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Dental health & Pre-made Raw diet

heather

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Sophie is now bring transitioned to pre-made raw diet NV and Primal medallions.

My (limited) understanding of feline dental hygiene is that chewing on bones or dry food breaks up any build up and keeps their teeth healthy.

But in the pre-made raw the bones are quite crushed. Will it still have an affect?

Should I feed her some raw meaty bones a couple times a week also?

I saw some "chicken necks and gizzards" at the grocery store. Would the necks sold at the store be ok? Not sure if they were organic though.

I only brush her teeth once per week. What would be ideal for her new diet?
 
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You're right. The one drawback to pre-made raw (and even the ground homemade raw that I feed) is that they don't get the dental benefit. The absolute best thing for dental health is chewing raw meaty bones! The meat and tendons on the bones work like floss, and of course chewing up the bones helps remove tartar build-up. It's also good to exercise those jaw muscles!

I give my cats meaty bones 2 or 3 times a week in addition to their regular ground food. I started them with chicken necks because they are a perfect "starter bone". Chicken wing tips are great, and also chicken ribs. (and yes, the ones from the grocery store are fine to use) Basically any soft, smaller bones are good to start with. I had to start by cutting the chicken necks into 1 inch pieces. Now that they have the hang of it, I can toss pretty much any bone down and they'll eat it with no problems. I'm feeding them rabbit bones now, about 3-4 inches in size.

What amazes me, is that some of these bones I struggle to cut with my knife and kitchen shears, but these cats just chomp them right in half with their teeth!

Be sure to keep an eye on her while she's eating her bones (you'll want to anyway, it's really cool to watch)...sometimes my cats get them stuck on their teeth (it's kinda funny) but I have to help them. ALSO, don't be alarmed, when she's eating a large chunk of meat, if she partially swallows it and then sort of gags it back up and starts chewing on it some more. She just thought she could swallow a piece that was a little too big...it's perfectly normal. Mandy is notorious for that!

If you're feeding bones and notice Sophie's poop is white - that just means she's had a lot of calcium (from the bones) and you should hold off feeding her more bones for a couple of days. The other day, I got a new shipment of rabbit bones and fed a bunch of it to my guys...it looked like Frosty the Snowman had been using my litter box! :LOL::LOL:
 

heather

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Thank you Brooke!

Now I'm going to look like a crazy lady buying only chicken necks at the grocery store! I literally did all my shopping last night and didn't even forget anything. I will be going for the sole purpose of chicken necks. :LOL: It just cracks me up thinking about it.

I'm looking forward to giving her some bones! Thanks for the heads up on the swallow/gag I prob would've panicked.

This is so exciting!

Frosty the snowman :LOL: :LOL: That's hilarious!

You're right. The one drawback to pre-made raw (and even the ground homemade raw that I feed) is that they don't get the dental benefit. The absolute best thing for dental health is chewing raw meaty bones! The meat and tendons on the bones work like floss, and of course chewing up the bones helps remove tartar build-up. It's also good to exercise those jaw muscles!

I give my cats meaty bones 2 or 3 times a week in addition to their regular ground food. I started them with chicken necks because they are a perfect "starter bone". Chicken wing tips are great, and also chicken ribs. (and yes, the ones from the grocery store are fine to use) Basically any soft, smaller bones are good to start with. I had to start by cutting the chicken necks into 1 inch pieces. Now that they have the hang of it, I can toss pretty much any bone down and they'll eat it with no problems. I'm feeding them rabbit bones now, about 3-4 inches in size.

What amazes me, is that some of these bones I struggle to cut with my knife and kitchen shears, but these cats just chomp them right in half with their teeth!

Be sure to keep an eye on her while she's eating her bones (you'll want to anyway, it's really cool to watch)...sometimes my cats get them stuck on their teeth (it's kinda funny) but I have to help them. ALSO, don't be alarmed, when she's eating a large chunk of meat, if she partially swallows it and then sort of gags it back up and starts chewing on it some more. She just thought she could swallow a piece that was a little too big...it's perfectly normal. Mandy is notorious for that!

If you're feeding bones and notice Sophie's poop is white - that just means she's had a lot of calcium (from the bones) and you should hold off feeding her more bones for a couple of days. The other day, I got a new shipment of rabbit bones and fed a bunch of it to my guys...it looked like Frosty the Snowman had been using my litter box! :LOL::LOL:
 

susi794

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I can't find a store that carries chicken necks--bought some whole chicken wings and cut them into thirds, but my cats didn't eat the bones--skinned them clean of the meat and left the bones--will have to start a little smaller, I think. I found some chicken leg quarters on sale for 39cents a lb. and almost did the happy dance right there in the store. Wooohooo! They are going to be having ground turkey next week for a dollar a pound. So I will be there with bells on. Any news back from the meat lady, Brooke?
 

havingalook

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I keep meaning to start feeding raw, or at least mostly raw but haven't yet. Will read the links everyone keeps posting. :ThumbsUp:
 
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Now I'm going to look like a crazy lady buying only chicken necks at the grocery store! I literally did all my shopping last night and didn't even forget anything. I will be going for the sole purpose of chicken necks. :LOL: It just cracks me up thinking about it.
Oh yeah, I get some really weird looks...I bought two packs of chicken necks (2 pounds for a dollar!!) and a couple containers of chicken livers and nothing else and I thought the store clerk was going to throw up. I had to tell her they weren't for me, they were for my cats, and she still thought I was a weirdo. It didn't help that I had all my tattoos showing! :LOL::LOL:

I can't find a store that carries chicken necks--bought some whole chicken wings and cut them into thirds, but my cats didn't eat the bones--skinned them clean of the meat and left the bones--will have to start a little smaller, I think. I found some chicken leg quarters on sale for 39cents a lb. and almost did the happy dance right there in the store. Wooohooo! They are going to be having ground turkey next week for a dollar a pound. So I will be there with bells on. Any news back from the meat lady, Brooke?
No news yet...I'll bug her again! I have another supplier that sells beef and chicken, very high quality and reasonably priced ($1/lb for beef). But, they only have ground, with organs. They also have rabbit from time to time but their price for rabbit is out of this world ($4/lb). They have dealers as far as Ohio, so it's worth checking to see what they would charge to ship to you. PM me if you want their info...I can also give you a yahoo group link where you might be able to get in on a co-op or find a local dealer so you won't have to worry about shipping. Co-ops or local dealers are a great place to find the weird stuff like chicken necks, plus they're generally cheaper than grocery stores. You can ask the butcher to special order chicken necks at the grocery store - or, look for asian or spanish groceries - they often carry things like that.
 

susi794

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No news yet...I'll bug her again! I have another supplier that sells beef and chicken, very high quality and reasonably priced ($1/lb for beef). But, they only have ground, with organs. They also have rabbit from time to time but their price for rabbit is out of this world ($4/lb). They have dealers as far as Ohio, so it's worth checking to see what they would charge to ship to you. PM me if you want their info...I can also give you a yahoo group link where you might be able to get in on a co-op or find a local dealer so you won't have to worry about shipping. Co-ops or local dealers are a great place to find the weird stuff like chicken necks, plus they're generally cheaper than grocery stores. You can ask the butcher to special order chicken necks at the grocery store - or, look for asian or spanish groceries - they often carry things like that.
Yes, thanks, I'd like to research some sources....
 

heather

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I had just happened to stumble across the chicken necks and gizzards- can cats eat the gizzards? They were packaged together - yum! :LOL:

I have a local butcher I haven't been to yet but will need to try. Ya know- now that I'm in the market for necks and organs and such! :Hysterical: I hope Sophie is pleased at my efforts!

Which got me thinking- you know how cats bring their dead prey and present it to their owners? Does it work the other way around? :Dizzy: :Laugh: Cuz it feels like that's what I'm doing now! Either that or she feels like she's at a 5 star restaurant and tonight Ground Cube of Quail was on the menu.
 
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:LOL::LOL::LOL:

I'm glad you're having so much fun with the raw! I have fun with it, too! :BigSmile: and more importantly, the cats love it.

Yep, she can eat gizzards. In fact, she can eat any part of the animal. Some hard core raw feeders use the 'whole prey' model, and basically give their pets a whole hen or mouse or small animal and let them eat that - just like they would in the wild (except that it's already dead and usually skinned first). Eyeballs are really good for them :Badly: and hearts are high in taurine. They often won't eat the intestines, though. When I buy my ground mix, the stomach and intestines are removed, but everything else (brains, lungs, heart, pancreas, liver, kidneys, etc. etc....are all included!)

FYI, When I give them meaty bones, I cut off any big chunks of fat that are still attached.

Some day, I might get up enough nerve to buy some frozen mice for these guys and see what they do with them. Not sure yet... I just bought some rabbit that had the skin (and fur) still on it because it was 50 cents per pound cheaper that way. The cats don't mind, but I am kinda grossed out by it. I don't like being reminded that the meat used to be attached to a cute little bunny! But, the fur is a really good source of fiber.
 
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I'd like to throw in a note for everyone information regarding manufactured raw because up until about 10 days ago, I would have agreed that it doesn't help teeth...however...

In July of 2009 when I adopted Buck and Buffy, they both had nasty teeth. Hers were not as had as his...but they were getting there. They both had more than enough dental tartar for them to qualify for a dental on any scale used in Veterinary Medicine. In August, I switched them to raw. Buck has been eating rabbit most of the time and Buffy's been eating mostly turkey/quail. Up until January 2010, I was feeding NV raw rabbit. They occasionally would be offered a chunk of something with a bone in it...but the single cat to always refuse was Buffy. Far too picky for that, she'd informed me multiple times.

On the 19th of February, all three of my cats were scheduled for echos and dentals. The dental tartar that I'd observed previously on my cats was DRASTICALLY reduced. A normal dental on a cat with dental tartar should take about 15 minutes from the initiation of scaling to the completion of polishing.

Buck: 4 minutes
Baldwin 5 minutes
Buffy: 2 minutes

In fact, Buffy had so little dental tartar I was actually asked if I wanted to forego the dental. She didn't even have enough to scale an entire tooth...they just scaled near the gum line where some buildup might've been.

Now, you might ask, why did I have dentals done if they weren't needed? I did it because I wanted to give them all the best "clean slate" I could with raw diet. Pets are at risk for bacterial myocarditis and other problems that dental tartar/buildup can cause. It's wise to have them checked regularly and a dental performed as needed.

That being said, my dogs are all on a more "whole prey diet" as Brooke mentioned (and my entire back yard looks like Frosty the Snowman drops by daily). None of them have any dental tartar at all. All 3 of my pitbulls have sparkly white teeth. Brogan and Bastien will be 4 this year, Breixo will be 2. They grind all that nasty tartar off with their weekly raw meaty bones. Yum!
 

Luvmysphynx

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Oh yeah, I get some really weird looks...I bought two packs of chicken necks (2 pounds for a dollar!!) and a couple containers of chicken livers and nothing else and I thought the store clerk was going to throw up. I had to tell her they weren't for me, they were for my cats, and she still thought I was a weirdo. It didn't help that I had all my tattoos showing! :LOL::LOL:
I've gotten some strange looks doing that before, too LOL But if you REALLY want to have some fun, try this! I do alot of homeopathics with my dogs, so when I need to prepare a remedy, I need Vodka and distilled water - Now me and a friend of mine decided to go get the supplies needed together. We're crazy on a good day - I'm 25, but look like I'm maybe 16, and she looks like something that came out of Hooters LOL So when we asked for Vodka, told them to give us the cheapest bottle they had (don't need good Vodka, it's just a perservative basically) and she started giving us a strange look like she just KNEW we where going to go get sloshed, so I just had to tell her "oh, don't worry, it's for my dog" I thought her jaw was going to hit the floor ROFL Asking the grocery store butchers for turkey tail, gizzards, or pretty much any other innard is also usually good for a laugh!
 

Luvmysphynx

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Oh yeah, I get some really weird looks...I bought two packs of chicken necks (2 pounds for a dollar!!) and a couple containers of chicken livers and nothing else and I thought the store clerk was going to throw up. I had to tell her they weren't for me, they were for my cats, and she still thought I was a weirdo. It didn't help that I had all my tattoos showing! :LOL::LOL:
I've gotten some strange looks doing that before, too LOL But if you REALLY want to have some fun, try this! I do alot of homeopathics with my dogs, so when I need to prepare a remedy, I need Vodka and distilled water - Now me and a friend of mine decided to go get the supplies needed together. We're crazy on a good day - I'm 25, but look like I'm maybe 16, and she looks like something that came out of Hooters LOL So when we asked for Vodka, told them to give us the cheapest bottle they had (don't need good Vodka, it's just a perservative basically) and she started giving us a strange look like she just KNEW we where going to go get sloshed, so I just had to tell her "oh, don't worry, it's for my dog" I thought her jaw was going to hit the floor ROFL Asking the grocery store butchers for turkey tail, gizzards, or pretty much any other innard is also usually good for a laugh!
 

Luvmysphynx

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Oh yeah, I get some really weird looks...I bought two packs of chicken necks (2 pounds for a dollar!!) and a couple containers of chicken livers and nothing else and I thought the store clerk was going to throw up. I had to tell her they weren't for me, they were for my cats, and she still thought I was a weirdo. It didn't help that I had all my tattoos showing! :LOL::LOL:
I've gotten some strange looks doing that before, too LOL But if you REALLY want to have some fun, try this! I do alot of homeopathics with my dogs, so when I need to prepare a remedy, I need Vodka and distilled water - Now me and a friend of mine decided to go get the supplies needed together. We're crazy on a good day - I'm 25, but look like I'm maybe 16, and she looks like something that came out of Hooters LOL So when we asked for Vodka, told them to give us the cheapest bottle they had (don't need good Vodka, it's just a perservative basically) and she started giving us a strange look like she just KNEW we where going to go get sloshed, so I just had to tell her "oh, don't worry, it's for my dog" I thought her jaw was going to hit the floor ROFL Asking the grocery store butchers for turkey tail, gizzards, or pretty much any other innard is also usually good for a laugh!
 

Luvmysphynx

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Oh yeah, I get some really weird looks...I bought two packs of chicken necks (2 pounds for a dollar!!) and a couple containers of chicken livers and nothing else and I thought the store clerk was going to throw up. I had to tell her they weren't for me, they were for my cats, and she still thought I was a weirdo. It didn't help that I had all my tattoos showing! :LOL::LOL:
I've gotten some strange looks doing that before, too LOL But if you REALLY want to have some fun, try this! I do alot of homeopathics with my dogs, so when I need to prepare a remedy, I need Vodka and distilled water - Now me and a friend of mine decided to go get the supplies needed together. We're crazy on a good day - I'm 25, but look like I'm maybe 16, and she looks like something that came out of Hooters LOL So when we asked for Vodka, told them to give us the cheapest bottle they had (don't need good Vodka, it's just a perservative basically) and she started giving us a strange look like she just KNEW we where going to go get sloshed, so I just had to tell her "oh, don't worry, it's for my dog" I thought her jaw was going to hit the floor ROFL Asking the grocery store butchers for turkey tail, gizzards, or pretty much any other innard is also usually good for a laugh!
 
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Can you just give a cat a bone to eat? How does this work? Just go to the store buy bones and give it to them, doess it need to be a certain size?
 

maxtmill

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I'd like to throw in a note for everyone information regarding manufactured raw because up until about 10 days ago, I would have agreed that it doesn't help teeth...however...

In July of 2009 when I adopted Buck and Buffy, they both had nasty teeth. Hers were not as had as his...but they were getting there. They both had more than enough dental tartar for them to qualify for a dental on any scale used in Veterinary Medicine. In August, I switched them to raw. Buck has been eating rabbit most of the time and Buffy's been eating mostly turkey/quail. Up until January 2010, I was feeding NV raw rabbit. They occasionally would be offered a chunk of something with a bone in it...but the single cat to always refuse was Buffy. Far too picky for that, she'd informed me multiple times.

On the 19th of February, all three of my cats were scheduled for echos and dentals. The dental tartar that I'd observed previously on my cats was DRASTICALLY reduced. A normal dental on a cat with dental tartar should take about 15 minutes from the initiation of scaling to the completion of polishing.

Buck: 4 minutes
Baldwin 5 minutes
Buffy: 2 minutes

In fact, Buffy had so little dental tartar I was actually asked if I wanted to forego the dental. She didn't even have enough to scale an entire tooth...they just scaled near the gum line where some buildup might've been.

Now, you might ask, why did I have dentals done if they weren't needed? I did it because I wanted to give them all the best "clean slate" I could with raw diet. Pets are at risk for bacterial myocarditis and other problems that dental tartar/buildup can cause. It's wise to have them checked regularly and a dental performed as needed.

That being said, my dogs are all on a more "whole prey diet" as Brooke mentioned (and my entire back yard looks like Frosty the Snowman drops by daily). None of them have any dental tartar at all. All 3 of my pitbulls have sparkly white teeth. Brogan and Bastien will be 4 this year, Breixo will be 2. They grind all that nasty tartar off with their weekly raw meaty bones. Yum!
Hi! Since I see you have cats & dogs both, I will ask you - how do you ensure that the dogs & cats are getting all the nutrients they need? Do they eat just raw meat & raw bones, or do you cook vegetables & brown rice for them, too? If you crockpot meaty bones, do you then use a meat grinder to grind up the bones into a coarse pulp? I may be moving out of the country in a few years, & I have been told that the dog food (& I assume cat food) is expensive & not a really good brand! Could I mix some raw with some kibble?:Dizzy:
 
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