Have you ever wondered why most cat food comes in a salmon or tuna flavor instead of pork flavors such as bacon or ham? There’s a misleading presumption that cats can eat just about anything, but that’s a just not right. Like us humans, cats must observe a balanced diet in order to stay healthy, so giving your cat some of the leftover pork chops from dinner last night might not be such a good idea.
Cats have greatly evolved from being untamed beasts preying in the jungles to your lazy couch potato companions shedding away on your expensive living room sofa. Although closely related to the large and unruly cats you find in the wilderness, domestic cats are surprisingly undemanding and don’t require much attention, not to mention they don’t eat like lions and tigers do.
A typical house cat basically sleeps throughout the day and only musters enough strength to get up when it’s time for them to be fed. Because of their idle lifestyle, it’s important for you as the owner to make sure your cat receives nutritional and well-proportioned meals. This includes avoiding a number of foods that are not necessarily healthy for your cat, a good example being pork.
Can My Cat Eat Pork? Answer: Yes, In Small Amounts
If it seems unclear as to whether or not you should be feeding your cat pork, you’re not alone. Most cat owners believe it’s alright to give their pet feline a strip of bacon or two because cats are dominantly considered as carnivores, but there are a lot of factors that modify these assumptions. Pork is not a toxic substance, therefore will not poison your cat if eaten, even in large amounts. Giving your cat pork products is fine as long as the meat is thoroughly cooked and is given only occasionally. What makes pork detrimental to the health of cats is its nutritional content. The meat of pigs is very high in sodium and fat which are two of the things cats don’t really need.
Why Can’t Cats Consume Fatty or High Sodium Food?
An active lifestyle requires a lot of food, and this is because energy is derived from what we eat. As mentioned earlier, cats are somewhat apathetic and are said to sleep anywhere from 16 hours to 20 hours in a day. If you provide a cat with fatty food, it isn’t likely they’ll burn away the excess. This is solely the reason why food such as pork isn’t recommended for cats.
The fat globules found in pork products are much larger compared to other meats. If ingested by your cat on a regular basis, the fatty deposits can easily block the small arteries of your pet. Pork can also possess preservatives which aren’t really good for anybody. Another justification as to why cats shouldn’t be eating pork is the high risk of contracting unwanted parasites. If cats are somehow able to get their paws on a piece of pork that isn’t properly cooked, it’s a possibility they’ll be getting more than just dinner.
What Are the Healthy Alternatives to Pork?
Cats absolutely adore fish and probably won’t mind eating it every single day for the rest of their lives, but it would be nice to shake up their regular menu with healthy and nutritional alternatives. Pork is a good source of protein, therefore if you’re going to completely eliminate it from your cat’s diet you should have other protein options other than fish.
Lean white meat such as turkey and chicken are great substitutes for pork. They consist of less fat, but provide the same amount of protein. Just keep in mind, when you are feeding your cat chicken, the skin and bones must be completely removed. Skin of the chicken can be saturated in fat after being cooked and the bone, regardless of how small it may be, can be a choking hazard for your cat.
A protein source you might also consider is a favorite of cats: milk. Surprisingly however, a majority of cats are actually lactose intolerant and get upset stomachs after drinking milk. Fortunately, there is special lactose-free milk available in the market specifically for dogs and cats who are lactose and tolerant. You may be able to find a couple of brands at your local pet store.