|Do cat’s benefit from a raw diet?
Yes. The domestic house cat is descended from the jungle cat, and still needs to eat like a wild cat. Both wild and domestic cats are classified as “obligate carnivores”, which means that due to their genetic makeup they must eat the tissue of other animals in order to thrive. Obligate carnivores may eat other foods, such as vegetables, grains, or fruit, but they must eat meat as the main source of their nutrients. And cats, like dogs, do not have any dietary requirement for carbohydrates, so grain-based foods are much less than optimal for them. And since the meat contained in most commercial pet foods is most often from diseased, condemned animals, the nutrition value of these foods is questionable. A raw diet made with fresh, approved meats and bones provides cats with healthy, natural nutrition.
It can be difficult to switch a cat's diet. Unlike dogs, who are usually willing to investigate any potential food source, cats often imprint on the specific smell, taste and texture of the food they are used to eating. So, while a few will immediately appreciate the raw food offered to them, most will look at you as if you are trying to poison them. But with a little patience on your part, your cat will make the transition.
The key to success with these finicky felines is to go very slowly. In some cases, you will mix only a finger-full (yes, a finger-full) of raw food into their current diet. Just enough to let them get used to the slight smell of the new food in their bowl. Very gradually increase the amount you mix in with their food. Over the course of a month, most will make a full transition, and no longer tolerate anything but raw food. One cat, who did require a 35 day transition, now swats the dogs in his household so he can steal raw food from their dishes.
Rabbit and venison tend to be very popular with cats, as are the poultry items. Organ meats (heart, liver and kidney) are very important to feed at least a few times a week. And while some cats love vegetables and it's fine to feed them, they aren't really necessary.