Rationale for Feline Diets
Wysong feeding recommendations for cats depart from the common practice today of exclusively feeding cats singular processed, manufactured foods, which claim to be "100% complete and balanced" pet food. (See the Myth of the "100% Complete and Balanced" Pet Diet, The Truth About Pet Foods.)
Without repeating these arguments here, let me briefly say that cats, of all species, are especially genetically adapted to the natural diet they would consume in the wild. Other than a few nibblings here and there of plant materials, and what would be consumed as part of the digestive tract contents of prey, cats are carnivores. Their diet would consist of the whole body of prey animals and would be raw and fresh.
Manufactured cat foods are a blend of meat parts and grains, with fortification of vitamins and minerals; this is a poor and incomplete substitute for the real thing. Nutritionists do not know all there is to know about cat nutrition and, therefore, cannot construct cat foods out of fractions and synthetics to make a "100% complete" diet. If 100% knowledge is not available, a 100% complete manufactured diet is not either. It is as plain and simple as that.
But since we cannot release our domestic cats into the wild to eat their natural diet, we are faced with the dilemma of having to prepare meals that will come as close to the archetypal pattern as possible. Such foods should be predominantly meat based, fresh, varied, and also properly manufactured raw cat foods. This indeed creates a challenge since most processing heats or otherwise alters food from its natural, raw state.
Most manufacturers leave it to nutritionists or to the results of failed feeding to determine how to construct cat foods. In other words, as long as a recipe does not cause overt problems, meets certain analytical values, or passes short-term feeding trials, all is assumed well. The cat product is put in the marketplace and only when nutritional disease strikes is a change made. For example, thousands of cats became ill and died as a result of feeding taurine-deficient premium brands of cat foods which had undergone analytical testing and feeding trial proofs. Once this was discovered, manufacturers added synthetic taurine to the diets and everything was once again considered to be "100% complete and balanced."
But this is only one crisis, only partially solved. Encouraging pet owners to feed processed cat foods that vary dramatically from the natural archetypal dietary patterns of cats is fraught with potential problems. As time moves on we will discover again and again that many of the diseases we had attributed to other causes or unknown etiology will be linked to the singular feeding of fabricated "100% complete and balanced" processed cat foods.
Wysong cat food diets are also processed. They do differ in design from other products in that they at least recognize their limitations and do not attempt to simply meet arbitrary nutritional minimums. Instead, we seek optimal nutritional value, by simulating archetypal patterns. For example, Wysong dry natural cat foods have as much fresh meat and organs in them as is possible to mix in a dry extruded product. There are also formulations - both dry and canned - that are 100% meat. After processing, various fragile natural ingredients such as enzymes, vitamins, and probiotics are enrobed on the outside to provide raw, natural, living food elements.
We encourage the use of supplements such as F-Biotic™, Biotic pH-™ or Biotic pH+™ if the cat is having urinary stone problems, EFA™ to provide high omega-3 essential fatty acids, and Pet Inoculant™ to provide high doses of probiotic microorganisms. By adding these raw, live, natural cat supplements to processed cat foods, they are brought closer to their natural, raw, whole characteristics.
Additionally, we strongly recommend the supplemental feeding of fresh, raw, meats and organs. Our Wysong TNT™ processed raw cat foods represent the least compromise from the natural feline diet. You can also feed a variety of meats and organs purchased at the grocery store and fed on a ratio of 10-15% organs with the balance being meats. Raw chicken necks and wings can be provided for the cat to chew.
Although there is a fear of food poisoning from this latter recommendation, this is by and large exaggerated. The danger to your cat in not consuming raw, fresh meat and organs far exceeds the danger of a bout of gastrointestinal problems from food-borne pathogens on raw meats (please review Should You Feed Raw To Your Pet?). Additionally, probiotics in Wysong Diets and Pet Inoculant™ help prevent food-borne pathogens from surviving, thus reducing the risk of a bout of food borne illness even more.
Wysong Feline Diets should be fed in variety. Cycle through the various dry cat foods and canned cat foods. Vary and mix these with fresh, raw, natural meats and organs. Also, follow the lifestyle recommendations described in the Wysong Optimal Health Program™.
By following this program much can be done to build cat health and prevent disease from ever striking in the first place. When disease does strike, following this feeding regimen and including the appropriate Nutrient Support Formulas developed by Wysong for the specific organ systems under stress, can do much to reverse disease.
Notice that we are not suggesting that cat caretakers look for certain percentages of protein, magnesium, phosphorous, taurine, carnitine, specific pH level, or any other analytical result or so-called proof from short-term feeding trials. We believe all of these are misleading and incomplete methods of determining food value for achieving optimal health. These methods keep nutritionists employed and manufacturers confident, but they do not address the real issue of returning cats to their genetically adapted, archetypal feeding patterns.
A more complete expose can be found in the report: "The Truth About Pet Foods."