3 Basic Options:

  • Pros: No worries about the Ca:Phos ratio; can run veggies through the blender thus making them easier for a kitty to digest; feeding is easy - spoon out just like you would commercial wet food
  • Cons: Investment in a grinder; grinding can be a pain and on average takes about 2 hours for 20 lbs of meat; larger animals and birds are difficult to grind
  • Pros: No grinding required; can use either ground meat or chunks which can be ground in a food processor; can feed larger animals such as beef (not saying this is always a good thing because it's not part of a cat's natural diet); feeding is easy - much like wet commercial food
  • Cons: Need to figure out for each type of meat and organ what the Calcium and Phos levels are so as to determine how much additional Calcium, collagen, and missing trace minerals to put in the food; limited menu options (pretty hard to find pheasant chunks or mice at the store:); easiest to screw up Ca:Phos ratio:(
  • Pros: Nothing will keep tartar build-up at bay like chewing on bones; closer to a cat's real diet in the wild; cats less likely to gobble down their food; fun to watch them growl and tear apart the meat
  • Cons: Acceptance issues are a real barrier - a lot of cats simply will not accept a whole mouse as food but this can be overcome with patience and persistence; some cats (e.g. my 2 boys) make a royal mess so daily clean-up can be a hassle.

Option 1: Ground raw meat mix

  • 4 whole young (not roaster because those are older) chicken fryers approx. 4 lb. each
  • Giblets/organs that come with the 4 fryers - liver, kidneys, heart, gizzards, but not neck (saved for cats to chew on while human slaves are grinding)
  • *1 lb. veggies - preferably high-moisture low-GI index squash, zucchini (all lightly steamed), and home-grown oat/barley/rye/wheat grass from seeds. Depending on the water content of the veggies, this can be as low as 1 cup or as high as 2 cups in volume. For cats with CRF, pumpkin can be beneficial because it functions as a nitrogen-trapper. IBD cats too can be helped by the moderately fermentable fiber in cooked/canned pumpkin. For some reason, my cats love a steamed broccoli and cauliflower mix; do not use in raw form unless you have a cat with an overactive thyroid gland.
  • 5 egg yolks (increase to 8 during shedding season) - can also add lightly cooked egg whites if you wish or make frittatas for yourself instead:)
  • 13,500 mg L-Taurine or 5 tsp. L-Taurine powder - based on the fact that 1/4 tsp of L-Taurine powder = 675mg (Source Naturals brand)
  • 32oz spring water or home-made chicken broth (check my book for recipe) - the moisture doesn't hurt kitties, and you'll also find it makes the whole mix easier to handle
  • Vit A - 100,000 IU
  • Vit D - 10,000 IU
  • Cod Liver oil in lieu of Vits A and D - Nordic Naturals brand softgel
  • Vit E - 20 400IU softgels of Carlson's Gems, Natural Factors, or NOW Dry E capsules
  • Vit B-complex - 8 capsules of Jarrow B-Right Low Odor B-complex
  • wild salmon oil - 10,000 mg
  • Digestive enzymes
  • FOS
  • Probiotics
  • trace minerals - key word here being "trace" so only teensy amounts please
  • egg yolk lecithin (during hairball season) - there was a study at UT Austin suggesting its use for hairball control
  • kelp -some concerns due to kitties being prone to hyperthyroidism, so very small amounts are best
  • nutritional yeast - okay as a bribe food but is high in Phosphorous so over time, can lead to imbalance

Step-by-step preparation:

General tips:

Option 2: Recipes that do not require a meat grinder

Turkey recipe:

  • 1 lb i,e, 453.56 grams raw ground turkey muscle meat (the darker the meat the higher its taurine content) - has 59mg Ca and 708mg Phos
  • 1/2 piece i,e, 50grams of raw turkey liver - contains 2.5mg of Ca & 140mg of Phos; raw chicken liver can be substituted (its Ca & P are very close)
  • 1 raw turkey heart i.e. 27grams - 2mg Ca and 60mg Phos (chicken heart #s for same weight are close)
  • 3.5 oz or 100g chicken gizzards - contains 11mg Ca and 148mg Phos (turkey gizzards are hard to find)
  • 2 tbsp steamed pureed veggies* - preferably high-moisture low-GI index squash, zucchini (all lightly steamed), or home-grown oat/barley/rye/wheat grass from seeds. For cats with CRF, pumpkin can be beneficial b/c it functions as a nitrogen-trapper. IBD cats too can be helped by the moderately fermentable fiber in cooked/canned pumpkin. For some reason, my cats love a steamed broccoli and cauliflower mix; do not use in raw form unless you have a cat with an overactive thyroid gland.
  • 1 large raw chicken egg yolk and lightly cooked white of same egg i,e, 33g (being added to supply lutein, Vitamin D, iodine, fatty acids, lecithin and a host of other nutrients)
  • 1478 mg calcium carbonate powder OR 3/4 teaspoon of eggshell powder** OR a bit less than 1.5 teaspoons of bone meal powder to address the calcium portion (please check the bonemeal section below to see why this is going to cause a problem with the Ca:P) ***
  • 1/2 tablespoon unflavored Gelatin as a proxy for cartilage
  • 1/2 teaspoon Dulse (has lower iodine levels than Kelp) to provide trace minerals and support thyroid function
  • 1 teaspoon Salmon body oil (available in liquid or in capsules at health food stores)
  • 2,000mg taurine
  • 2-3 oz home-made meat broth or spring water to help with consistency
  • Vit A - 2,000 IU****
  • Vit D - 200 IU
  • OR
  • Cod Liver oil in lieu of Vits A and D; matching up can be tricky because there is a different ratio of Vits A and D in brands e.g. for Nordic Naturals brand softgel has only 1 IU of Vit D per 300IU of Vit A. With Carlson's, 1 softgel would match Vit A but would have too much Vit D.
  • Vit E - 2 400IU softgels of Carlson's d-alpha Gems OR GNC's Natural E 400 100% natural d-alpha dry capsules; these are the only two products forum members have been able to verify are soy-free (this caution includes similar products from even these brands).
  • Vit B-complex - 1/8 capsule of Thorne B-Complex Formula #12 (least stinky cat-safe one on the market)
  • Fish body oil e.g. wild salmon, sardine, anchovy, or krill oil: one 1,000mg softgel providing at least 300mg EPA & 200DHA - Carlson's or Nordic Naturals brand or NOW krill preferably added at meal times
  • Digestive enzymes
  • FOS
  • Probiotics
  • Trace minerals - key word here being "trace" so only teensy amounts please - Source Naturals and Futurebiotics brands are the least icky ones though the amounts of various minerals is not the same for both these.
  • Egg yolk lecithin (during hairball season) e.g. Nature's Plus brand - there was a study at UT Austin suggesting its use for hairball control

Preparation: