How a kitten's nutritional needs differ from ours?

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In a study of homemade pet foods, more than 90 percent of foods were found to be nutritionally unbalanced and incomplete for pets.*

  • Each species has very different nutritional requirements. Cooking for your kitten is not the same as cooking for your children or yourself. Kittens have nutritional requirements that are quite different from humans.
  • Foods that are not properly balanced to meet a kitten's needs can lead to health problems. For example, calcium and phosphorus must be balanced to ensure that a careful ratio of more calcium than phosphorus is maintained for a healthy metabolism.**
  • Kittens have a very critical need for much more taurine than humans require. Too little taurine can lead to heart and eye disorders.†
  • Never feed raw meat to your kitten. The handling of raw meat is always a critical part of cooking our human foods. It is also important in pets' foods. Raw meats often contain bacteria like salmonella, listeria and even E. coli, which can be very dangerous to pets and the humans who care for them. Kittens and other pets fed raw meat can pass bacteria on to the humans who come in contact with them. Small children, the elderly and people with compromised immune systems may become seriously ill.††

*Small Animal Clinical Nutrition IV Edition, page 169.
**Small Animal Clinical Nutrition IV Edition, page 310.
† Small Animal Clinical Nutrition IV Edition, page 30.
†† FDA Notice December 18, 2002.

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