Viva Raw offers frozen raw foods with a range of proteins available. While not the complete cat food your kitty needs, the Viva Raw Pure range of proteins is high-quality and meets many of the nutritional needs of cats. In this Viva Raw for Cats review, I’ll tell you everything you need to know about the Viva Raw Pure range.
First Impression of Viva Raw Pure
My cats have only been on raw food for ten months, and they are almost 14 years old. I say this because my experience personally feeding raw food is very limited. I have been primarily feeding Fetching Foods, which comes in 1-lb packages, and is a complete meal.
Viva Raw Pure is not a complete meal by itself. It is only meat, organs and bones. So, you have to add a completer to it to make it a complete meal for a cat. They also come in 2-lb packages rather than 1-lb packages.
I like their marketing and packaging. I do wish that they came in 1-lb packages. It’s a lot to dethaw, mix and refreeze 2-lb packages, especially if I don’t have the storage containers to handle it. And when you’re feeding small cats, it’s a lot to store. If I had 5 cats, it would not be a lot to store. I also like to keep my cats on a protein rotation, so I have to do at least two of the packages at once.
I liked the vibrant colors of the meat – shows you how fresh it is. And I want my cats to be eating fresh, vibrant colors, as that will provide the nutrients their bodies need.
Packaging of Viva Raw Pure
An essential part of any raw cat food delivery review is checking how the food is shipped to you to keep it safe. Raw food, if not correctly handled, can grow nasty bacteria for cats and for human handlers.
The Viva Raw Pure range of proteins are shipped frozen in plastic packets. They are enclosed in an insulated box, and that box contains an additional box filled with dry ice to keep the proteins on ice until they get to your home – this is sealed inside its own secondary box so you don’t accidentally handle the dry ice, which can be dangerous.
The dry ice keeps the food safe until it reaches your doorstep, making it a great option for raw feeding with the convenience of shipping directly to your home.
Each packet has a tab to let you peel it open once it’s thawed and you’re ready to prep the food for your cats.
Image of Viva Raw Pure
You can build your own custom order with Viva Raw. When you visit their website, you’ll complete a short quiz about your kitty’s breed, age, weight, and activity levels. Then the site will recommend how much food you’ll need to buy to feed them.
You have to do the quiz to be able to order, but then you can decide how much you want to order. There are five standard single protein options, so you can build your custom box using any combination of chicken, turkey, rabbit, beef, and duck. Lamb is a seasonal meat at the time of this writing and is not always available.
Size of Viva Raw Pure Packets
Viva Raw Pure is shipped in 2lb packets. A 2lb packet could be as much as a week or so’s worth of food, depending on your cat. You’ll need to thaw the packet for around 24-36 hours in your fridge before you can prep it with a completer, and then you can re-freeze portions that you won’t be using in the next day or so.
Best Benefit of Viva Raw Pure
The Viva Raw Pure range of proteins is precisely that – a pure mix of just 80% muscle meat, 10% bone matter, and 10% organs from the animal (such as kidney, lung, and heart). This is the ideal ratio for most adult cats, with no extra additives or unnecessary ingredients, such as grains. This means you can easily tailor the food to your kitty – it provides most of the nutrients they need. You’ll just need a completer that’s suitable for your cat.
I used Alnutrin supplements, which was recommended by Viva Raw. Like Viva Raw Pure, they’re made from human-grade raw food materials and completely free of chemicals. Just mix with water in your bowls and then blend with the Viva Raw Pure, and you’ve got a healthy, nutritious meal ready for your cat, without any filler you’ll find in canned and dry cat foods.
The only protein of the six that is not purely matter from the animal is the Pure Lamb packet, which includes beef bone instead of lamb bone – but it still provides the quality calcium content that cats need.
Pros of Viva Raw Pure
- Human-grade meat sourced from Certified-Humane animals raised without antibiotics
- All food is processed in USDA kitchens
- Raw pet food, in general, can offer a lot of health benefits for cats, including weight control, improved gums and teeth, healthier skin and coat, and more energy
- Because it’s just the meat, organ, and bone matter, these are suitable bases for cats with allergies and other sensitivities – you can choose the right supplements to suit your kitty
- A variety of proteins are available: rabbit, chicken, turkey, beef and duck are standard, whereas lamb is a seasonal option
Cons of Viva Raw Pure
- Size of packages – this is subjective and will vary depending on the cat owner’s situation.
- Their Pure line isn’t a complete meal, so there are several more steps to make it a complete meal. So if you are used to feeding a complete meal, then there is more work involved. However, this is also a positive if you have a sensitive kitty and need to be in control of the supplements added to the food. Viva Raw has come out with a complete meal. However, I cannot feed it to my Trigg because of all the fish oils used. So Pure is a necessity for us, if I continue to feed it to my cats
- Not all cats are used to raw – so it could take a while to transition them.
Video of Viva Raw Cat Food
There are no significant safety concerns with Viva Raw Pure, at least for your cats. While it’s understandable to be nervous about bacteria in raw food, remember that cats in the wild eat prey all the time.
We’re the ones that are more susceptible to bacteria, so make sure you wash your hands after handling the food and putting it down for your cats. Raw feeding is a little more dangerous for human owners than it is for cats!
If you let the food thaw properly, it should be as safe as any other kind of pet food for your kitty.
Jenny’s Personal TakeAway
I was thrilled that my cats ate Viva Raw. Since we transitioned to raw food, they have not been willing to eat any other commercial raw other than Fetching Foods.
They preferred the rabbit and chicken over the lamb and turkey. They actually puked up the lamb after eating it. I suspect because of the richness of lamb. They never really went for it again, and to be fair, I didn’t try terribly hard because I didn’t want to clean up the mess. So I gave the lamb to my mom to feed to her German Shepherd. I would consider, though, trying it again if they were to offer it again. It isn’t a protein they get often, so it would be nice to have it in rotation.
The turkey wasn’t much of a hit either, unfortunately. They ate some, but were not big fans of it, like the rabbit and chicken. So my mom’s dog will also enjoy the turkey. And that’s the nice thing that dogs can eat the Pure too – so if your cat doesn’t go for it, you can give it to your dog or a friend’s dog or cat.
I am pumped that Jen and Zach founded Viva Raw – that they really care about where they source their meats, what the animals eat on the farms they source from, and so much more. They are on Susan Thixton’s The List – which is an accomplishment in itself.
Viva Raw has been a total delight to work with as a blogger. They have been very responsive and helpful. They have honored my work and have offered to do numerous Zoom calls should I want to have one. Like their food, it seems to me that they care about the relationships they are cultivating, which isn’t always the case in the pet food world.
A very good friend of mine has been feeding Viva Raw for almost a year. Viva Raw did not know we were friends. My friend has 3 Ragdoll cats, and they all like Viva Raw – I know she feeds the duck, and I think she feeds their chicken, turkey and rabbit too. She told me last year about some shipping problems she had – where the food arrived dethawed. She contacted Viva Raw, and they immediately took care of the problem. She also had another instance recently where the wrong “ground” type was sent, and again, Viva got it sorted out immediately. I have received two shipments from Viva Raw, and never had a problem with dethawing. I do live in a different city and state than my friend, so shipment routes may be different.
At this writing, the price of Viva Raw Pure varies depending on your chosen protein. Chicken is the cheapest option, followed by turkey. The most expensive options are rabbit and lamb (which is a seasonal option and not always available). Expect to pay between $6 and $9.50 per lb of food, though remember the packets are 2lb each, so you’ll be paying between $12 and $19 at a minimum.
Where to Buy Viva Raw Pure
Viva Raw Pure is available through the Viva Raw website. You’ll be shown the Complete options first, but if you choose “See More Recipes,” you can pick from the Pure range. The Complete range also includes the option to have food provided as chunks.
Becare you’re buying quality raw food that must be frozen when fresh and then shipped straight to you, you won’t be able to buy Viva Raw Pure from third-party websites like Amazon.
Discount on Viva Raw Pure
You can save money with a discount on Viva Raw when you place your order. Use the code FLOPPYCATS to get 20% off of your purchase. It’s the most cost-effective way to stock up, provided you have the freezer space to store all those food portions!
There’s also the option to choose a subscription. This won’t save you money, but it does mean you don’t have to keep placing orders. You can select the frequency you want to get the food shipped to you – every 2, 4, 6, or 8 weeks.
If your order is above $250, you’ll get free shipping. Otherwise, expect to pay between $10 – $20.
Do I Need To Add Anything to Viva Raw Pure?
Viva Raw’s Pure recipe is not a complete meal – it’s missing some of the critical vitamins and nutrients your cat needs. You’ll need to choose a pre-mix supplement such as Alnutrin to add to it to make sure your kitty gets the balanced raw diet they need.
How Do I Thaw Viva Raw Pure?
Because Viva Raw Pure is shipped in 2lb packs, it’s recommended to thaw them in the refrigerator for 24 hours before you prep the food with a supplement. You can then serve it immediately, refrigerate some for the next couple of days, or freeze the mixed batch to be thawed again later.
I reordered! My cats liked the rabbit and chicken – and ate it on a consistent basis, that it was worthy of reordering. I am very excited about this because I needed a second option for them other than Fetching Foods. As many of you know, I work with Pam of Purrrfectly Holistic, and she had asked me to withhold psyllium husk from Charlie for five days shortly after I had placed this order. Fetching Foods comes with psyllium husk added, so had I not had the Viva Raw, I’m not sure what I would have fed him.
I am really grateful to Jen and Zach, the founders of Viva Raw, for creating this company. For caring enough about our pets to make a food that is excellent for them, but also takes the pressure off of people like me who never want to make their own homemade cat recipes.
We received the Viva Raw Pure for review from the manufacturer. Receiving the free product and the review fee did not influence this honest post.
Hi, I’m Jenny Dean, creator of Floppycats! Ever since my Aunt got the first Ragdoll cat in our family, I have loved the breed. Inspired by my childhood Ragdoll cat, Rags, I created Floppycats to connect, share and inspire other Ragdoll cat lovers around the world,