My cat ate WHOLE quail leg!!

FredMD

TCS Member
Thread starter
Young Cat
Joined
Mar 26, 2023
Messages
23
Purraise
10
Hello, long time lurker, first time poster.
I have been doing my research on feeding raw meaty bones, and I know supervivion is required.
I have been feeding my Maine Coon raw quail meat for a few days, and tonight I finally gave her a leg with bone included.
The leg was small, just under 2 inches.
Before I could even react, she chewed it 8 or 9 times, the end of the bone was sticking straight out, she then tilted her head back, chewed a few more times, and just swallowed the whole damn thing!!
That was about 5 minutes ago, she isnt acting like anything is stuck in her throat. But she definitely did NOT chew the bone up first,
Should I be concerned? What should I be watching out for?
 
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #2

FredMD

TCS Member
Thread starter
Young Cat
Joined
Mar 26, 2023
Messages
23
Purraise
10
I should add that she is fully grown, and that the quail leg was raw NOT cooked. And she has eaten more cat food after eating the quail leg.
 

Box of Rain

TCS Member
Alpha Cat
Joined
Jun 21, 2022
Messages
388
Purraise
688
Location
Los Angeles
Not ideal, but quail leg bones are fairly small (I feed them too) and cat's systems are well-suited for passing bone. I'd monitor your Maine Coon (and the stools). Hopefully the 8 or 9 times she chewed had some effect.

In the future, you might want to hit the bone with a rubber mallet or with a meat cleaver/rubber mallet combination with a "gulper."

Bill
 

Margot Lane

Kitten at heart, not a Top Cat
Top Cat
Joined
Oct 24, 2021
Messages
4,616
Purraise
9,607
I know mouse bones aren’t quail legs but I often come down in the morning only to the awful offal.
 
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #7

FredMD

TCS Member
Thread starter
Young Cat
Joined
Mar 26, 2023
Messages
23
Purraise
10
Not ideal, but quail leg bones are fairly small (I feed them too) and cat's systems are well-suited for passing bone. I'd monitor your Maine Coon (and the stools). Hopefully the 8 or 9 times she chewed had some effect.

In the future, you might want to hit the bone with a rubber mallet or with a meat cleaver/rubber mallet combination with a "gulper."

Bill
I’m wondering if maybe a Cornish hen leg would be better. The whole reason I’m doing this is for the dental benefit. I gave her another quail leg today with bone removed and she really only chewed it a few times. I was hoping she would like turkey/chicken gizzards but she’s not interested.
 

Box of Rain

TCS Member
Alpha Cat
Joined
Jun 21, 2022
Messages
388
Purraise
688
Location
Los Angeles
I’m wondering if maybe a Cornish hen leg would be better. The whole reason I’m doing this is for the dental benefit. I gave her another quail leg today with bone removed and she really only chewed it a few times. I was hoping she would like turkey/chicken gizzards but she’s not interested.
I like quail as an edible bone source. And in 100% in alignment with feeding soft-edible bone for the dental benefits--which I'm convinced are huge.

The only catch is when one has a "gulper." Two ways to deal with that (in the short term).

One is to whack bones with a rubber mallet or to score them with a meat cleaver/mallet combination, so if the cat gulps them down that the bones are pre-sectioned.

The other option is to serve some bone that is too big to swallow whole, but soft enough for a cat to chew. An example is a chicken leg bone with the meat on. A cat must work to tear skin and meat, which is a good dental workout itself, and then they will go for the cartilage and softer bones on the ends (first). When you feel like the cat has hit the 6% bone consumption, pull the rest.

It can take a process to get cats used to chewing. But it is worth the efforts IMO. You can also expect to see the facility and capabilities in this department grow as the cat's neck and jaw muscles strengthen.

Chicken necks and chicken feet (both sectioned) are also good starter bone sources.

Glad to read that there were no issues. Cat's GI tracts are pretty good about dealing with bone, but obstructions are a legitimate concern.

Bill
 
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #10

FredMD

TCS Member
Thread starter
Young Cat
Joined
Mar 26, 2023
Messages
23
Purraise
10
How do you go about sectioning neck or feet for a gulper?
 

Box of Rain

TCS Member
Alpha Cat
Joined
Jun 21, 2022
Messages
388
Purraise
688
Location
Los Angeles
How do you go about sectioning neck or feet for a gulper?
No real wrong answer here. Just make sure the bones are smashed or pre-cut enough that if swallowed whole that they are not an obstruction risk.

You will want to have pieces that build up the "chewing" muscles, so it is all a balancing act, and why I suggest the chicken legs (especially if you can find small ones) for supervised feedings.

I have more experience with dogs and raw feeding, but many canines go through the same process of "gulping" and then learning to crush and tear. Some cats seem to get it right away, others take time.

My Desmond "got it" right away, but his capacity to crush bone increased substantially over time as he got these dental workouts. I have to watch him like a hawk now if I give him a chicken leg--as he can now destroy the whole thing very quickly--when it used to take him a considerable amount of time to just strip the meat, and I don't want him to consume the entire bone.

Bill
 

Box of Rain

TCS Member
Alpha Cat
Joined
Jun 21, 2022
Messages
388
Purraise
688
Location
Los Angeles
FredMD FredMD

Just a quick addition, as one smashes or pre-cuts pieces, they naturally tend to hang together (due to skin, etc) and that's not necessarily a bad thing, as it tends to encourage chewing (as opposed to having entirely discrete small pieces that get swallowed whole.

Bill
 

furmonster mom

Lap #2
Top Cat
Joined
Jun 14, 2013
Messages
2,764
Purraise
3,960
Location
Mohave Desert
I like using whole chicken feet because they are awkward, which encourages cats to gnaw on them. Also, the skin is tough enough to really make the cats work at breaking them into smaller pieces.
 

Box of Rain

TCS Member
Alpha Cat
Joined
Jun 21, 2022
Messages
388
Purraise
688
Location
Los Angeles
I like using whole chicken feet because they are awkward, which encourages cats to gnaw on them. Also, the skin is tough enough to really make the cats work at breaking them into smaller pieces.
We think alike.

The harder it is for an eager cat to manage a meal (assuming they are seasoned chewers) the more it provides them with a workout that keeps their dental structures strong and healthy, as it also works their minds. One can see the "brain work" and the relaxation that follows.

Gives the opportunity to develop the "little lion" inside.

I marvel watching Desmond take on "high entertainment" meals. I'm down to doing very little cutting anymore.

Bill
 

Tuckamukk3

TCS Member
Young Cat
Joined
Dec 21, 2018
Messages
68
Purraise
62
This is helpful information - I've got one cat who's such a pig he started off trying to belt all the bone chunks as described (he's food obsessed and definitely not the brightest cat in the world). He seems to be getting better lately, but I'll be keeping these tips in mind as I keep an eye on him and we continue to go forward.
 
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #16

FredMD

TCS Member
Thread starter
Young Cat
Joined
Mar 26, 2023
Messages
23
Purraise
10
Thanks for all the replies, super helpful.

She can't have chicken because of allergies but I might try duck feet. I have continued giving her quail, but have been taking the bone out which isn't ideal since i'm looking for dental benefits.

Since she is a gulper I have been hesitant to give her any bones. Here is a picture of the wing bone, would this be too big to try and give to her since she's a gulper? Maybe break this at the joints and try and give smaller pieces of bone?

IMG_8176.jpg
 

furmonster mom

Lap #2
Top Cat
Joined
Jun 14, 2013
Messages
2,764
Purraise
3,960
Location
Mohave Desert
I would not break it at the joints
Rather, I would pound/crush it with a mallet, but leave it whole. The idea is to get her out of the gulping habit, and encourage chomping. Smaller pieces would just enable the gulping.

Another approach might be to hold the small end and let kitty chomp on the large end. I had to do this with a dog who was a gulper.
 
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #18

FredMD

TCS Member
Thread starter
Young Cat
Joined
Mar 26, 2023
Messages
23
Purraise
10
I tried holding one end like you said, she ripped it our of my hand, she's quite strong! I even resorted to holding one end with a pair of pliers but she would dig into my hand with her claw while yanking with her jaws and even still managed to rip it out that way.

I got some freeze dried duck necks in to try but they are very big. About 8 inched long and maybe 1.5 inches in diameter. Theres no way she could swallow it. Maybe just let her gnaw on it whole? Or cut down to a certain size? What size do you think?

here's a pic:
IMG_8177.jpg
 
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #19

FredMD

TCS Member
Thread starter
Young Cat
Joined
Mar 26, 2023
Messages
23
Purraise
10
...or maybe i shouldnt feed freeze dried duck necks? maybe they could splinter?
 
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #20

FredMD

TCS Member
Thread starter
Young Cat
Joined
Mar 26, 2023
Messages
23
Purraise
10
...i just snapped one in half very easily.
 
Top