Wild cats consume all parts of their prey when killing and devouring it, including its bones. Bones contain essential calcium and other essential nutrients.
Raw diets provide added hydration, helping alleviate some urinary health concerns. A high quality raw diet contains proteins which are easily digested and assimilated by our bodies as nature intended.
1. Better Digestion
One common belief among owners and enthusiasts alike is that cats on raw diets enjoy better appetite, more energy and fewer health issues as a result of being better able to digest their food. Protein found in meat helps support metabolic regulation while bones provide essential minerals like calcium. Amino acids such as taurine and arginine may also come from this source of nutrition.
An appropriately-balanced raw diet can be highly nutritious for cats, provided they receive enough water. Therefore, many raw feeders advise their customers to place the cat’s food into a bowl with an accompanying water bottle, in order to ensure they consume sufficient fluids.
Keep in mind that too much raw meat could alter the gut flora in your cat, leading to health issues. Furthermore, when feeding raw food to cats it’s extremely important that it’s stored correctly to prevent contamination – raw meat can quickly grow bacteria and fungus at room temperature so it should always be stored in either the fridge or freezer to ensure its safety.
2. Improved Immune System
Cats are natural carnivores, and their digestive tract is designed for digesting raw meat. Feeding your cat a diet that fits his or her biology could help your feline thrive by improving immune system function, increasing energy, and improving skin and coat condition.
Raw diets that do not undergo heat processing provide more amino acids that the body can use and can decrease kidney stress by decreasing waste production from protein metabolism.
Raw diets contain ground bones that provide your cat with essential calcium and other essential minerals often absent in kibble-based diets, helping prevent tartar build-up on his teeth. This will also help ensure they live a longer, happier life!
Noting the proper preparation and handling is key when considering whether a raw diet can be healthy for people and pets alike. Raw food contains pathogens which could make people and animals sick if handled incorrectly; wear gloves when handling raw food and only buy meat from sources with stringent safety standards.
3. Healthy Skin & Coat
Raw food provides plenty of vitamins A, D and E to keep skin supple and healthy while the fatty acids found in raw foods will improve coat texture and shine. Furthermore, this diet also aids with your cat’s bowel movements by decreasing them and eliminating smelly fecal matter associated with many dry kibble foods.
Though raw diets are extremely healthy for your pet, it should be remembered that they may pose risks to human cohabitants living with cats. Proper food handling procedures must always be observed – whether grinding your own meat, purchasing pre-made raw food products or making it yourself; always wash your hands after handling raw ingredients and ensure all surfaces used during preparation are sanitised before beginning.
If you need help transitioning your cat onto a raw diet, the Feline Nutrition Foundation has an excellent guide that will walk you through it step-by-step. Gradually introduce raw food into their diet over time so that they can adjust and any digestive issues they might be having are identified and addressed appropriately.
4. Increased Energy
Raw diets contain more protein and less carbohydrates – providing natural energy sources to fuel a cat’s body and increase his or her vitality. Therefore, cats fed on raw diets tend to have greater energy.
Raw diets provide more efficient absorption of nutrients by the body, meaning less waste is produced and cats typically poop less, with smaller, dryer stools that smell less.
Advocates of raw diets claim that their felines’ dental health can benefit from eating raw food because it contains bones that help remove plaque and tartar build-up on teeth. Though chewing bones does help remove some plaque buildup from teeth, there is insufficient evidence to show this alone makes a positive difference to dental wellbeing.
One of the easiest and cost-effective methods of feeding your cat a raw diet is purchasing ready-made raw meals that have already been prepared, proportioned and mixed together – this way you know they meet all FEDIAF nutritional guidelines without heat processing being compromised.
5. Weight Loss
Cats are carnivorous animals and their digestive systems thrive best with an exclusively raw meat diet. Additionally, this provides extra proteins and fats which support weight management for cats.
Pet parents must remember that in order to ensure a nutritious raw diet for their pet, special care must be taken to select high-quality meats and add vitamins and minerals as required to meet all their dietary needs.
If a pet consumes an unbalanced raw diet, harmful bacteria not normally present can develop and lead to health problems including diarrhea, vomiting and weight loss. As such, it is crucial that you speak to a veterinarian regarding preparing or purchasing raw diets for their benefit.
Once your vet has recommended an appropriate diet plan for your pet, the transition to raw feeding can begin gradually by gradually adding pieces of raw meat into their canned food each day for two or three weeks.