Best Treats: Vital Essentials Minnows Freeze
If youre investing in raw food for your cat’s breakfast and dinner, you likely want to continue the trend when offering snacks. Other pet parents might only want to offer raw treats on occasion. Vital Essentials is filled with freeze-dried, wild-caught small minnow fish.;
Cats that gobble up these nutrient-rich treats will get a single source of protein, without any antibiotics, grains, fillers, flavorers, or added hormones. Warning: Your cat may love the taste of these treats so much that they’ll raid your kitty snack drawer.
Can Cats Eat Raw Chicken
Yes, cats can eat raw chicken. Supporters of raw diets for cats usually mention that such meal options allow the cat to consume the food felines are biologically prepared to digest. After all, no one is cooking the rodent a wild cat just caught for dinner. Some people claim that the main draw of feeding raw meat to your cat is that it mimics the meal cats are evolutionarily designed to thrive on.
However, there are important differences between wild cats like lions and tigers, and domesticated cat breeds. Perhaps the more important question to answer is should cats eat raw chicken or any other type of raw meat. For this, we need to look at what the safety risks are for both our pet and ourselves.
Raw Food Can Be Contaminated With Harmful Bacterial Pathogens
Did you ever wonder why humans learned to cook our food? Have you ever suffered from barbecue belly after eating insufficiently-cooked chicken? Raw food contains bacteria, and many of these bacteria are pathogenic, which means they cause disease. Many studies have sampled raw food diets, and confirmed that they fall below the threshold levels of pathogenic bacteria for human food. And some of the bacteria found were antibiotic-resistant. Its true that cats have the digestion to cope with higher levels of bacteria than we do, but it doesnt mean they wont fall ill. And even if they dont, the humans preparing and feeding their food can fall ill through contact with their food. Worryingly, cats can also shed the bacteria in their faeces and saliva – so even though they arent ill themselves, theyre inadvertently spreading antibiotic-resistant pathogenic bacteria such as Salmonella and E.coli around the house. This can cause severe disease for humans in the house – especially in homes with young children, elderly, or immunocompromised people.
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What If I Cant Feed Raw All The Time
For one reason or another, although youd like to feed your cats a raw meat diet, you simply cant
Perhaps you could feed your gang one meal/day or a raw meal a few times/week when youre able.
The extra water in their diet and the nutrition from the raw food will pay off.
You may find this is a nice way to transition over to raw feeding, by helping you as the Cat Parent get accustomed to the process as well as your kitty!
What Raw Meats Can Cats Eat
Not all meats were made equal. Some are more nutritious than others, while some pose unique dangers that others dont. You therefore have to carefully choose the kind of raw meat you feed your cat, as well as choosing how to feed it.
These issues are less prevalent with canned raw meat. Thats because manufacturers are careful to use clean cuts, and to ensure there are no parasites in there that could infest your cat. They expect that the meat wont be cooked before being served so they have to be careful in that regard. But supermarkets dont expect you to eat their meat raw, so dont take as many precautions.
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Are Raw Diets Safe
There are a couple of ways to examine this question.;First, we can ask ourselves if commercial pet food is safe? Numerous pet food recalls have occurred over the past few years and many pets have died from eating commercial pet foods contaminated with melamine and other toxins. Some pet food recalls have involved Salmonella found in dry food. Believing that mass produced foods are uniformly safe is a big leap of faith, in my opinion.
Second, we can look at the reality of how a cats anatomy and physiology were designed to eat and digest raw meat. Cats have a more acid stomach pH and a shorter gastrointestinal tract, making them less vulnerable to many types of food-borne bacteria. I remind my clients that cats lick their bottoms every day, and do just fine! Third, it is not difficult to create balanced diets that are safe from a nutritional perspective. Using a variety of recipes and meat sources is the best way to ensure that your cat gets all the nutrition she needs.
Cats On A Raw Food Diet Have Fewer Urinary Problems
One of the main diseases we see in cats is urinary disease, and evidence is mounting that dry cat food contributes to urinary disease. Cats are descended from desert-dwelling creatures, and they dont have much of a thirst-drive. Instead, they tend to get most of their water from their diet. Prey is around 75%-80% water, so dry diets, at 10% water, dont meet this need. Raw diets provide much more water, and therefore may help to stave off cystitis in susceptible cats – although this is also true of wet cat food diets. Theres currently no evidence for or against this benefit of raw cat food, but it makes sense that it may help.
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A Cooked Diet: The Risks And Rewards
Little scientific evidence exists either for or against a cooked diet for cats.
Some, like Cornell Universitys College of Veterinary Medicine, warn against making raw or cooked cat food at home because of the importance of getting the right quantity and proportions of nutrients.
Remillard says she has talked to many cat owners eager to switch to homemade cat food in the wake of melamine poisoning in commercial cat foods. And although she doesnt push homemade cat food diets, she says they can work — as long as cat owners consult a veterinarian-nutritionist to formulate one.
Royal Canin Kitten Thin Slices In Gravy Best For Kittens
This cat food comes very highly rated by vets and owners alike. It has been developed by scientists at Royal Canin to provide optimal nutrition for growing kittens. Theyve balanced for gentle growth whilst still providing energy for play, meaning this kitten food will keep your cat happy and well-fed to 12 months of age.
The protein content is 55% and theyve named the protein sources, so you know exactly what it is that your kitten is getting. It also contains added vitamins, minerals, and taurine to ensure theres everything your cat needs. Theyve even thought to make the slices smaller to make it easier for those tiny teeth and mouths! Theyve made the cans quite small though, which means you might get through several a day as your cat gets older.
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Safety Considerations For Raw Cat Food Diets
While some raw cat foods may provide cats with excellent nutrition, they are still not without their drawbacks.
Studies reveal that commercially prepared raw pet foods suffer from increased levels of contamination with potential pathogens like Salmonella, Listeria, and E. Coli in comparison to regular pet foods.
The situation isnt any better for raw diets prepared at home. USDA estimates show that approximately one-quarter of raw chicken parts in human food-production facilities are contaminated with Salmonella and/or Campylobacter bacteria. Toxoplasma gondii and other parasites can also be spread through raw cat foods.
You may have heard that healthy adult cats have innate resistance to foodborne pathogens. While this may be true in some cases, reports of cats developing and even dying from diseases contracted from raw cat food do exist.
People living with a cat who eat raw foods can also be exposed to these pathogens from handling contaminated foods or coming into contact with pathogens in the cats feces. The risks posed by raw foods are greatest for people and cats who are very young, very old, or immunocompromised.
Can Cats Have Salami
You might wonder if cats can eat salami, and if yes, in what amounts. Salami as a meal combines many unwanted additives, like salt, colorants, and flavor enhancers. And don’t forget about its seasoning, such as paprika or garlic that may even be toxic to cats. Salami is also high in saturated fats, only contributing to a cat’s potential obesity.
Besides that, salami is prepared by fermenting and air-drying the meat, leaving a small chance of Salmonella and Trichinella contamination.
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Can Cats Eat Chicken Nuggets
Chicken nuggets are a tasty snack and a firm favorite in many households. While it’s tempting to share these with your cat, we don’t advise that you do.
Chicken nuggets are not suitable for cats. Many store-bought or fast-food varieties of chicken nuggets contain preservatives and unsafe seasonings that may harm your cat. The breading often contains garlic and spices that may be toxic to cats, not to mention the high salt content, which is not suitable for felines.
If Your Cat Eats What It Shouldn’t
No matter how cautious you are, it’s possible your cat can find and swallow what it shouldn’t. It’s a smart idea to always keep the numbers of your local vet, the closest emergency clinic, and the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center — 426-4435 — where you know you can find them in an emergency. And if you think your cat has consumed something that’s toxic, call for emergency help at once.
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Cats On A Raw Food Diet Have Better Skin/coat/energy Levels
Advocates for raw cat food say there are a range of benefits, from better energy levels to curing cancer. And the problem with most of these benefits is that theyre hard to measure – they can be subjective. So far, theres not a lot of evidence that any of these benefits are actually true – and naysayers say that a change to any high-quality diet would have the same effect. Its certainly true that, for pets with allergies, a change of diet would improve their skin if the new diet didnt contain any allergens, so that probably accounts for some of the subjective improvements.
Can I Give My Cat Raw Vegetables
Although cats are obligate carnivores, when they’re hunting and eat their prey, they eat the vegetable matter in the preys gut. Cats are built to tolerate a certain amount of roughage in their diets.
If your cat is overweight, adding some veggies to his diet can help keep his;weight down. Feeding your cat vegetables can also boost his;immune system and can lessen the effects of ageing.
Vegetables that can be good to offer your cat are:
- Chopped carrots
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While The Debate Is Still Raging On Whether We Should Feed Our Feline Friends Raw Chicken Or Not Weve Put Together A Quick Guide Looking At The Benefits And The Risks Of Feeding Your Cat Raw Meat
Raw diet for cats is a controversial topic. With benefits and drawbacks on both sides of the argument, there is no wonder specialists are yet to find the definitive answer to the question of should cats eat raw chicken or indeed any other raw meat. Here is what you need to know about the pros and cons of this type of diet.
Raw Food Diets Mean Cats Are Less Hungry And Beg Less
Protein is very filling, and raw meat is almost completely protein. So, feeding a raw meat diet means that your cats are getting more protein, and will feel full. This is great for greedy cats or those that pester their owners for scraps. Less hunger potentially also means less obesity – which affects around 50% of cats, and is a serious welfare problem. Having said that, restricting diet can be done by having some willpower on your cats behalf, so this isnt as clear-cut as it might seem.
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Commercial Raw Cat Food Vs Homemade Raw Food For Cats
Raw cat foods come in many different forms. Some pet parents prepare raw foods for their cats at home. Others choose commercially available raw cat food diets, which are usually sold as raw frozen or raw freeze-dried formulas.
Other options are also available, like premixes of vegetables, vitamins, and minerals that you add raw meat to, or there are ready-made, raw pet diets that can be purchased from local butchers. Which option is best?
How Much Does Primal Cat Food Cost
If you feed your 10-lb cat 1.5 ounces of Primal cat food per dayabout 200 caloriesit would cost about $3.18 per day.
This makes it one of the more expensive products on the market. Its significantly more expensive than the average dry food, comparable to some high-end canned products, and a bit more expensive than Stella & Chewys, another popular raw cat food brand.
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Can Cats Eat Pork
Including pork in your cat’s diet will likely not cause too many issues. If your cat has never eaten pork, it may be a good idea to start off slow and see how your cat likes it.
The biggest concern with giving cats pork is the high fat content that can lead to weight gain if overconsumed. Pork for cats should only be served as an occasional treat and should come from the leanest cuts.
Pork is also high in sodium which is very bad for your cat in high doses. Too much sodium in your cat’s diet can cause hypernatremia which will require medical treatment. This meat is also notorious for carrying parasites, so if you’re choosing to feed pork to your cat, make sure it’s cooked properly.
Can Cats Eat Bacon
Bacon is not an ideal food for cats. Like most cured meats, it’s incredibly high in sodium which, in the long term, can have some pretty nasty effects on your cat’s health.
In addition to the excessive salt content, bacon is also high in fat that can cause weight gain when consumed regularly.
Can cats have bacon as an occasional tasty treat? Absolutely, but make sure it doesn’t happen too often.
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Bone Pieces Can Hurt Your Cat
This may not apply, depending on what kind of raw meat you want to feed your cat. But if you feed it meat with bones in, then these could hurt your cat. Small bones are a particular problem; these can be sharp, and can get stuck in your cats gums. Hard bones can also damage your cats teeth.
If this is a concern, you can feed your cat cuts of raw meat instead.
What Is A Raw Diet For Cats
A raw diet for cats involves feeding them uncooked animal products. This includes muscle meat, organ meat, and bones. This type of food is sometimes called the BARF diet, which stands for “bones and raw food” or “biologically-appropriate raw food.”
The ideal raw diet for cats is prepared based on a carefully designed recipe. Many cat owners choose to prepare these diets themselves at home, but commercial forms are also available. If you choose to feed your cat a raw diet, it should be one that has been determined complete and balanced by a veterinary nutritionist. Cats that eat an imbalanced diet are at risk for a variety of health issues.
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How Can I Prepare A Raw Food Diet
While raw feeding may bring to mind thoughts of throwing a piece of raw meat or fish in the bowl for your cat, making a complete and balanced homemade raw diet is not that simple.
A serious danger of raw feeding is the risks posed to the human residents of a house. Food safety storage and cleaning practices must be followed. It is always best to consult an animal nutrition professional to develop a complete diet of protein from meat or fish, amino acids, vitamins and minerals, and proper water intake for your cat.
What Do The Experts Say
Speaking to PetMD, Jodie Gruenstern, DVM, believes a raw food diet may be even more important for cats than it is for dogs because they are stricter carnivores than dogs. ;
In the same article, Erika Halle, DVM, discussed how a raw diet can help with weight management. Obesity is still possible with raw food, but much less likely than with processed, high carbohydrate food. With diabetes and obesity being so prevalent among cats today, this is especially important.
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What Kinds Of Raw Meat Can Cats Eat
As a general rule of thumb, cats should only eat lean cuts of meat that have been processed as little as possible before they eat it.
Now, there is a difference between commercial processing and processing at home. Grinding your own meat, cooking it, or adding other ingredients to benefit your cat are all fine. But canned meats, salted and pre-seasoned meats are generally not a good idea.
While you can feed the occasional high-fat meat, you should keep those cuts and kinds of meat to a minimum. Bacon, for instance, is both fatty and salty. Cats may love small amounts as an occasional treat, but bacon, ham, and other processed seasoned meats should be kept to a minimum or excluded entirely.
If youre feeding a larger amount of raw meat to your cat, you should also try to feed a variety of meats. Chicken, fish, and red meat can all add to your cats diet, assuming you have a safe and hygienic source, but too much of any of them may lead to nutritional imbalances that are harmful to your cats health.
Remember that there are commercially made raw diets that can serve as full meals or treats for your cat that are designed to be balanced and healthy for most cats.