -5 F. I don't remember the exact number recommended by the USDA, FDA, or whatever gov't agency it was; I just remember looking at that thermometer and thinking "there's no way that freezer will get cold enough to make 100% sure I kill everything." At the time I had bought some frozen raw rabbit meat and when I got home I discovered it came from China. I called the company to see if they could tell me about whether or not I could be safe feeding it raw to my cats. I ended up throwing it all out.
 
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