Here at the Buddha Compound, Miss Buddha demands only the finest delicacies to grace her plate. For a while that meant high-quality (and high-price) “holistic”/natural dry and canned food (by Nature, Fromm, Merrick, Solid Gold, etc.). Recently, though, we’ve switched two of our feline friends to raw food — and not only is it cheaper* but has made a noticeable difference in the health of our cats. That hopefully means fewer and cheaper vet bills for when they are old and feeble. For those out there that are afraid that raw would be too much work, take a gander at the recipe below. It is so freakin’ easy. My parents have even switched to this method (not an insult to my parents, they just like them some convenience).
I did a bunch of research before coming up with this recipe, and it is mainly based on the recipe listed on All the Best Pet Care (scroll down for the cat food recipe). The Natural Cat by Anitra Frazier is also a good resource, as well as Rad Cat’s resources. There a lot of very passionate opinions on how exactly to do a raw food diet. For example, some are adamant that one has to grind all the meat at home, bones and all. I do not have the time, money, or inclination to do that, but still want the health benefits of a raw diet for my cats. So I didn’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good, figuring that as long as my cats are getting all their important nutrients they should be fine.
Raw Cat Food Recipe
1 lb. of raw meat (we purchase this from Aldi’s for super cheap, frozen in the 1 lb tubes. We use turkey)
1 tsp bonemeal powder
~1/2 tsp liver powder (I am still trying to figure out a more exact measurement for this)
I pre-mix these ingredients in a glass jar that is kept in the fridge. One pound will last about two days, and I typically mix two pounds at a time to save me from constantly having to make new raw food mix. I use this calculator to estimate how much food to give them (about 1/3 a cup per cat/day).
When serving, I mix in a multivitamin powder (I don’t like to pre-mix this as it has probiotics and I’m afraid there would be some sort of reaction with the food. This isn’t a researched notion, just a thought I had).
Ideally I would also add fish oil.
Since I can squeeze the tube of meat into the glass jar, there is no need to handle meat. Also, I found when transitioning, the cats were less suspicious of the raw food if it was served on a plate as opposed to a bowl.
Our cats, since the switch, have had noticeable health differences. Most notably, both used to have digestive problems that are now absent. In the rare occasion we have to feed them dry food again (traveling, ran out of meat, etc.), the symptoms return. They are generally full of energy and active, and their coats are soft and don’t shed as much as they used to.
I hope that this recipe helps others transition over. It is worth
*When I originally calculated the per serving price difference, switching to raw was cheaper. I have not re-calculated since I’ve switched up the routine and added supplements, but I imagine that the price difference is not excessive and still comes out ahead of dry/canned.