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How much meat should I feed my cat?

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!

  
Milky

Pretty,- charming, and- kind of weird
 
 
Purred: Mon Jan 16, '12 2:41pm PST 
Next few months, I will switch her diet slowly. She likes to eat small amounts of meat. She hates raw turkey, but she LOVES raw chicken.

She weighs 10 lbs, and loves to pig out. She doesn't care if she barfs. I don't want her to barf anyway.

How much's meat (chicken) a day?

Thanks
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BK

Ambassador at- the Kitty U.N.
 
 
Purred: Tue Jan 17, '12 7:24am PST 
Milky, feeding a raw diet is not just a matter of throwing some meat on a plate. You need to make sure it's a balanced diet. There are different ways to do it - you can feed ground raw, which is ground meat, bones and organs with some supplements added. Or you can feed the Frankenprey model which is 80% muscle meat, 10% bone, 5% liver and 5% other secreting organ. I've written an article for Alex's mom's website which goes into more detail: http://www.ibdkitties.net/rawinstructions.html
I hope this helps - feel free to come back and ask more questions if you need more info!
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Pandora

go getter kitter
 
 
Purred: Tue Jan 17, '12 8:02am PST 
I don't know how much per day, as it depends on not just size but age and activity level and individual genetics also, but I do know feeding only 2-3 tablespoons per feeding helps keep it down, no matter what type of food it is. Have had several pigout kitties here too, and had to do that.
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Gummi

Destroyer of- Spiders
 
 
Purred: Tue Jan 17, '12 8:25am PST 
Usually at least 2-3% of the cat's total body weight.

Just make sure that if you are feeding *only* raw, that it's balanced. If you're still feeding some canned food on the side, your cat is probably getting everything she needs. I feed beef, rabbit, chicken, quail, beef heart, livers, and whole eggs and fish oils. Of course, I feed canned also so I know they're getting the things I've missed.
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Shade

My name is not- Kittyfloss!
 
 
Purred: Tue Jan 17, '12 2:27pm PST 
There are two issues I'd like to address here. First is that BK is absolutely right, raw feeding involves much more than just serving some muscle meat. A balanced diet has to include 10% bone, 5% liver, and 5% other secreting organ (kidney, spleen, thymus, etc.); these are not optional, but requirements. In addition to the great article that BK wrote, you can also check out catcentric.org and rawfedcats.org for more information. Additionally, I'd like to mention that although it's great that Milky loves raw chicken, it is best not to only feed one protein source to a cat. It's fine to start off with, but you want her to get used to other proteins too. I know you said that she doesn't like turkey, but both beef and pork are readily available and one can often find lamb too.

The other thing that I want to mention has to do with what Gummi mentioned about feeding canned food to balance out the raw. I would be leary of doing this. The vitamins, calcium, etc. found in the canned food are meant to balance out the protein (or meat) found in that can of food, they will not also balance out additional meat from raw feeding. It's fine to feed canned as well as raw, I do it myself, but the raw food still also has to be balanced over time. That means that let's say over a week, you have to have balanced out your 80% muscle meat with the bone and organs. The same thing would apply to whole prey. You wouldn't feed a quail chick or mouse to balance out several meals of chicken and beef meat chunks.

The amount to feed your cat is usually calculated at 2 - 4% of the body weight of the cat per day. You feed to the lower end if you have an overweight or more sedentary cat. You feed more to the 4% if you have a very thin or active cat. You would feed even more than 4% to an actively growing cat.

I hope this helps out. I think it's great that you want to try out raw with Milky, it's just important that you get completely educated before you jump into it.

Purrs,
Shade
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Rachel

1211214
 
 
Purred: Fri Jan 27, '12 2:58pm PST 
I second everything Shade just said.

Taking control of your cat's diet is a smart move, but it is vitally important to be sure you're doing it correctly.

Too much bone and your cat can become constipated; not enough and your cat can suffer from some pretty serious issues, especially if the lack of bone goes on too long.

Auntie Crazy
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