When Cat Food Is Safe For Dogs
In fact, for some dogs, like those battling cancer and experiencing weight loss, muscle wasting, and a poor appetite, cat food may be an ideal alternative to many dog foods.
Cat food tends to be more palatable, provide more calories per serving, and offer a more nutrient-balanced option compared to many home-prepared diets in these cases.
Likewise, cat kibble can make for healthier, well-balanced treats or training rewards compared to some human foods commonly used, like cheese, chicken, or peanut butter, which provide a concentrated amount of primarily one nutrient.
Video Answer: Is It Safe For A Dog To Eat Cat Food
But the popularity of the diets – which emphasize raw meat, bones, fruits, and vegetables – is rising.
Racing greyhounds and sled dogs have long eaten raw food diets.
The risks of raw diets have been documented in several studies published in veterinary journals.
You can rest assured that DE is a safe additive to your pet’s diet. To use as a dewormer, simply add a small amount of food-grade DE to your dog’s diet. Approximately 1 teaspoon to 1 tablespoon of DE should be given daily for a monthless for very small dogs and cats, more for very large dogs.
But I would not advise giving them human food as a treat if you are feeding them dry dog food.
Doing so may lead them to becoming a picky eater and may cause problems with getting them to eat their food.
Some harmful foods for dogs include grapes, chocolate, garlic , onions, sugar, etc.
A proposed class action alleges Rachel Ray Nutrish-brand Zero Grain dog food is harmful to dogs in that the product is deficient of taurine and contains legume-based protein, a combination linked to a potentially fatal heart condition when used in grain-free foods.
Problems With Pets Sharing Foods
It may seem easy to simply fill a big bowl with one food and let all your pets munch and crunch as they desire throughout the day, but there are several reasons why this isn’t recommended. For starters, you have no idea how much food each pet is consuming. Are they overeating? Not eating enough?
Let’s say you do feed each pet individually, but you have a sneaky pup who likes to eat the cat’s dinner for dessert. Your dog may be ingesting too many calories for the day, which could lead to obesity and other related health issues. Also, when a dog eats cat food, they’re not getting the proper ratio of protein, fiber and other nutrients needed to maintain their healthy lifestyle. This can lead to gastrointestinal problems, strain on the liver and kidneys, pancreatitis, or a number of other issues. The same can be true if your cat is sneaking your dog’s food. Not to mention, cats require a few nutrients, like taurine and arachidonic acid that are not required by dogs, and therefore, not always monitored in dog food. In the long run, a cat eating dog food may experience nutrient deficiencies whereas a dog eating cat food is more likely to experience problems associated with excess energy or nutrients.
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When Cat Food Is Harmful For Dogs
For other dogs, consuming cat food, even as an occasional treat, could become problematic if there are underlying reasons for why excess protein or fat is not ideal.
A dog with a sensitive gastrointestinal tract may vomit or have diarrhea after eating cat food because the food is simply too rich.
A dog with kidney or liver disease needs to consume moderate amounts of protein, not excess, to promote optimal functioning of those organs.
An obese dog, or one with a predisposition for developing pancreatitis , must consume a lower-fat diet to promote weight loss or limit pancreatic inflammation.
For all of these dogs, feeding any amount of commercial cat food, whether its infrequent or on a long-term basis, could exacerbate health issues.
Grapes And Raisins: Cant Eat
You should never feed grapes or raisins to your dog.
Grapes and raisins contain toxic compounds that are harmful to dogs. They have the potential to lead to rapid kidney failure and death .
Even small amounts of grapes and raisins can make your dog sick, so its important to avoid giving them to your dog altogether.
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Why Will My Dog Only Eat Cat Food
Cat food is mainly made up of meat because cats need the nutrients it provides for their body, whereas dog food does not need to be majority meat. Dog food needs to contain more fiber than meat can provide by itself. Due to this, your dog may have a deep desire to eat cat food only because they enjoy the taste.
Is It Ok To Feed Dogs Cat Food In Emergencies
Weve all done it. Sometimes it is easy for pet owners to forget that they have a hungry dog waiting for them at home. Or, like me, that they need to pick up dog food on their return before all the stores close.
This is precisely why, amid unforeseen circumstances, it can be tempting to give our dogs cat food in an emergency like this as an alternative to their normal meal.
Firstly, cat food looks similar to dog food and contains meat together with other products that our dogs enjoy eating. Secondly, it is not uncommon to find our furry friends trying to sneak and steal it from their feline counterparts, indicating that they enjoy the taste.
One look into the eyes of our beloved canine can often be enough for us to discount our worries and dish it into their bowls without any hesitation.
However, could this be the wrong decision to make? Is cat food harmful to dogs, or can you let dogs eat cat food in an emergency?
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Dogs And Cats Have Different Nutritional Needs
Cats and dogs are both considered carnivores, but cats are defined as “obligate carnivores”. What this means is that they are true carnivores, and as such, cats survive better on eating a diet of mostly meat proteins, while dogs survive better by eating a balanced diets of meat proteins, grains and vegetables.
For this reason different standards have been provided for each group. According to AAFCO standards on dry foods, dogs require 18% protein for minimal maintenance. Cats on the other hand require a higher, 26% protein for minimal maintenance of good health.
That said, most manufactured dry cat foods actually contains 30% to 35% protein, which means that if your dog is frequently eating from the cat’s bowl instead of his own, he can potentially be consuming up to twice the amount of protein he needs. A high protein diet is not necessarily bad for your dog. Dogs can consume higher amounts of protein so long as they’re appropriate for them and of high quality. And what happens if your cat eats dog food? That’s not a good thing either.
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Is Cat Food Good For Dogs
As I hinted at earlier, cat food is not designed for your dog. Labels and guidelines are available for all kinds of foods so that everyone is eating what is most appropriate for them.
Feeding your dog a cats diet can have some short term and long term side effects therefore try and be careful about what you are feeding him. Make sure that it is always good for him.
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The Consequences Of Dogs Eating Cat Food
Though these differences in diet may not seem that significant, the higher percentages of protein and fats mean more calories for your dog for the same sized portion of cat food. These richer feline diets can lead to weight gain and even obesity if eaten for extended periods of time.
Also, as a dogs gastrointestinal system was not designed to digest consistently high-fat foods, cat food can upset the stomach resulting in vomiting and diarrhea. Too much fat can negatively affect a dogs pancreas, leading to pancreatitis, which can at least impact the efficiency of their digestion and at worst have serious health consequences.
Some of the newer cat foods contain an improper balance of vitamins and minerals for your dog, and this may lead to either deficiencies or excesses of these ingredients. As an example, cat food typically contains less zinc and vitamin E than dog food. Cat food also usually contains added taurine, something that dogs do not need in their diet. These nutritional differences can affect your dogs overall health over a long period of time.
Cat food is richer and can cause your dog to become overweight or obese.
Dogs also need more carbohydrates than cats and often will not get the energy they need without these ingredients in their food. Dogs can consume a diet containing almost 50 percent carbohydrates to give them energy, while a cat gets the majority of its energy from fats.
Construct A Feeding Chamber For Your Cat
If you are the DIY type, you can make your cat a secure feeding chamber that allows him to eat in peace and prevents your dog from stealing his food.
You can make such a feeding chamber in several different ways, but the simplest way is to just purchase a large plastic storage box and cut a door in the side that is big enough for your cat, yet too small for your dog. Serve up dinner inside the container and voila! Canine-free cat food consumption.
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What Food Should Dogs Eat
Most dogs thrive off of a of dry kibble that follows AAFCO guidelines but the growing number of specialty food options has drawn some dog owners away from the traditional dry dog food. Most pet stores now have freezers and refrigerators to provide the other options that aren’t found on the shelves in the pet food aisle. Most every dog food you see in a pet store will follow AAFCO guidelines so as long as you choose a food designed for a dog and their specific needs you will be providing proper nutrition unless they have a medical condition requiring supplements. The same goes for feeding cat food to cats, but that does not mean that they are interchangeable between species.
Can You Feed A Dog Cat Food
You can, its your prerogative, but you should have an understanding about what you are feeding your dog. Cat food does not equal dog food, it doesnt even equal cat food. What I mean by this is that cat food isnt the same across the board.
Unlike dry cat food, canned cat food could contain 40% to 50% protein. Thats close to triple the amount a dog needs for minimal maintenance.
This could definitely impact your dogs health. Before you start feeding your dog the cats food, you may want to consider the side effects that a high protein diet of cat food could have on him.
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Can Puppies Eat Cat Food
If your puppy sneaks some cat food from time to time, it shouldnt be a problem. However, feeding them cat food regularly and as a replacement for proper puppy food is a different story. Puppies that are still developing need a nutritionally balanced diet suitable for their fast growth rate. Feeding your puppy cat food can quickly make them overweight and result in musculoskeletal problems.
What Happens If A Dog Eats Cat Food Especially On A Regular Basis
If it happens once or twice it’s nothing to worry about, but there are many reasons for making sure your dog sticks to dog food.
- Upset stomach. For starters, the protein-dense diet of cats can cause an upset stomach in dogs with sensitive tummies.
- Poor nutrition. Even if your dog’s digestion isn’t visibly affected, the long term ingestion of cat food creates problems because it’s not properly balanced for canines when it comes fiber and protein content and certain nutrients.
- Liver and kidney damage. Additionally, Dr. Crowell-Davis adds that the great amount of protein can be hard on the dog’s liver and kidneys.
- Obesity. Cat food will also affect a dog’s waistline. The cause for blame is the cat food’s heavy levels of fat. This may cause a cat-food-eating dog to become overweight. Note: Kitten food is even more harmful due to its higher levels of protein and fat.
- Pancreatitis. Overweight dogs are at risk of developing pancreatitis, explains Dr. Patty Khuly.
So in order to keep Rover safe and healthy, make sure that he is specifically fed a diet purposely tailored for his or her own species.
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Is It Safe For Dogs To Eat Cat Food
Having grown up in a household that never had less than eight cats, and always at least one dog, our dogs were always taking advantage of the ever-present feline food items no matter how hard we tried to keep them from the cat fare. .
Ounce for ounce, most cat food is typically more expensive than most dog food and so most dog owners for economic reasons alone would rather feed their dog his own food. But maybe you are having the same problem as I had, where my dogs always found a way to get their paws on the cats cuisine. You might be left wondering if its OK for your dog to always be chowing down on Kittys food. In short, the answer is no.
Can Dogs Eat Cat Food What Happens If A Dog Eats Too Much
Their kibble may look similar, but there are differences between dog food and cat food. Thats because dogs and cats differ wildly. Sure, both animals are mammals and both eat meat, but thats about where their similarities stop.
Dogs evolved to take advantage of a variety of nutrients, including the fiber found in plants. Theyre scrappier they make do with what they come across. For this reason, dogs can fast for longer, too. This ability means they require less protein and fats, and more plant content than found in cat food.
Cat food not only lacks crucial nutrients dogs require, its also overabundant in nutrients they do need. You could think of cat food as a cheat meal or junk food for dogs. But while some turn to cat food as a treat in a pinch, dog specific treats are better for their health in the long run.
So, whats the worst that could happen if your dog gets into some cat chow? While many dogs can tolerate the occasional sneak meal, some dogs may overeat the already rich food and vomit or suffer diarrhea. If thats the case, the pooch will probably stabilize on its own, but be prepared for a visit to the vet if symptoms worsen.
So, why cant dogs eat cat food? In the long term, the high protein content of cat food can tax a dogs liver and kidneys. And the high fat content can lead to pancreatitis, which gives them digestion issues, among other dreadful symptoms like diarrhea.
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Is It Ok To Give Dogs Wet Cat Food
But cat foods are made with a bit more fat than dog foods. Dogs prone to fat intolerance should also not be allowed to eat cat foods, as this is a common cause of pancreatitis and digestive upset. Canned cat foods tend to be higher in animal protein sources, which, in excess, can be tough on a dogs system.
Preventing Your Dog From Eating Cat Food
The majority of prevention methods here involve the owners being diligent. Make sure to supervise your animals during eating times if you believe your canine keeps getting into your kittys food. The best way to avoid this is by separating their eating dishes by room. Place your dogs dish in one room, and place your cats dish in another.
Another effective method is to place your kittys food on a surface your dog cannot get to. This can include tabletops, windowsills, and cabinet or dresser tops. If you have a crafty dog or one that likes to climb, make sure the food is somewhere out of reach.
Owners can try to discourage or punish their dog with reprimanding tones when they find it eating a cats meal, but that rarely works for too long. If your dog loves cat food, there isnt anything short of professional training that will discourage it from chowing down when no one is in the room.
Feeding your pets at the same time can also come in handy. If your dog is too busy eating its own food, that will give your cat time to enjoy its meal unbothered. Promptly remove any leftovers or place them in a position that your dog cannot reach them afterward.
Lastly, many owners have started to utilize baby gates to separate their pets during feeding time. They can also be used to close off an area of the home you want to keep sacred for just your cats.
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Avoid Dog Diet Dangers
As for definite dangers, Nelson says: Big things that come to mind are grapes and raisinsstay as far from these as possible. Also avoid tomatoes, avocado, and, while a dog-safe peanut butter is fine, Stay away from the nut category. Also dont include anything spicy or seasoned, or garlic or onion since higher amounts can have toxic properties.
And while pepperoni, salami, deli meats, and high-fat or stinky cheeses can be popular for a human charcuterie board, due to their fat and sodium, theyre not good for dogs. We want to avoid these as much as we possibly can, Nelson says.
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