How Diet Affects Your Cat


What’s up, Team Cat Mojo? We have a special episode
of Cat Mojo today. I field a lot of questions
about cat nutrition. And I’m glad. It makes me happy to be able
to talk about that body mind connection with cats. I’ve been doing that for
many, many, many years. And for quite awhile now, one
of the tools in my toolbox has been felinenutrition.org,
and felinenutrition.org really gets into the nitty gritty
about what cats need to eat and what keeps them vital. And I’m really happy to welcome
Margaret Gates her today. Margaret Gates is the founder
and director of the Feline Nutrition Education Society,
and welcome Margaret. Hi. It’s so good to see you. Tell me a little
bit, tell the world a little bit about
felinenutrition.org and how you started it. Well, I started in 2008 after
I had attended a lecture given by a v about nutrition. And one of the
things she did was she brought in all her equipment
and made a batch of raw food right there. And I realized how easy it was. And also how she explained
what cats evolved to eat and what they really
should be eating, which is a raw meat diet. That’s what their whole
systems are geared up to do. And I switched all of my cats,
who were then about a year old, on to a raw meat diet. And I was just blown
away by the results. Even with cats that
we’re young and healthy, they had more energy, their
coats got soft and silky, and best of all, the poop
doesn’t smell at all. It’s been an uphill
battle in terms of advocating a
bio-appropriate diet for cats. Since you started in ’08,
are you finding that there is a measure of acceptance
around raw diet? Acceptance is growing. Yes, the vets are
slowly coming around and one of the
things we have found is a lot of people start
feeding their cats the raw meat diet after visiting our site or
deciding on their own to do it. And they end up taking their
cats to the vet, the vets ooh and aah over how
healthy their cats are and we’ve had people it took
an 18-year-old cats that have been on a raw meet
diet and the vet just couldn’t believe the
cat was 18 years old. Then they reveal
what they’re feeding the cat and a lot of vets take
a step back and start really thinking about it at that
point, because, they’re getting educated
by their clients. Most vets don’t get a lot
of education in nutrition, and that’s part of the problem. What education they
do get is often taught by the pet food company. Exactly, right. I’ve had vets
describe this to me. It was mostly a course
in how to prescribe the veterinary
prescription diet. It wasn’t about what
was best for the cat. So a lot of vets just don’t
know very much about it, and because a vet,
they’re reluctant. Vets that are a little
bit more open minded are willing to learn from what
their clients are showing them. And willing to see the results,
because a raw meat diet can be very effective in
helping cats with IVD, and diabetes, and other
diseases, urinary tract problems. And because of that, a lot
of people are turning to it and trying raw meat diets. Tell me about your
light bulb moment. I suddenly realized that,
of course, a cat is a cat. They evolved to eat raw meat. And the fact that we’re
feeding them other things is leading to a lot
of health problems. We’re feeding cats foods
that they did not evolve and it is causing them a
lot of health problems. Especially dry food, because
cats are obligate carnivores, they don’t have any
requirement for carbohydrates. That’s one of the things
that this vet pointed out. And once you point
that out to people, and they suddenly
realize what they had been feeding their cat,
because we had fed our cats dry food. And once you realize that you’re
feeding your cat something that they have no
business eating, they have no requirement for
carbohydrate, and all dry food, no matter what the ingredients,
even if it’s grain free, is filled carbohydrates. And that was
something I realized, that I’d been contributing
to my cat’s health problems by what I was feeding him. I had assumed that because
this food is in the stores and it’s available, that
it was OK for my cat. It’s not. Everyone talks about the
fact that– my grandma fed her cat blank blank. I’d feed– my mom fed her
cats the dry blank blank, and I feed it. And our cats are living
to be 20 years old. So their lifespan is just fine. What do you say to
people who say that? Yes, some cats do survive
into old age on dry food. But it’s still not a
healthy food for them. They never tell you whether that
cat was having kidney problems, whether it was having any other
medical problems, whether it was probably overweight. Cats are a lot
healthier when they’re eating bio appropriate diets. Not every cat is going to have
a problem on a dry food diet. A lot of cats well. And you don’t know when
you’re starting out whether your cat’s
going to have a problem. And I always think why risk it? The myth that you can
feed a grain free dry. And it’s great for then. The whole packaging of
grain free, talk to me about that real quick. Because people started
to avoid grains with cats, which are very
dangerous to give cats, manufacturers caught onto that
and started eliminating grains. All they do is substitute
another carbohydrate, some sort of vegetable usually. It’s still carbohydrates,
it’s still dry. Cats don’t need
carbohydrates and they need to get most of their
liquid in their food, which is why canned or raw
diet is most important. Tell folks how they
get this information on feline nutrition. If you go to
feline-nutrition.org, we have lots of
different sections. We have sections
on nutrition that would talk about
these prepared diets, we also have a recipe if
you want to make homemade, you need to follow a recipe,
because cats need meat, bone, and organ in their diet. Can’t just be plain meat. That’s very deficient. And we have lots of
different articles on how to do a proper
raw meat diet whichever method you’re using. Thank you so much, Margaret. You’re welcome. Me and you could sit here and
talk for six hours, I’m sure. We could. And hopefully we will sometime. But in the meantime
folks, you know how I feel about a
bio appropriate diet. Now you’re starting to see that
it’s not such a strange thing. Feline-nutrition.org,
please go to it, you’ll see the links down below. And do what’s best for your cat. Start thinking. Is that kibble in
that bowl really the right thing for your cat? You know I talk to you guys
all the time about structuring meal time, structure meal
time, with at the very least, a grain free wet diet,
but start taking a look at the kind of things you’ll
find with the Feline Nutrition Education Society. Please do it. Do what’s best for your cat
and avoid the learning curve that a lot of us
including me and Margaret have gone through before. We’re trying to
make it so you don’t have to make those tough
decisions once your cat is not well. All right, folks, if you
want to get in touch with me, and I’m sure you
do at this point. This is really
interesting stuff. You can find me on Twitter and
on Facebook and on YouTube. And you can also find
Margaret wherever you need to on feline-nutrition.org. Until the next time we
meet, all light, all love, all mojo to you, love you. Goodbye. [MUSIC PLAYING]

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