So you’ve decided to feed your cats a raw food diet? Awesome. What happens when they won’t eat it? Today I’m going to give you my tips for transitioning picky cats to a species appropriate diet.
1. Temperature Matters
Cats are very sensitive to the temperature their food is at, especially when it is something new. Cats tend to prefer foods that are room temperature or slightly warmer (i.e., body temperature). This is because they are generally not scavengers and instead prefer to hunt and eat fresh prey. To replicate this, thoroughly thaw your raw food and then mix it with some warm water or bone broth to increase the temperature.
Note: Never cook raw food with bone in it.
2. Presentation Is Important
While you don’t have to present their food in fun Disney character shapes, many cats do prefer their food to be broken into small pieces or mashed into a wet food consistency. Also, less thawed food is easier for them to carry around your house. Take it from me, the extra time it takes to thaw their food is worth it when it saves your white carpet from blood stains.
3. Think About Texture
This one is especially important for cats that have been fed kibble all their lives. They are used to the crunchy carby texture of kibble. The wet, sometimes firm, sometimes mush consistency of raw can be baffling & offputting to them. If this is the case with your cat, start slowly by getting them used to eating canned food, and transition them to fresh food.
4. Take it Slow
Cats by nature are cautious eaters. If they have not been exposed to a new food during the first 16 weeks of their life, they tend to be more skeptical about trying it as an adult. If your cat shows no interest in their new food or refuses to eat, take a step back and begin your transition more slowly.
Note: Cats should never be fasted/ starved into eating a new food, regardless of what it is. Food restriction in cats can lead to a hepatic lipidosis (fatty liver disease) which can be fatal.
Woofs & Wags,
The Holistic Pet Radio Pack