COVID-19 Information Center

Home Cooked or Raw Diets for Dogs and Cats

Date Published: 05/05/2003
Date Reviewed/Revised: 09/15/2023

Many people would like to feed home-cooked or raw diets to their dogs and cats, however, well-balanced home-cooked or raw diets are often hard for owners to design and make. To complicate matters, there is much disagreement on what diet is best for pets, as “one size does not fit all”.

We suggest that people wishing to feed one of these diets first consult with their veterinarian and discuss the pet’s specific health situation. Doing significant research (see the links below) and understanding the health risks to your pets and yourself before embarking on this is very important.

Gray tabby cat and food bowl

Your veterinarian may refer you to a veterinary nutritionist (specialist). A veterinary nutritionist can help you understand diet options based on your pet's specific health needs, and design a nutritionally complete diet (all the needed calories, protein, fat, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals, etc.) for your pet. Visit this site to locate a veterinary nutritionist near you.

Overall, the more you know before you start, the better the nutrition and outcome will be.

Other resources: