This month we are exploring how our pets can contribute to mental health and recovery. Kathryn Joel from Get Cooking joins us this month with her cat Milo to share her pet food recipe.
Hanging out with Milo is a great way to switch off and relax. During the stresses of pandemic life, he kept my two sons and I grounded. It’s hard to be too stressed when you have a gorgeous purring happy furball to distract you.
Milo isn’t actually on a raw food diet. I taught a class on raw food diets for cats, at Edmonton International Cat Fest and I’ve tried to get Milo interested, but he is a pretty picky eater! He’s on a combo of high-quality cat food (he prefers seafood) and a bit of dry.
Edmonton International Cat Festival asked me to teach a class on cat food. Initially, I thought I’d make an easy seafood recipe, something Milo would like! But when I started researching I learned a lot about what cats should actually eat. It’s a bit of a rabbit hole! Raw is best. Cats are obligate carnivores. They don’t need fruits, veggies, and grains in their diets! But a raw diet for cats is comprised of chicken or rabbit. Fish needs to be cooked. And Milo likes fish! So while I now think that a balanced raw diet is the healthiest option for cats, I’m having trouble convincing Mr. Milo. He is accustomed to seafood with a bit of kibble and at eleven years old not willing to change.
Before making your own cat food, we recommend that you consult with your Vet and/or a Veterinary Nutritionist. There are a lot of resources online. The recipe below is drawn from the following resources:
If you plan to switch your cat to a homemade diet without bone, you can use a nutritional premix. In Canada, TCfeline is one option. You combine the supplement with water and mix with liver and meat (you should plan to grind your own). You can order this online.
Always remember that cats are Obligate Carnivores. They need a high-protein, meat-based diet to thrive and do well. A low-protein, high-carbohydrate diet is not suitable for them. There’s no such thing as a vegan cat. The recipe below partially cooks whole chicken thighs, to reduce the risk of salmonella. Keep in mind that cats are not humans, and do not react in the same way to salmonella. Please refer to the sources above if you prefer to feed your cat(s) a fully raw diet.
Recipe from Lisa A. Pierson
Note: most cats eat 4-6 oz per day
3 lbs poultry thighs (meat, bones and skin)
3-4 oz chicken liver, fully cooked
1 cup water
2 soft boiled eggs (optional) – boiled for 3-4 minutes, the white should be cooked but the yolks runny, or alternatively scramble in a little butter
5000 to 10,000mg fish oil (not cod liver oil), salmon oil is not recommended
400 IU vitamin E
1 capsule vitamin B complex 50 (for a picky cat start with 1/2 a capsule, 25 mg)
2000mg taurine (powdered, in capsule or loose)
1 tsp Windsor Half & Half salt with iodine