Monday, September 21, 2015

The Why's and How's of Transitioning Your Cat to a Raw Diet #InstinctRaw

This post is sponsored by Instinct® and the BlogPaws Professional Pet Blogger Network. We are being compensated for helping spread the word about Instinct Raw but GLOGIRLY only shares information we feel is relevant to our readers. Instinct is not responsible for the content of this article.
WAFFLES:  Hey Boss, check out the new food! Glogirly says it's good for me on account of I'm a species-appropriate mancat. 



KATIE:  Waffles, the food is species-appropriate.  Not you. There's really nothing terribly appropriate about you –



KATIE:  OR your table manners for that matter. But that's a whole different blog post.




Instinct Raw Bites from Nature's Variety®
We're beyond thrilled to introduce you to Instinct Raw today. We may spend our days coming up with silly ways to make you laugh, but sound feline nutrition is not a laughing matter and one we take very seriously. If you've been curious about feeding raw, Instinct Raw Bites are a fantastic way to begin introducing a raw diet to your cats.



It's easier now than ever to find them too. Our local PetSmart recently started carrying Instinct Raw in their own freezer case.

How We Got Started with Raw
If you've been following us for awhile now, you probably know that Katie & Waffles have been eating a raw and cooked whole food diet for some time. We originally made the switch over to whole foods last year when we started treating Katie for IBD, Inflammatory Bowel Disease.

We're not experts. We're not medical professionals. We're just a couple of cats and a girl who've worked hard to understand the commercial pet food landscape and navigate our way through it.

Cats are Obligate Carnivores
Obligate means "by necessity" and according to the dictionary, "biologically essential for survival." Combine obligate with carnivore and it's all pretty clear. Cats must eat meat. It's a biological necessity critical for survival. Glogirly may try and convince us that jelly beans are critical for her survival, but we're not buying it.

So What Does Mean in Simple Terms?
Cats thrive on a diet that's as close to what they would eat in the wild if they could. That means fresh, raw, whole prey. Meat, organs bones... the whole enchilada, so to speak.
Cats cannot properly digest many of the plant-based proteins and other ingredients often found in dry and even canned foods.

It's pretty simple really. Like any animal, cats will do best on the diet nature intended for them.



Read more at http://feline-nutrition.org/answers/answers-what-exactly-is-an-qobligate-carnivoreq 
Follow us on Twitter: @FelineNutrition





Read more at http://feline-nutrition.org/answers/answers-what-exactly-is-an-qobligate-carnivoreq 
Follow us on Twitter: @FelineNutrition

What is Instinct Raw?
Instinct Raw mirrors a cat's natural diet - all natural, never cooked, complete and balanced nutrition packed with animal protein. It's made of 95% meat, organs and bones, 5% fruits and vegetables and 0% grain. We'd love it even more if the 5% fruits and vegetables were eliminated from the cat food, since we believe that cats don't need any fruits and vegetables, but 5% is definitely an amount we can live with. The fact that Instinct Raw contains the meat, organs and bones is far more important and something we can really get behind.

So Why are Meat, Organs & Bones So Important? 
These whole food ingredients lead to optimal nutrient absorption. In other words, all of the food is easily digested. Some commercial foods have to add ingredients to make food palatable, hold it's shape, stay fresh, etc... And often those ingredients can't be properly digested and just pass right through. For us, this has never been more readily apparent than in the litter box.

Wait... did you say litter box?
One of the most dramatic changes we noticed when switching to a raw and whole food diet was with Katie and Waffles' poop. (did we just say poop??) That's right. What used to be dark and terribly stinky little tootsie rolls are now virtually odorless, weightless, light cardboard-colored tootsies. That's because there's none of that garbage waste from ingredients in their food that they're unable to digest.

If this litter box dream-come-true isn't enough to make you seriously consider switching your cat's diet, the health and wellness benefits most certainly will.



The BIG Health Benefits
This isn't just a list grabbed from Instinct Raw's website. These are all real benefits we've actually seen and experienced as a result of switching to a raw and whole food diet. In fact despite Katie's IBD, Katie and Waffles have never been healthier.
• Healthy skin and luxuriously silky coat 
• Optimal digestion 
• Healthy teeth and gums 
• Relief from food sensitivities 
• Ideal body weight


How to Make the Switch
1.  Don't be intimidated. 
We were at first. It probably took us almost a couple of years to take the raw plunge. But are we ever glad we did!

2.  Introduce new food gradually.
Mix just the smallest amount of new food with your cat's original food. With Instinct Raw Bites, we'd suggest only one or even 1/2 of a single 'bite.' Gradually increase the amount of raw bites as you decrease the amount of original food.

3.  Take it slow. VERY slow. 
Patience is key when switching food. Cats are creatures of habit. If they've been eating the same kind of food for 1, 2 or 10 years, they may not even recognize a new type of food as food. That's how it was with us. Younger cats often have an easier time transitioning. Some cats take to a new food in just a week or two. Waffles, who was 2 at the time, completely transitioned in about 5 weeks. Katie, who is 10, took about 4 months. Don't give up though! It's totally worth it.




Four Protein Choices 
Instinct Raw Bites for Cats is available in 4 varieties - Rabbit, Chicken, Duck and Tuna. Many cats have sensitivities to fish, so we choose not to use tuna or other fish products as a daily diet choice. Katie is definitely a rabbit girl. Rabbit can be a good choice for cats with GI sensitivities. And despite Waffles' reputation as a chicken devotee, he an equal opportunity meat eater and loves all the Instinct Raw proteins.

How to Serve
Keep the resealable bag in the freezer and just take out what you need a few minutes before serving. The bites thaw very quickly. You can also put a little hot water over them if you're in a hurry. Serve as a meal enhancer or a full meal. We even use individual bites as treats.

Want to Try Instinct Raw? 
Sign up for a $3 off coupon on the Instinct Raw website. You can use it on any of the Instinct Raw products, including their $3.99 trial size. Follow them on Facebook too to keep up with their latest news and offers.

34 comments:

  1. Katie! How cool to see you helping your human do the shopping! We were bummed that our local PetSmart didn't have the duck in stock, because I L-O-V-E duck maybe even more than I love chicken!

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    1. Shopping was very fun! Katie even let a few people say hello and pet her. Katie's favorite by far is the Rabbit!

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  2. Harry the Farm cat wants to know if there is "gopher" for in the winter when the hunting isn't so good. He is down with raw gopher. He's tried rabbit recently and he likes that too.

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  3. My cat Sam seems to have a seefood diet. He sees it and decides "It's food!" ;D The biggest barrier for me switching my cats to raw is cost. I don't know about affording it on a regular basis, never mind at the same time as buying what I'm feeding them right now. And my other cat, Maya, is So Picky, the thought of trying to get her onto raw makes me groan and think of all the wasted raw that would probably end up in the garbage can because she turned up her nose at it.

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    1. The transition period can be hard. The slower we went the easier it was though. And that meant far less waste. Between the various raw and whole foods we're using now, we're actually paying less than we are for our previous canned food. Just let us know if you need any help finding something that will work for you.

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  4. How awesome you got to go to the store, Katie! Our PetSmart doesn't carry any Instinct raw at all. PetCo carries raw, but stopped carrying it for cats. The Pet Supermarket said that the head peep was literally the only person buying it there, and then their supply dwindled, too. We're glad to see that availability is better other places.

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    1. Well that's a bummer! It's not like you live out in the middle of nowhere! We hope that PetSmart gets behind this brand and makes it more readily available.

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  5. I'm so happy to see you feature this topic on your site. I think it's so important for cat guardians to read about "real life stories" about how much better cats do when fed a species-appropriate whole food diet.

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    1. Thank you, Ingrid! We've learned so much from you and your incredibly thoughtful and knowledgeable Concious Cat site!

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  6. Thanks fur the info. We've run out of moles and voles here .... We need some real meat.

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  7. Me does trust your recommend , Miss Katie !
    cause we are tuxedo =^~^=
    Pretty cool you can go shopping with your mom. The photo you are in da basket is pretty cute !

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  8. Thanks for the post. I always wondered about these foods.
    Sue B

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  9. We've added Instinct Raw to our diet too. Now we're eating like the true wild cats we are...or think we are. ;)

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    Replies
    1. You guys have always been at the top of our Wildcat list! ; )

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  10. I've tried raw bites with Mudpie and so far she's been pretty picky with it but I'm going to keep trying!!!

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    Replies
    1. We had to go very, very slow. Much slower in fact than the brand recommends. But we're so glad we stuck with it!

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  11. Pawsome info!!! We'd like to try some of those!

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  12. Good info. We've never tried Raw but Mom has considered it.

    The Florida Furkids

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  13. It sounds like a great choice but I am so picky. Mum has tried several times over the years to get me and also Eric onto raw food. The only raw food I will eat is what I have caught myself.

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    Replies
    1. There's nothing wrong with catching your own, Flynn! : )

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  14. Allie: Let's focus in on the important things here: TABLE MANNERS. *looks meaningfully at Faraday*

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    1. Miss Allie, you are always the voice of reason and decorum. xo

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  15. Gweat posty. We wish they carried them wound here sumwhere.

    Luv ya'

    Dezi and Lexi

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    Replies
    1. They only recently started carrying Instinct Raw at our local PetSmart. Hopefully they will keep expanding!

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  16. I wish we could have found the Instincts for Molly Mew. She loves her raw tuna and you are right about the poop. It doesn't stink! With Molly Mew being the only kitty, ma has to scoop her box only once a day. She has one pile to scoop and that is it. The boby absorbs the rest. We love Raw Instinct!

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    1. We know! The poop factor isn't something that gets mentioned very often and it's really a testament for how well the body absorbs and uses the food! We hope you can find some for Molly Mew in the future!

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  17. TW says she’d love to try this but I won’t eat anything that comes out of the refrigerator even after she thaws it. She’s also scared of getting e-coli or something and the work of sanitizing the counter every day. I’m so happy Katie is featured and got to go to PetSmart too.

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    1. From what we have researched and read, there are actually far more cases of things like salmonella from dry cat and dog food than anything with raw. Raw requires really no more precautions than you would take with your own (human) food. Even in our own personal experience, we've had tainted dry and canned food on more than one occasion. We've never had any trouble with raw. But it's not for everyone. We understand that. : )

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  18. Wow, thanks for sharing your experience with us, Katie, Waffles and Glogirly! We're on specialized diets (well Moosey is, anyway) here because of medical issues, but we have heard about Instinct, and been curious. Really, really interesting!

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  19. That sounds great ! We have to see if "ready to eat" raw food is available in Switzerland, because Mum is interested but too lazy (she says busy) to make us our meals. Purrs

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  20. We read about this on another blog. Mom has never done raw for us as preparing for eight cats would be overwhelming. She thinks she might try this, however, and see if any of us will eat it. XOCK, Lily Olivia, Mauricio, Misty May, Giulietta, Fiona, Astrid, Lisbeth and Calista Jo

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  21. We're still getting used to the raw bites. Truffle ate it after Mom Paula fed her from her hand. Brulee says the "jury is still out" on whether she will eat them.

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