🍂 15 years young NR/RF kitty, Briar has been eating much more food (volume) lately with the drop in temperature, reduced light exposure, change in season & his requirements have changed. 😻
👉 How much to feed? We say, “Feed according to BODY CONDITION” – NOT:
By current body weight (ideal/target weight – yes!)
By activity level
By caloric guidelines
Yes, all these factors may be used when initially switching to feeding fresh foods, but after you first start with an average suggestion for quantity/calories, soon afterwards, you will need to adjust amounts based on your animals’ individual metabolism and needs – and to adjust, as needed, on a regular basis, too!
👉The SINGLE MOST important determining factor for knowing how much to feed your carnivores is BODY CONDITION. To determine, have a qualified, experienced raw feeder/third party help you examine your animals’ body condition, or objectively look at your animals’ body composition and condition.
👉 Your carnivore should be very LEAN, ribs viewable, waist well defined, with good muscle.
👉 Animals eating carbohydrates/starch are chronically inflammed, appear “puffy” or are downright overweight. We’re now accustomed to seeing this as normal, but it’s not actually healthy. Aim for your animals to appear “slightly underweight” – this greatly reduces risk for developing disease, and allows them to enjoy a longer, healthier life.
So, yes, start with the above determining factors, but you will need to adjust to the correct amount of food that an individual animal does best on and requires.
👉 These needs can/do change! Be prepared to adjust accordingly and dynamically. Stress, exercise, temperature, sleep, hormones, seasons, light cycles, age, nutrient density of the foods being consumed, all influence nutritional requirements and “how much to feed”. Ulike our little tank kitty, Bones, Briar’s weight has always been very lean, so I have always allowed him to consume as much as he needs, without any restrictions. Recently, he’s been downing and finishing off about 16-20 ounces (yes, over a pound!) on average every day.