Be Informed, Not Intimidated

The standard rejoinder I heard years ago and continue to hear from many vets goes like this: many homemade diets, including all meat diets (whether raw or cooked), are “highly unbalanced and are likely to be deficient in key nutrients unless properly supplemented.” You’ll get no argument from me on that. I am also told that many veterinary nutritionists strongly discourage the use of raw diets for some very good reasons. Again, no disagreement there. No one in their right mind would feed an all meat diet to a cat. That would be horribly unbalanced. I can only applaud and encourage anyone, vet or lay person, who loudly and vehemently discourages anyone from feeding something so patently unsafe to a cat.

But there is so very much more to the story. The customary response from vets, and certainly the pet food industry, about the possibility for raw diets to be dangerously unbalanced is a red herring. It distracts from the fundamental issue of advocating a balanced diet that is true to the carnivorous heritage of small cats. If the goal is to give a cat the best diet possible, then vague admonishments about the potential for homemade diets to be unbalanced are not enough.

If your vet is hassling you about feeding raw? First, make sure you’re doing it well – but don’t shy away from holding your ground.

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