Feeding A Raw Diet To Your Cat

A mouse is a perfect meal for cats.  It contains meat, bones, organ meat and predigested vegetables in the correct proportion.  Your goal should be to recreate this with your homemade raw meal.

The tip of a chicken wing is a good choice for a raw meaty bone.  Chicken necks can also be served but some cats may find them too large so it will be necessary to pulverize them a bit with a meat mallet.  Because necks often include portions of the thyroid gland there is a risk of causing a thyroid imbalance in your cat if you feed necks daily.  I have chosen to feed chicken necks only twice per week.

A small amount of organ meat should be included in the daily diet.  Options for organ meat are heart and liver from beef, chicken, lamb, quail, duck and turkey.  These can be cut into a piece large enough to require your cat to tear and chew which is a great “kitty toothbrush.”

Green leafy vegetables and a small amount of fruit run through a food processor should be added daily.  My cats each receive about 1 teaspoon of the vegetable/fruit mix with ground meat to make it palatable.  Raw ground beef, chicken, turkey, quail, duck and lamb are all good choices and should be served on a rotating basis.  Variety is essential.  Choose meat from animals that have not been given hormones or antibiotics.

One meal per week can be either sardines or salmon.  Choose unsmoked sardines with skin and bone that is packed in water.  Wild caught canned salmon is a better option than fresh.  If using fresh salmon choose wild caught, cook it to remove potential parasites and remove the bones.

Eggs are a healthy addition to cat meals throughout the week.  I have found that cooking lightly makes them more digestible for most of my crew.

Please note that raw bones are an essential part of the diet.  Muscle meat alone does not provide the necessary calcium and phosphorus balance.  Do not feed cooked bones as they are too brittle and can cause an obstruction.  The only exception to this is the bones in canned sardines and salmon since the canning process makes these bones soft enough to digest.

The amino acid taurine is an essential component of a cat’s diet.  A deficiency can lead to blindness and heart failure so be sure to include a source of taurine daily.  Turkey dark meat is one of the best sources of taurine followed by chicken necks and beef heart.  It is best to serve these in whole pieces to preserve the taurine content.

Recommended reading to start you on your raw feeding journey:

 

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