Young woman cuddling cat

Bright eyes, silky fur and a content, calm mood. There’s nothing quite as rewarding as seeing your cat happy and healthy, and a balanced diet is essential to their well-being.

But, how do you define a cat food diet as “balanced”? In your head, does “balanced” mean not only meat, but also  fruits, vegetables and grains? Keep reading to get your answer (and more!)

Which foods and ingredients are necessary in a balanced cat diet?

Many consumers have heard that fruits, veggies and grains are needed, in addition to meat, to form a truly balanced cat food diet. But, these additional ingredients can actually be more harmful than helpful for cats.

Fruits, veggies and grains are great for humans and other animals, but adding these ingredients to cat food adds soluble carbohydrates that cats simply don’t need. Expert veterinarian and animal nutritionist Dr. Patton calls cats “obligate carnivores,” meaning that cats thrive on a meat-based diet that’s free of carbohydrates.

How does a raw cat food diet lead to balanced nutrition?

A true raw cat food diet is made from meat, vital organs and bones. This diet matches what cats ate in the wild–which is why this approach to nutrition is called the ALPHA Prey-Model. Back in the day (waaaay back), the “Alpha,” or leader of the group, had first dibs on vital organs and the best meat. So, by feeding your cat a true, balanced raw diet, you’re promoting them to Alpha of your family and giving them the best of the best.

Here’s four reasons why raw cat food with no added carbs is exactly what your pet needs:

  1. A raw diet provides cats with an essential amino acid called taurine. This amino acid is important for vision, digestion, muscles and your cat’s immune system.
  2. Added carbs from grains, fruits, veggies, legumes, etc. “tie up” taurine and prevent cats from absorbing it from their food.
  3. Carbs can contribute to a higher risk of obesity in cats.
  4. A low-starch diet encourages natural bacteria in the digestive tract to create B vitamins, which are vital to the nervous system and immune system, and further support healthy digestion.

What types of raw cat food and treats should I start with?

Our growing list of raw freeze-dried and frozen food, treats and snacks are made with only meat, vital organs and bones, and absolutely nothing else. We like to say that our products are gluten-, grain- and guilt-free and packed with protein for your kitty.

Here’s how you might start your cat on a raw food diet with Vital Essentials.

  • Top their current food with a meal topper to get your cat introduced to a raw diet.
  • Work in our other food products gradually, like our Mini Nibs or Mini Patties.
  • When your cat’s “feline” good and deserves a reward, give them a freeze-dried, raw treat like our duck hearts or minnows.

Have questions about our products and how to provide your cat with a balanced diet with raw food? Check out our FAQs or drop us a line!