What Can Cats
Eat Besides Cat Food?
Cats eat cat food. Right? Right, of course.
But imagine eating the same thing over and over again for
the rest of your God-given life. No matter how much you like
whatever it is, it can get old pretty quickly if you’re
consuming it on a daily basis. If your human palate can get
tired, you bet your pet cat’s can, too.
This may be why pet owners often give their cats “special
treats”, sometimes straight from the dinner table. While the
sentiment is all well and good, many cat owners don’t even
realize that they could be endangering their precious felines
whenever they do that. A cat may beg and wreak havoc just to
get you to part with food from your plate, but that doesn’t
mean it’s going to be good for him or his digestive tract.
So what can cats eat besides cat food, then?
Well, you’d be happy to know. The DO NOT EAT list is
actually a lot shorter than you may think. Dr. Elizabeth
Colleran, president of the American Association of Feline
Practitioners (AAFP), say the following must never make it past
your cat’s lips:
While sushi is technically fish (and cats are often depicted
as fish-lovers), sushi that has been prepared for human
consumption can give your cat gastrointestinal problems. The
onions and chives? Good for humans but can cause damage to
feline red blood cells even in trace amounts.
Uncooked eggs could expose anyone to salmonella. Bones can
cause choking. And fat trimmings? It’s like tempting
gastrointestinal upset and pancreatitis to make an appearance.
Caffeine, of course, can increase heart rate and agitate your
pet. And finally, cats become a bit lactose-intolerant as they
get older which makes milk a bad idea.
So again, what is safe for your cat to eat? What can cats
eat besides cat food and all those items in the do not eat
Here are a few things that are perfectly edible to
felines in small portions:
•lean deli meats
•canned baby food
You might have already heard that cats are obligate
carnivores. That means they need meat to survive. So what up
with all the veggies on the list?
Well, while it’s certainly true that cats cannot derive
nutrition from vegetables, it doesn’t necessarily mean it is
bad for them. And there are cats that love chomping on greens
for fiber. So instead of letting him chew on grass, why not
give him a broccoli or two? Houseplants may be toxic, but
asparagus isn’t, you know?
Cheese, meanwhile, is a good protein source for cats. But
like previously mentioned many cats become lactose-intolerant
as they grow older. If cheese is on the menu, therefore, just
give it in small quantities and watch out for diarrhea.
Fish is always good for cats. Just don’t overdo it. The high
levels of polyunsaturated fatty acids in a heavy tuna diet can
deplete your cat’s vitamin E supply.
So go ahead and give your cat a treat or two. Human food
shouldn’t be a problem as long as you stick to the safe list
and you give the food in moderation.