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Advice re possible change to Raw (instead of pouches)

Discussion in 'Cat Health and Nutrition' started by Loulabella1, May 18, 2010.


  1. Loulabella1

    Loulabella1 PetForums Junior

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    Hi

    My two cats (approx 8 months old) have Royal Canin kitten 36 as their dry food and I've tried various wet foods (ranging from Bozita to Whiskas oh so meaty - out of desperation I know it's on 14% meat), I do it slowly and gradually introduced but it seems whatever wet I feed one of them gets a slightly upset stomach from it. So I'm thinking as the dry is complete (I think, please correct if wrong) I might give up on the pouches and give them raw meat for their evening meal as I don't want them on 100% dry. As the biscuits are complete I wondered if it really mattered what meat it was, I know if you are 100% raw it's important to get the right balance so they get everything they need. In the past they have gone mad for raw beef mince and I've given them a tiny taster and it went down really well. So my question really is if I'm just giving them raw as a treat meal (once a day) is it ok to just stick to beef mince or is there a better meat I should try? My freezer is small so bulk buying specific raw cat food isn't an option so needs to be meat I can pick up in the butchers or supermarket, am happy to get 2 or 3 things to freeze into small portions but really can't fit more than that in my silly small freezer.

    Thanks

    Lou
     
  2. Nicky10

    Nicky10 PetForums VIP

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    The basic idea is to feed completely raw. So you feed 80% muscle meat including the heart, 10% bones I don't give these ground up and 10% other organs. You could get chickens maybe and freeze those or get small portions from the butchers/supermarket. Good luck with switching over you've made the right choice. rawfed.com has a lot of info on it
     
  3. billyboysmammy

    billyboysmammy PetForums VIP

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    ok

    If you are feeding the raw as a complimentory treat then you dont need to worry so much about getting the balance right. Its just a treat and couldnt be considered a meal replacement.

    However If you are planning on replacing a meal a day (whether that be a dry or a wet meal) then you do need to consider the nutritional value of the meat. To ensure they get a full complete balanced diet.
     
  4. HollyM

    HollyM PetForums VIP

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    I have just started to feed raw so i'm not completely offay as i'm still learning, but i would vary (if possible) the raw you are feeding them. For example get some raw liver to feed them a couple of times a week, heart or chicken for the remaning days. I am sure you will get better advise than this but i thought i'd try!
     
  5. hobbs2004

    hobbs2004 PetForums VIP

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    Alternatively, it is said that if your raw is less than 20% of your cats' food intake then you don't need to worry about feeding bones etc or supplementing the diet as one presumes that your other food (dry or wet) would contain the necessary vitamins and minerals your cat needs.

    So, you could just get whatever cut of meat you like (as well as heart, liver, kidneys etc if you like) and feed whatever is available.

    However, if you want to feed a raw portion daily then that would be more than the 20% imo. You will need to see for yourself whether your cats will eat bone and offal. You may need to start off with minced meat that includes bones and try to wean them on to proper bones. Same with offal. However, as you said, you have a small freezer, so that might not be an option.

    If they don't then you will need to find other ways to supplement their raw by either using calcium products (such as bonemeal, eggshells of calcium carbonate) or a complete supplement such as Felini Complete or Easybarf until you get your head around what and how you want to feed. There are plenty of recipes for you to make your own complete meals.

    Here comes a small spanner in the works alert! It is also frequently said that one should not mix and match commercial cat food and raw because they all have different digestion periods and mixing it could cause some digestive problems in some cats. So what people generally suggest is that if you want to continue feeding dry or wet, you have a completely raw day followed by a complete dry/wet day.
     
    #5 hobbs2004, May 18, 2010
    Last edited: May 18, 2010
  6. The Twins

    The Twins PetForums Senior

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    Have you considered that it is could be the dry food causing the probs? Sometimes people think its the wet but often it is the dry - because of all the carbs and fillers. I would personally echo Hobbs advise and do one day of raw and one day of dry (if you really want to continue with dry)... Raw will def help their tummies. Alot!
     
  7. Loulabella1

    Loulabella1 PetForums Junior

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    Thanks for all your help, I'll have a read of the websites suggested.

    I would love to feed raw only but due to tiny freezer it's not possible. They are now just on the RC dry and both tummies are fine, which is why I'm assuming it's the wet. However they are now going outside so I'm starting to think they may be eating stuff outside of which I have no control. Once tummies 100% for a good few days I will start introducing raw. Although by the sounds of things mixing the dry and raw might upset their tummies too - seriously who thought feeding cats would be so complicated. I'm sure it was easier when my Mum had cats and there wasn't much choice - whiskas dry and wet.!! But now I know how bad it is for them I just can't do it!
     
  8. hobbs2004

    hobbs2004 PetForums VIP

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    Seriously, it was easier before commercial cat food came on the market (I believe someone in the US had the great idea at the turn of the last century or so) because before that cats got kitchen/butchers scraps and probably hunted more as there were fewer cars etc to run them over, etc etc.

    Is there any way that you could get a small stand-alone freezer for the cats' meat? Then you could ditch the dry and think about feeding raw properly. Mine subsist on two meals a day (morning and evening) and while they would certainly eat more if there was some their weight actually has remained stable.

    Please don't take this wrong way but it somehow is a complete contradiction to me to be feeding dry and raw. In your head you seem to have made that leap to consider feeding raw - maybe, just maybe, you might consider the full jump; particularly since you are having difficulty finding a wet?

    Mind, there is a lot of info to take in when feeding raw - unfortunately it is not just a case of serving them with a slab of meat and hey presto, raw food. But there are some good sites out there that will help as well as the good folk here!
     
    #8 hobbs2004, May 18, 2010
    Last edited: May 18, 2010
  9. Loulabella1

    Loulabella1 PetForums Junior

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    No I see what you are saying, but basically I'm happy with the dry they are on (I did quite a lot of reseach before giving it to them) but would like them to have one wet meal a day and I was hoping that raw might be a good option as not upsetting tummies, I honestly don't think 100% raw is the right option for me and I don't have room for another freezer. Hmmm I need to think carefully about what I'm going to do, I want to find a eating plan and stick to it!

    Thank you for all your help! None of my friends have cats and they think I'm mad for spending so much time worrying about it! However my cats are my babies and I want the best for them!
     
  10. Tje

    Tje Banned

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    Up until about 6 months ago I could easily have been the poster child for Royal Canin dry food. I had every variety of it my cupboards (I foster a lot so needed a lot of different numbers) had everything from RC Baby to Kitten to BSH to intestinal to kidney diet to hair and skin to Exigent to Light.

    Then I started reading up on dry food… Royal Canin & Hills in particular. And I didn’t like what I read. The labels on the packaging don’t lie (the composition labels I mean).

    And it took me months (my own cats were totally addicted to RC dry) but I got them off the dry diet, then very very gradually I introduced raw. They still get some dry food, but I changed brands to Orijen. It simply is better. I would say now my cats eat

    45% raw
    45% high protein wet
    10% dry (only give them a tiny little bit of Orijen dry at night time so they don’t wake me up at dawn)

    And they are thriving on it.

    I do have foster kittens right now and I do give them some RC dry… but I also give them quality wet food and raw too. I want all my kittens to have as much experience with as many food types as is possible. I would rather not give them the RC dry, but I have no control over their diet when they leave me, and many people still want to feed a solely dry diet, so that’s why I do it. The other older foster cat who just left me… I was feeding her more or less identically to what I was feeding my own two.

    I too was happy with Royal Canin dry…. But I am much happier now that I have made the change.
     
  11. hobbs2004

    hobbs2004 PetForums VIP

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    Ok - slight change of topic. Since feeding raw every day for one meal might not be practical (well, in terms of it being as balanced as it perhaps should be), what you do you think it is that disagrees with them re the wet foods that you have tried?
     
  12. Loulabella1

    Loulabella1 PetForums Junior

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    I really don't know, when I first got them (and had no knowledge of kittie nutrition) they were on felix kitten pouches and whiskas kitten biscuits, their tummies were fine, I would have happily kept them on that had I not been on this website and found out how bad it was for them. So changed their biscuits to royal canin kitten 36 (which I'm happy with) and tried to also change their wet to a higher quality. They aren't interested in pate style so only chunks in gravy / jelly are any good.

    I've only tried a few (as it's difficult for me to find high quality that is the consistency they like), Bozita seemed to be too rich. They just get sloppy poos and I know that isn't right.

    Just want them on a healthy diet that suits both of their digestions!
     
  13. hobbs2004

    hobbs2004 PetForums VIP

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    Do you feed any wet at the moment that they like and that agrees with them?
     
  14. Loulabella1

    Loulabella1 PetForums Junior

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    No, after an upset tummy from one of them Sun eve they are currently just on dry, both tummies are fine. So I want to stay on dry only till I'm 100% that their tummies are fine and then try and find a wet that suits, I don't want them on dry only, the love their wet meal, it's a treat for when they get back after a day exploring outside. I just want something that is both good for them and suits them.
     
  15. hobbs2004

    hobbs2004 PetForums VIP

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    Ok, if there was a wet that agreed with them then you could have mixed new food in gradually - changes in wet food should be done slowly over a week/sometimes even two to prevent any big tummy upsets.

    If you are looking for a treat that is wet and not raw, then how about almo nature? In itself it is not a complete food but since you are mainly feeding dry, then that wouldn't matter. It comes in a staggering range of flavours.

    Or there is feline fayre - again most of the pouches are not complete foods. I can give you a list of foods that are chunks in jelly/gravy; some of which are complete and some of complementary foods if that would help.

    The big but in all of this is that these types of foods (because of their consistency as well as their content) frequently create fussy eaters. So you might have a problem changing them to other foods if and when you decide to feed them more wet than dry etc etc

    So, I think we are now going full circle. Since you are now talking about the wet being a treat, rather than a complete meal, why not feed bits of raw food as an evening treat.
     
  16. Loulabella1

    Loulabella1 PetForums Junior

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    I really appreciate all your help, I think I had come to the same conclusion as you. I know they love beef mince so I'm going to get a pack today and give them an ice cube size portion this eve, if that goes well I'll freeze into my ice tray as a big pack will last ages and give them a portion every eve.

    Does this sound ok? I can vary the meat and will read up on other meats which are good for them, it wont always have to be beef mince.

    Thanks again for all your help and suggestions.
     
  17. hobbs2004

    hobbs2004 PetForums VIP

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    Oooh, they will love you! Have you ever tried beef pieces rather than minces so that they have something to chew? It is very satisfying to hear a cat chew on a piece of meat, be it beef, lamb or chicken.

    Have you ever tried chicken wings as a weekly treat?
     
  18. Loulabella1

    Loulabella1 PetForums Junior

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    Actually I've got some cubed beef in the freezer, so I might get that out next week and try them on a little bit, I think they would prefer the big chunks. Now just need to take all the leftover pouches I've got up to Sainsbury's for the cats protection. It's nice to know that some cats will get to enjoy it!

    Again thank you for all your suggestions.
     
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