Sunday, February 5, 2012

Homemade Cat Food Advice and Ideas

For some time now I have been concerned with my pet food bill and finding helpful ways I can shave a dollar or two off the cost, perhaps by supplementing healthier sources in combination with the no name dry and canned products I purchase now.

There are many good ideas on the net for making homemade cat fare and I have tried some of them usually with mixed reactions from my cats. I decided to pursue a safer method and researched several vet sites to get the input of professionals. I found some interesting insights for feeding an all-natural diet but drawbacks arose with the added expense of buying specialty items like whole rabbits, especially if you lack a local supplier and depending on how dedicated you plan to be in this venture, making volume amounts of animal provisions is the more beneficial way to go as it does involve some work.

If you're unsure how your cats will react to raw meat try giving them a little. When I'm preparing dinner using meats like fish, chicken, turkey or liver I cut small chucks and offer them to my felines to test how easily they will take to it. Usually all four will eat it without hesitation and beg more. You can also experiment with trying them on cooked meats to see how readily they will eat that.

To change your pet’s diet to completely natural foods you will need a quality Grinder. I purchased a Tasin 180 online from the States after learning they're not available in Canada. It was cheaper than I thought and the company got it to me within three days. This machine is recommended because of its ability to grind small, cooked bones well. Adding bone to your mixture insures the much needed calcium content of the food. If you're not certain about grinding the bone sufficiently, save eggshells and wash them well; leave to dry out completely for a few days then use a coffee grinder to grind the shells to a fine powder. Add a teaspoon to the finished food. I’ve done this myself so I know it works. I found this very idea on several vet sites that prepare whole raw diets for their cats otherwise I would never have tried it.

The easiest way to start is to take leftover cooked chicken or turkey and separate the meat you want to use; be sure to add skin and fat along with at least two small thigh or leg bones. Add a few slices of raw liver for more nutrition. Please note that you don't need to add much bone to get the amount of calcium required and because they are cooked they will go through more easily. With a half cup of water grind the meat and bones. I put it through twice, then I 'feel' the finished meat to find the larger pieces of bone to remove them. Adding water brings the moisture content up and makes grinding easier on the machine. Refrigerate in air tight containers and serve.

Since it comes out like wet canned food sometimes I will add chunks of meat to make it more attractive. Some cats prefer chunky fare as apposed to a more liquified consistency. Don't include a lot of vegetables in the meat mix. I have tried this and it was not a grand success. Cats are primarily meat eaters, though I have found that if I add a small chunk of potato, they like it better; you don't need to add spices of any kind either.

As an additional advantage to being a proud owner of a Grinder, I make my own sausage by cutting beef and pork roasts into chunks and mixing in my special spices. The cats love that too and its pure meat.
Set up grinder

After reading about all the herbs and supplements I would need to invest in and the access to certain animals like rabbits and other smaller prey that I'd need to purchase again online, from the States; well, I had my budget to consider so I decided to go with half measures instead. Surely I could improve their diets by adding to rather than by making a complete and drastic change right now. Its gone well so far and my pocketbook, as well as my cats, are the happier for the alterations.


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