Should you keep your cat away from meats?
There are a lot of different diets that some people go on: Paleo, Pescetarian, Keto, and, probably the most popular, vegan.
When you go vegan, you just rely on plants for your sustenance and survival, no meats, eggs, dairy, fish–just vegetables and vegetables alone. Now for some people, this could actually be healthy and even help them lose weight.
However, others who have seen the effectiveness of this diet health-wise go way overboard and try it on their cats as well.
So we are led to this imperative question: Should cats go vegan?
Some might even say, “It worked well for me, so it COULD work for my kitty too, right?”
WRONG. Cats should not go vegan.
Cats are naturally obligate carnivores or also known as strict carnivores, as their bigger cousins in the wild. This doesn’t necessarily mean that the just prefer meat, but they ACTUALLY depend on the nutrients found in meat to survive. Dogs, while not advised either, could go vegan and still survive because they are omnivores. Cats, on the other hand, are strictly carnivores.
Cats did not evolve to have the capability to fully digest vegetables, especially the leafy ones. Likewise, their metabolism requires a high amount of protein to process other nutrients like taurine, vitamin A, and arginine.
Cat food can substitute some of these nutrients
When you check the label of some commercial cat food, you could see ingredients like grains and vegetables. This is because proteins could be synthesized to include with vegetables in cat food. However, don’t feed your cats an all-grain diet because they need meat and lots of it.
What happens if your cat doesn’t meet his or her protein requirement?
Keeping your cat from meat could drastically affect his or her health. In a few months’ time, he or she could already develop a taurine deficiency, which could pave the way for a lot more health issues like retinal degradation and heart problems.
Kitties on vegan diet can also run low on essential amino acids like methionine and cystein. Over time, all these deficiencies could result to serious stomach issues, and ultimately, liver failure.
Not only does a high-protein diet provide your cat the nutrients he or she needs, it also helps keep him or her lean, and lessens the risk for obesity. Remember: a healthy cat is a happy cat.