Do you have a Maine Coon cat? If you do, chances are you’ve wondered what the best diet for them is. One option that’s becoming more popular is a raw food diet. But does it work better than traditional diets? In this blog post, we’ll discuss the pros and cons of a Maine Coon raw food diet, and help you decide if this might be the right choice for your furry friend.
Here’s what you need to know about feeding your Coon a raw food diet. To go raw or not to go raw?
A raw food diet is great for a Maine Coon cat because its high in protein. Cats are obligate carnivores which means they can only get derive energy from protein based foods. So a raw food diet such as raw meat will go down a treat with your Maine Coon. We give the complete run down on feeding your Maine Coon raw food below.
Cat Food In The Wild?
A Maine Coon in the wild typically eats small prey, such as rodents, birds, and insects. Since the cats teeth are made for ripping and tearing, not chewing, they can pretty much swallow whole whatever it is that they catch.
In the wild a Maine Coon diet would consist of:
- 50% – 80% small rodents such as mice or rats
- 10% – 40% birds
- 8% insects/reptiles/fish
The rest of a wild Maine Coon diet would be made up of plants such as grass.
The fact that they eat these animals raw in the wild means they can certainly eat raw food that you give to them.
Now, let’s take a look at Maine Coons dietary requirements to ensure we know exactly what they should be getting from their new diet.
Nutritional Needs Of Maine Coon Cats
A Maine Coon has some specific dietary requirements that should be taken into account when deciding on the best diet for them.
Cats are obligate carnivores, which means that their bodies are designed to digest and use only animal-based proteins.
Grain-based diets can be hard for cats to digest, so it’s important to choose a diet that is based on meat proteins.
In addition, a Maine Coon needs a diet that is high in protein and low in carbohydrates.
Carbohydrates can be hard for cats to digest and don’t provide as much nutritional value as proteins.
Essential Nutrients For A Maine Coon Cat
- Arachidonic Acid
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin B
- Vitamin K
As mentioned previously, cats are obligate carnivores, therefore, they don’t need carbohydrates in their diet. However, carbohydrates provide glucose to help keep their cells healthy.
Cats need fat in their diet because it helps them absorb essential vitamins and minerals.
Fat also helps keep cats’ coats glossy and healthy and provides energy for cats both mentally and physically.
Too little fat in a cat’s diet can lead to weight loss, poor coat condition, decreased immune system function, and other health problems.
Taurine helps with the development and function of the heart, eyes, and central nervous system.
A Maine Coon needs niacin in their diet because it helps them to digest protein. Niacin is also essential for the formation of red blood cells, the maintenance of skin health, and the functioning of the nervous system.
This awesome acid helps with the development and function of the heart, eyes, and central nervous system.
We mention eyes above because it’s important to take care of your cat’s eyes to prevent possible blindness as they grow older.
Read our article about Maine Coon blindness if you’d like to discover more.
This is an essential amino acid for cats because they cannot biosynthesize it from other amino acids.
Arginine is necessary for the synthesis of proteins, DNA and RNA, and for the urea cycle.
Cats also use Arginine to produce nitric oxide, which helps keep their blood pressure regulated.
Cats rely on Vitamin A to promote healthy eyesight. It’s also important for the lens and cornea of the eyes.
Vitamin B12 is a necessary nutrient for cats to stay healthy. It’s involved in the maintenance and function of your pet’s nervous system as well digestive tract, which means it can have serious implications on their behavior too!
It also helps keep their brains and bodies running smoothly.
A cat needs vitamin K in its diet because it helps with blood clotting.
A raw food diet provides all of the above nutrients with the exception of carbohydrates. But not to worry because cats don’t actually need carbohydrates to live a healthy life.
Let’s move on and look at the pros and cons of going raw with your Maine Coon.
Pros & Cons Of Raw Food
There are a number of pros to feeding a Maine Coon raw food.
It’s always best to consider every pro and con of introducing your Maine Coon to a diet consisting of raw food or meat.
Below we’ve listed the advantages and disadvantages so you can make a more informed decision.
High Protein Diet Guaranteed
First, a Maine Coon is a carnivore and their bodies are designed to digest and use protein from animal sources.
Raw food provides cats with all the nutrients they need, including protein, essential fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals.
Stave Off Obesity
Another pro of feeding your Maine coon raw food is that it can help reduce the risk of obesity and other chronic health problems.
Its also lower in carbs and higher in protein, which helps keep cats slim and healthy.
Feeding your Maine Coon raw food can help improve their dental health. Cats are designed to rip and tear meat into small shreds, which helps keep their teeth strong and healthy.
Improve Your Cats Digestion
A diet consisting of mostly raw meat is more natural for cats and contains all the nutrients they need to digest their food properly.
It also includes enzymes and probiotics that help break down food and keep your cat’s gut healthy.
Great For Skin And Fur
Going raw is a great way to improve your cat’s skin and fur health. The ingredients in raw food are natural and unprocessed, which means that they are packed with nutrients that help keep your cat’s skin healthy and fur shiny.
Additionally, a raw diet is low in carbohydrates, which can help keep your cat’s skin free of inflammation and other skin issues.
A raw diet contains all of the nutrients that a cat needs, including proteins, essential fatty acids, vitamins, minerals, and enzymes, perfect for high-energy felines.
Remember, a Maine Coon is known for being very playful even into their later years so a diet consisting of mainly raw meat may be the perfect solution for such high levels of energy.
A raw diet benefits cats in a number of ways, one of which is that they poop less.
The lack of fillers and processed foods in a raw diet means that the cat’s digestive system doesn’t have to work as hard to break down and digest food.
This means that there is less waste produced, and hence, less pooping!
Raw Food Diet Disadvantages
A diet of raw food for a Maine Coon can have some disadvantages.
The diet can be expensive since it requires buying a variety of meats and possibly utensils to prepare it.
It can also be time-consuming to prepare, and may not provide all the nutrients that a Maine Coon needs.
A diet of raw foods for a Maine Coon can make them more likely to get sick, especially because it contains raw meat.
A Maine Coon is more likely to contract salmonella poisoning from eating raw meat than other breeds of cats. Salmonella symptoms include diarrhea, lethargy, fever, and vomiting.
Maintain good hygiene when preparing a homemade cat food recipe of any kind by wearing plastic gloves while handling the ingredients and washing your hands thoroughly with hot water and soap afterward.
Raw Food Is Costly
Yes, this type of diet for a Maine Coon can be expensive. The diet requires buying a variety of meats, which can be costly.
On top of that, you will most likely need to buy vitamin supplements to add to the raw food to make sure your cat is getting all the nutrients it needs, supplements can also be costly.
To keep food costs down we recommend buying meat from a wholesaler and freezing it. Meat from a wholesaler can be up to 50% cheaper than prices at your local supermarket.
So we suggest doing a Google search for your nearest wholesaler.
It Can Steal Your Time
A diet consisting of raw food is more time-consuming because it requires you to purchase and prepare a variety of meats.
It can also be difficult to ensure that your Maine Coon is getting all the nutrients they need from a raw food diet alone, so you may have to supplement with other foods.
Is Your Cat Picky?
A Maine coon can be a picky eater because they are used to a certain type of diet and are not willing to try new foods.
Additionally, some cats may not like the smell or taste of raw meat. Not to worry, slowly but surely you can wean your cat onto more raw food.
Start with a little bit at a time and even try mixing it with other food so they don’t notice.
Gradually, they will begin to like it.
Great And Easy Maine Coon Food Recipe
The following recipe is a great starter recipe for anyone looking to make their own raw food Maine Coon diet. It includes a mix of raw meats and extra vitamin supplements:
- 3 pounds of rabbit(the entire rabbit including bones, skin and organs).
- 2 eggs(lightly cook the the white and use the yolk raw)
- 1 cup of water
- Wild Salmon Oil
- Vitamin E supplement powder
- Vitamin B complex supplement
- Lite salt with Iodine (3/4 table spoon)
Mix it all together and serve the meal. This recipe was originally found on Pets WebMD, you can find more info there.
Don’t Give Your Coon These Foods
There’s a host of foods you should avoid giving your Maine Coon. Some of the top foods include:
- Onions and Garlic
- Gluten Foods
- Animal Bones
- Dairy Products
- Grapes and Raisins
Additionally, when serving your Maine Coon a meal, make sure there is never any added salt or seasoning. Also, never serve them frozen food, this rule applies to a person as well as a cat.
Check out our latest article if you’re interested in discovering more foods not to give your Maine Coon cat.
Is This Food Suitable For Maine Coon Kittens?
Yes, Maine Coon kittens can eat raw food as long as it is balanced and complete. A raw diet for a Maine Coon kitten should include muscle meat, organ meat, bone, and some edible vegetables.
However, according to the RSPCA, it’s best to avoid feeding a kitten raw meat until after they are 20 weeks old. This will ensure that you’re not providing them with any nutritional deficiencies during their developmental years!
If you’re thinking of switching your Maine Coon over to a raw diet, please consult with your veterinarian first.
A raw diet can be great for cats if done properly, but there are some risks that come along with it.
Your vet can help you create a balanced and healthy raw diet for your cat that will keep them happy and healthy for years to come.
There is a lot of Maine Coon food out there. Both wet cat food and dried food. However, advocates of raw food swear it’s the best.
Have you switched your Maine Coon over eating raw food only? What has been your experience so far?
Elliot is the owner and lead writer at Lais Lairs. He is the proud owner of a Maine Coon/Siberian Mix cat named Lai. His oldest cat lived to be 18 years old so he’s learned a thing or two about keeping pets. When he’s not writing you can find him playing video games or playing fetch with Lai.