It is quite difficult to say no to your darling cat whenever it comes asking for treats or snacks. This is a problem most cat owners face and it is a result of the love they have for their pets. It is always a way of showing that love as well as caring for these furry creatures that have now become so dear to our hearts.
Hence, many of us have even developed the habit of giving human food by hand to our pets as we eat. Some folks give snacks so frequently that they don't even know the adverse effects that these actions might have.
As a result, many manufacturers have capitalized on this love and have created a wide variety of treats and snacks for cats to allow us to show love for our pets in this manner. While giving your feline friend treats or snacks is not a bad thing in itself, the frequency and how it is done must be handled wisely.
Therefore, we have decided to share with you safe ways to give your cat treats and snacks. We will discuss how to choose the appropriate treats, how many treats should be given each day, and the toxic food that shouldn't be given to your pet.
Since we have a lot to talk about, let's get started…
When some people hear the word cat treats, they think it is just giving your pet any type of food as a way of treating them or showing love. Therefore, it isn't strange to see someone giving these creatures human foods because they think everything goes. This kind of thinking can prove fatal to your furry feline friend.
One of the reasons human food isn't suitable for cats is because of their high level of calories and salt. The excess calories in the food can cause your pet to become obese or overweight. These conditions can be harmful and can even shorten the lifespan of your tabby. Salt also has an adverse effect on these cute creatures. Click here to learn more about how salt affects cats. This is just one reason why they shouldn't be fed human foods.
Apart from the above reason, some foods we give them do not contain vital nutrients required for your cat's general well-being. So, you might end up giving your cat a lot of human food and instead of seeing it grow well, its health begins to decline. This is because; its diet balance has been unsettled. This situation can also cause it to become cranky.
Furthermore, another reason you should not treat your pet with any kind of food is that felines are carnivores and not omnivores like us. Hence, they are meant to eat meat instead of plant or grain foods. Therefore, when they eat such plant or grain foods, it is likely to affect both their digestive and dental health.
With all that we have said, the best thing to do is to feed your cat with treats that are specially designed for them. This should serve as an addition and not a replacement to their regular feed. When this is done, you won't have to deal with the issues associated with feeding them wrongly.
When you buy those specially made treats, ensure that you get the ones made by recognized and established brands. You should also discuss with your vet to determine if the treats you have purchased should be given to your pet. Whatever advice they give, ensure that you follow it so that you don't put your cat's health at risk.
Treats and snacks are not meals and should not be a substitute for your cat's regular meal. As a result, you should not give them often or whenever your pet comes begging for it, and trust us that they will master the art of begging once they become used to these items.
One of the reasons they should not be given often is that they also contain calories just like human foods. Therefore, the same negative effects that such foods cause can be caused by treats as well.
Hence, it is recommended that the amount of calories in the main meal is reduced whenever you give snacks. The calorie amount of the given snack must not be more than 10% of the daily overall calorie consumption in the main meal. This means you must make the meal and the snack balanced.
Certain foods are toxic to your cats and shouldn't be given to them. We will discuss a few of them below…
The reason chocolate is toxic to cats is that it contains theobromine and caffeine. These ingredients are known to cause hot temperatures, vomiting, diarrhea, increased breathing or heartbeat, and seizures.
All forms of dairy products are harmful and can cause vomiting as well as diarrhea. Cats are naturally intolerant to lactose which is found in these products. Therefore, keep them away from cow's milk, yogurt, cream, cheese, etc.
Despite being carnivores, it is not recommended that you give your feline raw meat, fish, as well as eggs. The reason they are classified as toxic is that they tend to have E. coli bacteria or salmonella. Visit https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/160942 for further study on salmonella. These organisms are known to cause vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, and sometimes death.
This article has discussed how treats should be chosen, how many should be given daily, and toxic foods that shouldn't be fed to your cat. If you have further questions, feel free to ask.