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If you’ve already done a little research on raw diets, chances are the term “Frankenprey” came up in your search. This type of raw feeding is becoming more popular, but what exactly is a Frankenprey diet for cats?
Frankenprey diet involves feeding your cat a variety of animal parts over a certain period of time to mimic a whole prey diet. The meals consist of chunks of meat with bones and organs.
Frankenprey feeding method doesn’t require a lot of preparation in terms of the food itself, but you will have to create a feeding schedule and stick to it to ensure your kitty gets a proper balance of nutrients.
In this article, we’re going to discuss the ins and outs of a Frankenprey model and how to incorporate it into your cat’s diet.
What is a Frankenprey diet?
Felines are obligate carnivores, which means they need animal protein to survive. Cats in the wild eat the whole prey, such as birds and rodents. A Frankenprey diet tries to mimic a cat’s natural diet in the wild, but instead of using the whole prey, it creates a balanced meal out of various animal parts.
It suggests feeding your cat a mixture of meats, bones, and organs over a period of time, usually a week. That way, your cat gets the same sum of animal parts that they would if they ate the whole animals.
The benefits of chunks
Frankenprey diet involves serving your cat chunks of food, which creates a chewing challenge. Being actively engaged in eating is beneficial for a cat’s mental health (it caters to their hunting instinct). The act of chewing raw meat contributes to the release of enzymes that aid in digestion.
Frankenprey menu options
Like with any other diet, variety is important, not only to sustain your kitty’s interest in food but also to maintain nutritional balance.
Chicken and pork are great meats to start with, as they are soft and easy to chew. Turkey, beef, rabbit, and lamb are also standard Frankenprey meal choices.
When it comes to organs, it’s a good idea to alternate between liver and other organs such as kidneys, pancreas, and thyroid glands. Bear in mind that lungs, gizzards, and heart (rich in taurine) are considered muscle meats and don’t count as organs.
Organs contain enzymes and often have a strong flavor, so if your cat isn’t used to eating them, they may feel sick if fed too much in a single meal. Be sure to spread the organs out across meals and, if possible, put equal amounts of meat and organs in every serving.
You should also consider the nutritional content of different meats. Chicken, for example, is high in fat, while rabbit is very lean, so it shouldn’t be used as a single protein source.
It’s a good idea to ask a veterinary nutritionist to help you create a balanced recipe so that you can be sure your kitty is getting all the necessary nutrients.
For a deep dive into at home feline nutrition and food prep safety read “How to Make Homemade Cat Food – a Comprehensive Guide.”
Where to source Frankenprey ingredients
You’ll likely be able to find most of the products we mentioned in local grocery stores. You can also ask your local butcher, restaurants, or their suppliers for organs and other meat pieces they throw out.
Although organic products are generally considered a healthier choice, they aren’t a requirement – it’s more important to make sure the meat is free of artificial flavors and additives.
Food preparation and cleaning
Frankenprey diet doesn’t require extensive preparation, but you’ll need certain tools, such as a pair of poultry shears, a kitchen scale, and sufficient freezer space. You’ll need to cut down chunks of food, measure meal-sized portions, and pack them in the freezer.
You should always defrost your cat’s food in the fridge rather than on the counter to prevent the growth of harmful bacteria. If your cat prefers its meals warmed up, you can seal the food in a bag and put it in warm water for a few minutes.
When it comes to chunk size, cut the meat according to your cat’s wishes – you can start with small pieces that are easy to chew and swallow. You should always serve bones with meat on them to avoid digestion issues. Never feed cooked bone, as it can splinter and cause serious damage.
Once you’re done with preparing food, be sure to thoroughly clean the surface area. You can use disinfecting wipes combined with rinsing or a mixture of vinegar and water.
How much to feed?
The amount of raw food your cat needs will depend on its weight and activity level. You can multiply your cat’s weight by 16 to convert it to ounces and then multiply that number by 2%, 3%, or 4% – the more active and lean your cat is, the higher percentage you start with.
Once you get a total, divide it by the number of meals you plan to serve each day to see how many ounces to feed per meal.
For example, Bowie is a very active Siamese cat who weighs 8lbs and eats 2 meals per day.
Using our feeding formula:
- 8lbs X 16 = 128oz
- 128oz X 4% (he’s very active) = 5.12oz per day
- 5.12oz / 2 meals per day = 2.56oz per meal
Three meals per day are common for adult cats (kittens can have more). With a Frankenprey diet, it’s important to adhere to a feeding schedule to make sure your cat is getting all the necessary nutrients and to save you some nerves.
Be aware of the risks of feeding raw
Studies have shown that raw diets may increase the risk of bacterial growth such as Salmonella and Listeria, which are harmful to pets and their owners.
Because of the possibility of pathogenic bacterial contamination, raw food isn’t appropriate for cats suffering from serious diseases such as diabetes, cancer, or kidney or liver dysfunctions.
If you opt for a raw diet, high-level hygiene is essential – be sure to clean your cat’s bowl and food prep areas regularly and thoroughly to reduce the risk of infection.
If preparing raw cat food makes your squeemish (no judgement, it’s kinda gross), we’ve compiled a list here of the best raw cat food you can purchase at your local pet store.
Key takeaways on a Frankenprey diet for cats
Whether it’s inspired by Mary Shelley’s famous character or not, Frankenprey diet provides a diverse feeding method similar to a cat’s natural eating habits. It has its benefits and drawbacks and it’s up to you to decide whether it’s the right choice for your pet. When in doubt, turn to your vet for expert advice on raw diets.
- Frankenprey Diet for Cats: The Benefits of Feeding Raw - February 4, 2022
- Do Cats Need to Be Fed a High Protein Diet? - December 14, 2021
- 15 Naturally Small Cat Breeds That Will Win Your Heart - December 7, 2021