I haven't seen hardly any mention of raw food diets for pets from other zero wasters, and that's a shame, because high-quality, simple food is generally part and parcel of zero-waste living, right? At least, that's true for humans - and it should be the same for our pets!
I wrote a primer on the whys and wherefores of raw diets, if anyone is interested:
I had a discussion with my dad recently about the diabetic cat mentioned at the end of the post, and I linked him to that same website today in the hopes that maybe, MAYBE, they can cure her diabetes while she still has a few years left in her.
This is what a vet has to say about diet and feline diabetes:
"Because improper diet is the cause of type II diabetes mellitus in the cat, diet must be the foundation of the management of this disease. Although the veterinary profession has been conditioned to believe that high-fiber dry diets are capable of assisting in the management of feline diabetes, the reality is that this disease has historically been extremely difficult to deal with because of this mistaken belief. The practice of using dry form, high-fiber diets for our diabetic patients is utterly in error. In fact, high-fiber dry foods have two massive flaws. The first is the high amount of carbohydrate in them (no, they are not immune from the requirement of extruded foods for high cereal content) which promotes high blood glucose notwithstanding the fiber contained in them. These diets are usually “low fat” as well as high-fiber and because of this, much of the usual fat in the formula has been replaced with even more digestible carbohydrate than is present in regular formulas (in the highly mistaken belief that it is dietary fat that makes cats fat)."
Anyways, post your thoughts, experiences, questions!
PS - If anyone knows how to find a butcher that will actually sell you offal from organic or pastured(!!!) livestock, let me know because it seems to be just about impossible. I guess butchers don't do much actual butchering anymore.
I have found a free range butcher in Mount Waverley, Victoria Australia who sells pet mince comprising minced chicken frames and beef and sheep offal, all from free range animals. What better way to honour the animals we choose to eat, than to eat as much of it as possible.
There's a meat vendor at a farmer's market here who sells "dog food", but I think it's mostly just ground up muscle tissue scraps - for dogs, this is OK as they have a natural inclination to chew (to clean their teeth and strengthen their jaws), but I don't believe cats do, so you wouldn't just be able to give them a bone to gnaw on in addition to soft meat mulch.
Our dog has been on raw food all his life, not a zero waste version because of the sheer amount he needs; but his favourite treats are chicken carcasses (chicken skeleton minus legs and head; with some meat left on), he gets these frozen solid (it takes him a good minute to finish it off...). I asked at the local butcher, who happily sells these for £1 apiece at most, as they consider it waste.
An option is to find your local reptile supply store. Here they sell frozen mice which might (with thawing) fit the bill. Likely prewrapped in plastic though.
If you're looking into this, there's a youtuber who gives his cat two options (chicken and turkey) and records her preference as well as other combinations to discover her/his tastes.