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There are many things that go into keeping your cat healthy and happy. Genetics and environment play a part. But, there is one thing that has a huge effect on your cat's health, and that is diet. Cats are predators that evolved to eat a diet of raw meat. It is only over the past 70 years or so that we have tried to feed cats a diet based on foods unsuitable for a strict carnivore. Grains, vegetable and plant matter and highly processed and cooked meat products. It's no wonder cats suffer from so many diet-related diseases. We're out to change that.
 
You are here because you want to learn more about how to keep your cat healthy. Diet is the most important change you can make in your cat's life. We hear over and over again from pet parents who have changed their cats' diet and now wish they had done it sooner. They can't imagine feeding their cats any other way. Not only do they see improvements in their cats' health, but they feel a great sense of relief knowing they control what goes into their cat. No more mystery ingredients.
 
Contemplating a diet change for your cat can be a bit overwhelming at first. We remember what it was like in the beginning. We were so used to leaving our cats' nutrition in the hands of others. But, leaving it to others didn't work out so well, did it? Cat nutrition is complicated, right? Well, not really. It's actually pretty easy.

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Answers: Do Raw Diets Affect Blood Test Results?

My cat used to be fed a dry kibble diet. I've been feeding her a raw meat diet for the past six months and I'm very happy with the results. She is going in for her annual check-up soon. Will her new diet cause changes in her blood work?
 
Yes, there can be slight changes in some of the blood work values because of the switch to a high-protein, very low or non-carbohydrate diet. People who feed raw diets – and this applies to cats and dogs – sometimes find that their pet's BUN or blood creatinine are slightly elevated. Both are used to assess urinary tract function. When the mechanism of production of these compounds is examined, this elevation makes sense. A 2003 study compared the blood values for 256 healthy, adult dogs of various ages and breeds. The dogs were divided into two groups: one group was kibble fed, and the other had been raw fed for at least nine months.¹ There was no significant difference in results between the two groups, with the exception of haematocrit, BUN and creatinine. These parameters were, on average, higher in the raw fed group than for the kibble fed group.

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Falling Off the Recipe Cliff

If you're making homemade raw food for your cats, you are following a recipe. At least, I sincerely hope you are. Not following one can be disastrous for your cat. Recipes matter. You really can't just 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 whole message is that you don't have to have an advanced degree in nutrition to feed your cat properly. That's the argument that big pet food tries to use to discredit homemade raw diets. They say it shouldn't be left to amateurs. By that logic, no mother should be allowed to take her infant home from the hospital. She isn't qualified to feed it.
 
Feeding your cat a balanced homemade diet isn't that hard, but you can't just wing it all on your own. You need to follow an established recipe from a trusted source. The recipe we have on the site has been used for many years, with thousands of cats. Not everything is known about what cats need – something big pet food won't tell you. The major nutrients are well established, at least the minimums and sometimes the maximums necessary.

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Answers: Do Cats Need Dietary Fiber?

Do cats need fiber in their diet? Being strict meat-eaters, how would they get fiber in their natural diet, since they wouldn't be eating plant material?
 
Dietary fiber is the indigestible portion of food derived from plants.¹ There are several different types of plant-based fiber. There are soluble and insoluble fibers as well as rapidly fermentable and slowly fermentable fibers. Soluble fibers are also rapidly fermentable. These fibers, which include pectins and gums, can act like a gel and draw water into the colon. Fermentable fibers can also be fermented by bacteria in the gut to produce short chain fatty acids which can be utilized by the cells of the colon to help them function. Soluble and rapidly fermentable fibers tend to add moisture to the stool and decrease gastrointestinal transit time. These types of fiber may be beneficial in the case of constipation. Slowly fermentable and insoluble fibers tend to increase gastrointestinal transit time and "bulk up" the stool. These types of fibers, which include cellulose and peanut hulls, may be beneficial in the case of diarrhea.

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Feline Pancreatitis: Signs of Trouble

Pancreatitis can be a frustrating disease in cats. The cause in most cases can't be definitively determined and the symptoms can be vague. Pancreatitis can range from low-grade with mild symptoms to severe, which can be fatal. Most often, the treatment is supportive, alleviating symptoms and keeping the cat comfortable.
 
The pancreas is a lobulated gland located along a portion of the small intestine in mammals. The pancreas has two types of tissue, each one of them synthesizing a different type of secretion. The exocrine portion, or acinar cells, produce enzymes utilized in the digestion of food and the endocrine portion, or islets of Langerhans, produce vital hormones such as insulin. Insulin is involved in the absorption and metabolism of glucose.
 
There are several diseases that can affect the normal functioning of the pancreas. In this article we're going to talk about inflammation of the pancreas, which is called pancreatitis. Pancreatitis happens when the enzymes produced and stored in the exocrine portion of the organ get activated inside it.

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It Started With a Caracas Cat Named Caterpillar

My name is Stefanie de Alfonzo and I live in Caracas, Venezuela. My passion for cats is very recent – 2012 - although I've always loved all animals and nature. I've always considered myself more of a "dog person." To tell you the truth, it never even crossed my mind to have cats as pets, until one day a stray cat had kittens at the warehouse I worked in.
 
I talked to my supervisor and asked him if we could keep two of the five kittens for rodent control at the warehouse. He approved, so I took the other three to a shelter for adoption. Little did I imagine how these two kittens, Shadow, a black cat, and Caterpillar (like the forklift brand), would change my life. Between gaining their trust and learning how cats really are - calling them indifferent is unjust - I was absolutely in love with cats. People that have cats knows exactly what I mean and people who don't…why don't you go to your closest shelter and adopt one or two so you can experience for yourself the wonders of cats. Unfortunately, in April 2013, my very beloved Caterpillar developed crystals in his urine; likely due to the dry food he was fed.

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Feline Nutrition Membership Tops 4500!

Feline Nutrition is now the largest feline diet membership organization in the world, with more than 4500 members in over 70 countries. And growing all the time. We are thrilled that interest in bio-appropriate nutrition for cats has global appeal, but it also tells us something important. Bad diets for cats are everywhere. That means that the health consequences of those bad diets are everywhere, too. But, people all over the world are waking up to the realization that they can take control of their cat's diet. That it isn't hard at all.
 
Cats are cats. Large or small, all cats evolved to eat a diet of raw flesh. As strict carnivores, they should not be eating plant-based, high carbohydrate diets. We believe every cat, everywhere, should be fed a healthy, bio-appropriate diet.
 
Join Feline Nutrition today. Encourage your friends, family, co-workers and customers to join. Membership is free. Add your voice to the thousands that think it's time that cats are fed diets fit for the carnivores they are. Your membership encourages people new to the idea to make that change. Join now and help cats get food that makes them thrive, not just survive.

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FelineNutrition Answers: To Grind or Not To Grind? Different ways to feed a raw diet to your cat. http://t.co/v0GE3RlfXg
FelineNutrition Answers: Making Meals Kitty Sized. http://t.co/CxHLSTSZYv
FelineNutrition Do Cats Need Fiber? The Answer Might Surprise You. http://t.co/8CPUPXsnIT

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