Dogs and cats are both pets of the family, but many cat owners have a hard time figuring out if their feline friends can eat dog food.
The truth is that some pet owners will feed their cats dog food to supplement a lack of protein in the diet, while others may just let them eat it when they feel like it. There are do’s and don’ts to feeding your cat with other animals’ food!
Your cat might be a picky eater, but their food should not come from the dog bowl. Some pet owners think that cats can eat dog food because they are both carnivores and they have similar dietary needs.
Cats cannot digest grains, which is what most of the ingredients in dog food consist of. Dog foods also contain more sodium than required for your cat’s diet, as well as artificial flavors and preservatives to make it smell better and last longer on store shelves.
If you’re having trouble choosing the right type of pet food for your pet, you’re not alone. For many potential pet owners, deciding whether to buy cat food or dog food is a major decision.
Even if you’ve already decided which pet to bring home, you may still face the dilemma of which kind of pet food to buy — cat food or dog food.
Cat Food vs Dog Food: Main Differences
Pet food is a huge industry, with products specifically designed for all types of pets. If you have a cat or a dog, it’s important to know that the two species have different nutritional requirements.
This doesn’t mean that you can’t give your dog cat food or vice versa; it just means that the food will be less effective, or may even cause problems for your pet.
A cat’s digestive system is different from that of a canine and cannot digest the same foods efficiently or safely, so humans need to be conscientious about feeding both animals separately.
Animal shelters and veterinarians recommend feeding cats on their own plate with specially formulated dry kibble, fresh water and canned food if necessary. Cats should not eat dog food.
Cats are not dogs. They have different dietary needs and preferences, so it’s important to know what your cat likes before feeding them something new.
Every animal is unique and has its own individual nutritional needs based on age, breed, life stage and activity level.
In the wild cats eat meat as their main source of protein which they hunt for themselves in order to survive. Cats also need a higher fat content than dogs do because they can’t synthesize all the nutrients from plant-based sources like dogs can with their shorter digestive tract.
Nutritional Requirements for Cats
The variety of food labeled as cat food is as varied as the variety of cats themselves. While cats come in all different shapes and sizes, nutritional requirements for cats are not as different.
Cats are carnivores, and require a diet filled with protein to maintain muscle mass. Cats are also sensitive to carbohydrates in their diet, as they are unable to digest them.
In the wild, cats eat rats, mice, insects, and fish, which provide them with all of the vitamins and minerals they need.
Cats are carnivorous animals, this means that their bodies are designed to get all of their required nutrients from meat. If you are a responsible pet owner, you will want to ensure that your cat is getting all the nutrients that it needs.
Some of the nutrients that your cat needs to get from the diet include:
- amino acids,
- fatty acids,
- and vitamins.
Amino acids are used to create the proteins that build and repair all the cells in your cat’s body. Your cat needs 21 amino acids to stay healthy. Of course, your cat cannot create these amino acids on its own, and must get them from the food that it eats.
Most cats are not getting enough calcium in their diets. In fact, a recent survey found that 90% of dry cat food contains inadequate levels of this essential mineral.
This can lead to serious health problems later in life, including osteoporosis, a disease that makes it hard for cats to walk. Fortunately, there are simple steps you can take to ensure that your cat is getting the right amount of calcium.
Avoid feeding your cat milk. Cats don’t have the digestive enzyme needed to break down lactose, which is one of the main ingredients in cow’s milk. This can lead to diarrhea or other problems.
Be sure not to feed your cat people food like french fries, spicy foods, onions, garlic and excessive amounts of cheese as these items could be dangerous for cats (and dogs). Also avoid chocolate!
It has been found that up to 80% of cats are allergic to it – even small doses can cause vomiting and death in a sensitive animal.
Despite their reputation for independence and aloofness, cats are actually very social creatures. The bond between humans and our feline friends is strengthened even more when it’s clear that we genuinely care about their needs.
One of the most important things you can do to care for your cat is to make sure its nutritional needs are being met.
What foods are harmful to cats
As all cat owners know, cats are natural hunters. As such, they are perfectly equipped with the senses to find prey in the wild. Unfortunately, cats have yet another sense we should be worried about: their sense of taste.
Since cats can taste even the tiniest amount of something that could be harmful, they are very good at finding things that are bad for them to eat. The best way to keep them safe is to learn what foods they should and should not eat.
Cats are carnivores and evolved to obtain all of the nutrients they need from animal tissue, so feeding them a vegetarian diet is highly inadvisable. In fact, since most of the nutrients cats require come from meat, diets containing large amounts of carbohydrates or sugars can be dangerous to their health.
The ASPCA and other organizations have published lists of foods that are not good for cats to eat. For example, some citrus fruit and tomatoes are harmful to cats.
In addition, they should not be fed onions, avocados, or chocolate. There are many more foods they should avoid, so contact your veterinarian to learn more.
Many people feed their cats the food they eat. However, not all foods are safe for your feline friend. In fact, some foods are even toxic to cats. Before giving your cat table scraps or recognizable pet food, read the list of harmful foods to cats below.
Below are some foods which should be avoided, or at least kept away from cats:
- onions – they can cause anemia in felines.
- grapes and raisins – these too could lead to toxicity as well as kidney failure.
- chocolate (all kinds) – this is not only deadly for a cat but it’s also bad for their heart if consumed often enough.
- tomatoes; the acidity of them could burn through their esophagus. Tomatoes contain oxalic acid, which burns when ingested by your pet over time. Tomato plants have calcium oxalate that makes contact with skin-irritating and may cause dermatitis in people who work around them constantly.
- avocados – these could cause malabsorption and other complications.
- alcohol of any kind (beer, wine, liquor) – this is toxic to cats as well as people who drink it often enough.
Many foods that are poisonous to humans can also be dangerous or deadly for your cat.
Cats are Obligate Carnivores
Cats are obligate carnivores, meaning they need to eat meat in order to live. This is why it’s so important that your cat not only eats food with protein but also raw meaty bones.
If you feed them a lot of carbohydrates or too much grain-based dry food, this could lead to severe health problems down the line
Cats are carnivores. That means they are designed to eat a diet of meat and animal products and have no nutritional need to eat plant matter (although they can, and many do, since it is tastier than dry food). Cats are obligate carnivores, which means that they have no choice but to eat meat.
Unlike many other animals, they cannot get all the nutrients they need from a vegetarian diet. Aside from the fact that cats are carnivores, eating only meat, you may wonder why you should care.
Most people recognize the importance of feeding their cats the proper diet they are designed to eat, and the importance of feeding cats what they are supposed to eat may seem like it would be clear.
Unfortunately, this can make many cats’ diets deficient in essential nutrients like vitamin A and taurine.
Cats have a short digestive tract and most of the nutrients come from the stomach and small intestine. This is why cats suffer when they’re fed only carbohydrates or plants. They need protein to maintain good health and energy levels
Choosing the Right Cat Food
Choosing the right cat food is a common dilemma for many pet owners. Cats are very different from dogs and they require specific nutritional needs to maintain their health. Fortunately, finding the best cat food for your furry friends can be done with some research and an understanding of what cats need in terms of nutrients.
When choosing the right cat food to feed your feline friend, there are a number of considerations.
- First, you should select a food that meets your pet’s unique nutritional needs. (The nutritional needs of an adult cat are different from those of a kitten, for example.)
- Second, you must consider the quality of the food you buy.
To help you discern quality, look for a food that will provide your pet with optimal nutrition, as indicated by a high level of protein, water and nutrients. Quality foods will also meet your pet’s dietary needs through the life stages he is currently in.
Cats need a diet with fewer carbohydrates and more meat protein.
Some high-quality dry cat foods include: Wellness Core, Nutro Natural Choice, and Iams Proactive Health Smart Puppy or Senior Cat Dry Food.
Do’s and Don’t when feeding cat dog food
Do you have a cat that is on a diet? Or, maybe you feed your dog wet food instead of dry. Either way, if you are in the market to buy an affordable and healthy alternative for your pet’s food, we can help!
It’s common knowledge that cats and dogs are natural enemies. But what if I told you some dog food is actually healthy for cats?
The reason it’s not usually recommended is because the protein sources in cat food are different from those found in dog food. Protein sources like chicken, beef, fish, turkey or lamb are more likely to be found in cat food than dog foods.
The other major difference between these two types of pet foods is the vitamin content. Cats need taurine which they cannot produce on their own whereas dogs do not require this nutrient as much as cats do.
So a diet containing only large amounts of taurine can lead to health problems for your feline friends!
If you have a cat that has been eating dog food for an extended period of time, it’s important to know the pros and cons of feeding your cat dog food.
For example, if you feed your cat with dog food for too long they can experience health problems such as arthritis or kidney disease because their system isn’t designed to digest the nutrients in dog food.
Some other things to consider are whether or not your pet is allergic to any ingredients found in both cat and dog foods- dogs usually have more allergies than cats do so be careful when choosing what type of food to give them.
Feeding your cat dog food may not be as bad for your cat as you think. However, there are some dangers you should be aware of.
The first thing you need to know is that, unlike cats, dogs can eat a variety of foods. That means if your cat pig out on some dog food, it may not be the end of the world. What’s more, certain dog foods are better than others, and may have certain health benefits for your cat.