Why feed a raw diet
The "perfect" dinner
A raw diet recreates the way our pets' ancestors have eaten in the wild for thousands of years. Dogs and cats are carnivores. Left to their own devices, their typical daily diet, like that of their wild cousins (wolves and the big cats), would involve catching (or finding) and eating another animal. A raw diet returns our pets to this more natural and healthy form of nutrition, as if they had hunted and caught their "perfect" dinner. A meal that includes some meat, some bone, some organ meats (liver, heart, kidney, etc.), and a small amount of green vegetation. These ingredients are the five main food groups of a good raw diet.
- Fresh, raw meat
- Some uncooked bone
- Some raw organ meats
- Some green vegetation
- Natural vitamins and minerals
Bravo formulates all of our products to include some or all of these ingredients.
The specific product you select should be based upon how you prefer to prepare your pet’s food (from scratch or serve a prepared complete and balanced formula right from the package) or on the specific needs of your companion animal.
- Pets with highly sensitive digestive tracts or those suffering from allergies may want to feed a selection from the Bravo Basics or Bravo Boneless product lines.
- Pets without these issues may do well on a diet formulated to include more of the five ingredient groups. For these animals, a selection from the Bravo Blends Bravo Balance product lines might work best.
The ability to customize your pet’s diet by selecting the exact type of formulation you want to use is one of the Bravo advantages enjoyed by our customers.
Advice about cats
Cats have special needs
Unlike dogs, who do very well on a balanced diet of meat proteins, vegetables and minimal amounts of grains, cats have lost the ability to synthesize certain nutrients on their own. A cat’s diet must have readily available sources of select amino acids, vitamins and minerals only found in diets rich in meat sourced proteins, organs and fats.
- Cats have a low thirst drive and rely heavily on the moisture in their foods for hydration. This suggests foods need to offer a moisture content similar to that of wild prey (60-80%), not that of dry kibble (9-11%).
- Cats need higher levels of protein (29%) when compared to dogs (12%), but the level isn’t the only factor, all proteins are not created equal. Protein sources differ widely in the quality, digestibility and utilization of the protein.
- Cats also require additional amino acids, the building blocks of proteins and metabolism, which can vary by type of protein. Taurine and arginine, two of the amino acids cats cannot synthesize, are readily available in raw meats and organs.
- Fat is a good thing for cats. It’s a great source of energy, aids in nutrient utilization and metabolic regulation, plus it improves food palatability.
- Cats need a diet rich in animal tissue are high in fats and essential fatty acids (EFAs), especially readily available Omega 3 and 6.
- Vitamin and mineral needs are also unique to cats, compared to dogs. They require very high levels of B vitamins and have special needs for Vitamins A and D. Unlike dogs, cats cannot convert beta-carotene to Vitamin A and require a preformed version from an animal source. And cats cannot synthesize Vitamin D, but usually meet their needs if eating a carnivorous diet. It’s also important to remember vitamins and minerals work synergistically and caution needs to be observed when adding high levels of supplements.