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 Post subject: Vegans owning non-Vegan animals?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 02, 2011 7:41 am 
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I own two cats and feel strange owning mostly carnivores as pets.


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 Post subject: Re: Vegans owning non-Vegan animals?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 02, 2011 10:53 am 
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I know what you mean. Having read up on what people say about trying to get your cats to be vegan (since the topic was disturbing to me, too), it is going against nature. The most convincing research shows that cats are obligate carnivores. We also have had snakes, centipedes, and spiders as "pets". Those would definitely not be vegan, and it would be cruel to starve such beautiful creatures to impose our values. Nature is sometimes inherently cruel.

However, I am thrilled that I can make a conscious choice about my diet and be perfectly healthy being vegan.

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 Post subject: Re: Vegans owning non-Vegan animals?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 02, 2011 12:02 pm 
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SpartanDiva wrote:
I know what you mean. Having read up on what people say about trying to get your cats to be vegan (since the topic was disturbing to me, too), it is going against nature. The most convincing research shows that cats are obligate carnivores. We also have had snakes, centipedes, and spiders as "pets". Those would definitely not be vegan, and it would be cruel to starve such beautiful creatures to impose our values. Nature is sometimes inherently cruel.

However, I am thrilled that I can make a conscious choice about my diet and be perfectly healthy being vegan.


Yeah, atleast I can abstain from eating them.


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 Post subject: Re: Re: Vegans owning non-Vegan animals?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 02, 2011 9:52 pm 
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SpartanDiva wrote:
it is going against nature.
The physical world isn't some moral authority and it is not capable of being harmed by going "against" it.

It may or may not be in everyone's best interest to feed cats a vegan diet that's synthetically supplemented as necessary, but the observation of their natural diet shouldn't preclude engineering a way around it.

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 Post subject: Re: Re: Vegans owning non-Vegan animals?
PostPosted: Sun Jul 03, 2011 2:23 pm 
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chrisjs wrote:
SpartanDiva wrote:
it is going against nature.
The physical world isn't some moral authority and it is not capable of being harmed by going "against" it.

It may or may not be in everyone's best interest to feed cats a vegan diet that's synthetically supplemented as necessary, but the observation of their natural diet shouldn't preclude engineering a way around it.

Agreed. The concern is not IF cats can be vegan (they very well can), but if there is vegan food out there that is high enough quality. My mother fed her cats vegan for awhile, but honestly I didn't trust the supplier. She eventually went back to feeding them meat-based foods due to cost, but they did fine on their vegan cat food.

So little is known about feline nutrition requirements (compared to human), so I'm not convinced that vegan cat foods provide the optimal ratios of everything a cat needs. That being said, vegan cat food can't be any worse for your animal than getting cheap store crap like 9 Lives or Friskies or whatever. My girlfriend is vegan and she feeds her cat only Organix brand. It's more expensive (~$2/lb), but at least with organic meat there is SOME standard of quality, versus none at all for most cat food....

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 Post subject: Re: Re: Re: Vegans owning non-Vegan animals?
PostPosted: Sun Jul 03, 2011 4:55 pm 
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Fallen_Horse wrote:
My mother fed her cats vegan for awhile, but honestly I didn't trust the supplier....So little is known about feline nutrition requirements (compared to human), so I'm not convinced that vegan cat foods provide the optimal ratios of everything a cat needs. That being said, vegan cat food can't be any worse for your animal than getting cheap store crap like 9 Lives or Friskies or whatever.

Any chance you're talking about Evolution? I've been skeptical of them based off a few horror stories, but fwiw I don't necessarily trust those telling those horror stories either.

In any case, I used to feed my cats vegekit but now just use Evolution. We've tried amicat and that stuff is great, but at least at the time VE was having trouble keeping it stock and cats don't like their kibble changing.

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 Post subject: Re: Re: Re: Vegans owning non-Vegan animals?
PostPosted: Sun Jul 03, 2011 7:19 pm 
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chrisjs wrote:
Fallen_Horse wrote:
My mother fed her cats vegan for awhile, but honestly I didn't trust the supplier....So little is known about feline nutrition requirements (compared to human), so I'm not convinced that vegan cat foods provide the optimal ratios of everything a cat needs. That being said, vegan cat food can't be any worse for your animal than getting cheap store crap like 9 Lives or Friskies or whatever.

Any chance you're talking about Evolution? I've been skeptical of them based off a few horror stories, but fwiw I don't necessarily trust those telling those horror stories either.

In any case, I used to feed my cats vegekit but now just use Evolution. We've tried amicat and that stuff is great, but at least at the time VE was having trouble keeping it stock and cats don't like their kibble changing.


Sorry about the supply issues, Chris - having to import Ami in all the way from Italy makes it challenging to never be out of some bag sizes at times, but we're hoping to change all that next year by doubling up on our supply. The main issue being, if Customs/FDA decides to scrutinize our freight shipment, they've been known to keep it sitting in a warehouse for weeks on end so that they can ask us to verify all the same infomation they already have on file (true gov't inefficiency and incompetence hard at work! :wink: ) That's why we're going to be restocking when we're sitting on twice as much food as normal, just to keep an ace up our sleeve for those times that our wonderous protective agencies seem to suffer some sort of brain fart that means detaining cat food for a month "for the safety of the general population" :augenroller:

I do recommend Ami and VegeCat supplements most of all - we always get the best feedback on those two brands, not that I have issues with Evolution Diet, just that they can't seem to stay on target with their kibble as they tweak the formula a few times every year, which seems to always make some cats go from loving it to hating it. If they'd just stay focused on one formulation (or, release a few versions if they seem to feel a need to have different formulas), we'd be good to go. I think that much of the issue people have with Evolution Diet is moreso on their dealings with the company, as they're not always easy to get info from (or, at least, get information that doesn't lead to a long rant from whoever is on the other end of the phone regarding something that's often off-topic).

We're hoping to eventually get the demand for Ami up enough to look at having production done here in the USA down the line as well. If that happens, not only will supply issues be a thing of the past, but we'll probably be able to lower the price by 20%, which certainly is a good thing :D

Finally, there's a new vegan kibble from Benevo that isn't available in the USA yet, but you can be sure we're working in bringing it in to be the first to offer it. In due time, we should be seeing more options come about!

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 Post subject: Re: Vegans owning non-Vegan animals?
PostPosted: Sun Jul 03, 2011 8:55 pm 
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Thanks for your always-awesome replies on this forum. Didn't mean to fault you for the issues, I realize it was customs.

US production would be great if that eventually came together.

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 Post subject: Re: Vegans owning non-Vegan animals?
PostPosted: Sun Jul 03, 2011 9:02 pm 
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What I'd really like to see is a vegan cat hairball treatment.

What's with the d3 in the benevo? They have a star next to it on their site but I don't see any footnote.

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 Post subject: Re: Vegans owning non-Vegan animals?
PostPosted: Mon Jul 04, 2011 5:20 pm 
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chrisjs wrote:
What I'd really like to see is a vegan cat hairball treatment.

What's with the d3 in the benevo? They have a star next to it on their site but I don't see any footnote.


Yeah, seems all the hairball remedies have gelatin or some other crap in them that's far from ideal. Been checking for years on this, but so far, no-go on an all vegan brand for hairball control treatments.

Benevo has told us that they now have a vegan D3 sourced for their cat food, whereas before they'd been using a lanolin-based D3. I've had quite a few emails back and forth with their manager, so as long as we can get this 100% confirmed to be accurate, expect to be seeing Benevo kibble in our shop before winter.

I also just found out that a company in Sweden called Vegusto makes some wet-style cat and dog food using Hoana's VegeCat and VegeDog along with their own ingredients. Hoping that we can find a way to get it in, I guess that it is a short shelf life (about 7 weeks) unless kept frozen, so I'll be checking into this one as well to see what we can do.

Strangely, it seems that even with the higher cost of vegan cat and dog foods, they're selling better now than ever before, depsite people cutting back in other areas. Guess that means I need to keep on top of these new brands to get them in sooner than later!

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 Post subject: Re: Vegans owning non-Vegan animals?
PostPosted: Wed Jul 06, 2011 2:05 pm 
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If I could feed my cat vegan I would, but as it is vegan food is more expensive and I would rather not run the risk of screwing up my kitty and possibly endangering her. She gets decent quality meat-based food. It's not ideal, but the world is sometimes not ideal.

My pets and my family's pets have always been adopted from shelters, and speutered. I believe in doing my part to halt the explosive growth of domestic cat populations by helping catch stray cats for speuter and release programs, only adopting cats (and a dog, maybe someday), and encouraging friends to speuter their pets and their pets' kittens when they're old enough. I also think that since these animals were, in a way, created by humans, we have an obligation to control their populations and to care for those that are abandoned or abused. In the end, I hope to inspire other people to take better care of their animal dependents, help curb damaging population growth, and take in cats and other animals that need a loving home.

As much as I love snakes I don't think I could have one as a pet, because I love rodents so much. I do have a pet tarantula which I feed crickets; that's probably not "vegan" but tarantulas live a long time and she's my friend now, I have to take care of her. :P The crickets are gently cared for and have a nice mini tank with tubing to jump around on.

I'm not sure how I feel about abolitionist stances against owning animals as pets. Like I said, I support animal welfare and rescue groups, and in the cases of pets like hamsters and guinea pigs, I know ours came from friends of the family and not breeding mills or anything nasty. At least rodents are vegetarian, too. :P At the end of the day, I'm fascinated by all critters, running an crawling, and will most likely continue to have pets for the rest of my life.


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 Post subject: Re: Vegans owning non-Vegan animals?
PostPosted: Wed Jul 20, 2011 2:41 pm 
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I have two cats and they are definitely not vegan. I am VERY wary of products and attempts to make vegan cats work; I don't want to run the risk of harming my kitties. In the end, we just don't live in a perfect world and we have to live with that...or not have carnivores as pets.

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 Post subject: It is against nature!
PostPosted: Thu Jul 21, 2011 6:31 am 
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We are vegans by nature, cats and dogs are carnivores by nature. Cars eat gasoline, diesel and gas. It's as simple as that :)

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 Post subject: Re: It is against nature!
PostPosted: Thu Jul 21, 2011 3:28 pm 
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Duncan_Idaho wrote:
We are vegans by nature, cats and dogs are carnivores by nature. Cars eat gasoline, diesel and gas. It's as simple as that :)


Actually, dogs are omnivores, only cats are "obligate carnivores" due to their specific needs in nature :wink: Visit any 3rd world nation with plenty of feral dogs who survive off of vegetation and trash pickings, you'll see quickly enough that they can get by with little to no meat for long periods of time.

Though, the one point I will always make is this (not directed at any reply in particular, but it often bears repeating in discussions about vegan cats). It's no more "natural" to feed cats heat processed renderings (often containing diseased parts) that are mixed with artificial fillers and binders with color enhancement (specifically for the visual appeal of those buying the food, not eating it), than it is to feed a vegan formula that's formulated to meet the nutritional needs of a cat.

I'm not saying by any means that vegans MUST feed their cats or dogs vegan formula foods, but the usual arguments where people tend to infer that a bag of 9 Lives kibble is somehow remotely close to what a cat would eat in nature and is superior to a balanced vegan formula is a pretty shaky stance. Not only that, but can anyone name a time in nature where a cat is going to be eating parts of a cow they come across? Or, an 80 lb. tuna that lives hundreds of miles off the coast? So far, what exists for food for cats really isn't natural in any way in comparison to what they'd eat if left to their own devices.

Unless a cat is eating what it catches itself, OR, unless there comes a day where canned cat food simply contains whole mice, there's nothing very "natural" about cat food in general. The closest thing would be some of the raw meat foods that can be found from time to time online and at independent animal supply stores (only because they're un-processed, not because they're what a cat would naturally eat), but that's about it.

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 Post subject: Re: It is against nature!
PostPosted: Thu Jul 21, 2011 4:32 pm 
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Duncan_Idaho wrote:
We are vegans by nature, cats and dogs are carnivores by nature. Cars eat gasoline, diesel and gas. It's as simple as that :)


I have to disagree. Without eating lots of dirt and living in a sunny environment, many vegans would die without supplementation. B12 and vitamin D just aren't found in vegan foods, and they are required by our body...

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