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my cat still won't eat raw

This is a dedicated place for all of your questions and answers about Raw Diets. There are also some really cool groups like "Raw Fed" on the topic you can join. This forum is for people who already know they like the raw diet or sincerely want to learn more. Please remember that you are receiving advice from peers and not professionals. If you have specific health-related questions about your cat's diet, please contact your vet!

  
Bella

I will go up to- you, not the- other way
 
 
Purred: Wed Oct 29, '08 9:21am PST 
I've been reading on other forums how other people transitioned their cats and are having small or big successes but my cat will not touch anything but like 2 brands of can food and a handful of dry food brands, all very poor grocery store quality.

since my cat wouldn't eat cold turkey raw, i took the advice to put a sliver of raw in with her can. she will actually eat around the sliver leaving some can too.

i raw feed my dogs, so i have all kinds of meats available for her to try, but she'll have none of it.

i also tried cooked meat, and no.

she will always sniff it, but then leaves it untouched.

is there anything i can do??? i've been trying for at least a month now, but she won't even take 1 lick.

and i'm so surprised because she won't eat the can food that is a mush. she only eats the can food that has slices or cuts of "meat" in sauce or gravy. so i mean, the texture of raw is just about the same! yet she won't try it.

i tried that gravy stuff you can buy in petco, she won't eat that gravy.

any ideas please would help alot any tips!

but i wonder though, if it's this hard to get her to eat raw meat, how on earth will i get her to eat bone powder and organs???
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Khina

Don't breed or- buy when shelter- pets die
 
 
Purred: Wed Oct 29, '08 7:10pm PST 
Luckily my cats were not at all hard to transition. However, the ferrets were another story completely. When I offered raw meat to them they looked at me like I was trying to poison them. Here are the methods I tried with them.

I started introducing meat baby food as a treat. Neither would go for it at first so I had to force the issue a bit by smearing some on their nose to lick off. Once they got a taste they were hooked. They would lick it off my fingers and then off a spoon.

After they were hooked on baby food I added the absolute tiniest pieces of boneless skinless chicken breast. I mean I chopped it up in the tiniest mince you can image. They spit out every single piece of it.

Next I tried blanching the chicken and adding it to the baby food. Same result as raw.

So I decided that the wet method wasn't going to be the way to go with these two. Here's what finally worked. I blanched the chicken and cut it into pieces that were the same size as their kibble (EVO), smashed some kibble into a powder and coated the chicken like shake 'n bake. I started adding bits of it to their kibble bowl. Eventually they would accidentally eat one. And so I'd add more chicken and less kibble. After a couple of weeks I was able to serve all slightly blanched chicken with just a dusting of kibble powder on top. Then no kibble powder. Then bigger pieces of blanched chicken. Then I cooked it for less and less time. Eventually they were eating all raw and they weren't quite sure how it happened. But, boy are they glad it did happen!

Any of those methods may hit the mark with your cat and I'm sure there are other methods as well. I assume you're not free feeding kibble and all that, so I won't go through the laundry list of the basics. Keep trying. Eventually some combination will work. Maybe you need to give her privacy while she eats and keep all other animals out of earshot. Or maybe she'd rather you be nearby. Or maybe she'd prefer her food on a towel on the floor instead of on a plate. There are so many variables, but don't get discouraged. Try to follow her lead and don't get anxious. It'll work out.
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Ivan

Ivor the Engine - keeps going and- going
 
 
Purred: Wed Oct 29, '08 11:29pm PST 
I'm relatively new to the raw diet. My cats like the Primal frozen nuggets (I defrost them, of course). They liked them from the beginning, but in reading about transitioning cats to the raw diet, I came across a recommendation to "fast" your cat if s/he doesn't take to the diet on his/her own. This means withholding food for 24 hours and then offering him/her the raw food (or a combo with their old food, if you prefer, or if s/he still won't eat the raw alone). Some feel this is healthy and natural and should be done every now and again, even with cats who are eating well, as cats in the wild do not always eat every day.

Anyone have any thoughts on that? I'm not sure I'd be a proponent of fasting as a semi-regular practice, but it might be a one-time option for Bella, to get her interested in the raw food.
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Khina

Don't breed or- buy when shelter- pets die
 
 
Purred: Thu Oct 30, '08 6:16pm PST 
Fasting is not a commonly accepted practice for cats because of the risk of developing fatty liver disease (hepatic lipidosis), which can be fatal. Cats should eat something every 24 hours even if you have to resort to junk food.

This doesn't mean that your cat shouldn't become hungry. Do not leave food out all day. Set mealtimes and stick to them. Leave food down for 20 minutes and then put the leftovers away until the next mealtime. Cats are very intelligent and will very quickly learn how to manipulate you if you don't stick to your guns.
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Ivan

Ivor the Engine - keeps going and- going
 
 
Purred: Thu Oct 30, '08 11:36pm PST 
Good to know, Khina. Just to clarify -- if you're saying cats need to eat at least once every 24 hours, it sounds like a 24-hour "fast" would be ok to try with Bella as a one-time-deal, to see if that helps her start eating the raw food (she'll be hungry and more inclined to eat). Is that right? Again, just wanting to clarify.

We agree about not leaving food out all the time. That can make for fat cats, especially if they are indoors-only. We follow exactly what you prescribe - set feeding times and amounts, and the food is removed if not eaten in a certain period of time. The amounts are very carefully measured, too.

Well, Bella's Pawrent, we wish you good luck! If you simply cannot get Bella to eat raw, you might try EVO, as it touts itself as "minimally cooked", and, just as important, it's grain-free. We give our cats some EVO kibble with their Primal raw food, but we occasionally give them EVO canned, too, as they start to get bored with the same wet food every couple of weeks. BTW we are planning to try raw meaty bones to eventually replace the kibble, but we're not quite there yet.
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Whisper

Master of the- Silent Meow
 
 
Purred: Sat Nov 1, '08 2:08pm PST 
My little Whisper will not eat raw, no matter what. I think I could fast him and he would rather starve. Cats! Also, Whisper loves this dry food called "Healthful Life" by Purina and a number of kits suggested to upgrade the food. I bought a small bag ($10) of Chicken Soup dry food, remembering that it was a good food. Will he eat it? Nooooo. I have to mix it with the HL! I am not in a position to be buying all kinds of dry foods if he won't eat it. I thought I was doing a favor by buying CS. I can't figure him out sometimes...MOL! He is soooo picky.
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Watson

He's no- Sherlock!
 
 
Purred: Sat Nov 1, '08 10:10pm PST 
If I were you, Whisper, I'd just keep mixing the food. At least he's getting some of the good with some of the bad! Better than all bad.
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Whisper

Master of the- Silent Meow
 
 
Purred: Sun Nov 2, '08 4:25am PST 
Watson, I try to put a little more and more of the CS in the dry. I mean, Cat Forbid, it has healthy ingredients, with the first listed being chicken. It has salmon, duck, turkey, too. Do you eat raw, Watson? I am always in awe of cats who just take to raw and love it.
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Watson

He's no- Sherlock!
 
 
Purred: Sun Nov 2, '08 10:29am PST 
I like to have a few nibbles of my ferret buddies raw food. My mamma's trying right now to get us all onto canned/raw dietslaugh out loud. She's not having a lot of luck with a couple of my kitty brothers. And I like to play with her mind! Will I/won't I eat it today?happy dance
And Khina? My kitty brothers are being far more stubborn about the switch than my ferret buddies were! They love their RMB diet!
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