Sunday, June 16, 2024

Can Cats Eat Dog Food

Foods That Are Toxic To Cats

Can Dogs Eat Cat Food?

There are some known foods that are toxic/poisonous to cats and should never be fed to them, these foods are: grapes, raisins, chocolate, onions/garlic, bread dough , alcohol, xylitol, caffeine, liver, trimmings, and human medicine. Do note that xylitol can be found in yogurt and sweet foods as a added sweetener. In addition, you should never offer your cat human medications.

How To Prevent Cats From Eating Dog Food

Living with both a cat and a dog can bring great joy to your life, but you must make sure each animal only eats his own food. If your cat keeps snacking on your dogs food, youll need to ditch your open-access feeding technique and try these tips instead:

  • Feed your dog twice a day .
  • Monitor your dog during feeding time to ensure your cat doesnt sneak a taste.
  • If your dog leaves food behind in his bowl, dispose of it so your cat wont find it later.
  • Likewise, you can prevent your dog from eating cat food by placing your cats bowl on a shelf, table, or countertop where your dog cant reach.

Can Cats Safely Eat Dog Food Long

No, cats cannot be maintained on a dog food diet.

If a cat is only fed dog food for a long period of time, then detrimental, if not deadly, consequences can occur.

This is because dog food and cat food formulas have different nutritional components in order to meet the different nutritional needs of these two species.

Also Check: Royal Canin Gi Low Fat Liquid

Improper Diet For Cats

Feeding your cat an improper diet, namely food formulated for dogs, can result in a variety of illnesses. A lack of taurine, which is not found in dog food, can cause blindness, heart problems and deafness, according to PetMD. Other possible effects of an improper balance of vitamins needed by cats include lethargy, seizures, poor posture, poor coat condition, impaired reproduction and even death. In addition, the improper balance of proteins, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals may cause gastrointestinal upset in your cat if she eats a large amount of dog food.

Eating a bite of dog food here and there won’t have a large impact on your cat’s health, but continued snacking on your pooch’s food can harm her. If she fills up too much on your dog’s food, she simply won’t have room in her tummy for her own food, which is beneficial to her health.

Can A Cat Get Sick From Eating Dog Food

Can Cats Eat Dog Food? Comparing Cat And Dog Diets

If your cat, like mine, is determined to sneak into the kitchen and raid the dog food bowl at every available opportunity, then I would suggest feeding both species separately or at the very least removing your dogs food after mealtime is over, to limit the temptation. In the short-term, there is minimal risk of cats becoming sick if they occasionally snack on dog food. However, providing dog food regularly as a source of nutrition to cats will make them very ill over time. Dog food simply doesnt contain the essential nutrients that cats need to survive, let alone thrive. Without essential amino acids such as taurine and arginine cats can become blind and potentially even die.

Don’t Miss: Is Wet Food Bad For Dogs Teeth

Is It Bad For Cats To Eat Dog Food

Many cats are picky eaters and wont touch anything but the most delectable wet cat food. Others are keen to munch on just about anything they come across, including dog food. But just because your cat wants to eat dog food doesnt mean its healthy for him. After all, there are reasons kibble is labeled cat food or dog food, and not simply pet food.

Is There A Food For Both Dogs And Cats

Due to the myriad of essential nutrients that cats absolutely require from their food, which isnt present in most dog foods, the short answer to this question is no. However, there are times when both dogs and cats have an increased requirement for nutrients, far above recommended minimal levels such as when recovering from a serious illness. During these times, there are foods available on veterinary recommendation that are specifically formulated with increased nutrient levels to suit both dogs and cats to aid their convalescence.

You May Like: Can You Buy Dog Food With Food Stamps

How To Introduce Your Cat To A New Family Pet

Tis the season for giving gifts! And some of you may be thinking of giving the gift of a safe and loving home to a new pet! Perhaps youre planning a trip to the shelter to find a new dog or cat. Or maybe youre acquiring a bird or fish or something more exotic. Whatever little life youre planning to change, theres an important factor to consider: if youve always been a one-cat home or have older, established cats, its important to consider their comfort when bringing a new pet home.

Weve put together a series of tips to help you introduce your cat to a new pet.

Of Feeding Multiple Pets


People who put more than one animal ask the method of feeding to their pets. The feeding of a single is relatively easy than feeding multiple pets. There is no worry to think about how to provide various pets. It would help if you separated your pets into different rooms or places. Give each pet a separate dish of food to eat, and this is the answer of can cats eat dog food.

Make sure to make baby gates between the barrier. This fact will make your pet happy and give you an advantage not to eat other pets food.

Don’t Miss: Blue Buffalo Vs Nutro Dog Food

Gotta Keep Them Separated

When bringing a new pet home, you shouldnt give them free run of the house right away. Instead, both for their comfort and that of your older kitties, keep them limited to a small part of the house. You can gradually introduce them to your entire home, and your other pets, over time.

One of the recommended first steps to introducing pets is to have them smell each other through a closed door. That way, they have time to grow accustomed to each others smell in a safe and restrained manner.

Is It Safe To Feed Dog Food To Cats

The best cat food and dog food may look similar, but there are key differences in their ingredients. This is because cats and dogs have different nutritional needs, so cats shouldnt eat dog food, and vice versa.

Whats so different about cat and dog food? Well, cats are obligate carnivores they cannot survive without meat in their diet. Thats because of an amino acid called taurine that isnt found in plants, but is found in meat. Whilst canines can make their own taurine from other amino acids like methionine, cats cannot. If they dont eat enough taurine, they quickly have severe effects. Cat food therefore always has plenty of bioavailable taurine, whilst dog food may have it, or may not, or may have it in only small amounts. There are other differences too cat food generally has a higher protein content and higher amounts of the amino acid alanine.

Because of these key differences in the nutrient content of cat and dog foods, dog food is not safe for cats. Cats that eat wet or dry dog food wont be getting the required amount of taurine, alanine, and protein. Taurine deficiency in cats causes blindness and heart disease that is quickly fatal.

Also Check: Is Pedigree Better Than Purina

Can Cats Have Dog Treats

YES, they can but it should NEVER become a daily habit. The composition of dog foods is quite different from cat foods as they have a lot more vegetables and grains. Felines cant digest these ingredients properly because they are pure carnivores and their diet revolves around meat.

In addition to that, dog treats dont offer any significant nutritional value to felines. They dont have the required amount of protein or vitamins that your cat needs. For these reasons, its best to stick to specialized cat food for your feline pets.

Difference Between Dog Food And Cat Food

Can Cats Eat Dog Food?

The nutritional needs of cats and dogs are vastly different, even though both belong to the Carnivora order. Dogs are misunderstood to be carnivores by many. In truth, dogs are omnivores, according to General and Comparative Endocrinology.

A canines diet must have a variety of grains, vegetables, and fruits, alongside meats. In comparison, cats are strict carnivores. They dont need vegetables, grains, or fruits in their diet. All the nutrition they require can be derived from a wholly meat-based diet.

Even though cats are capable of digesting plant matter, they cannot do so efficiently. In fact, some uncooked vegetables are impossible for a cat to digest and will be passed whole. Likewise, felines cannot extract enough nutrients from the matter to keep up their health. Although a carrot may be packed with vitamin A, for example, a cat will only get a tiny portion of this.

Instead, vital nutrients for cats must be derived from animal proteins. Taurine is the most important one, with vitamin A following closely behind. Dog food contains little to none and far less protein than cat food.

Don’t Miss: Is Iams Dog Food Any Good

But The Real Question Is Can Cats Eat Dog Treats

The answer is yes, but the picture is more complicated. As mentioned, cats and dogs are two very different animals with different digestive systems. But even though they are different, they can occasionally coexist because of their shared dependence on each other. This behavior is not what you would expect from a cat, but its true they can digest all kinds of foods, including dog food. Cats are carnivores, and dogs are omnivores.

Cats have a large appetite for many different types of food and can make a mess when they try to get it. But the majority of the time, it evolves around meat as thats the main need for their diet.

Is Dog Food Safe For Cats

If youre only feeding dog food to your feline once, then yes, its safe. But that doesnt mean its healthy. There are some primary differences between cats needs and dogs. Dogs are omnivores that can thrive on a mixture of meats and plants. But cats are obligate carnivores. Theyre not meant to eat plants and they need far more protein than dogs.

For a hungry cat, a meal or two of dog food isnt likely to cause any major problems. It could potentially upset your cats stomach, but it wont cause the same kinds of problems that could arise from continued feeding.

Also Check: What Dog Food Is Comparable To Nutro

What Is Cat Food Made From

Contrary to the diet of a dog, cats need food rich in protein and fat. It also needs to be lower in fiber. Felines need added vitamin A as they are an organism which is unable to metabolize it on their own. The same happens with taurine, an amino acid which cats in the wild get from eating raw meat, especially offal such as the liver or heart. As commercial cat food is not raw and doesn’t always contain these elements, it must be added to the food during production. We should not underestimate how important taurine is to the health of our cats. A diet sufficiently deficient in taurine will lead to various health problems in cats including heart disease. This is something which needs to be considered if you are thinking of providing a raw food diet for cats.

When you are considering your cat’s diet and nutritional needs in general, you need to remember that they are obligate carnivores. This is why they require so much protein in their diet. If they don’t have sufficient amounts of protein, they will not have the energy they need to carry out their physical activities throughout the day. Although cats might seem like lazy animals at times, in actuality they burn a lot of energy during games or when hunting. If a cat has protein deficiency, they will not only become lethargic, but can develop severe illnesses.

Can Kittens Eat Dog Food In An Emergency

Why Can’t Cats Eat Dog Food?

Yes, they can eat dog food.

Kittens are not just small adult cats. They still have their growing phase to go through, and dog food isnt the greatest source of nutrients for them.

Depending on how long kittens are fed dog food, they may never grow properly. They will probably be sickly for most of their life compared to a cat that has been fed its own food from the start.

If kittens are given the choice, they would probably rather eat nothing than dog food if its in an emergency situation. Keep this in mind when deciding what to feed your kittens during a shortage of cat food.

However, kitten food is not necessarily healthy for adult cats.

Kitten food contains a large number of carbohydrates that adult cats do not need. Adult cats should be fed a diet high in animal protein and fat, even if they may be overweight or obese because this is what their body needs to stay healthy.

However, in an emergency situation where your cat cant get to its own food, it may not have a choice. In this case, your kitten can definitely survive on dog food until cat food arrives.

Also Check: Can You Buy Dog Food With Foodstamps

What Happens If Cats Eat Dog Food

If you catch your cat in the act, theres no need to rush him to the emergency vet. Eating a bite of dog food here and there usually isnt a major concern, but cats shouldnt eat dog food full-time. The effects of an improper diet vary, but here are some signs that your cats health is suffering from overindulging on dog food:

  • Lethargy and weakness
  • Loss of appetite, vomiting, diarrhea, and other signs of GI distress
  • Choking
  • Blindness, deafness, and heart problems

Can’t Dogs And Cats Only Eat Food Labeled As Complete And Balanced

Pet food companies have a pretty big interest in perpetuating this myth. Is every meal you eat complete and balanced?

Even the most health conscious among us don’t worry about meeting the proper balance of nutrients at every meal. We know that over the course of the day or week our diet will be fairly complete, so we don’t have to worry about eating exactly are recommended intakes on daily basis.

Many of us take vitamins and supplements to fill in any gaps, because even eating a very healthy diet of whole foods may not provide all the vitamins and minerals our body needs to stay healthy.

Variety is the key to a healthy diet for dogs and cats as well. If you’re feeding at least 50-60% commercially prepared foods that are designed to be “complete,” then you are well on your way to providing a majority of the balance of nutrients. Adding healthy toppers, people food, fresh vegetables or other non-formulated foods to your pet’s meals will boost the overall nutrition of the diet as long as it is not overdone.

Providing a daily multi-vitamin adds extra nutrients to fill in the gaps. One caveat here: meat is higher in phosphorus and lower in calcium, so when adding more than 15-20% extra meat to your companion’s diet on a regular basis, keep the calcium and phosphorus ratio balanced over time by including raw bones or adding a calcium supplement.

Recommended Reading: Royal Canin Low Fat Gastrointestinal Dog Food Calories

Cats And Dogs Have Evolved To Eat Different Diets

Cats are obligate carnivores, this means that they require animal-based protein and fat. Whereas dogs are omnivores like us so they can derive their nutrients from a mixed diet of meat, vegetables and sources of carbohydrates. Cats need animal protein because they cannot make certain essential nutrients from plant-based protein.

Although dogs can synthesise the two proteins, taurine and arginine, cats can not.

Vitamins And Minerals Essential For A Feline

Can Cats Eat Dog Food?

Cats are unable to synthesize certain vitamins and minerals that are essential for its well being. They have to get these vitamins and minerals from food sources instead.


Cats do not have the ability to make taurine and have to get this essential element from their diet. Without taurine, cats will suffer from vision problems, digestive issues, loss of heart muscle function and inability to maintain a healthy immune system. Most cat food has taurine added to it. However, taurine is rarely included in dog food.

Arachidonic acid

Arachidonic acid, which is important for its reproductive performance, is another essential element that cats can only acquire from their diet. Dogs, on the other hand, can create this fatty acid by themselves. Therefore, dog food is seldom supplemented with arachidonic acid.

Vitamin A

Your cat is unable to synthesize vitamin A on its own and has to have it supplemented in its diet. Although most dog food contains vitamin A, it is usually not enough for your cat’s optimal nutrition.

Read Also: Who Makes Dr Pol Dog Food

I: Can Cats Safely Eat Dog Food Daily As Their Main Diet

Going to dive into the answer right at the start here: Cats cannot safely eat dog food exclusively, as their main diet.

It may not be the answer you were hoping for, but its rue cats cannot live on dog food alone. Its unhealthy. To reiterate: Dog food is dangerous for cats to eat as their daily, main meal.

Branding men and womens deodorants differently to make more money on womens deodorants may be a sly trick that marketing departments play, but when it comes to cat and dog food these are branded differently for very good reason. Cat food and dog food are different, theyre composed of different things, and feeding a cat dog food is dangerous because the composition of dog food is not sufficient enough to help a cat maintain good health.

Over time, feeding your cat dog food is not only possibly going to make your cat sick, its almost certain to. Especially if you have an indoor cat who is not at all supplementing his or her diet with any prey he or she has killed to eat from the outdoors.

Im not sure how long it would take for a cat to be sick off of eating only dog food, but its not something you should risk or try testing out. Again not a marketing ploy or gimmick cat and dog foods are different, which is why theyre labelled differently. And your cat needs to be eating cat food to stay healthy.

Popular Articles
Related news