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What are you feeding your carnivore?

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  • What are you feeding your carnivore?

    Cats are OBLIGATE carnivores

    Meaning they need meat to live. They cannot turn vegetable matter into the vitamins they need to thrive. They will survive on bagged garbage. Like us they will also develop chronic diseases. A major one being diabetes.

    It has took me a long time to finally realize that I needed to do something about what I eat, but for years I have been feeding my cats like royalty Meaning they get free range turkey, rabbit, duck, liver and whatever else meaty they beg for. There favorite is popcorn but since I stopped eating it and they can't cook, they deal without it

  • #2
    I would prefer to do a raw diet like that. Sadly I foster, so I have to feed them something that the adopting families will feed. Otherwise, their transition to their new homes will be even harder, increasing the likelihood of returns. I feed grain-free food (they went grain-free before I did) and try to get them to eat more canned than dry. The dry has more protein and fat than any other dry food I've found, but it's still way carbier than a cat would normally eat. I've also started getting chicken liver for treats. They're a little suspicious but they're taking to it.

    One thing I've noticed about canned vs. dry is that my kitties who are really keen on the canned food tend to be leaner. The kibble freaks are the ones that tend to chunk up.

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    • #3
      We feed our two cats canned cat food (Trader Joe's brand) and tuna. They seem to do all right. We would prefer to feed them a more whole-prey style diet, but they're both fussy eaters and we have a hard time getting them to eat anything that doesn't come in a bag or can.

      The dog gets mostly bone-in raw chicken parts and occasional liver, beef, and fish. He's a pretty healthy animal.
      Today I will: Eat food, not poison. Plan for success, not settle for failure. Live my real life, not a virtual one. Move and grow, not sit and die.

      My Primal Journal

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      • #4
        It's sad to see the health problems of pets mirroring our own in this culture. I definitely listened with new ears as the vet at a very posh & well-recommended pet clinic patiently explained that cats just get old and naturally develop rotten teeth, kidney dysfunction and incontinence, obesity, and inflammatory joint problems. Purina- and Iams-sponsored placards in the exam and waiting rooms advised annual teeth cleanings (under general anaesthesia) and portion control for weight issues.

        But no one there could explain to me why cats ought to be eating corn, rice, and "soybean mill run" in the first place.
        Last edited by cantare; 01-31-2012, 12:57 PM. Reason: typo--'Iams' is pet food, 'Iambs' is poetry
        6' 2" | Age: 42 | SW: 341 | CW: 198 | GW: 180?

        “Life can only be understood backwards, but it must be lived forwards.”
        ― Søren Kierkegaard

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        • #5
          I don't have a cat, but one issue I've heard of with feeding cats a meat diet (which the of course need) is ensuring that there is supplementation with taurine. I'm sorry that I don't know more about why this is or how much, but I'd google it if I were you, as it could be an issue for the kitty's health!
          (I do love kitties but hub's allergies do not).
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          • #6
            Two years ago, we switched our then 15-year old overweight cat to a grain-free, raw food diet. Now a healthy and spry 17+, her black coat is less gray and she is much closer to an ideal weight. When we tell people how old she is, they are astounded.

            Complete Raw Diets for Pets: Raw Frozen Formulas

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            • #7
              I feed my cat raw liver, giblets and hearts (chicken). He also likes turkey of course, pork and hamburger meat. He gets a can of sardines or salmon once a week.
              He also gets local made kibble made without grains, the amount the size of 2 mice. It has taurine in it and other supplements, friendly bacteria, cartilage and bone.

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              • #8
                I feed my cat Orijen dry cat food. 80% meat, and grain free. I had a realization though.

                I know that snake owners regularily buy humanly killed mice and rats for their pets, why not cat owners?

                Checking prices online, you can get pre-killed feeder mice shipped to you for about $0.50 each. Two a day for only a buck?
                There aren't many problems in life that can't be solved by sleeping it off, or adding more butter.

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                • #9
                  9 year raw feeder here...will never go back to commercial foods for my felines. I did the foster thing and it tore me up to have to feed them kibble because I knew adopting them out would be difficult otherwise. I had some really young young litters of kittens I fed some raw too and also canned, then converted to dry and canned before sending them to homes. Oh did the kibble foster kitties litter boxes smell!! :P

                  In regards to supplementing, I think the taurine thing has gotten a bit blown out of proportion. If you feed plenty of fresh meats, dark muscle meats, and heart, they should be getting plenty of taurine. If you feed mainly chicken breasts, then yes, you def need to supplement. But a varied protein source diet with plenty of organs you should not need to supplement.

                  Tealia, in regards to feeder mice, they are a great way to get variety for a raw fed kitty. Price wise though, my cats eat about 5-7 ounces a day each, and mice are pretty teeny, so it is an expensive prospect. I used to feed mice, but only 2 of my 4 crew would eat them, and one of those decided they wouldn't eat the mouse unless they played with it a minimum of 10 minutes first......I decided dead mouse flung on counter, wall, table, and cabinets was where I drew the line on the raw feeding front . (they still get pinkies occasionally, those seem to be more acceptable for all 4 to eat).
                  Erin
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                  • #10
                    We went to a grain free high end commercial food several years ago (when there was that huge scare and animals were dying).

                    The problem I have is we adopted one cat who came to us with health problems (kidney issues) and he's on fancy vet food for his problems. I think it's made him fat (15.5 lb). But he came to us fat. He was on steroids for a while, too. We got him off the steroids, but he's still tubby.

                    The other cat I adopted developed diabetes. She's not overweight (8-9 lbs) and is now no longer dependent on insulin shots. But now the vet has her on a special diabetes formula. She's healthy.

                    I would LOVE to get them off fancy vet foods but worry about their other health issues. Have any of you had any experiences with pet chronic disease and diet? When I ask, vets (CW) always say regular old meat is an insufficient diet for cats b/c in the wild they eat lots of other things and the things they eat eat other things, etc. (BTW, third cat is a great weight and healthy as a horse so he can eat anything).

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                    • #11
                      started feeding our cats grain free food about 3 months ago. havent noticed any difference at all
                      Primal Chaos
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                      • #12
                        Why buy dead mice when you can grow your own and let the cat have the fun of playing with a live mouse? If you put the mouse in the bathtub, there is less chance it will escape under some furniture, but even if it does escape, that's what the cat id for.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by MonsterAlice View Post
                          Why buy dead mice when you can grow your own and let the cat have the fun of playing with a live mouse? If you put the mouse in the bathtub, there is less chance it will escape under some furniture, but even if it does escape, that's what the cat id for.
                          Crickets are safer to feed live in a bathtub, or at least less likely to become a serious house problem . I tried catching mice live in a 5 gallon bucket (to move out of our garden, not to feed the cats), which they promptly jumped out of. I somehow don't think they would stay in a tub unless it is really deep.
                          Erin
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                          Primal Pets Blog

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by cline View Post
                            The problem I have is we adopted one cat who came to us with health problems (kidney issues) and he's on fancy vet food for his problems. I think it's made him fat (15.5 lb). But he came to us fat. He was on steroids for a while, too. We got him off the steroids, but he's still tubby.

                            The other cat I adopted developed diabetes. She's not overweight (8-9 lbs) and is now no longer dependent on insulin shots. But now the vet has her on a special diabetes formula. She's healthy.

                            I would LOVE to get them off fancy vet foods but worry about their other health issues. Have any of you had any experiences with pet chronic disease and diet? When I ask, vets (CW) always say regular old meat is an insufficient diet for cats b/c in the wild they eat lots of other things and the things they eat eat other things, etc. (BTW, third cat is a great weight and healthy as a horse so he can eat anything).
                            You are unlikely to get any food advice from a traditional vet other then the labeled vet foods in their office. They just don't have the training or research to back up any other recommendations.

                            You can hunt around for a more homeopathic vet in the area, many recommend raw or more natural diets and have personal experience treating health conditions with foods other then the ones with the easy label system. (I worked for vets for 10 yrs plus, as much as I like my old vet friends, there just is NO nutritional training or research for them other then what is provided by the food companies. Just like your pet vaccines, the vaccine companies produce the research and the schedule, and the vets follow it....there is rarely anything independent in the industry).

                            You can browse some of the raw feeding forums or natural foods forums for pets and see what you can glean there. Just like any forum, there are some people that are aggressive or purists on there, so you just have to weed through it and try and make a decision as best you can. I know a lot of people have treated/improved diabetic and kidney failure cats through raw diet. Usually with kidney failure you get the standard 'they need less protein', but I am not sure how that works when so many raw fed cats do fine with kidney issues on it. Kidney cats do benefit from more fluids...so a wet food or raw diet is a huge bonus.

                            Something to research I would say, and definitely see if you can find a knowledgeable vet in your area. There is a shift in the industry, I was surprised how many homeopathic type vets are out there now and how many support/recommend raw diets.
                            Erin
                            Daily Vlogs
                            Primal Pets Blog

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                            • #15
                              I feed my cat face grain free dry cat food, along with gran free wet cat food (Today's menu, duck), and supplement it with the bits I cut off of my meats (For the cat...) She really, really likes chopped up chicken and fish. Not too keen on organ meats, and beef.
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