Can cats eat dog food? Let’s find out if the foods intended for dog are also good for the cat or if they are dangerous.
Those who enjoy the company of dog and Fuffi will often find themselves jumping through hoops at the time of the meal. Sometimes, in fact, it can happen that the cat pierces some morsels from the dog’s bowl. Or that, with so many thoughts on our mind, we forget to buy cat food and think of falling back with that for Fido. Can cats eat dog food? Let’s see what is the opinion of the experts.
Cat dog food: yes or no?
If you are wondering if you can feed the cat dog food, the answer is no. The reason is simple: they are two very different animals, with equally different nutritional needs.
For this, it is advisable to feed the cat with a food specially produced for him, which can provide a rich dose of protein in the cat. Dog food does not contain enough of it for felines, as it provides additional nutrients, including carbohydrates.
The amount of taurine is also insufficient. The liver of felines, in fact, unlike dogs, is not able to synthesize this amino acid on its own. For this reason, it is essential that it is introduced through the diet.
Finally, an additional necessary component in Fuffi’s diet is a fatty acid, known as arachidonic acid. Like taurine, cats’ bodies cannot make it on its own. In dog food, however, it is not necessary because Fido’s body is able to synthesize it independently.
Diet based on dog food: the risks in cats
What happens if you feed the cat dog food? First of all, rest assured. If it happens sporadically that the cat has stolen a treat from the bowl of his four-legged companion, it will not have any repercussions on his health.
If, on the other hand, the feline habitually feeds the food intended for Fido, the consequences for Fuffi could be risky. In fact, there could be food deficiencies in the cat.
The most obvious manifestations of this condition are dull coat and weakness. In the event of severe nutritional deficiencies, the cat may have eye damage, including the feared progressive retinal atrophy.
It is an irreversible and degenerative condition, which causes blindness in the animal. Furthermore, the deficiency of taurine and arachidonic acid can cause heart and neurological problems in the cat. For this, a specific and balanced diet is essential.
How to stop your cat from eating dog food
What are the tricks we can put into practice to ensure Fuffi does not eat Fido’s food? Let’s see some simple tips:
- Out of sight out of heart: First of all, it is wise to make sure that dog finishes all the contents of his bowl, so that his gruel is not easily within reach of a hungry feline.
- Eye does not see heart does not hurt: to prevent the cat from eating dog food, at the time of the meal it is possible to consider setting up separate spaces for dog and Fuffi.
- Here cat hatches us: did you catch the cat “with its paws in the jam”? You will have to scold the cat. Take it back firmly, but without screaming. It will be enough to say a sharp “No!” and place the right bowl in front of him.