Nature’s Variety Instinct® Raw: My #InstinctRaw Experience, Your Coupon

This post is sponsored by Instinct® and the BlogPaws Professional Pet Blogger Network. I am being compensated for helping spread the word about Instinct Raw but CatInTheFridge.com only shares information we feel is relevant to our readers. Instinct is not responsible for the content of this article.

Me and the product. I feel like I could really nail being their new model.

Me and the product. I feel like I could really nail being their new model.

Dear Readers,

Many of you may know by now that my FODs keep me on a raw food diet. Sometimes I grumble, sometimes I find a food that pleases my delicate palate. In either case, the FODs are pretty set on raw food for a variety of reasons. For instance, did you know that when I was adopted I was super sick with upper respiratory infections and herpes outbreaks? The doctors said I’d never breathe normally again. MomFOD put me on a raw diet and within two weeks, I was looking good! I mean, I always looked good. Great, really, but the raw definitely put me over the edge and those stump modeling contracts really began pouring in But, I digress.

This is from my "Sexy Raw" photo shoot.

This is from my “Sexy Raw modeling photo shoot.

Ponder this: can cats in the wild cook their dinner? Have you ever seen a wild animal constructing a fire of twigs and tinder bundles so they can delicately sear their recently snared vole? You haven’t? That’s because they don’t. Raw diets are what nature had in mind for cats and we felines have all the right digestive enzymes for being able to eat raw. We are also obligate carnivores meaning we MUST eat meat. Therefore, when one of our favorite food brands approached us and asked us to share our experience with our readers, we were all for it! So, without further ado, please have a look at:

 

Nature’s Variety Instinct® Raw Bites

::Cue exciting music::

Nevermind. Nature’s Variety didn’t send us any music. They did send us this fabulous picture though:

The bites in action. Or inaction. Whatever. This is what they look like.

The bites in action. Or inaction. Whatever. This is what they look like.

So, let’s look at this scientifically, shall we?

Let's do this.

Let’s do this.

What is it:

Instinct Raw is made of 95% meat, organs, and bones, 5% fruits and vegetables, and 0% grain. It’s made in Lincoln, Nebraska, USA.

The Hypothesis:

I volunteered to try Instinct Raw Bites because I’ve already tried it and know it’s delicious. We believe that raw is the way to go for most cats and we hypothesize that we will eat and enjoy this food.

Oh, what's this? Could this be for me?

Oh, what’s this? Could this be for me?

The Test:

Four out of five cats were used as testers on the rabbit and chicken flavors. The dog also eats this food but she’s away on holiday at the GrandFODs’ place. Since we already eat raw, we did not have to transition slowly and ate is all by itself.  The bites are cool because they are really quick to thaw and, since MomFOD often forgets to plan ahead, it only takes a few minutes before we can chow down.

I didn't trust this cat. I think he was there to take my food.

I had to whip my head around because I didn’t trust this cat. I think he was there to take my food.

The Conclusion:

It was delicious. Four out of four testers ate the food.

Four out of four testers enjoyed the Raw Bites.

Four out of four testers enjoyed the instinct Raw Bites.

 The Benefits of A Raw Food Diet:

Some of the most-oft cited benefits of feeding raw (and those we’ve noticed here) are:

  • Healthy skin and coat
  • Optimal Digestion
  • Healthy teeth and gums
  • Relief from food sensitivities
  • Ideal Body Weight

I’d also like to add:

  • Poop smells better
  • Anal gland expression issues in dog have resolved (thank goodness)

Tips:

  1. If your cat has never tried raw before, start slowly with small amounts to make the transition. Many raw companies advocate mixing your cat’s current diet with some raw. This can work for some, though in our house, some of the more sensitive stomachs are unable to handle raw and cooked at the same time. You know your cat’s stomach. Choose wisely.
  2. In addition, we often get tired of the same protein source, so it’s helpful to rotate to make sure we’re getting as much nutrition as possible and don’t snub the food.
  3. Raw doesn’t have a strong smell, so if your pet doesn’t like it right away, keep trying! Sprinkle hated the idea of raw the first few times and her tummy got a bit grumbly. We stopped trying to give it to her and a week later, she was stealing Louie’s (and my) raw food all on her own.
Raw matches Sprinkle's digestive tract and her eyes.

Raw pairs well with Sprinkle’s digestive tract and her eyes.

Where to find it:

While we only used to be able to find our raw food in Chicago health food stores, we are now able to find it at PetSmart! Please be aware, though, that it’s not in ALL PetSmart stores yet and was only in 50% of the two we visited. In addition, the cat variety was hidden in the dog section way up on the top. You may have to ask. Here’s what the display looks like:

instinct petsmart

I circled the cat section for you way up there past the dogs.

 

Try It:

Now then! If our experience has made you curious, Instinct is kindly offering a $3 off coupon on their website, which you can use towards a trial size or a larger bag. Larger bags tend to be more cost effective, and we hope that they come up with a “We have five cats” size bag soon.

Safety concerns:

Those are addressed here! We make sure to keep our bowls and hands clean, and haven’t had any problems! For more info, visit: http://www.instinctpetfood.com/quality-and-safety

You can also discuss on their Facebook page.

That’s it! We are really pleased to have participated in this campaign because we feel diet is THE MOST IMPORTANT HEALTH ASPECT of pet care. We always advocate using species-appropriate, healthy foods to keep your pets healthy and we are huge advocates of the raw diet and have been for years.

What do you think of raw? Do you love it? Do you hate it? Let’s discuss!

Love,

Crepes.

Is Goat’s Milk Healthy for Your Pets?

Alana here again.

I’d like to continue the subject of nutrition that I started earlier this week on the topic of goat’s milk. By now, many cat owners have heard that cats could not and should not drink cow’s milk, but have you heard that your cat or dog can and even should drink goat’s milk?

©freefoto.com

The Mighty Goat

 

DIGESTIBILITY

For those familiar with milk in its raw state, cow’s milk separates into cream and a more watery milk if left to settle and must be shaken to combine them. This is where homogenization comes in; although a few small studies suggest that homogenizing milk may be harmful to one’s health, companies do this so people don’t have to shake the milk before drinking it. (I’d prefer to shake it if there’s any doubt.) Goat’s milk, on the other hand, does not ever separate (Edit: 6/30/15 Goat’s milk can eventually separate, but does not do so as easily as cow’s milk), does not need to be shaken, and does not require homogenization. Due to its smaller molecular size, goat’s milk is more easily digestible (it takes about 20 minutes to digest, compared to 3 hours for cow’s milk). In addition, raw milk (cow OR goat) contains the necessary enzymes to aid in its own digestion, something pasteurized milk is lacking. This is why those of us that are lactose intolerant can drink raw milk but cannot digest processed milk.

BENEFITS

Goat’s milk is a, or possibly THE, most nutritionally complete food. In fact, the American Journal of Medicine states that goat’s milk is “the most complete food known.” It does not stimulate the production of mucus (cow’s milk does) and can counteract inflammation. It also seems to have some antiviral properties that can benefit and enhance the immune system, and has a nutritional and compositional profile very similar to human mother’s milk. It is often well tolerated by infants, adult humans, and cats and dogs. Rescueguide.com advises that orphaned kittens should be fed goat’s milk when their own mother’s milk is unavailable.

PERSONAL EXPERIENCE

In my personal experience, goat’s milk has been extremely welcome in the diet of my cats and dog. Though they can be picky eaters, the occasion is rare that they turn down a bowl of goat’s milk. Two of my four cats have sensitive stomachs, one of them extremely sensitive. If he strays from his diet at all, the result is usually regurgitation of his meal, yet he’s able to easily tolerate goat’s milk without a problem. When Crepes was having herpes flare ups as a kitten, the change in her diet from a highly-processed, grain-based diet to an all raw diet that included goat’s milk cleared up her symptoms entirely and she no longer suffers from any respiratory issues.

WHERE TO GET IT

Goat’s milk tends to be seasonal; the goats do not produce milk year-round, so farmer’s often freeze their surplus to be able to accommodate customers during the off-season. You may not be able to find fresh goat’s milk, but the frozen variety works, as well. Ask your local pet store if they carry it in their frozen section.

Your cat or dog may benefit from the inclusion of goat’s milk in their diet, or they  might simply enjoy it because it’s tasty!

If you’ve tried it, what did you think? What did your pet think? Let me know!

 

 

 

Sources:

http://www.naturalnews.com/031586_raw_goats_milk_health.html

http://dancingdogfarm.wordpress.com/2011/07/22/benefits-of-drinking-goats-milk/

http://www.roseofsharonacres.com/raw_goat_milk_benefits