Pros and Cons of Grinding Meat

There is one camp that believes grinders should not be used (such as the folks at Raw Fed Cats). No reason to grind, cats need to chew bones.  In theory they are correct. Cats should be able to chew whole raw bones and there are many benefits from doing this. However there are several factors which can prohibit this:

  •  Cats with teeth issues
  • Older cats not used to bones may refuse to try
  • Lifestyle and convenience issues

Grinding vs. Frankenprey

Pros of Frankenprey

  • No grinder needed
  • Vitamins are not lost from grinding and freezing
  • Cats can strengthen their teeth by chewing on bone, which is great for dental health

Cons of Frankenprey

  • Messy: cats will not eat neatly over a bowl, the floor area should be cleaned after each feeding
  • More time consuming: it will take cats much longer to eat
  • Must buy meat sources more often and have them defrosted and ready daily
  • Must keep track of proportions of muscle meat, bone, organs and fat daily and weekly

manual meat grinder raw cat food

Pros of Grinding

  • Feeding time is not messy, cats eat neatly and quickly over a bowl
  • Preparing cat food can be done once a month
  • No need to calculate daily or weekly intake. Each container is a balanced proportion
  • Shopping for meat is done once a month rather than weekly

Cons of Grinding

  • Must have grinder (however manual grinders work great and are small and inexpensive)
  • Some vitamins are lost due to grinding and freezing
  • No dental benefits from chewing bone

I do acknowledge that all of the cons to Frankenprey are in fact cons to the human, not to the cat. To those who are able to feed solely Frankenprey I admire you. I’m just not able to.  I work full-time and enjoy the convenience of grinding. Sometimes I need a neighbor or friend to feed my cats and I would not be comfortable asking them to feed them bones and watching the cats eat, finish and then clean up after them.

So I have been feeding ground raw food for the last year and a half. But I have noticed some tartar buildup in Cornelius’s teeth. And I know he hasn’t been chewing on any bone and therefore not getting any dental benefits. Earlier I said he refused to eat anything that was not finely ground. He even refused to chew on small chunks of muscle meat. But when the kitten arrived I knew she could eat chunks and bone without hesitation. Check out my post on feeding chicken necks.  Now they both can successfully chew on bone. In the video you will see that it took them 10 minutes to finish half of a chicken neck. It also requires a lot of cleaning up afterwards.

raw chicken necks cat food

The bottom line is you have to do what you can and what you’re comfortable with. I don’t want to judge anyone for caring for their cats to the best of their ability.

If anyone reading this feeds Frankenprey regularly I would love to hear from you and your experience, so please share in the comments.

(Explanation of why I feed raw meat and frankeyprey vs ground raw)

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7 Comments

  1. September 25, 2015 / 10:02 pm

    Dat’s very innewestin’. Mommy’s always been fwaid to give us a chicken or turkey neck even though she’s read it be good fur us. She just worries ’bout da bone fing. Maybe sumday.

    Luv ya’

    Dezi and Lexi

  2. September 26, 2015 / 12:37 am

    The only raw we get is already prepared raw. The mom doesn’t want to grind, not grind, whatever. :)

  3. September 26, 2015 / 10:24 am

    I use a chopper rather than a grinder, and this works really well with chicken, turkey or beef. This is the one I got:
    http://www.kalorikshop.be/en/in-the-kitchen/3493-HACHOIR-KALORIK-TKG-MCH-1000-5413346295859.html

    Also, because my cats don’t get bones and I oftentimes can’t easily get other, more “exotic”, meat here on the tiny island where we live, I supplement the ground/chopped meat with a vitamin powder called “Felini Complete” which I buy online from Germany. Here’s the link to what I use:
    http://www.futterado.de/shop_content.php?coID=12

    Sorry about all the links above (I hope my comment doesn’t get censored because of that), but I just would like to share what I myself use – there are always lots of alternatives if you (a) don’t have time to make your own cat food, (b) can’t get the right ingredients or (c) your cat doesn’t like one meat or another (my Ruby *only* eats chicken, she sticks her nose up to any other meat, even fresh salmon!). :)

    • September 26, 2015 / 4:36 pm

      Thank you for sharing! So you use the chopper for muscle meat only? not bones?

      • September 26, 2015 / 6:13 pm

        Ah no, I don’t feed bones (the little chopper I have probably wouldn’t survive grinding bones, haha!) — sorry, I forgot to mention that. That’s why I use the supplement for the calcium and all the other important vitamins and minerals…

  4. Vanessa Alicea
    June 20, 2016 / 3:33 am

    I agree with your initial statement regarding that it should also be convenient for us, humans (or any caretaker). I wouldn’t like to put my cat health in jeopardy because of convenience for which I consider that brushing his teeth can go a long way if I’m not feeding bones (or chunks of food). I have struggled a lot to trying to balance the pros and cons. It is my thinking that I can avoid both, the increasing risk of cross contamination if I can avoid as much mess from raw food as I can.

    • Vanessa Alicea
      June 20, 2016 / 3:36 am

      I’m sorry, I meant to say that I’d like to be able to avoid both: dental disease (by brushing consistently) and avoid also the possibility of cross contamination (by maintaining my cat clean as well as the feeding area).