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Advice for a cat's diet?

Hey everyone! I just rescued a cat from the streets, she’s an amazing beautiful gift! She was extremely underweight when I got her. She has bulked up a bit from the “natural” holistic food I have been feeding her. I’m taking her to the vet to get all those horrendous shots, that weird chip, and spayed. When she’s healing from this traumatizing experience, can I put her on a real holistic diet? Is there a whole food diet or even a raw food diet I can put her on where she won’t get sick? I’m sure she can’t go raw, don’t they need animal protein?? Please help. Thanks!!!

I have also heard that sprinkling nutritional yest on her food is excellent for her skin and fur, any thoughts there?


  • Blue_EyesBlue_Eyes Raw Master

    Yes, Kitties can go raw. that is what they are suppose to eat Raw Meat. Kitties are Carnivores. They were not meant to eat the “cereal” that the pet food companies sell. It is cereal sprayed with meat FLAVOR. Make sure you research it well and never give your kitty regualer raw chicken. Kitty food should be all organic and free range. I have a friend who had an outside cat that lived to be 22 years old and the only thing it would eat from her was raw deer meat. She said they had to kill a deer every year just for the cat and when they ran out they had to borrow from neighbors. If you are going to keep it in the house are you sure you want to give it all those shots? It may be a good idea but I am learing of shots.

    My cat died at about 10 from the best “cat foods” out there so they did her no good. I even did holistic cat food. If I get another kitty she is going RAW

  • evergreenevergreen Raw Master

    there is lots of info here

  • I don’t want to give her those shots, at all. I believe by law when I get her spayed, I have no choice, she has to get them. Can I buy frozen “wild caught” fish and feed her primarily that? Or organic canned tuna? I’m so weird about buying meat, but if she needs organic chicken and beef I’ll do it. Will she be susceptible to worms with the raw meat?

  • evergreen-thanks for the info!

  • BluedolfinBluedolfin Raw Newbie

    chakra essence~ Even though most of us think fish is a “natural” food for felines, it really isn’t. Most cats don’t like getting into water, so, in the wild, fish would not be on the menu for dinner. However, what is “natural” for a feline are things mice, etc. You might check out frozen mice at your local feed store. Also, there have been a few other threads recently where folks talk about getting chicken and other meat & bone products. Congrats on becoming a new kitty mom. It’s purrrrfectly wonderful. :)

  • iknikn

    Chakra-essence – enjoy your little kitten! I don’t know where you live, but in my area, Sarasota FL, there are several distributors for raw food for cats and dogs. It is frozen into small cubes and you just need to thaw. I put my cat on this diet. First he thought he’s gonna starve, but in a few days his system got used to it. Unfortunately I went back to the regular cat food, because I simlpy could not afford it. My previuos cat lived to be 21 years old! she was an inside and outside cat. I fed her regular cat food and maybe twice a week some regular tuna from a can. no matter how deep in the forest she was, she somehow heard me open the can and ran inside, to get her little treat. So I don’t know, but I think it’s the combination of food, genes, and lifestyle for a cat to live a long life. Oh, by the way, she was diagnosed with leukemia when she was 6, and the vet wanted to put her to sleep right then and there. I was so devestated and I didn’t let him do it right away. I wanted to say goodby to her. At home I started feeding her raw liver (really cheap at the grocery store) and tuna. She survived her “leukemia”, if she had it at all.

  • Hey Chakra Essence,

    I’m not sure where you are coming from but where I live vets can’t force you to do any shots by law except Rabies (and most won’t push that to the brink). I am an ex vet tech/assistant (whatever you want to call it) I burnt out fast because I don’t vaccinate my cats at all (had I been as enlightened when I got them as I am now they wouldn’t have even gotten kitten vaccines…but then again I wouldn’t have gotten the rabies vaccine either…live and learn). My cats are now five and haven’t had vaccines since they were 2. Even then I did the minimal vaccines. Also, I would not recommend vaccinating and getting spayed at the same time. Vaccines (especially Rabies) attack the immune system (that’s their purpose, to produce an immune response to create antibodies). As a result it could affect your little treasures healing time, the way the incision heals etc. A lot of vets understand if you tell them you are uncomfortable vaccinating when she is having surgery because you want to make sure her immune system can be fully devoted to healing. If they refuse service…they probably aren’t the best vet to be going to anyway. I worked with 7 vets, 2 were big cat vets and neither of them vaccinated their own cats and would be honest about it with their patients owners. I also worked with 2 holistic vets (not the same people) who didn’t promote vaccinating but would do it if requested and did educate their clients about Rabies being required by law. In some states (Oregon I think is one) Rabies isn’t even required for cats.

    My cat’s have been raw longer than I have been, nearly a year. They are doing wonderfully on it. I feed twice a day ~12 hours apart. It’s very important for them to have a fasting period during the day. Since cats are obligate carnivores I have found that I don’t need to supplement anything they do great with what they get. I have also discovered that some cats do not handle beef liver well at all…my female projectile vomits (sorry to be graphic) whenever she eats it (luckily we figure that out quickly…poor little girl!). Yahoo has a couple good groups for raw cats, one is called RawCat I believe.

    Best of Luck! I am glad you are passing your raw knowledge on to your pets, my path was in reverse (cats and dogs are on raw and now I am working on being 100% raw).

    Sorry so long! Wysteria

  • im so inspired by this! I have been wanting to get my kitty off of store bought pet food- i buy her the best natural pet food, but she still sheds like crazy and despite being very active, is kinda tubby. How would you recommend weaning her off of bought food? I may also be weirded out by buying meat again…

  • Husbands come in very handy for the buying meat thing… :-p As far as switching over, some cats jump right in all four paws…I had one that did…I also have a wonderful calico that is like my hubby and totally carb addicted. It took her a while of weaning (about 4 months to be exact and I have heard some take longer.) We started out mixing wet in with their dry till they were 100% wet (because of my picky girl) and then a few pieces of meat in with the canned (she avoided that like the black plague). It also took either cutting into small pieces or grinding (we got a meat grinder specifically for that and making chicken burger for ourselves (before I became vegetarian). They then transitioned to chunks and then to full wings, necks, legs of chickens. We give them turkey every now and then and we also give them a tuna treat (my calico is obsessed) every now and then. Once I got the cats on the full raw diet is when they started dropping weight. My male is almost his ideal weight (he has skin that hangs down instead of a perfect tucked tummy but it’s possible that’s genetic) and my calico (Kitten) could stand to loose probably another 1/2 pound but I am not pushing matters. She’s healthy and happy so I let her be. Can’t inflict too many rules on those calico’s…you may have a war on your hands. :)

    I would also recommend checking out the yahoo groups. They are the only cat specific ones I have found. My journey with pets on raw started when I got my first dog (I had had one of the cats for about 2 years already). That’s when I bloomed into the nutritionaholic that people like to roll their eyes at. My mother seriously thought I had gone plum insane. She still thinks I am at times. She’s going to come down for a few days at the end of September…she doesn’t know I am eating strictly raw, she may be a little put out. :-\ Anyway, off topic, raw pages. Another good one but it’s designated for dogs is http://dogfoodproject.com. They have a bunch of basic nutrition information.

    Good Luck! Wysteria

  • VeggiePrincess- I love the fact that your cat’s diet influenced you to go raw! Thanks for the heads up on the vaccines. I just contacted my local Holistic Vet, they said the dr. more than likely will not operate on her until she is up to date on all her vaccinations and gets a leukemia test. Sheesh!

    I’m going to call my co-op and find out if they have this frozen raw cat food. That sounds like my best bet at the moment. I thought about buying her a frozen mouse from the pet store, but won’t she want to play with it? I can see her now whipping it around and dragging mouse particles all throughout my house!

    Bluedolfin- I will more than likely not feed her fish. After I red your post I came across an article about tuna being toxic to their digestive track. I have been giving her cod liver oil just about every other day, would you advise against that, too? I read somewhere else that giving not only cats, but all pets fish oil can really be beneficial to their immune system, reduce any potential inflammation, and benefit their overall health. Any thoughts??

  • You contacted your local “Holistic Vet” and they said that you need to vaccinate! That’s CRAZY! They may be using holistic as a marketing ploy. Just like alternative practitioners for children, good holistic vets are looking out for the pet. But unfortunately there are a lot out there that tout the “holistic” name and don’t live the lifestyle. I would look other places or, go in and see the vet (do a visit just by yourself to check out the facility; a good vet will do this). Talk to the vet one on one. Make sure you aren’t going through a receptionist. They aren’t always the most informed unfortunately. We had a couple I worked with that were very uninformed. Most were great but it depended who you talked to.

    best of luck!

  • Is it safe to feed whole pieces of chicken to cats? Ive heard that the bones splinter and can cut up their insides. Dont know if thats true. The only thing i have that could grind meat is my vitamix and i dont feel good about comingling meat preperation in what i prepare. Im thinking about getting a frozen mouse and shutting her in the bathroom with it (that way it doesnt end up stinkin behind the couch) So funny you bring up calicos VeggiePrincess, my girl is a calico. shes part siamese too, with very pretty blue eyes.

  • Bones are safe as long as they are uncooked…funny huh :) I have been feeding my cats chicken wings and legs, cornish hens (full thing) and smaller turkey legs for about a year (give or take). My dogs eat full chickens (not in one sitting or they would be piggies) turkey, beef rib bones, venison, pretty much anything that I can get for a good price. It’s not cheap having 5 animals all on raw and then myself and my hubby… sigh. I haven’t braved the mouse yet. I know a lot of people do it but I just can’t get past the fur thing…I did give the cats rabbit once…they weren’t too into it, and frankly neither was I. It was really gamy smelling and just was all around unpleasant. Rabbits aren’t my animal of choice (I’m allergic to most – the fur..) but I love them in the wild and I would like to eventually keep/maybe breed angoras if I get into spinning my own yarn anymore (but that’s for when I get my farm and my land and am not living in suburbia…) Totally off topic, SORRY! I would recommend starting with something ground first. The frozen mice you have to warm to room temperature. Cat’s a lot of the time don’t like stuff if it’s not room temperature, and it isn’t recommended defrosting in the microwave (we don’t own one so I forget about that sometimes) or in boiling water. The microwave creates carcinogens and cats are VERY sensitive to any toxins. That’s part of why I don’t vaccinate. Cats are more prone to get injection site sarcomas (I believe it’s sarcoma…my mind is failing me right now…sorry) than dogs are. They are just super sensitive little beings.

    I bet your little girl is gorgeous! Gotta love the blue eyes :)

  • BluedolfinBluedolfin Raw Newbie

    chakra essence~ Sorry, I don’t have any info on kitties and castor oil. With my three Aby lovebugs, I used the same “stuff” I use for myself.

  • you guys will love this- I bought some chicken thighs last night (from a local amish farm) and cut a few small chunks off for my kitty as i was in a hurry. She looked at it, batted it a bit and ignored it. I proceded to give her some torn up romaine lettuce and she chowed down on that. So cute- my little veggie kitty. I will keep trying with the meat…

  • That’s great! lol apparently she needed greens.

  • cute…. my marmalade cat loves to steal broccoli from my plate! i guess he figures it is the easiest thing to grab when he is feeling naughty

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