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Old September 21st, 2009, 04:50 PM
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Is raw food ok to feed to older cats?

Forest is 15 years old. I just researched elderly cat behaviour (http://www.our-happy-cat.com/senior-cat.html), and it all makes sense. The excessive meowing, the clinginess, signs of arthritis and the lack of appetite. I then went to this link http://www.our-happy-cat.com/cat-diet.html which states:

Quote:
As cats get older they require less protein in their cat diet. Protein helps to promote growth and is a great energy giver.

However as they get older and less active they no longer use as much energy and have stopped growing a long time ago. Although protein is still required, they need less than an adult and so don’t require food that is high in protein.

It is important to reduce the protein levels for older cats because an excess of protein in their system will put a strain on their Liver and Kidneys. This can cause an increased level of thirst and or course urination as the body tries to eliminate some of the excess protein, but of course at the same time it is flushing away valuable vitamins and minerals as well.
As I understand it, a raw diet has lots of protein which cats need, but for an elderly cat is this information true? Should I switch him back to a different diet or back to wet?

On a behaviour related note: What can we do to prevent the over-clinginess and excessive meowing? We love him to bits, but this behaviour is driving us insane. I know with excessive meowing you can't give any attention to it or he will learn that all he has to do is keep at it til we give in. At first we thought he was confused at night, so we got some night lights. Didn't stop the meowing. We can't let him sleep with us, cuz it's more trouble than it's worth. He moves around, has those meowing nightmares, tries to sleep ON my bf's head, etc.

During the day, I will let him on the bed and he will settle half a foot from me, but then he'll get up, pretend to stretch, and try to climb on my lap, or stretch his paws out to touch me. It's not like he has cooties (lol) he has always been easy going, but now it's like he's kicked it up 10 notches and it's hard to handle every day.

Any tips?

Last edited by dollface; September 21st, 2009 at 05:15 PM.
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Old September 21st, 2009, 06:21 PM
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ABSOLUTELY YES!

Puddles went on a raw diet last year and she has since developed muscle mass, yes at 12 years old. She is more active and her fur quality has improved. Soooooo that tells me that senior cats DO require quality meat protein.

If you find a way to stop the excessive moewing let me know, sounds like Forrest is just like Jasper
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Old September 21st, 2009, 11:18 PM
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Has Forest been tested for HyperThyroidism? Excessive meowing especially at night is one very common symptom of HyperT.

Raw food is fine for older cats my grrl is 18 yrs & she was started on a raw diet 2 years ago. Some cats may need their diets tweaked depending on the condition of the #2 deposits left in the litterbox.
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Old September 22nd, 2009, 07:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by growler View Post
Has Forest been tested for HyperThyroidism? Excessive meowing especially at night is one very common symptom of HyperT.
Really? I wonder if I should have Jasper tested again. I have problems keeping weight on him too.
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Jasper, male Ragdoll ?? (approx 10 yrs)
Rose semi feral, a cpietra rescue, female tabby (approx 7 yrs)

Sweet Pea RIP (2004?-2014)
Puddles RIP (1996-2014)
Snowball RIP (1991-2005)

In a cat's eye, all things belong to cats.-English Proverb

“While we are free to choose our actions, we are not free to choose the consequences of our actions.” Stephen R. Covey
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Old September 22nd, 2009, 02:43 PM
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Once again thank you experts Raw diet it is!

No tests done as of yet, need an extra bit of money to do so, but that is now on the list of things to check him out for (Senior blood panel & HyperT).
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Old September 22nd, 2009, 02:50 PM
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Boo went on a raw diet at age 16 after 16 years of kibble...she wasn't too sure about it at first, and it took about a month for her to completely catch on to it, but now she's bugging me ALL THE TIME for her noms. We saw: better coat, better teeth, hardly any more hairballs or vomitting (used to be almost every day, now maybe once a month if that), and her bloodwork is picture perfect (she had shown some signs of kidney issues earlier). She's the picture of senior health!
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Old September 22nd, 2009, 03:38 PM
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Yup Forest was on kibble for 14 years and he was soo stubborn trying to get him on the wet diet first but when it was time to change to raw he gobbled it up without a fuss! No more hairballs and better coat! The only thing that isn't better is his teeth, maybe even worse somehow The Vet noticed when I had to get them vaccinated for their hotel stays in June. They are very pro dry food. And so I bet they will say the raw diet is why their teeth has gown downhill...
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Old September 22nd, 2009, 04:00 PM
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does Forest get whole chunks of meat and bone to chew on? The dental benefits are mainly attained from that; feeding ground raw won't help with teeth nearly as well. Plus, if there's 14 years of dental damage there, it might require a cleaning as a jump-start.
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Solomon - black DSH - king of kitchen raids (11)
Gracie - Mutterooski X - scary smart (9)
Jaida - GSD - tripod trainwreck and gentle soul (4)
Heidi - mugsly Boston Terrier X - she is in BIG trouble!!! (3)
Audrey - torbie - sweet as pie (11 months)
Patrick - blue - a little turd (but we like him anyways) (6 months)
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Riley and Molly
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Old September 22nd, 2009, 10:35 PM
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No we feed the Nature's Variety pucks. Sugarcatmom has suggested some dental chews but haven't been able to purchase them yet. I did not know you could get whole chunks with bones to chew on. Please tell me more about this way of raw feeding
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Old September 23rd, 2009, 06:55 AM
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I would start him off with chunks of meat, no bone, until he gets used to chewing and biting his food, you can then progress with chicken with rib bones. I break the rib bones with the back of a meat cleaver to help eliminate the issue of choking on bones. When he is used to chewing his food with his back teeth and chomping on bones, you can then progress to bones that haven't been broken up.

Good luck.
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Jasper, male Ragdoll ?? (approx 10 yrs)
Rose semi feral, a cpietra rescue, female tabby (approx 7 yrs)

Sweet Pea RIP (2004?-2014)
Puddles RIP (1996-2014)
Snowball RIP (1991-2005)

In a cat's eye, all things belong to cats.-English Proverb

“While we are free to choose our actions, we are not free to choose the consequences of our actions.” Stephen R. Covey
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Old September 23rd, 2009, 07:01 AM
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Definitely try bigger chunks of meat, and if you can convince Forest to eat chicken necks, that would be the ultimate teeth cleaning product. Kicks @ss on any expensive dental chew you can buy.
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Old September 23rd, 2009, 08:43 AM
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Yes, chicken necks and chicken backs are the meaty bones I choose to feed my cats. You can usually get these directly from a butcher, although some specialty pet stores will sell bags of them (much more expensive IME from pet stores though). Like PPs said, though, it can take a little while to convince your cat to actually CHEW ...but my Sr. kitty chewed through a nummy chicken back this morning!
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Owned by:
Solomon - black DSH - king of kitchen raids (11)
Gracie - Mutterooski X - scary smart (9)
Jaida - GSD - tripod trainwreck and gentle soul (4)
Heidi - mugsly Boston Terrier X - she is in BIG trouble!!! (3)
Audrey - torbie - sweet as pie (11 months)
Patrick - blue - a little turd (but we like him anyways) (6 months)
__________
Boo, our Matriarch (August 1 1992 - March 29 2011)
Riley and Molly
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  #13  
Old September 23rd, 2009, 11:47 AM
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Ok so you can just get them from the grocery store/butcher in a package or bag? Do I have to add any supplements to it? If they don't eat it how can I entice them to just chew it?

Update: Forest was fairly quiet yesterday, no meowing so he got to come in the bedroom during the day. No meowing until we went to bed. Today shortly after my bf left for work Forest started meowing again. But it didn't sound like his usual meow. Almost like a howl? Then I just woke up, went out to check the phone than came back in the bedroom and closed the door. He started up again only this time after the 2nd round of meowing, he broke off mid-meow as if he got tired or something. Hard to explain, but should I be worried?

Last edited by dollface; September 23rd, 2009 at 11:52 AM.
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Old September 23rd, 2009, 11:52 AM
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You need to make sure they're getting the right balance of meat, organ and bone in their diet (the kitty gurus could speak to this better than me). I generally feed, say 70-80% of my cat's meals from premade (Nature's Variety) patties (which has the needed mix) then the remaining meals become chunks of meat, meaty bones (like the necks or backs) and a bit of organ meat (chicken liver, heart, etc.)

I get my necks/backs from my local butcher; he saves them for me as free "scraps". I've also been able to buy backs by the boxfull from other butchers. I haven't had any luck getting these from a large grocery store, since most of them don't do their own butchering.

As for getting them to eat it, well, I did baby steps with Boo (the others figured it out right away). i started with just meat, no bone, cut the meat into little bites. Gradually moved up to larger chunks. Once she was comfie with the chunks I tried offering her smaller peices with the bones in (neck/backs). She just figured it out eventually. Persistence was key!
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Owned by:
Solomon - black DSH - king of kitchen raids (11)
Gracie - Mutterooski X - scary smart (9)
Jaida - GSD - tripod trainwreck and gentle soul (4)
Heidi - mugsly Boston Terrier X - she is in BIG trouble!!! (3)
Audrey - torbie - sweet as pie (11 months)
Patrick - blue - a little turd (but we like him anyways) (6 months)
__________
Boo, our Matriarch (August 1 1992 - March 29 2011)
Riley and Molly
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Old September 23rd, 2009, 12:24 PM
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Here are some great links for info. I use the recipe on catinfo, but I do not add any supplements, just the egg yolks. My cats, with the exception of Rose who won't eat cat food, get 50% cat food.

I started with slightly cooked meat, then gradually went to raw. I also mixed a tiny bit in their canned food and gradually increased the raw portion.

Sprinkling parmesean has helped some people.

Bendyfoot is correct. It is so very important that cats get a proper diet based upon the prey model.


http://www.catnutrition.org/foodmaking.php

http://www.catinfo.org/makingcatfood...ecipe_Together
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Cat maid to:

Jasper, male Ragdoll ?? (approx 10 yrs)
Rose semi feral, a cpietra rescue, female tabby (approx 7 yrs)

Sweet Pea RIP (2004?-2014)
Puddles RIP (1996-2014)
Snowball RIP (1991-2005)

In a cat's eye, all things belong to cats.-English Proverb

“While we are free to choose our actions, we are not free to choose the consequences of our actions.” Stephen R. Covey
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Old September 24th, 2009, 01:52 PM
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How do you slightly cook the chicken? And do you have to train them to eat it in one place? I know some cats like to "play" with their food before they attempt to eat it. Gizzy is a fan of taking his treats off somewhere to eat in "privacy" even if it's a foot away lol
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Old September 25th, 2009, 08:23 AM
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Our cats tend to take their food out of the bowl too, so we feed them on kitchen tile, and just use vinager water to wipe up afterwards, it takes about 10 seconds to tidy up. You can lightly cook by putting it in a no-stick pan (no oil) just long enough to make the outside white but the inside stays pink. You can also dunk peices in boiling water for a second or two to get the same effect.
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Owned by:
Solomon - black DSH - king of kitchen raids (11)
Gracie - Mutterooski X - scary smart (9)
Jaida - GSD - tripod trainwreck and gentle soul (4)
Heidi - mugsly Boston Terrier X - she is in BIG trouble!!! (3)
Audrey - torbie - sweet as pie (11 months)
Patrick - blue - a little turd (but we like him anyways) (6 months)
__________
Boo, our Matriarch (August 1 1992 - March 29 2011)
Riley and Molly
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Old September 25th, 2009, 10:16 AM
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I put mine in an oven for just a couple of minutes, like Bendy stated the outside is white, but the inside is still pink.
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Cat maid to:

Jasper, male Ragdoll ?? (approx 10 yrs)
Rose semi feral, a cpietra rescue, female tabby (approx 7 yrs)

Sweet Pea RIP (2004?-2014)
Puddles RIP (1996-2014)
Snowball RIP (1991-2005)

In a cat's eye, all things belong to cats.-English Proverb

“While we are free to choose our actions, we are not free to choose the consequences of our actions.” Stephen R. Covey
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  #19  
Old September 26th, 2009, 10:56 PM
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Thanks everyone! I will try this out
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Old November 19th, 2009, 02:13 AM
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For teeth cleaning, can I feed them chicken wings for gnawing until I can find the necks/backs?
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Old November 20th, 2009, 11:14 AM
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That would be fine....just don't mix kibble with raw in the same meal.
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Owned by:
Solomon - black DSH - king of kitchen raids (11)
Gracie - Mutterooski X - scary smart (9)
Jaida - GSD - tripod trainwreck and gentle soul (4)
Heidi - mugsly Boston Terrier X - she is in BIG trouble!!! (3)
Audrey - torbie - sweet as pie (11 months)
Patrick - blue - a little turd (but we like him anyways) (6 months)
__________
Boo, our Matriarch (August 1 1992 - March 29 2011)
Riley and Molly
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  #22  
Old November 20th, 2009, 06:13 PM
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kibble is a 4 letter word in my house
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Old November 20th, 2009, 06:42 PM
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ok, ok, so nothing with GRAINS in it at the same meal
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Owned by:
Solomon - black DSH - king of kitchen raids (11)
Gracie - Mutterooski X - scary smart (9)
Jaida - GSD - tripod trainwreck and gentle soul (4)
Heidi - mugsly Boston Terrier X - she is in BIG trouble!!! (3)
Audrey - torbie - sweet as pie (11 months)
Patrick - blue - a little turd (but we like him anyways) (6 months)
__________
Boo, our Matriarch (August 1 1992 - March 29 2011)
Riley and Molly
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