Your cat’s dietary requirements vary from yours in several respects, the basic difference being that a cat is a carnivore (a meat-eating animal) and human is an omnivore (he eats all sorts of things).
What do cats eat besides cat food?
The cat is more of a true carnivore than a dog: a dog can happily be fed on a diet that is half cereal, but a cat needs meat and very little else.
One of the peculiarities of the feline diet is the high demand for specific types of protein and the lack of any genuine requirement for carbohydrates and roughage. The amount of food needed by some cats is far greater, body weight for body weight, than that needed by some dogs.
Another peculiarity is that the cat can cope with a very high quantity of fat in his diet and apparently thrive on it. Unless a cat leads a very sedentary life and is overweight, a natural amount of fat in his diet will do him good.
Under the unnatural conditions arising from his long and often lethargic history of cohabitation with man, the cat has learned to adapt his diet to some extent.
He will usually no longer live solely on meat and water though, while he likes some variety, the extra foods he is prepared to consider are far less catholic than those accepted by a dog. There are many stories of depraved felines hung up on titillating extras such as chocolate ice cream, but such tastes are not normal.
In addition to natural cat foods such as red meats, fowl, rabbit and offal, most cats like fish (a traditional but not really a primary food for cats), milk (not natural for adult cats, but good if it agrees with them) and any other foods of animal origin, such as egg and cheese.
A diet consisting of meat alone may be lacking in certain dietary elements. However, we have known a series of strappingly healthy elderly cats who would not deign to touch anything but meat, offal, fish, and milk.
They will frequently learn to accept a small vegetable or cereal addition to their diet, and if you can get him to accept pollution of up to 25 percent of vegetable and cooked cereal matter in his food, so much the better for you, though fat cats should not get too much carbohydrate, and no cat can cope with a lot of roughage.
Can cats eat dog food?
Cats have unique nutritional requirements that cannot be satisfied by the feeding of foods formulated for dogs or by the sharing of food prepared for humans.
The main difference between cat food and dog food is the very high level of protein necessary in the cat’s diet. Adult cats require a minimum of 21 percent protein and kittens need 35 percent.
This is at least twice the level required for dogs. Cats seem to break down protein as a source of energy, whereas other animals utilize carbohydrates for this purpose.
Can cats eat human food?
Cats enjoy eating human food when it is offered to them but it is not something they will do on their own. Unlike dogs, cats do not beg for food or eat food off of your plate while you are eating. They will wait until you have finished your meal before they start begging for more food or trying to steal some of yours.
When it comes to choosing which human foods your cat can eat, there are some basic guidelines that should be followed. The first thing you need to remember is that most cats cannot tolerate milk products because these products contain lactose which can cause digestive problems in cats and even diarrhea if consumed in large quantities by your cat. Other foods that may cause problems include chocolate and onions which can lead to vomiting or diarrhea when eaten by your pet.
If you’re wondering what human food can a cat eat, here are some things that are OK for your cat to eat:
- Meats: Beef, chicken, turkey, pork, lamb and fish. Meat byproducts like liver, heart and kidney can also be fed.
- Fruits and vegetables: Apples, bananas, carrots, peas, green beans, and broccoli. These should be given sparingly because of their high fiber content.
- Grains and cereals: White rice and pasta are OK in small amounts but the bread should be avoided because they’re too high in carbohydrates and yeast products like doughnuts or cakes can cause gas and diarrhea in cats.
Can cats eat rice?
Yes, cats can eat rice. Rice is a grain that can be a part of a cat’s diet. It is a good source of carbohydrates, which help support muscle mass and energy levels. A healthy cat should be able to digest rice just fine, but if your cat has an allergy or digestive issues, this may not be the best option for him.
Can cats eat brown rice?
Yes! Brown rice is just another version of white rice with more nutrients added back in during processing. It’s also not as processed as white rice so it has fewer calories and carbs but more fiber and protein than regular white rice.
Can cats eat cooked eggs?
Yes, cats can eat cooked eggs but they should only be given them occasionally as they are high in cholesterol.
Can cats eat cheese?
Yes, cats can eat cheese but you should keep an eye on how much they’re getting because it could make them fat if they eat too much of it! Cheese contains dairy which can turn into lactose inside their bodies if they don’t have enough lactase enzymes to break down the sugar molecules in dairy products. This means that some cats will get diarrhea from eating large amounts of cheese or other dairy products!
Can cats eat peanut butter?
Cats can eat peanut butter, but it’s not a good idea to feed it to them. Peanut butter contains a large amount of fat, which can cause pancreatitis in cats.
Pancreatitis is an inflammation of the pancreas that occurs when food or other substances irritate the pancreas and cause it to release enzymes that damage its own cells. The condition can be life-threatening if not treated quickly by a veterinarian.
How do you get a cat to eat new food?
If introduced to new foods at an early enough age a cat can, however, prove remarkably omnivorous. Most adult cats will drink cow’s milk because they are introduced to it as kittens; many caught young will also enjoy vegetables and cereals or other “unnatural” foods.
However, it is important to remember the cat’s exceptionally high demand for protein, which he prefers to be mainly of animal origin: most cats will express little interest in a low-protein diet. On the other hand, some good quality animal fat in an otherwise unpalatable diet may increase its acceptability.
Once a young cat is settled into a good, varied routine that suits him, be firm, and try to keep the upper hand. Never offer any food which isn’t anything but absolutely fresh (cats are justifiably revolted by meat that is even slightly off), but if a finicky cat refuses a meal that you know is wholesome, don’t relent and give him something else.
Leave the food out for half an hour: sometimes a cat, seeing that nothing better is going to appear, will make do with what is there. If he does not, remove the offending food and let him wait till the next meal.
However, such methods should not be pushed beyond a certain point as frequently even hunger will not force a cat to eat the food he has set his heart against.