SoCal anyone? Looking for organ sources...

Tuckamukk3

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Hello, I live in the high desert, Ca and have recently been trying harder than ever to see if it's at all possible to source heart and organ meat around here. So far all I've found is one carniceria that sells cow brains and heart. Apparently cow heart doesn't have as much taurine as chicken heart so I'll just use it for nutritional variety. If anyone knows of a secret source around here please let me know. I'll continue to search.

But I'm also heading down to O.C. in a week for a couple days - wondering if anyone knows sources down there. I've found that 99 Ranch Markets carries chicken hearts and pork kidneys. Any other sources, especially for organ variety that anyone knows of? I'll be heading down the 15 S, then west to Anaheim Hills area but can detour a little.
 

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Hi, I'm no where near California but would having them shipped in bulk be an option for you?
Check ethnic markets, they sometimes have organs, and some have more novel proteins (rabbit, etc.)
 
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Tuckamukk3

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Unfortunately I can't afford to have stuff shipped - I've checked in the past and it was pretty expensive.
The big Asian chain market down there - 99 Ranch Markets at least has pork kidneys and chicken hearts but the more variety the better.
 

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Unfortunately I can't afford to have stuff shipped - I've checked in the past and it was pretty expensive.
The big Asian chain market down there - 99 Ranch Markets at least has pork kidneys and chicken hearts but the more variety the better.
I hear ya there, I get stuffed shipped from the state next to me and the shipping costs are horrendous!
Have you checked local raw feeding facebook groups or places like next door?
 
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Tuckamukk3

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I'm not that great at using Facebook but it's on my list of things to try. I don't know that my area has a local raw feeding Facebook page. How do you search for that? How exactly do you mean places next door? I've checked all my supermarkets, surrounding area markets, big and small. Ive asked the only butcher around but they throw everything in a bin "for rendering". They don't separate organs. And most frustratingly there is a farm nearby that butchers all kinds of animals, and they are "nose to tail" butchers but they want a $170 membership fee before they will sell me anything (!)
I am going to try to find out if I'm missing any other farms and try social media (to the best of my ability... )
 

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Hello, I live in the high desert, Ca and have recently been trying harder than ever to see if it's at all possible to source heart and organ meat around here. So far all I've found is one carniceria that sells cow brains and heart. Apparently cow heart doesn't have as much taurine as chicken heart so I'll just use it for nutritional variety. If anyone knows of a secret source around here please let me know. I'll continue to search.

But I'm also heading down to O.C. in a week for a couple days - wondering if anyone knows sources down there. I've found that 99 Ranch Markets carries chicken hearts and pork kidneys. Any other sources, especially for organ variety that anyone knows of? I'll be heading down the 15 S, then west to Anaheim Hills area but can detour a little.
Savage cat has raw cat food with organ meat but I’m not sure if you’re looking to add it to your own? Pet Supply is a local OC pet chain they have a few locations I’m not sure which would be most convient for you but here’s the website for locations Pet Supply Orange County
They might have organ meat separately they have a large frozen section so I’m not sure but you could call maybe? Also they are amazing and the staff is very knowledgeable so if they don’t have what you’re looking for I’m sure they can give you some local spots that would!
 

Box of Rain

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There are Super King markets in Clairmont and Anaheim.

I do pretty well at my local Super King.

Bill
 
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Tuckamukk3

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Thanks! What do you get there?
 

Box of Rain

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Thanks! What do you get there?
Super King usually has beef and pork livers, beef kidney, beef heart, beef cheeks, beef tongue, tendons, sometimes brains, all sorts of pork (including some odd bits like snouts and ears).

They tend to carry chicken hearts, gizzards, and feet (but these can be somewhat spotty).

They have quail frozen in 4 packs for about $8.

SK used to have "sweetbreads" (and for $1.99), but not since Covid.

Jon's Market almost always has dark meat turkey and chicken liver. They also have "melts" (aka beef spleen) irregularly. Not sure if there is a Jon's on your route?

Also check if there are Mexican oriented supermarkets on your route, such as Vallarta or El Super. You already know 99 Ranch.

Bill
 

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I'm not that great at using Facebook but it's on my list of things to try. I don't know that my area has a local raw feeding Facebook page. How do you search for that? How exactly do you mean places next door? I've checked all my supermarkets, surrounding area markets, big and small. Ive asked the only butcher around but they throw everything in a bin "for rendering". They don't separate organs. And most frustratingly there is a farm nearby that butchers all kinds of animals, and they are "nose to tail" butchers but they want a $170 membership fee before they will sell me anything (!)
I am going to try to find out if I'm missing any other farms and try social media (to the best of my ability... )
You've gotten some great leads so I'd check those out first. I don't do facebook either.
That membership fee is weird to me, I've never ran into anything like that.
EatWild - California
Here's a list of farms in California that might be able to work with you if you can't find anything in the local markets.
 
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Tuckamukk3

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I'll check out that link iPappy, thank you. Yeah the membership thing IS weird, but then so was the lady that I went back and forth with there. She was kind of cagey. Not very community oriented, which most people out here are.

Thanks for all the info, Box of Rain. Too bad they don't have sweetbreads anymore. That would have been great. I'll check about Jon's too, just in case they have spleen. I have seen some things like pork snout and some kind of tongue at the Mexican markets. Is that something you include just for chewing or are there nutritional benefits? I've seen chicken feet too but I've never known the bone content of them so I don't know how to figure them in.
 

Box of Rain

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I'll check out that link iPappy, thank you. Yeah the membership thing IS weird, but then so was the lady that I went back and forth with there. She was kind of cagey. Not very community oriented, which most people out here are.

Thanks for all the info, Box of Rain. Too bad they don't have sweetbreads anymore. That would have been great. I'll check about Jon's too, just in case they have spleen. I have seen some things like pork snout and some kind of tongue at the Mexican markets. Is that something you include just for chewing or are there nutritional benefits? I've seen chicken feet too but I've never known the bone content of them so I don't know how to figure them in.
I like serving some high-cartilage sources (mixing it up) figuring it is both a great "chew" (one of the main reasons I raw feed it to keep the dental structure in good shape) and because connective tissues helps to mimic whole prey. I can't say that I've identified a specific nutrient that such items provide. More of a "hunch," than being evidence-based.

Chicken feet are approximately 60% bone. I mix up the edible bone sources.

Beef tongue is pretty high in taurine. The prices for beef tongue went crazy, but they seem to be be coming down. Even the "low price" is $6.99, so fairly expensive.

I really miss the sweetbreads. I'd feed most of it to our raw fed dog (pre-cat), but I also love sweetbreads. Almost impossible to find now.

Bill
 
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Tuckamukk3

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Thanks for all that information, and the chicken feet bone %. I'll try incorporating some into my batches at some point. I'm always wary of trying to keep bone % accurate, and so get a little paranoid of trying new bone sources but everyone seems to do chicken feet and I've wanted to try. I actually only just recently started given the babes meaty bones to chew - guess I used to be paranoid about that too lol! But concerns for dental health finally won out.
I hear you on the "hunch" thing, and it makes sense to me. I'll keep those things in mind to change things up a little. And yes, I think I did notice somewhere that tongue was kind of pricey but I'll keep my eyes open.

Victorville is near me. I've been to Cardenas and Vallarta I think is the other one, but somehow I missed El Super... I've just been searching on Google maps. Don't know how I missed that one so I'll look them up and give them a call. Thanks for the heads up!
 

Box of Rain

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Thanks for all that information, and the chicken feet bone %. I'll try incorporating some into my batches at some point. I'm always wary of trying to keep bone % accurate, and so get a little paranoid of trying new bone sources but everyone seems to do chicken feet and I've wanted to try. I actually only just recently started given the babes meaty bones to chew - guess I used to be paranoid about that too lol! But concerns for dental health finally won out.
I hear you on the "hunch" thing, and it makes sense to me. I'll keep those things in mind to change things up a little. And yes, I think I did notice somewhere that tongue was kind of pricey but I'll keep my eyes open.

Victorville is near me. I've been to Cardenas and Vallarta I think is the other one, but somehow I missed El Super... I've just been searching on Google maps. Don't know how I missed that one so I'll look them up and give them a call. Thanks for the heads up!
I will split the chicken feet before serving, as I try to balance individual meals (as opposed to taking a "balance over time" approach). So I individually freeze them on a tray, then ziplok.

When serving, I portion using a heavy (but cheap) meat cleaver by striking it with a (cheap) hard rubber mallet. These tools have been a boon for portioning pre-frozen items of all sorts for the cat.

I'm pretty convinced that gnawing appropriate meat and bone helps keep teeth, gums, and the muscles of the jaw and neck strong. Probably my top reason for feeding a PMR style to both dog and cat.

If you hit El Super, let me know how it works out. We have one that's not too far out of the way, but I have a long time.

As to "hunches," I like to think of myself as a scientifically-minded person, but sometimes there is a lack of evidence. In those instances, I default to to thinking "what is in prey, and how can I best mimic that without going too crazy?"

As to beef tongue, IMS the taurine content is approximately the same as dark meat chicken (which I can get for less than a buck a pound, so paying $6.99 (much less the $12.99 it has been until recently) makes be "balky."

In your shoes, I might try to ingratiate myself with the butchers who put all the offal in a render bin and see if they wouldn't sell a portion to you.

Bill
 
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Tuckamukk3

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As to "hunches," I like to think of myself as a scientifically-minded person, but sometimes there is a lack of evidence. In those instances, I default to to thinking "what is in prey, and how can I best mimic that without going too crazy?"
Raw feeding in general, and PMR in particular, from what I've read here and there seems to be largely a combination of these - science and common sense guesses.

Re ingratiating myself to the butchers, I don't know how possible this would be as they are pretty far from me and mobile so they're not necessarily going to be there if I walk in. When I called I just talked to a secretary type person. It might help if I were already a customer...

I actually have yet to figure out how to perfectly balance bone amount in every meal for every cat when using chunks they can chew. So far I'm only using chopped Cornish hen wings for chewing, but as soon as I started doing that I found that my female seems to get soft poop if she gets a meal that doesn't have much bone (I grind a lot of the meat, some bone, liver, then have meat chunks and then the chopped wings mixed in). When this happens to her she tends to wipe her butt on the floor, which is beautiful. So I'd like to be able to balance them a little better, but at the same time don't want things to get super complicated. My cats all eat different amounts of food. I like having some grind to mix the supplements into, plus I add 2T extra water to their food upon serving and need something to mix it into. It gets pretty soupy.
 
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Tuckamukk3

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Btw, I will let you know if I find anything interesting at that El Super when I get a chance to go by it.
 

Box of Rain

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Raw feeding in general, and PMR in particular, from what I've read here and there seems to be largely a combination of these - science and common sense guesses.

Re ingratiating myself to the butchers, I don't know how possible this would be as they are pretty far from me and mobile so they're not necessarily going to be there if I walk in. When I called I just talked to a secretary type person. It might help if I were already a customer...

I actually have yet to figure out how to perfectly balance bone amount in every meal for every cat when using chunks they can chew. So far I'm only using chopped Cornish hen wings for chewing, but as soon as I started doing that I found that my female seems to get soft poop if she gets a meal that doesn't have much bone (I grind a lot of the meat, some bone, liver, then have meat chunks and then the chopped wings mixed in). When this happens to her she tends to wipe her butt on the floor, which is beautiful. So I'd like to be able to balance them a little better, but at the same time don't want things to get super complicated. My cats all eat different amounts of food. I like having some grind to mix the supplements into, plus I add 2T extra water to their food upon serving and need something to mix it into. It gets pretty soupy.
I figure that when we feed fellow humans, such as members of our families, that we (hopefully) have principles of good nutrition in mind, but that much of it is intuitive.

I know I have done far more research on canine and feline nutrition than I ever have when feeding people (and I'm a life-long cooking enthusiast).

Even with "research," when feeding PRM (or anything else) nutritional science is fair (to a point), but there are some holes. Like what are the results of feeding inordinate amounts of carbs to carnivores? The "results" are easy to see, but there is no profit in exposing the downsides. Anyway, I won't "rant."

You may want to look for frozen 4 packs of quail sold at "Mexican" supermarkets as Guilotas Supremas. Lots of good edible bone in these and basically all dark meat.

With a good whack from a rubber mallet and a cleaver many types of poultry bones can be sectioned into serviceable pieces. Chicken necks (which I also get a Super King--and are generally, but not always available) are easy. Even frozen Turkey necks can be "shaved" with a good whack.

Stool consistency tends to be a pretty good guide to bone. Desmonds are pretty firm, as there is just not much "waste" when cats eat PMR. The more experience you have, the easier it will get.

Bill
 
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Tuckamukk3

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"I know I have done far more research on canine and feline nutrition than I ever have when feeding people (and I'm a life-long cooking enthusiast)."

I know, right? Haha! Me to. And I also cook constantly. Where I live there is no healthy cheap prepared food, and anyway everything is at least 7+ miles away (gas$) so I cook all my own. Though feeding ourselves is a little easier because if you like healthy food you tend to crave what you need, we have a ton of variety as humans and we crave variety, and we have various doctors and blood tests to give us specific advice when necessary.

I've seen those quail packs at a number of stores - I didn't know they were dark meat. Do you happen to know the bone content of them?
To find out the bone % of Cornish hen I once weighed one, then I deboned it and scrubbed all the meat off the bones with a wire brush and weighed the bone afterwards. It was about 16 - 17% bone by weight, which was a far cry from the usda data (which I think was like 40% or so). Since then I stopped trusting their data... But I'd hate to repeat this experiment on something as small as a quail. And can you use all parts as edible bone?
 

Box of Rain

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"I know I have done far more research on canine and feline nutrition than I ever have when feeding people (and I'm a life-long cooking enthusiast)."

I know, right? Haha! Me to. And I also cook constantly. Where I live there is no healthy cheap prepared food, and anyway everything is at least 7+ miles away (gas$) so I cook all my own. Though feeding ourselves is a little easier because if you like healthy food you tend to crave what you need, we have a ton of variety as humans and we crave variety, and we have various doctors and blood tests to give us specific advice when necessary.

I've seen those quail packs at a number of stores - I didn't know they were dark meat. Do you happen to know the bone content of them?
To find out the bone % of Cornish hen I once weighed one, then I deboned it and scrubbed all the meat off the bones with a wire brush and weighed the bone afterwards. It was about 16 - 17% bone by weight, which was a far cry from the usda data (which I think was like 40% or so). Since then I stopped trusting their data... But I'd hate to repeat this experiment on something as small as a quail. And can you use all parts as edible bone?
As to the bone content in quail, I've never been able to find an authoritative source, so I "wing" it. It may be up to you to repeat the experiment. They are pretty boney. Of all store purchased options, quail seem like the closest thing to a bird a cat might eat.

It may be up to you to repeat your work--for the sake of science. Let me know.

Bill
 
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