Saturday, October 20, 2012

Raw Feeding

My column Dog Talk today in The Star is all about raw feeding for dogs.  It includes information from vets and dog experts who are for it, against it and on the fence.  It also includes an interview with Siew Yen from Furrenz who makes and sells raw food in Malaysia.

If you have a dog, check it out!

I should say here that I am on the fence about raw food.

I feed Target and Guido raw beef - but I wouldn't feed them raw chicken or other meat as I would worry about salmonella.  The beef they get is top quality, carpaccio and steak tartare quality, and I eat it raw too. I would feed them sashami fish but it's too expensive.

I don't believe anyone should prepare all food for their pets at home, unless they are qualified animal nutritionists.  There is just too much juggling that goes into making food that has the right ingredients in the right proportions.

Because of this concern, I feed my pets manufactured food too.  Biscuits which I think help clean teeth, and quality wet food that has lots of taurine and all that other stuff that's essential for kitties.

Contamination and dodgy factories means that I never buy food or treats made in China.  I usually opt for products made in Thailand.  Touch wood it's been OK so far. 

As a caveat, I have to say that if my pets had allergies, or if Thailand started having pet food scandals, I would rethink all this - and probably end up taking a course in pet nutrition.

I'd be curious to discover what you all think about this issue.

See you Monday for Target's Gotcha Day?


Here's Yen who has her point of view talking about her raw food.



22 comments:

The Whiskeratti said...

I feed my two cats Evo grain free, dry kibble. I think it's a good food. I've considered raw but you are right - too many variables involved. I just keep praying that we won't ever have any problems with Evo.

If we did, I'd probably try Wellness. I fed them canned W for awhile and they did like that. Feeding is really a complicated issue these days.

Brian said...

Interesting stuff! I have not tried raw anything yet.

Sherlock, Ash and Traveler said...

We have a friend who makes her own dog and cat food but mom sticks to the Meow Mix at Petsmart purrrs
Can't wait for Taget's Gotcha Day monday :)

mythreemoggies said...

We occasionally get chicken but it is cooked :-)

Mollie said...

Humom never lets uz have anyfing raw, except a bit of veg when she's chopping..Good old Yucky kibble for me :( xx00xx
Mollie and Alfie

Sparkle the Designer Cat said...

My human tried giving us raw food once - it was frozen and store bought. NONE of us ate it - we looked at my human like she was nuts, which of course she is.

sully86 said...

your cats eat better than me.

Cathy Keisha said...

Will you feed me raw fish when I come to visit tomorrow? I don't like beef at all.

Texas, a Cat in New York said...

My human has the same concerns as you regarding raw meat...
Purrs

dArtagnan Rumblepurr/Diego Hamlet Moonfur said...

Rumblemum has been worrying about our food lately... she's trying to figure out a good diet for us.

Cat-from-Sydney said...

Hmm....we get the canned variety for breakfast and top quality kibbles for whole day nutrition. The kibble is low ash, low salt etc....all because of Brad. Only Brad and I eat raw meat, beef or lamb usually, the rest of my family refuse to touch them. Not saying we only eat sirloin steak but Mama craves Aussie meat, so we benefit too. purrr...meow!

Declan said...

Spooky! My post yesterday was about raw feeding. Mum still can't quite being herself to give me chicken bones but I love raw fish, beef , chicken tripe & rabbit! Deccy x

~*Connie*~ said...

I feed my seven cats raw. I used to make it myself via a recipe from a nutritionist at http://www.catinfo.org

A cat's natural diet is small rodents and birds, and it includes the meat the bones the organs and the fur/feather/feet if they eat the stomach contents then the plant based part of that diet is no more than 2% of the diet, unlike most commercial diets that have plant based ingredients often as a major portion of the diet. Many food manufactures include fiber thinking it will control hunger - but it is not part of their natural diet and can just lead to problems such as excess gas from the fiber fermenting because they can't be properly digested to larger smellier stools.

A cat's whole body was designed to thrive on their diet. Their digestive enzymes are geared towards meat. They lack several key ones to get the nutrients out of plants that omnivores have. Their digestive tract is also shorter and more acidic to prevent e coli and salmonella from multiplying and causing problems. It only becomes an issue when the kitty is immunocompromised - which is the same with humans. When you hear of these outbreaks they are almost always limited to the young the old and the infirm.

One downside with cats is that they learn what foods are foods with in the first few months of their life. If they are not introduced to raw meat or high meat diets it might be hard to convince them that raw meat is food and you will have to work with this biological instinct to introduce them to them. If feeding a cat a new diet causes gastrointestinal distress it isn't because the food is bad, it is because the food is unusual and you just need to go slower to help the body adjust to something new.

Tamago said...

I get manufactured food for my boys because of the same reason as yours. I prepare snack (boiled chicken) myself, though. I'd love to get beef for boys but Goro got sick by eating it..so no beef on their dining table. They must be jealous of Target and Guido :-)

Katie and Glogirly said...

We haven't tried raw, but know a few cats that eat raw and loved it. It's manufactured raw though and probably has a good balance of nutrients.

Katie has been food hopping lately. I had an opportunity to talk with the Vet in charge at Royal Canin. I am pretty impressed with their new spayed/neutered formula.

: ) Glogirly

Christine and FAZ said...

Raw is best but sadly we only get that for treats. FAZ

heyitsjethere said...

Hey Au, Hey Target, Hey Guido, Jet here. Hi Miss Ellen.

You've touched on a very hot topic here in the States as well. We believe it takes a strong commitment to go raw. Here in the states there are several companies who prepare and sell raw products, so, it's a bit easier. You bring up important nutritional considerations.

Mom serves us nutrient dense kibble from Life's Abundance. A vet in our state formulated the product, it's all natural, and we seem to thrive on it. Plus, they give a % to our favorite rescue! It's drop shipped to our front door... can't get any easier!

FURKIDSMOM said...

We've never had raw food but we know a few woofies and kitties that do.

We wanted to let you know that we did a review of your book on our blog today!

The Florida Furkids

Katie Isabella said...

I was hoping that I would get a kitty who was very young and I could traun him or her to certain things....walking outside on a leash, eating raw, several other things but I got a well established in her own rights, young lady of approximately three years of age and she said that changing her diet (especially when she bomits SO much) is not in the cards.

I will look at the iPad and let you know the name of the app here shortly. xox

Marg said...

We have never fed raw here mainly because it is expensive. It probably is better for them but I cannot bring myself to do it, plus, I would think you would have to have a very large freezer or go to the store every day. I would be afraid of it going bad. My cats and dogs have all lived a very long and good life on good ole cat and dog food.

Timmy Tomcat said...

Pops makes us cooked chicken meals. He got the grinder and does it all by recipe. The old guy, Pops not Buddy, is doing research on nutrition for cats and his RN background really helps. We all tried Raw but... Well... Only Mr B and Rumpy ate it in any amount.
Eating the cooked meals has cleared up Rumpy's Diarrhea and Buddy's Constipation. In only a week I may add.
The next big thing is switching off of Dry food as a treat to Dried Chicken or beef bits. Pops was going to buy a freeze/dry machine but wants to check to see if we will eat it first before spending a few grand. He must really love us.
Purrs

Cheri said...

I tried raw food for the cat sand they would not eat it - good idea but some pets will not eat it.

cats of wildcat woods