Does your cat have crazy cravings for bread? Probably she is not the only one. If that’s the case you are probably asking yourself - can cats eat bread? Even though this might be a crucial part of a human’s diet, is it safe for your feline? Many people are asking themselves this question. For that reason, we have done some research to find the answers to these questions.
Is Bread Good for Your Cat?
Cats usually enjoy eating fish, meat and similar treats, and it’s strange when you see them ask for bread. In these situations, every cat owner feels hesitant whether bread is good for cats or not. Here is some advice from vets on this topic. Dr. Amy Farcas from San Francisco’s Veterinary Nutrition Care stated that it’s not harmful to give your cat a small amount of bread. However, you need to have in mind that the bread contains carbohydrates and felines need mostly protein and fat in their diet. For that reason, if cats consume too much carbohydrates, there won’t be any room for protein and fat.
Another expert, the associate professor of nutrition at the University of Minnesota’s College of Veterinary Medicine, Dr. Julie A. Churchill has a similar opinion. She is mainly concerned about the balance of the cat’s diet and adds that if a cat is healthy, and has a good condition and weight, a small bite of bread is acceptable. She points out the problem with portion control. Most cats eat commercial cat food which is mostly well balanced and any treats or snacks given to her shouldn’t take up more than 5-10 percent of the daily intake.
What Type of Bread to Avoid
If you have a cat that can’t resist bread and want to treat her, be aware that some types of carbohydrates are never good for felines. Never give rising dough to your cat. This type of bread contains active yeast which continues to rise in their stomach after consuming. This process might lead to intestinal blockage and serious gastrointestinal upset. Any type of toppings or additives to bread such as chocolate, raisin or garlic can be very toxic for your feline. In other words, any flavored bread is not good for your cat, so you should avoid it.
Protect Your Cat’s Oral Health
As we already mentioned, bread is mainly carbohydrate and this type of food should not be consumed often. This goes for cats but humans as well. Eating too many carbohydrates can increase your cat’s weight and it might even lead to obesity. Moreover, when carbohydrates are consumed they break down into sugar. The sugar might attract bacteria in your cat’s mouth which can lead to tooth decay or even gum disease. Also, bread lacks taurine which is a nutrient necessary for a healthy coat and teeth. This nutrient is found in meat and fish, so it’s better to feed your cat with proteins, rather than with carbohydrates.
So, can cats eat bread? To sum up, a small amount of bread will not harm your cat. It’s not the ideal food for felines, so don’t include it in the regular everyday diet. Make sure your cat gets the necessary nutrients from wet or dry cat food rich with protein and fat. However, the most important thing to know is that if your cat eats a bite of bread isn't that bad.
Written by George Vezilic
George is a blogger, photographer and cat enthusiast. He is the owner of lifewithcatman.com. He is most passionate about writing about cats and taking photographs of them. His goal is to show the world how important creatures the cats are and make them feel appreciated.
If you're looking for more information on feeding cats. read our Guide to Feeding Cats.