Science has shown that following a plant-based diet can have a number of health benefits for both people and the environment, and as a result many people in our modern society are now choosing to go vegan or vegetarian - naturally leading them to wonder if you should look for the same in a premium cat food. The short answer is “no.”
Sometimes, people will say that they have proof that cats can thrive on a vegetarian or vegan diet, as they currently have their cat on such a regimen and the cat is still alive. However, it’s important to understand that cats are resilient, and just because the cat hasn’t died yet doesn’t mean that this sort of regimen is healthful.
It’s important to understand that cats evolved to be carnivores, and to ignore this is at best ignorant, and at the worst abusive. Merely learning about the physiology of cats proves that they are obligatory meat eaters. The intestinal tract of a cat is much shorter than a human being (about half as long) and their stomach acidity is more intense than a person’s. These facets of their biology allow them to pass food quickly, and easily combat microbes present in meat.
Saying this doesn’t necessarily prove that human beings are not supposed to eat meat, merely that cats physiologically seem to require a substantial amount of meat to be healthy. These facts are why we take great care in our formulation of Snappy Tom all natural cat food, and never use anything except real chicken and fish as our primary ingredients.
These premium meats contain significant amounts of protein, ample healthy fats, amino acids, and all the vitamins and minerals that are much harder for a cat to obtain from plants alone. Experts believe that the bioavailability of these nutrients is much lower from plants than their animal-based counterparts.
The difficulty your cat can experience from trying to digest plants can result in unnecessary digestive discomfort that could easily be avoided by providing a high-quality cat food with only the best meats as their primary ingredients - which is exactly what we create at Snappy Tom.
While the controversy around whether human beings are carnivores, herbivores, or omnivores remains uncertain and heated (understandably so) the debate around cats has been laid to rest - cats are carnivores. It’s important to not let your personal views about human beings’ diets get in the way of providing your cat with the nutrients they want and need.