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Bio-Inappropriate: The Dangers of Dry Cat FoodFeline Diabetes: The Influence of DietFeline Inflammatory Bowel Disease: Nature and TreatmentFeline Hyperthyroidism: What You Need to KnowA Diet for Your Cat's Urinary and Kidney HealthConstipation: Real Help for Your CatPhosphorus Can Be Key for Cat KidneysWater, Water and Water Battles CrystalsFeline Cystitis and Bladder/Kidney StonesHigh Blood Pressure: Yes, Your Cat Can Get It, TooNutrition is Vital When Treating Feline LeukemiaFeline Pancreatitis: Signs of TroubleAnother Furball? It Might Be Feline AsthmaOpen Wide: The Basics of Kitty DentalsCat Scratch Fever: How It Affects CatsDiet and Your Cat's Cancer RiskChunks and Bones For Your Cat's TeethA Cat's Food Allergies and Intolerances ExplainedHow Toxoplasmosis Affects CatsAvoiding Hepatic Lipidosis in Your CatHow Raw Food for Cats Affects Blood Test ResultsGet Kitty Exercising to Trim DownSalmonella: The Chicken or the EggSafe Handling Practices for Raw MeatIf You're Feeling Stressed, So Is Your CatChoosing the Right Insulin for Your Diabetic CatA Veterinarian's View on Raw Cat Food: Andrea Tasi, VMD
Answers: What Exactly is an 'Obligate Carnivore?'Answers: What Dry Food Does to Your Cat's AppetiteAnswers: Why Won't My Cat Eat?Answers: Who Were Pottenger's Cats and Do They Matter?Answers: To Grind or Not to Grind Raw Cat Food?Answers: What Dry Food Does to Your Cat's TeethAnswers: What Dry Food Does to Your Cat's FurAnswers: What Dry Food Does to Your Cat's PeeAnswers: What Dry Food Does to Your Cat's GutAnswers: One More Reason to Ditch Dry Cat FoodAnswers: Do Cats Need Dietary Fiber?Answers: Cats in a Bind over PhosphorusAnswers: Let's Talk About Cat BarfAnswers: Making Raw Cat Food Kitty-SizedAnswers: Raw Food for Cats, What About Eating Bones?Answers: Getting Kitty to Like ChunkyAnswers: Are Exotic Meats Nutritious or a Novelty for Cats?Answers: Raw Food and Outdoor Cats, What About Worms?Answers: Take a Deep Breath and Cut the Mouse in HalfAnswers: The Stomach Contents of PreyAnswers: Flaxseed Oil for Kitty?Answers: Plant vs. Meat – The Protein Feud for Cat FoodAnswers: Kitty That Only Wants FishAnswers: Is It Okay for My Cat to Have Milk?Answers: Feed My Cat a Raw Egg Yolk?Answers: Raw Cat Food for My Cat's Mystery Allergy?Answers: Your Cat's Acid StomachAnswers: Cat Urine Ph, Why It MattersAnswers: Kittens Go Through Teething, TooAnswers: Raw Cat Food for All of Those Kittens!Answers: Why Did My Cat's Fur Get So Silky?Answers: Goaltending the Cat Food BowlAnswers: Who Are AAFCO and the NRC?Answers: Taking the Complexity Out of B Vitamins for CatsAnswers: The Paradox of Prescription Diets for Cats
How to Think Like a CatRaw Meaty Bones for Cats: Adult Supervision Required!Let Me Tell You About Raw Cat Food. Hey Come Back!But Kitty, What Nice Teeth You Have...Sasquatch vs. My CatI Worry About My CatYour Cat Worries About ThisYour Kitty May Need to Go to Chunk SchoolAre Cats Clandestine Consumers?Dry Cat Food – The Big EasyEight Cat CuriositiesCats and Cantaloupe: A Method to their MadnessThe Myth of the Finicky CatFalling Off the Cat Food Recipe CliffCat Daddy Talks Cat DietThe Popularity of Cat PoopThe Most Important Member, YouYou Said You Feed Your Cat, What?Oh! Those Dirty Little Kittens!It's My Cat's House, I Just Live ThereBlack Cats Are Not Unlucky at AllLessons From the Stoic CatIs There a Cat in the House?Rice Isn't NiceDon't Let it Bug You Kitty!Tell Your Cat to Chew on This!Cat Longevity and the Ultimate Test?Bug Patrol and Cat Stampedes: Life with Lots of CatsWhat Scraps?
Feeding Raw Food In Australia: What's Up Down UnderThe Cemetery Cats of Buenos AiresCats Are Paying Attention to Your FeelingsCheetahs in Captivity Need a Better DietIt Started With a Caracas Cat Named CaterpillarConsidering a Hybrid Cat?Tales from the Trenches: Feeding Kittens a Raw DietSaving Alistair: How Lyn Thomson Helped Stop IBD 11,000 Miles AwayRaw Cat Food Essentials and Fun Stuff, Too!There's No Kibble Served at the Big Cat RescueWhat Bob Dole Taught Me About Raw FoodAn Answer For Alex: Raw Food and Tight RegulationMangiare Crudo in Italia (Raw Fed in Italy)Melamine to Frankenprey: A Documented JourneyCould Everything We Know Be Wrong?A Brief History of Commercial Pet FoodWhen a Vegetarian Feeds A Raw DietRead Me! Great Books About CatsDuke's Story: Inflammatory Bowel DiseaseAdoption: What Should We Feed Our New Kitten?Malaysian Kittens Meet Frankenprey!Raw Food Co-ops: Make Buying Less Trying!Feeding Cats Ring Dings and Krispy Kremes
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As founder of Feline Nutrition, I spend a lot of time thinking about cats. They are a huge part of my life and I confess we have quite a few, ten actually. My focus is always on cat nutrition, but you can't spend time with cats without having them worm their way into every aspect of your life. Ask most people, and they'll tell you their cats are part of the family. Ours certainly are. In my opinion, a house without cats is just a house, not a home. One of the reasons that nutrition is so important for cats is that, as pets go, they live a long time. Currently, our cats are all over ten years old. I fully expect to have the same ten cats in ten years, maybe even fifteen. Barring accidents, all cats should live into their twenties. This means they are going to go through old age and, just like people, need to stay healthy to make the best of their senior years. Proper nutrition plays a huge role in their health. Here are some of my thoughts about cats, cat food and what we can learn from our furry family members.

How to Think Like a Cat

Like anyone involved professionally with cats, I spend a lot of time trying to figure them out. That means really trying to understand how they think. As much as we count them as part of the family, they are not little humans. While some of their behaviors seem similar to ours, understanding what motivates them can be difficult. There is always the danger of attributing to them more than is really there. Recently, a friend told me a story about her son and his wife. They are new cat owners and love their cat dearly. They travel a lot. Her son reports their cat has been peeing on shoes when she sees the suitcases come out. Continued

Raw Meaty Bones for Cats: Adult Supervision Required!

I have always recommended feeding raw meaty bones to cats. They really need to do some serious gnawing and chewing – using those side teeth – to keep their teeth and gums in top shape. If you have read my previous blog posts, you'll know about Thodin and her amazing teeth. She is over ten years old and has been a raw meaty bone-eater her whole life. Her teeth are plaque-free and the gums are in great shape. She's never needed a dental and likely never will. This is how a cat's mouth should be. She's had over 2700 raw meaty bone meals over the last ten years. Then one day there was a problem. Continued

Let Me Tell You About Raw Cat Food. Hey Come Back!

If you're anything like me, as soon as you realized what a difference raw food for cats makes, you wanted to tell everyone all about it. You wanted to convince everyone to do what you did. If you've tried, you probably had mixed success, right? Why is that? Just think about what we're saying. Basically, you're telling someone what they're doing is wrong, and you've got it right. You can see the problem. Nobody likes being told they are wrong. Ever. There are only two ways someone will be receptive to this kind of message. Continued

But Kitty, What Nice Teeth You Have...

One of the things critics of raw cat food diets point out is there isn't much scientific evidence to back it up. I agree. There isn't. Scientific studies cost money, and almost all nutrition research is funded by big pet food companies. You can see the problem. Why would they fund research that will show their product to be inferior to a diet appropriate for obligate carnivores? Well, they wouldn't. So, raw food for cats gets little scientific study. Science supports this model of feeding, but does so in an oblique way due to the lack of direct research. What do we look to then? We look to anecdotal evidence. Continued

Sasquatch vs. My Cat

We have two calico cats. The kind with big patches of white, black or dark grey and orange tabby stripes. This coat color is always striking and a favorite the world over. I always thought it was cool that our calicos are really orange tabbies, with a white coat and a black coat mutation thrown in together. Makes for interesting combinations and random patterns. We've all seen the funny pictures on the internet of cats with unusual markings. Social media are full of cats with Hitler mustaches, strange eyebrows or heart shapes in the fur. Continued

I Worry About My Cat

The primary things cats worry about are food and safety. I delved into those worries in my last post. Basically, for a cat, that means eat and don't get eaten. These concerns explain why cats can be so skittish and why they startle so easily. They know they are prey and quick reactions are life and death. It also explains why food can be such a bonding tool with your cat. Being the one who feeds her really does give you a leg-up on being at the top of your cat's favorite person list. But, what do you worry about when it comes to your cat? Continued

Your Cat Worries About This

Everyone who shares their life with cats at some point wonders how they see the world. In the literal sense, they do see it differently than we do. Their distance vision is blurry, their close-up vision is pretty bad, too. They see the same colors. But, vision is not really what I'm thinking about. I'm thinking more about their outlook – what they care about. What do cats think is important in life? My answer would be food and safety. That's not unusual; it's what all animals, care about – people, too! With cats, though, the two may intersect in ways you might not think. Continued

Your Kitty May Need to Go to Chunk School

Frequently, I'm asked, "How do I get my cat to eat meat chunks and raw meaty bones?" I'm glad to hear this question because it means people understand how important it is for a cat's dental health to do some chewing. It's also important for their psychological health. Imagine if you ate only soft foods. As obligate carnivores, cats evolved powerful jaws that can slice through meat, skin, tendons and bones, yet we have taken away any opportunity for them to use their teeth. This can't be healthy physically or mentally. Continued

Are Cats Clandestine Consumers?

I once met with a representative from a meat producer trade group. I thought they might be interested in Feline Nutrition's efforts to educate pet parents on feeding raw food for cats. I asked whether they had figures on the amounts or percentages of human-grade meat purchased for pets by consumers. The rep looked surprised, as if it had never occurred to her to ask this particular question. It turned out it was something they didn't track, period. Perhaps the industry rep wasn't surprised by the question, but only that someone asked it. Continued

Dry Cat Food – The Big Easy

The hook that gets most people snagged into feeding cats dry kibble is that it's easy. Okay, it's extremely easy. You can feed the cat in under five seconds. She seems to like it, too. It's hard to fight against that. We are all busy, some of us ridiculously so. Easy is a big deal. Once people understand their cat shouldn't be eating plant-based kibble, their first worry, whether they admit it or not, is that feeding kitty will become a lot of work. Almost everyone at this stage has realized there's no going back, no matter how convenient it is. Continued

Eight Cat Curiosities

I've had cats my whole life. Except for a brief period in my younger days in a no-pets apartment, they have always been there. There are pictures of me as a baby snuggled up to a kitty bigger than I was. As a child, my father insisted they go outside at night – sigh – it was a different era. But, I kept the window open in my room to let them back in. One of the most heartbreaking experiences I ever had as a child was leaving a house we stayed in for the summer without one of our cats. Tigger ran away or got lost in the woods days before we had to leave. Continued

Raw Cat Food Essentials and Fun Stuff, Too!

The Feline Nutrition Foundation is dedicated to educating people about the benefits of feeding their cats the right kind of diet. We want science-backed information to be freely available to everyone. That's a core part of our mission. We emphasize the freely part. Membership is free, all the information we offer is free and we don't have ads cluttering up the site. Everyone associated with our education and advocacy work is a volunteer. We are passionate about helping cats. But, passion doesn't pay the bills. Continued

Cats and Cantaloupe: A Method to their Madness

One of the things we hear about all the time is the strange things cats will eat. If you've had cats for any length of time, you've experienced this. Not just the odd items in the meat category, such as grasshoppers or frogs, but also things like broccoli and string beans. The one food item that seems to come up time and again is cantaloupe. Having a cat that wants to eat something unusual now and then doesn't seem implausible. They are individuals subject to the variations in behavior that entails. Continued

The Myth of the Finicky Cat

I'm often asked what to do when kitty doesn't want to eat the new raw cat food you're offering. I hear words like "stubborn" and "finicky." While that may describe what's going on, it's from a decidedly human perspective. I think it's time to delve into a little cat psychology to help us understand what's happening in that little kitty brain. People like to say they are creatures of habit. I would agree, but habit isn't quite the right word. They stick to what works. That kind of behavior makes a lot of sense for them. Continued

Falling Off the Cat Food Recipe Cliff

If you're making homemade cat food, you're following a recipe. At least, I hope you are. Not following one can be disastrous. Recipes matter. You really can't feed whatever you want. We don't recommend trying to formulate one from scratch. Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying this is rocket science. Part of our message is that you don't have to have an advanced degree in nutrition to feed your cat properly. That's the argument big pet food companies try to use to discredit it. They say it shouldn't be left to amateurs. Continued

Cat Daddy Talks Cat Diet

Every fan of felines has heard of Jackson Galaxy. He's spent more than twenty years helping people solve feline – and human – behavior problems, so people and their companion cats can live in harmony. All of his experience getting into kitty minds resulted in his Animal Planet show "My Cat from Hell." It's helped people everywhere understand their cats and why they do what they do. We think it's terrific. Anything that helps cats stay in their homes and be happy is something we applaud. Feline Nutrition wants cats to be happy and healthy as well, but we focus on diet. Continued

The Popularity of Cat Poop

Feline Nutrition posted a video on our YouTube Channel. "The Poop Question" got more than 2300 views in two weeks. That's ten times more than any other Feline Nutrition video in the same time. It's now nearly 200,000. Cat poop is popular. We launched our channel as a way to reach people who are considering making a switch to a raw cat food diet. Videos make information more accessible. We want to get our message to as many pet parents as possible. There are many things that are easier to show than to explain in words. Continued

The Most Important Member, You

When I created the Feline Nutrition Education Society in 2008, one of the first things we had to do was name the organization. People usually don't think about the naming of things, and how much a name can influence the character of a person or a group. Names matter. I thought long and hard about it. The Feline Nutrition part came naturally; that is the core of what we are. We chose feline over cat, as feline evokes the scientific. Science is at the core of our world view. Education was what we intended to do and are doing now. Continued

You Said You Feed Your Cat, What?

I read the results of a survey that questioned people on their cat nutrition knowledge.¹ That the survey was done by Purina gave me pause, but the answers they got didn't surprise me. Most people don't think much about what they feed their cats. They buy what's in the grocery store. You know, the stuff with the healthy-sounding names and the nice pictures. It couldn't be sold if it weren't good for your cat, right? You might think I'm passing judgment, but I'm not. I used to be one of those people. I know how they got there. Continued

Oh! Those Dirty Little Kittens!

You may have heard of the hygiene hypothesis. The theory is that exposure to dirt and germs early in life helps to prevent allergies later – your immune system needs to be "trained" at an early age to fight off allergens.¹ The idea came from the observation that children who grew up on farms had a much lower incidence of allergies than those in cleaner environments, without as much exposure to naturally-occurring germs. Some studies conclude that infants exposed to multiple pets, cats or dogs, have fewer allergies as adults.² Continued

It's My Cat's House, I Just Live There

There's a movement in housing design to include features to enhance accessibility. Architects and designers are responding to the need for houses with features to make life easier and safer as one gets older, or if you become disabled. Wider doors for wheelchairs, handholds in the shower and spaces left for the addition of an elevator. It shows designers are thinking about how houses are really used, rather than just what looks good. But, I wish to register a complaint. Builders must recognize that creatures besides humans use them.Continued

Black Cats Are Not Unlucky at All

When you start feeding raw food for cats, you begin to ask questions. For so many years, I fed dry, plant-based kibble because I had never asked those questions. It was a shock to realize how much I had taken for granted. I never asked myself the "why" of what I was doing. It's clear now it's always good to ask questions about all those reasons why. Questioning things we accept as given can lead us to interesting places. We should be more like children when we ask questions. They ask about things adults have stopped noticing. Continued

Lessons From the Stoic Cat

Cats are often described as stoic – they don't let it show when they're sick. I think that's partly true. In the wild, they don't want to be obvious about being sick or injured. Showing that kind of weakness is a good way to get yourself eaten. It's better to hide until you feel well enough to pounce or run away. When you share your life with a cat, you get to know them pretty well. Watching the subtle things, it's usually easy to tell when something is wrong – usually. I'm always paying close attention to my cats. I check their behavior for anything that seems "off." Continued

Is There a Cat in the House?

I have noticed – and not just recently – that as far as movies and television are concerned, cats barely exist. If there are any aliens out there that have been monitoring our TV transmissions, they are probably wondering why there are so many cat food ads when no one actually seems to have any cats. I'm always snapping to attention when I see a cat incidentally on television or in a movie: it's such an unusual event. As far as numbers are concerned, cats have been the most popular pet for quite a while now.¹ You'd never know it from the movies. Continued

Rice Isn't Nice

I've been noticing something when I walk down the pet aisle at the supermarket. It's just to get kitty litter mind you, since I don't believe there is any real cat food there. A lot of those cans and bags are touting the fact that they contain rice. It seems it's is the new "in" filler. Wheat has gotten a bit of a bad reputation lately, mostly because it turns out some people have trouble with it, and pet owners are getting the message that corn is bad for cats. Pet food companies seem to be left with rice. Many people buy pet food based on the sound of the name. Continued

Don't Let it Bug You Kitty!

It's been a while since my last blog. I have a good excuse! My computer was down for over a week after my cat Kai shorted out the power supply on my computer. He claims he was only marking his territory, but I really have to congratulate him on his excellent aim! Everyone knows cats like to eat bugs. In our house, it's part of their job. But is it just because bugs trigger the hunting instinct in cats by being wiggly and running away? Is it a good idea to let your cat eat bugs? The answer is yes! Continued

Tell Your Cat to Chew on This!

I feed a combination of raw food for cats, including homemade ground chicken, farm-raised commercial rabbit and turkey with ground meat/bone/organs, to which I add supplements, commercial whole carcass ground rabbit with fur, commercial "complete" rabbit patties and whole chicken wings. I want to feed a variety, so that over time, I'm sure they get all the nutrients they need as obligate carnivores. But nutrients aren't the only thing cats need from food. A mostly ground diet – while accomplishing my goals nutritionally – isn't enough. Continued

Cat Longevity and the Ultimate Test?

I've been thinking about cat longevity. We had cats when I was a kid, and none of them made it past about eleven. I thought then that was how long they lived. After all, it was a lot longer than most of the dogs I knew. As an adult, my husband and I adopted a half-dozen rescues. They lived longer. One made it to 19, a couple to 18, but many died at 14 or 15. They all succumbed to one disease or another, cancer, diabetes, kidney failure and one from a completely mysterious ailment. It was heartbreaking. Continued

Bug Patrol and Cat Stampedes: Life with Lots of Cats

We have a lot of cats. More than is usual in a multi-cat household, but less than "crazy cat lady" numbers. We love having lots of cats, but it does change your life. We've made adjustments to accommodate them. Most are to make our lives easier, since trying to change a cat's nature is futile.We don't have any carpets in our house. We tried it once. Our cats thanked us profusely for the great new horizontal scratching pad, and assured us they'd have it shredded in a jiffy. Continued

What Scraps?

Since I started feeding raw food for cats, I've done a lot of thinking about cat food. I realized while grocery shopping the other day the only reason I go down the pet food aisle now is to pick up kitty litter. There isn't a single pet food there I'd be willing to give my cats. Everything has grain in it. Everything. I shudder to I think it wasn't that long ago I was buying dry food there. I really should say what I've been thinking about isn't cat food per se, but meat. I pretty much stick to fowl when it comes to my own diet. I don't eat beef, but I have pork and fish on occasion. Continued