Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Home made cat food

I've been a responsible "mother cat" to my Mr Bond. Since taking him to the famed Dr Jean Paul Ly who specializes in nutrition and natural therapy, I've been making homemade wholesome pet food for my furry boy after hearing Dr Ly's lecture on the evilness of commercial pet food.
Now if pet food and nutrition bores you, you might want to skip this post. I'm it's gonna be a somewhat long one on it and I feel the need to do my duty and spread the homemade pet food gospel.
After doing my own extensive research online and speaking with my Aussie friend who's also a vet who advocate homemade raw food, I'm so abhored by the shitty and harmful commercial pet food that I feel the need to do a post on it so whoever read my post with pets might benefit. I mean I'll have to try right? I only wish I had known this earlier and started Mr Bond on good decent food. I try to stop kicking myself for being ignorant until now!
To spare you the eye damage of reading pages after pages of reports and research on why commercial pet food is bad, here's the gist of it:
  • Commercial pet food brands care more about their profit margins than your pets' health. I mean after all, it's a business and they need to make money
  • Low quality ingredients are used in commercial pet food. When they say it's chicken meal, you get chicken parts like feathers (seriously), becks and feet thrown in and that probably make up the biggest bulk since it's cheaper than the real meat parts of the chicken. The same goes for other types of meat
  • Dry food is the worst as they're always processed in high temperature for a prolonged period and all the nutrients are destroyed in the cooking process. Not to mention the amount of preservatives added as it's meant to keep over a long period of time
  • Dry kibbles all have artificial flavors and additives added so that it's tasty to your pets and pets always get addicted to it. Some pets are so addicted that they wouldn't eat anything else. It's the same way some humans are addicted to bad junk food or soda sugared drinks. If your pets are addicted, you don't change brand and they get more profits
  • Dry kibbles have been the main cause for an increase in urinary and kidney diseases in animals. Wet food is better but they, too, are processed in high temperature and their nutrients are gone and protein denatured
  • The evilness of commercial pet food affects cats more compared to dogs as cats are biologically pure carnivore. It means they should be having a very high protein diet (at least 80%) and their bodies aren't meant to digest grains (carbs) and vegetable. Doing so means health issues like diabetes, obesity and kidneys issues etc. Commercial dry food often use plant protein to cut cost since it's cheaper and a lot of feline dry food is nothing but "meat flavored cereal" and it is known to cause kidney diseases and urinary problems that can be lethal
  • A lot of vets push commercial pet food saying it's healthy and optimal but do you know that a lot of these commercial pet food companies actually sponsor and produce education materials for vetinerarian studies???? Very smart of them to brain wash vets
Okay, this is just the gist of it and it's by no means all. Far from it in fact. So with Mr Bond being plagued by urinary problems (one bladder stones removal surgery already) and kidney stones (small ones that got recently discovered), I'm not taking any chance and I'm making homemade cat food good enough for my own consumption (minus the seasoning of course). If I won't eat it, I won't feed it. And here's the recipe that even Mr Bond, the finicky and fussy eater, would eat:
  • Minced LEAN chicken meat. Please remove skin if you're mincing your own meat
  • Pumpkin and brown rice (organic if possible and you can replace pumpkin with carrots or broccoli and even dou miao, but never put onion, garlic and grapes as they are toxic to cats)
  • Flaxseed oil
  • Vitamin E oil (buy the ones in capsulated oil form and you can then squeeze it in)
  • Multi vitamin for your pet (I recommend Life Extension Cat/Dog Mix)
I don't have the exact measurement of it cos Dr Ly told me that it's not that strict but keep in mind that it has to be mainly protein, so I'm doing a 80% protein and 20% veggie and carbs. However, cats with kidney problems would have to take in less protein and I would recommend doing perhaps 50% protein, but check with your vet first.
To make it, it's quite easy breezy. Cook brown rice as how you would cook rice. One cup of rice to 2 cups of water. Simple but make sure you cook the rice well and it's all soft and not half cooked etc. Then cut the pumpkin in chunks and blanch it in boiling water for a while until it's a bit soft but not mushed up. Next, throw both into a food blender and blend into small tiny bits.
Once that's done, mix it with the meat according to the nutritional needs of your cat as mentioned earlier (check with vet if you're unsure). I do a 80% meat and 20% veggie. Add in a tea spoon of flax seed oil and a few drops of vitamin E (2 or 3 drops is fine and not too much cos it's got a bit of bitter taste) per 100g or so. Mix well.
Then group them in small servings that you would feed per meal (I feed about 100g a day, 100g is suitable for cats. For dogs, check with vet), freeze them in the freezer for 3 days. You can clump them into meat balls and cling wrap them before freezing. Freezing the meat for 72 hours would kill off any potential parasites but in general, the meat you get from the super market is pretty safe to begin with.
To feed, take one out and defrost IN THE FRIDGE. It'll take about 8 to 10 hours for a solid lump of frozen meat to defrost nicely in the fridge. So it it out at night to defrost over night so it's in time for the morning and defrost one in the morning so it's in time for night. You get the drift. And here comes the most important part.
It's supposed to be fed raw. Yes, RAW. Raw food diet is the best as both cats and dogs are biologically built to digest raw meat. It's how nature intend it to be. RAW. If they're in the wild, they'll eat their meat raw and cats would hunt for small mice and they eat them raw. According to Dr Ly's over 30 years of veterinarian experience, the healthiest and longest living pets are those who were/are fed raw food diet. I wouldn't elaborate more but do your own research and you'll find out that raw is really the best way to go.
Initially, to help with the switch, you can blanch it a little in boiling water so it's cooked on the outside and raw on the inside. After that, mix in a scoop of multi vitamin and you're ready to serve.
To help transition your kitty to new food, raw one especially, slowly switch over by adding a bit into the current food and slowly adding more over a period until it becomes totally acceptable. Mr Bond was relatively open to it and it took him about 2 weeks to transition fully to raw food.
Once your kitty accepts raw food, to warm up the meat, just cling wrap (use the microwave cling wrap) the meat and put the whole thing in hot water before feeding.
Now, one important note is to discard leftover raw food after you leave it out for an hour. Given the weather here, you don't want to leave it out too long.
It's really easier than it sounds. I really enjoy making cat food these days and I make it once every 2 weeks. Mr Bond has been on it for a little more than a month now and I could see that he's peeing better as raw meat provides more water content which is essential and very crucial for cats with urinary and bladder problems. He's due for a review in about a month's time and I'll then get to know more about how he's doing with the new diet.
If you're interested to switch your furry buddies to healthy homemade diet, please do more research and read more and check with your vets before making the swtich!

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