Do you worry about Salmonella?
I just started introducing my 3 cats to a raw food diet and it's going GREAT so far- they have loved the raw meat (especially salmon!) and have taken well to almost everything- my "middle child" turned her nose up at chicken liver but I'll try again tomorrow! Leave it to those middlies to be difficult ;) Anyway I feel great about this and I know it's best for them. Already my baby, who is very inactive and overweight, is running around playing & pouncing like never before, and this is after 5 days eating raw meat mixed with their normal canned & dry foods!
My big concern health-wise is about salmonella/bacteria. Feeding them raw chicken & turkey almost seems to be asking for it. So far they've had organic/hormone free chicken, wild salmon, and a mix of organic/hormone-free chicken & chicken liver. I plan to give them mainly raw chicken & turkey due to cost, with salmon, tuna or other fish maybe twice a month. I've heard that their stomaches produce more acid than ours do to kill any bacteria, and of course I'm being very careful about cleaning everything really well, but I just don't want to end up hurting them with this! Any suggestions, advice or anything to ease my fears? Have any of your pets or yourselves gotten salmonella eating this way?
Also, can anyone recommend a good brand of bone meal powder so that I can supplement their diets until they are ready to eat edible bones?
a man is a success if he gets up in the morning and gets to bed at night, and in between he does what he wants to do.
No problems with salmonella here! I have fed dogs, cats & ferrets exclusively raw foods for about 10 years & have never had a problem with salmonella either in the animals or in my family.
As for bone meal, I never use it since it's steamed. You can use dried egg shells instead & make your own calcium supplement that way: just let the empty egg shells sit on your counter or in a windowsill to dry & grind them in a mortar & pestle. Another thing you could try until they have the hang of meat-with-bones is putting chicken wings in a baggie (or more accurately, a couple of baggies, as the one closest to the chicken will tear; I use old plastic grocery bags), get your trusty hammer & smash the bones into pieces & give your kitties that. You'd be surprised, though at how quickly your cats will handle those bones. Chicken wings are easiest to start with, as the bones are fairly soft, though you could use any cut of chicken. Backs are a good choice for smashing, too. If you can find them you can try chicken necks (turkey necks are too hard) on you kitties; chicken neck bones are REALLY soft & crushable even when cooked - though I really caution against cooking any bone if you're going to feed it to your pets.
I hope this helps!
- Stasi, Pea Pod (Morab), Rosie Cotton & Binnabik (the Pibble Posse)
My dog has had no problem with the bones. It freaks me out. I guess it's the cooked bones that splinter that cause problems. I'm not sure how much that carries over to cats, though.
As for salmonella, animals should have no problem with that for exactly the reasons you were saying.
I have fed dogs,cats,ferretts,rats all RAW and never had a single problem!
Glad they are enjoying it! HUGS&PEACE Carrassa
Originally Posted by Anastasia Alston
HEY!! Thanx for the ideas! I'm especially going to try the calcium supplement. However, I would advise against giving them ANY kind of cooked bones for ANY reason, even if you crush the bone.
Last edited by portiz; 01-15-2008 at 12:05 PM.
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Just an aside but don't forget the red meat! As cats can't synthesize their own taurine, you need to give them dark meat so they don't become deficient. Beef heart is a great source of taurine and fairly cheap.
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