Why Choose a Raw Food Diet for Your Cat?
All pets need proper nutrition to stay healthy and live longer. Since animals generally digest foods differently than humans, they need to follow a diet that is designed specifically for them. The diet should include ingredients that increase their vitality and energy levels, as well as protect them from illnesses. For these reasons, many cat owners have chosen to feed their pets a raw food diet and enjoy the many benefits associated with it.
Raw Vs. Commercial Cat Food Diets
Among the various options available, raw cat food diets stand out because they are the closest thing to what a cat would eat if it was in a natural habitat. A feline's body is made to consume unprocessed food found in the wild. However, as cats have become more and more domesticated, they have strayed from their original feeding structure. Cat owners might purchase prepackaged or canned pet food out of convenience, or they could be unaware of alternatives. One of the problems with these foods is that they are condensed when packaged in order to be preserved. Often times, the condensing process involves heat that will actually destroy some of the nutrients that cats need. An indirect result of this process is that cats are deprived of their nutritional requirements, and their bodies cannot function at optimal levels.
Benefits of a Raw Food Diet
Raw foods are the easiest way to give your cat a diet that resembles what they would naturally eat in the wild. It also prevents cats from eating live animals on their own, which is extremely important. Mice, rats, birds, and insects can carry diseases and should never be digested by your pet. The best way to make sure he or she is eating quality, harmless foods is to closely monitor everything eaten on a daily basis.
Additional benefits of a raw food feline diet include:
- Decreased Risk of Diabetes
- Decreased Risk of Urinary Tract Infections
- Decreased Risk of developing Hyperthyroidism
- Decreased Risk of Skin disorders
- Decreased Risk of Arthritis
- Reduction in Anxiety
- Healthier Weight Control
The basic dietary needs of cats are quite simple:
- 80 to 85 percent meat, including fat, skin, sinew, tendons, cartilage, and other tissues
- 10 percent bones, either ground into the meat or bone meal, as a necessary source of calcium.
- Five to 10 percent organ meat, with half of that being liver
The calcium and protein they will intake are invaluable. Try to keep the types of bones and meat varied, as that practice will most resemble natural hunting patterns.
Concerns and Precautions
A lot of cat owners are intimidated or uncomfortable with preparing a raw food diet for their cat. Although this is logical, try to remember that cats are carnivorous, and have a faster digestion process than humans; so bacteria does not arise as quickly in their intestines. Before you start your cat on any raw food diet, you need to understand how to prepare their food safely. Ignoring certain precautions will potentially expose them to salmonella and surface bacteria present in uncooked meats.