The modern consensus is that commercially produced cat food is alright but not ideal and the rise in convenient dry cat food is generally considered to be a step in the wrong direction from a strictly cat health viewpoint.
Dr. Elizabeth M Hodgkins DVM, a vet and cat food expert, spells out some of the health risks of dry cat food in her excellent book “Your Cat”. A couple of examples would be (a) Feline Diabetes and (b) UTIs – see urinary tract cat food.
I would suggest that the average, thinking cat caretaker is not completely happy with commercial cat food. They probably wouldn’t mind an alternative to it if it was on the market. That certainly applies to me.
Common sense says that the best diet is a natural diet. Commercially produced dry cat food is a very poor substitute to a natural diet. It is quite unnatural but it keeps our cats alive! Dry cat food is a modern convenience food. Convenient for the cat’s owner and manufacturer but not for the cat. See the best dry cat food in the USA on my assessment.
The most natural diet is a raw cat food diet. But you have to make it yourself. Few of us have the time or inclination to make it. A major obstacle is knowing how to do it…..
This is where our veterinarian could step in. Advocates of a raw cat food diet say it has real health benefits. Diseases such as IBD, diabetes, urinary tract infections, and mysterious undiagnosed health issues can be successfully dealt with or at least treated in part with a change over to a raw cat food diet. This is what individuals who make it say, based on first hand experience.
In general, it is fair to say that a raw food diet when prepared and stored properly carries health benefits. It is proactive health care. Going to the vet is reactive health care – you are reacting to a health problem rather than preventing it.
Why, therefore, are not veterinarians more knowledgeable about raw cat food diets? Why can’t we go to a vet and ask for advice on a raw cat food diet? Why don’t vets sell the product? It is their role to protect the health of our animal companions. In general it would seem that vets advise against people making a raw cat food diet because of the potential health risks in improper storage and manufacture. I can understand that but why, then, can’t they give us the advice?
There is no doubt that veterinarians have a poor grasp of the intricacies of preparing a raw cat food diet. I actually think vets should sell it. But that will never happen because it would probably result in an improvement in the health of the domestic cat population. Our cats would suffer from less disease.
Would that suit Mr. Veterinarian? On the basis of what we know about the USA vet’s reasons for maintaining declawing in the USA I think we know the answer.
The bottom line is that vets depend on our cats getting ill. Am I being too tough on vets?