How Much Rad Cat Raw Food Should I Feed My Cat?

We recommend feeding Rad Cat twice daily. Portion size will vary with the size, age, and activity level of your cat. Normal meals for an adult cat are between 3-3.5 ounces per meal (approx. a healthy 1/3 cup) for each 10 pounds of cats' weight.  Kittens and pregnant or lactating moms will often consume 3-4 times the adult quantity and need that extra nutrition. 


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How Long Does Rad Cat Stay Fresh in the Refrigerator?

Typically, our products will stay fresh for 3-4 days in a refrigerator kept between 37-40 degrees.


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Why Has Rad Cat Chosen To Use Container Packaging Instead Of Packing In Chubs Or Forming Patties, Nuggets, or Medallions?

At Rad Cat we have taken very careful consideration in regards to our packaging and have found many benefits of a "tub" style container versus packaging in bags.


One of the most important reasons is that our containers are recyclable! It is very important to us to be as environmentally conscious as possible in selecting our packaging and our ingredients and in the very manufacturing of the food, itself. When packaging in a bag, there is no choice but to deposit it in a landfill after use. It troubles us to think of thousands of pounds of our packaging heading to a landfill to spend hundreds of years decomposing in the earth - that is why we use a recyclable container. By recycling our tubs, the plastic is re-used to make packaging for many consumer products and other materials used by industry. If we produced our product in chubs, patties, nuggets, or medallions, we would have no choice but to use a bag, which is not acceptable to us. Our goal has always been to provide an excellent cat food with as little waste as possible.

Our packaging doesn't tear or leak and also provides longevity for our product in the freezer. There is little surface area exposure, as opposed to patties or medallions, which protects the food from freezer burn that can lead to degradation of the food and compromise its nutritional value.


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Do I Need To Add Supplements To Rad Cat?

Rad Cat is a complete and balanced diet and needs no supplementation. Our products provide natural, whole-food nutrition. The only supplement we add is a small amount manganese gluconate, simply because this trace mineral is found in greatest abundance in grains and vegetables, which we do not include in our products. Our whole-food ingredients contribute a fair amount of manganese to our foods, but not in the quantities we believe would be beneficial for optimal nutrition, so we supplement a small amount.

On the labels of cooked products, there is a long list of supplements that have to be added due to the destruction of the naturally present vitamins and other nutrients originally contained in the ingredients. Rad Cat contains all essential nutrients, provided from raw, fresh, organic, and free-range sources.

All of our diets have been tested for nutritional adequacy by an independent laboratory and meet or exceed the nutritional standards set forth by AAFCO. Our diets are complete and formulated for all stages of a cats' life.


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Do I Need To Worry About Samonella and E.Coli With Rad Cat Raw Cat Food?

We pride ourselves in the quality of our products, which includes a very tight quality control program. All of our batches are tested by an independent laboratory for total bacteria, Salmonella, and E.Coli O157:H7. Even though we test our products before they leave our plant, the first level of our quality control begins with the sources of our meats - the control of bacteria begins at the farm.


We only work with vendors that we feel comfortable about their quality standards. Products that come from sources that provide free-range meats or have organic certification are typically an assurance of overall higher quality and higher standards, which includes testing and methods to assure safe handling, packing, and shipping. Working with responsible farms in conjunction with our strict product testing procedures provides very safe, healthful products.


Our poultry ingredients (the thigh and leg, hearts and livers) undergo high pressure pasteurization before they reach our facility.  This "kill step" is recognized by the FDA for many food products, as a way to eliminate pathogens from ready-to-eat foods.  It will only kill pathogens and spoilage organisms, such as salmonella, E.coli, Listeria and Campylobacter.  As poultrydoes not contain "beneficial" bacteria, there is no concern about these bacteria being affected.  This is simply another step to make sure our products are free from pathogens.  Please visit our About HPP page, under Education for more information.


We also use Ozone Technology in our processing which is an additional insurance that our meats and poultry are free from contamination.  Ozone is used environmentally, where it is part of our cleaning process.  Ozone is a natural oxidizer that kills bacteria on contact, having no residual effects.  It makes our production area smell fresh, like right after a fresh spring rain and keeps our entire environment bacteria and mold-free.  In nature, that scent is actually ozone!


Please see our Safety and Quality page for more information on how we assure our products are safe.


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What Does Rad Cat Use as a Source of Taurine?

When considering essential nutrients, some of the most important are amino acids, such as taurine, which is very important for cats to eat in abundance. Amino acids are the building blocks of protein and are very abundant in meat sources. Taurine, as well as at least 10 other amino acids are essential - which means cats must acquire these through dietary means and do not manufacture them on their own. Taurine is found in the highest concentration in the brain. When cats capture prey, the head is almost exclusively consumed first before any organs or muscle. The stomach and its contents, contrary to popular rhetoric, are almost never consumed.


Logistically, it's impractical to use brain as a primary taurine supplement, but we, at Rad Cat, have chosen to use organ meat with the next highest concentration of taurine: the heart. Taurine is present in all meat, even in muscle, but the heart is an excellent source of this amino acid in high concentration. In addition to its nutritional value, cats find the flavor of heart irresistible! We do not add synthetic Taurine to our foods because adequate levels are provided by our natural muscle and organ meats.


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Is It Okay That My Cat Doesn't Drink As Much Now That He/She Is Eating Rad Cat?

Cats are designed to naturally extract the moisture they need from their food. Not added water, like in canned food, but intracellular moisture from raw food. The moisture is released through digestion and is more thoroughly absorbed.


Dry diets are taxing on cats' digestive systems and, in essence, make them work in the exact opposite way than they were designed. As stated above, cats are designed to extract the moisture they need from their food. When consuming dry food, cats need to rehydrate the food in their stomach - taking the moisture away from other critical systems. This taxes the body and impedes proper digestive function. Once the food is hydrated and broken down, then the water can be reabsorbed. During this entire process, there is no additional, needed moisture contributing to the digestive process until the cat journeys to the water dish, which is typically long after a meal is consumed.

Often people are surprised to see that their cats stop drinking as much when eating raw. That is simply due to the high natural moisture content in raw food. For a healthy cat, it is possible to rarely see them drink from the water dish. When eating kibble diets, cats are often in a state of chronic dehydration. Many companies add salt to their food to try to encourage cats to drink, but all the salt does is contribute to the dehydration problem. When cats (or people, too) aren't drinking enough water, the urine becomes concentrated. This is a significant contributor to FLUTD, mainly stone and crystal formation. Optimal hydration also contributes to healthy kidney, digestive, joint, and cognitive functions.


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Is Rad Cat An Option For My Cat With Renal Disease & FLUTD?

There is still much misinformation and debate about low protein diets for cats with kidney disease or renal failure, in any stage. The latest research is showing that the source and quality of the protein is more important than the quantity of protein.


The "low protein diet" philosophy comes from research conducted decades ago on mice, who are vegetarian, that were fed a high protein diet, which is not natural for them. This caused their kidneys to begin shutting down because they weren't designed to process all of the protein they were forced to ingest. These inappropriate findings were then applied to all companion animals, saying that high protein diets contribute to kidney failure. Recent research is supporting the theory that protein is not a major contributor to renal disease and should only be restricted under special circumstances.

Diets high in phosphorus are now being considered as a possible problem, but only for cats that are in acute renal failure or have severe renal disease and clinically show elevated phosphorus levels. However, for the obligate carnivore, phosphorus cannot be restricted without restricting protein. Typically, cats with advanced renal disease are thin, have a very low appetite, are lethargic and need to be fed whatever they will eat in order for them to get any nutrition and keep any weight on. This should be a food they love that is nutrient rich. Rad Cat has been the answer for so many cat companions because this is a nutrient dense food that cats will consume with voracity. At Rad Cat, we receive regular testimonials from people who started to feed their cats raw when they were diagnosed with renal disease. These cats are full of life and putting weight on because they're eating again. That is wonderful and beautiful to hear.

Even though phosphorus may be in question for its involvement with renal disease, it is essential in a cat's diet. Phosphorus is a building block of bone. It can be considered the "scaffolding" and calcium is the "cement" when building bone. These two minerals have many other functions in the body, especially with cellular metabolism, but this is one of their biggest roles. When looking at any diet for cats or dogs, there is a ratio of calcium to phosphorus that needs to be observed or some potentially serious health problems can occur. In cats, too much calcium can lead to stone and crystal formation - calcium oxalate stones, in particular. Too little can lead to the body pulling calcium from the skeleton, which can lead to osteoporosis. This is one of the main considerations in home prepared pet food or using "pet food blends" available in many grocery and pet stores. Most contain muscle, organ meat, and necks, backs, or other bones. Do these other companies and grocery stores who design their own blends know what the best bone to muscle ratio is? And, is it consistent? At Rad Cat, we use powdered eggshell. Our recipe is very specific and every batch of our food maintains a proper calcium to phosphorus ratio. Also, there is no need to worry about bone shards that can potentially be harmful to cats with sluggish or compromised digestive systems. Many cats that are new to eating raw diets can have difficulties with the challenges that ground bone can cause.

Our products are also naturally low in magnesium, which tends to be the major concern, among minerals, in cases of urinary tract obstruction (kidney stones and crystals). Our foods are formulated to contain all of the minerals in proper balance and only contain healthful levels, not high levels.

The amount of moisture present in a cat's food is extremely important, especially when considering cats with urinary tract stones and crystals (FLUTD). As mentioned above, cats are designed to extract the moisture they need from their food. When consuming dry food, cats need to rehydrate the food in their stomach - taking the moisture away from other critical systems. Once the food is hydrated and broken down, then the water can be reabsorbed. During this entire process, there is no additional, needed moisture contributing to the digestive process until the cat journeys to the water dish, which is typically long after a meal is consumed. This can lead to a state of chronic low-level dehydration and highly concentrated urine. This can be a major factor in the development of urinary crystals and stones.

The intracellular moisture present in raw food is slowly released during the digestive process, providing sufficient water for digestion and therefore, adequate hydration.


Our products also promote a healthy urinary pH, around 6.2, which is slightly acidic. High protein diets can lead to urine that is more acidic, but less concentrated, which is optimal and especially important for cats that have a tendency to develop crystals and stones.


Because we don't grind bone in our products, all of our diets are naturally low in ash.  All of our varieties are 1.4% or less.


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Where Does Rad Cat Raw Cat Food Source Their Meat?

It is important to us that all of the meats we use come from farms that practice sustainable agriculture and use humane and ethical standards of raising animals. Our chicken, turkey, lamb, pork and beef are US sourced and inspected by the USDA.  Our venison comes from New Zealand and is inspected by the New Zealand USDA equivalent, which is the New Zealand Ministry for Primary Industries and the New Zealand Veterinary Inspector.  On the USA import side for our venison, the FDA and US Fish and Wildlife Service oversee all imports, as the USDA does not have jurisdiction for imported products. However, all of our venison meets USDA requirements.  All of our meats and poultry and are hormone and antibiotic free and are all cuts that are made for human consumption.  On our label, we list the actual cuts of meat we use.




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Why Does Rad Cat use Powdered Eggshell instead of ground bone?

We use powdered eggshell in all of our products. Powdered eggshell contains calcium carbonate, which is highly bio-available like calcium phosphate, found in bone.  Powdered eggshell also contains other trace minerals nutrients that are found in ground bone.


Here are a couple of reasons why we made the choice to use powdered eggshell instead of ground-in bone:


#1) Many people and veterinarians have serious concerns about feeding raw ground bones. Ground bone is challenging for a cat's digestive system. We agree that this may by okay for some cats with normal, healthy digestion, cats with sluggish digestive systems or with IBD/IBS might have problems digesting bone shards. You are a better judge as to the value of bones in your cat's diet. That is why we recommend feeding bones in the natural condition a cat might find it - whole and chewable! You are at the mercy of the manufacturers on the size of bone shards in their grind. In a typical 'kill' for your backyard carnivore, he or she would most likely consume far less bone than is in a typical serving of food with bone ground in, which can be 10-15%.


#2) It is difficult to guarantee the ratio of bone to meat unless every bone ground is exactly the same size. We have chosen to use powdered eggshell so that we can closely regulate the calcium and phosphorus content in our diets, which is so important for cats.


#3) Many cats suffer from constipation when consuming raw, ground bone on a regular basis. In order to maintain a proper calcium:phosphorus ratio, diets with ground bone can contain upwards of 10% bone, which is troublesome for many cats.


#4) Powedered eggshell contains far less phosphorus than ground bone, which can make it a better option for cats with renal issues.  Many veterinarians often suggest cats with kidney disease eat diets with less than 1% phosphorus.  All of our diets are .9% or less.  Eliminating bone from our formulations also reduces the ash content, which can greatly benefit cats with urinary tract issues.


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What Is The Best Way To Transition My Cat To A Raw Diet?

Many cats transition right away to Rad Cat without hesitation. However, cats naturally fixate on food - we call it ‘finicky' - for them its by nature how their mothers helped teach them what food IS. Some cats require a transition period and patience and persistence on your part to transition to raw. Visit our Transitioning page to read our suggestions on methods to transition your cat to a raw diet. It also contains information on changes to expect when cats are eating raw.


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Is Rad Cat Good For Overweight Cats And Cats With Diabetes?

Rad Cat diets are designed to provide meals that are high in protein and low in carbohydrates, which is beneficial for weight loss and for cats that are diabetic. Cats are designed by nature to metabolize proteins more efficiently than carbohydrates, which sets them apart from other omnivores, like dogs and humans. Cats have a limited ability to utilize carbohydrates as energy. They are metabolically adapted to use protein and fat as their energy source and do best when fed a diet that reflects that of their wild ancestors - mostly meat and very little carbohydrate intake. It's the ingestion of proteins and fats that helps give cats a feeling of satiety and triggers the mechanism in their brains that tells them they can stop eating. Cats that "graze" during the day often eat due to this lack of satiety and their bodies experience rapid rising and falling of glucose levels throughout the day.


When cats eat a high protein, low carbohydrate diet, satiety is reached sooner and glucose is released more slowly by the transformation of protein to glucose (gluconeogenesis). This means cats will not have a need to "graze" throughout the day. Also, less unused energy (carbs) will be stored as fat. This brings about natural weight loss and lower blood sugar levels.

A cat's pancreas isn't designed to release large quantities of insulin to counterbalance constant rises in blood glucose. The pancreas in cats produces a limited amount of insulin and can become overwhelmed by the demand. This can lead to a considerable amount of stress on the pancreas, resulting in suppression and, therefore, eventually, diabetes. All of this free-flowing sugar in the bloodstream that is not used for energy is converted into fat and is one of the main contributors to feline obesity.

Physiologically, cats also have a limited capacity for the digestion of carbohydrates. Cats lack salivary amylase (an enzyme) and have limited amounts of pancreatic amylase, which aids in the breakdown of carbohydrates. The presence of high carbs in their diet may also lead to decreased protein digestibility and intestinal disturbances.

Cats on portion-controlled diets that limit carbohydrate intake will often have limited intake of protein and other essential nutrients. Weight loss may be noted, but possibly at the expense of lean muscle mass, not just fat. Weight-loss formulas may also contain higher quantities of insoluble fiber that can increase stool volume by pulling large amounts of moisture into the stool. This can lead to dehydration in cats that aren't drinking a sufficient amount of water (which can happen especially in cats eating dry food). This dehydration can be a significant contributor to urinary tract disorders (FLUTD).


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Is Rad Cat Good For My Cat With IBS/IBD (Irritable Bowel Syndrome/Disease)?

As irritable bowel syndromes and diseases may have many causes, a healthy diet to support their digestion and immune system is paramount. Rad Cat is formulated to be the most easily digestible raw cat food and to provide support to maintain a healthy digestive tract. This issue was the driving force behind the formulation of Rad Cat. Click her  for Juno's story!


Raw diets are easily digestible due to the presence of naturally occurring enzymes in the meat and high moisture content. At Rad Cat, we add gelatin to our diets to enhance the digestive process. Gelatin is high in the amino acid glycine (as well as many others), which increases the hydrocloric acid (HCl) content of the stomach, as well as other gastric secretions. This is very beneficial for cats that are eating a high protein diet. Cats generally have very acidic stomachs, but many cats come to eat raw after being ill and have compromised immune systems and sluggish digestion. Cats without digestive problems can also benefit from the presence of the added amino acids that gelatin provides. See the blog post about the many benefits of gelatin!

Gelatin is also a wonderful source of collagen that is necessary for maintenance and repair of the digestive lining (as well as all epithelial tissue and joints). IBD and IBS cause a breakdown of this lining which not only contributes to many of the bowel symptoms associated with IBS and IBD, but can lead to general lower immunity. A healthy gut leads to a healthy immune system.

At Rad Cat we don't use ground bone from our products. While we agree that chewing on raw bones is extremely beneficial for cats and dogs, ground bone can be difficult to digest for cats with inflammatory or irritable bowel diseases. Ground bones can provide some roughage and be challenging to the digestion. While this may be fine for healthy cats, in general, often it is too challenging for cats with digestive issues and can exacerbate their symptoms.


When ground bone is used in cat food, in order to maintain a proper calcium:phosphorus ratio, the diet can consist of upwards of 10% ground bone. This can lead to constipation in many cats when fed this much bone on a regular basis.


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Why does my cat throw up when eating the lamb, beef or venison?

Sometimes kitties have sensitivities to red meat and this reveals itself by vomiting the meal right after they consume it.  It's not uncommon for cats to eat too fast and then vomit - a phenomenon we refer to as 'scarf and barf'.  If this has been ruled out, then most likely it is a sensitivity to the protein - not a reaction to the presence of pathogenic bacteria.  This has a bit of a different presentation, if it were to happen.


Sometimes these sensitivities show up immediately and sometimes they show up after a few meals, especially if they've been fed the same new, red protein, in a row.


If you suspect your kitty has a sensitivity to red meat, or a particular red meat protein, there are a few things to try:

-  Try a small portion of another protein (like a tablespoon) and see if there is a similar reaction.  Some kitties can eat the venison, but not the lamb, for instance.

-  Try serving tiny bits of the new protein as a treat, occasionally.  Some kitties need time to adjust to digesting red meat.

-  Don't serve whole meals of a new protein several times in a row.  Try one meal, see how they react, and then try it again the next day or after a couple of days.


Some kitties can adjust to eating red meats and some never do.  Juno (our spokes-kitty) couldn't eat lamb for the longest time.  She gradually started snacking from her sisters' plates, a little at a time, and now she eats the lamb and beef just fine.  But, we had another kitty that loved the lamb and would vomit every time she ate it.  She never adjusted to the protein and she couldn't eat any red meat at all - ever!  She could eat red meat cooked, but not raw, which is interesting.


There have been many reports of this happening over the years, so I thought posting a FAQ would be helpful!


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