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The complete diet for cats

This diet is designed to approximate the normal, natural diet that cats would eat if they lived in the wild.  It is based on 'live prey' diet as the only species apropriate diet for our feline friends.

There is no other diet or shortcut  that can secure longevity and vibrant health for domestic cats. If you are not ready to invest some time for study and preparation of this diet then this page is not for you, but be prepared to invest considerable amount of money for veterinary bills at any time in the future.

I would like to begin this page by giving credit to Dr. Lisa Pierson DVM who runs the best page on cat nutrition that can be found on the World Wide Web. Her experience and knowledge, freely offered on her web page is a great service to many cat owners and also many veterinarians.

On this page I will only try to provide basic guide for cat owners with links to more exstensive information on Dr. Pierson’s website.

When presented with the idea of feeding raw natural diet, most cat owners state their cat is doing well on commercial cat foods and kibbles. This cannot be further from the truth, read here why.

 

Lets begin with some fundamental facts

  • Domestic cats share the same physiology as their wild relatives; this means cats are obligatory carnivores, satisfying all of their nutritional needs with whole live prey - mostly small rodents and birds.
  • Live prey normally contains 70% moisture, and never more then 2% of carbohydrates. It also contains protein with complete amino acid profile.
  • Comparing to other species cats have a very low thirst drive and many owners notice that their cats hardly ever drink. This is why it is of utmost importance for domestic cats to get fresh meals with high moisture content.
  • Most commercial cat foods be it dry or canned are based on grains as fillers, which means they contain very little good quality meat and much more carbohydrates then 2 %. Feeding this type of food to your cat is a recipe for disaster, since you are risking inducing urinary tract problems including kidney failure, diabetes or obesity,  to name just a few problems that plague domestic cats fed with commercial cat food.
  • Feeding your feline friend with commercial foods is nothing but a gamble with your cat's life as the ultimate stake. For the excessive list of health problems you are risking when not providing you cat with its natural food please visit this page.

 

What and how to feed

Cats in the wild thrive on the diet of whole prey, mainly small rodents and birds. Obviously we cannot offer the same to domestic cats but we can offer similar diet if we feed them poultry and rabbit. Poultry or rabbit meat should be grinded together with skin and bones. We should also add some supplements, most importantly Taurin -essential amino acid and some vitamins.

 

www.catnutrtion.orgwww.catnutrtion.org

This is Dr. Pearson’s recipe for home made cat food:

Most cats eat approximately 110-170 grams/day. Therefore, this recipe yields enough food for one cat for approximately 10-14 days. The whole quantity can be divided in small daily portions  and safely stored in the freezer.

Base:

1.4 kg of poultry thigh meat with bones and skin

or

1 kg of whole carcass ground rabbit + 340 g of boneless chicken or turkey meat/skin/fat

www.catnutrition.orgwww.catnutrition.org

Add:

1 cup water (or, preferably, more if your cat will eat it with more water)

2 eggs - use the yolk raw but lightly cook the white

5000 mg fish oil (a good source of essential fatty acids - note that this is increased from the original amount of 2,000 mg - if your cat does not like fish, it is ok to use only 2,000 mg)  Do NOT use cod liver oil!

400 IU (268 mg) Vitamin E (powdered E in capsules is the easiest to use)

50 mg Vitamin B-complex (capsules or tablets)

2,000 mg taurine (use powdered - either in capsules or loose)

3/4 tsp salt with iodine 

 

Liver - If using ground rabbit (which includes liver) do not add additional liver.  If using chicken legs, thighs or a whole chicken carcass minus the organs, add 110 grams of chicken livers per 1.3 kg of meat/bones/skin.

Fiber - Here is dr. Pierson's experience regarding fiber: " I do not add any fiber to my cats' diet.  A cat's natural diet is extremely low in fiber.  Contrary to popular belief, the hair and feathers of their prey is not a source of fiber.  Fiber only comes from plant material - not other animals.  The only source of fiber for a cat in the wild is the miniscule amount in the gut tract of their herbivorous/omnivorous prey or the plants that they may eat.  Since cats don't generally chow down on much plant material, this is also a negligible source of fiber. When I first started feeding raw, I used psyllium whole husks but I did not see much difference in their stool consistency.  It was still very dry and and low in volume but then I came to realize that this was normal for a cat eating a diet like this.  I was just so used to the big, bulky, stinky stools of cats fed commercial canned and dry diets."

For more in depth information and additional details please visit this page.

Making your own cat food can be fun and its certainly not astrophysics, you can watch the whole process here:



Transitioning your cat to raw food  

Due to high content of carbohydrates and gluten found in dry food cats can get addicted to it and very often they will not look any other food.

Gluten is protein found in wheat and most of the other grains that are used as fillers in commercial cat foods. It contains component called Gliadin – which is capable of binding to opioid receptors in the brain, hence causing the addiction.

Therefore switching form dry food can be a challenge. This is best done by transitioning the cat to good quality tinned food ( with no grain content and only meat) and then to raw home made diet.

Cats can be very stubborn but this can be accomplished if we are armed with some patience and knowledge. On this page Dr. Pearson provides comprehensive advice on smooth transiting form dry food to soft food.

 

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