Although it contains large amounts of protein and healthy fats, it is weak in other elements necessary for a properly balanced cat diet. Cats love seafood, and most cats are especially fond of canned tuna and tuna juice. Finally, cats can love tuna to a fault. The safest option for tuna to give your cat is 100 percent real tuna, as some types of tuna contain artificial fish flavors that are not healthy for cats and may be linked to hyperthyroidism. Tuna And Cats; Good Effects For Cats; Negative Effects for Cats; So, Can They Have It? Now, the broader question is also, should they eat it? How Much Water Does an Adult Cat Need to Drink? However, it should not be their everyday food, and you want to be especially careful with canned tuna due to potential for issues with excessive mercury consumption. Tuna in oil doesn’t have enough taurine for your cat, needed for healthy kidney functions. Monitoring food consumption is very important when managing your cat's health. However, if your cat has dry skin, you can treat them occasionally with tuna in oil. Let’s find out… Table of Contents. In fact, some of them treat this fish as something akin to poison. The 8 Best Cat Foods for Urinary Tract Health in 2020, The 7 Best Cat Subscription Boxes of 2020, The 8 Best Premium Dry Foods for Cats in 2020. Although rare, signs of mercury poisoning in cats include incoordination, loss of balance and problems walking. It lacks important nutrients like iron, sodium, vitamins B and E, copper and calcium which are necessary to keep your cat healthy. Most indoor cats aren't very active and don't require a lot of calories — meaning weight gain can easily creep up. You've probably seen or heard countless stories of cats loving fish, but as far as cats eating tuna goes, is it really a good idea? Usually fish is not a natural diet for … Your use of this site is subject to the terms of our Legal Statement. Tuna can have a high level of mercury, which in high amounts can be harmful to both the feline and the human. The safest option for tuna to give your cat is 100 percent real tuna, as some types of tuna contain artificial fish flavors that are not healthy for cats and may be linked to hyperthyroidism. Specific concerns with cats eating tuna in oil. Christine O'Brien is a writer, mom, and long-time cat parent whose two Russian Blues rule the house. If your cat loves tuna, ensure the serving is tuna in water. While tuna is fine for cats in moderation or as a treat, too much canned tuna can be bad for your cat. You may not feed your cat a diet based solely on tuna fish. Here is how and why cats can eat tuna. The simplest answer here is yes, cats can eat tuna. Make sure that the ingredients do not include added chemicals. In fact, fish is the central ingredient in many dry and canned cat food. While a single bite may not do any harm, it's best to take tuna out of their bowl entirely. In fact, if you love giving it to your feline pal every day, they may be addicted and refuse to eat other foods. Foods like tuna can provide high-quality protein, needed moisture (dry-food only diets often leave cats dehydrated), and nutritional diversity that can effectively supplement their normal diet. Some cats, when given tuna regularly, will start turning up their nose at their regular cat food, holding out and hoping you will cave and give more tuna instead. Even giving canned tuna as a treat can lead to health issues, especially if it is given in large amounts or frequently. Yes, your cats can definitely enjoy tuna meals; however, in a moderate quantity and only occasionally. They love the powerful smell and the robust flavor of this fish, and a spoonful of tuna has been known to make the medicine go down easily. Tuna is high in mercury, a toxic metal. Learn more about which human foods are safe for cats and which foods to avoid. Even if your kitty begs for more, keep its tuna intake to small amounts from time to time. According to recommendations set forth by the World Small Animal Veterinary Association, a cat that weighs 11 pounds should consume 290 calories per day. These issues aside, a small treat of cooked tuna here and there is probably safe—just don’t allow a steady diet of the stuff. Mercury poisoning can cause muscle weakness, vision impairment, memory loss and lack of coordination. Any food that you simply prefer to feed your cat should have healthy levels of taurine in it. This is due to the fact that albacore is a larger tuna species. Some experts claim that fresh food in a cat’s diet is like raw food in a human’s menu, which brings plenty of risks, including bacterial infections such as salmonella and campylobacter. Frequent consumption of tuna may also lead to mercury poisoning explains Cailin Heinze, a veterinary nutritionist at the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University. So, can cats eat tuna? As is true for most vegetables, however, carrots should be cooked before feeding them to your cat. But a steady diet of tuna prepared for humans can lead to malnutrition because it won't have all the nutrients a cat needs. Fish has many properties that can help with a cat's skin, heart, kidney, and joint diseases, Dr. Kirk said. It also filters away the … The simple answer is that cats are attracted to tuna. In cats, this enzyme can break down an essential B vitamin called thiamine, potentially leading to dangerous condition called thiamine deficiency, which is very dangerous. Final Conclusion: Can Cats Eat Tuna. Tuna for cats – is this a right choice? However, this is a bad idea, as this type of tuna is not good for a cat to eat. Cats should primarily eat cat food that is specifically made for feline health and digestive needs. So if you’re eating a tuna sandwich and you’re tempted to give your furry friend a little bite, you’re in the clear. Can cats eat albacore tuna? It is rich in those proteins and amino acids essential for your cat's growth and development. Tuna that comes in oils or brine is a definite no. While tuna can be fed to cats, it should not be fed as the main component of your cat’s diet. In moderation, tuna can be a healthy treat for most cats. Supports healthy immune system, digestion, lean muscle & beautiful fur. The simple answer is that cats are attracted to tuna. There is a lot of mixed opinion out there regarding cats and tuna. Tuna in oil should be an occasional treat. Chunk-light tuna is a better choice for your cat than albacore, which is higher in mercury. If you open up that can of tuna and your cat comes running, don’t feel guilty letting them have some (or drink the juice). A kidney support diet contains less protein, sodium, and phosphorus and increased omega-3 fatty acids. Cats have very specific nutritional needs. Healthy measures for feeding your cat with tuna in oil. This is because neither is nutritionally complete for cats and over time, deficiencies can develop. The Merck Veterinary Manual lists fish as a top food allergen for cats, noting that common signs of an allergic reaction include itching, hair loss, red or swollen skin and red bumps. A cat shouldn’t be fed tuna on a daily basis because it can cause mercury poisoning. But there are some human foods that can make great additions to your cat’s regular diet –– in moderation. How much tuna can a cat eat: You can feed your cat tuna occasionally. Serving tuna for your cat frequently can cause health conditions at a later time. If you choose to offer your cat the occasional tuna treat, you can choose canned tuna or fresh tuna. Nutrition plays an important role in managing CKD in cats. But if you listen to some experts they advise against it. The cats can consume a small quantity of tuna just as a treat, however, stick to the suggested guidelines. Fish. In addition to being loaded with dietary fiber, carrots are also rich in vitamin C, vitamin K, potassium, and manganese. On the flipside, tuna can be used to encourage unwell cats to eat, given in small amounts. Most cats love tuna so much. As long as you are not relying on tuna as a staple in your cat’s diet, it should be just fine. Cats are originally carnivorous animals, but cats are unlikely to catch and eat wild animals, and cat food is the mainstream. Is Tuna harmful to my cat? Writer, editor and pet expert Jackie Brown is a regular contributor to many pet and veterinary industry books, magazines and websites. Eventually, your cat may experience deficiencies in vitamins and minerals, so … The rest of your cat’s diet (90 percent) should come from a high-quality, complete-and-balanced cat food. Cats can eat tiny amounts of tuna in their eating routine. The safest option for tuna to give your cat is 100 percent real tuna, as some types of tuna contain artificial fish flavors that are not healthy for cats and may be linked to hyperthyroidism. Yes. Cats can eat small quantities of tuna as part of a balanced diet. There's also the B and C vitamins that improve immunity plus manganese and potassium. Can cats eat raw tuna? Yes! Also, you should know that this fish alone does NOT constitute complete nutrition for the cat. If you open a can of tuna, it won’t be long before your cat is drawn to the enticing aroma. Can Cats Eat Tuna – The Disadvantages Malnutrition. Tuna is high in protein and low in carbohydrates. Let’s take a look… Also, canned Tuna generally contain high levels of sodium, which is not suitable for the cat and can … Conclusion – Can Bengal Cats Eat Tuna Safely? Can Cats Eat Tuna? Mercury builds up over time, and giving your cat tuna on a regular basis can lead to mercury toxicity. Yes, cats can eat canned tuna occasionally but make sure that it’s canned tuna in water and not in oil. Select canned tuna packed in water, not canned tuna in oil or canned tuna with added salt or other flavorings. In the meantime, go enjoy your sushi roll in solitude! Tuna is not nutritionally balanced and should not be fed as a large part of your cat's meal plan. As most cat owners would have witnessed, canned tuna is something that most cats love to eat. Cats with food allergies may also vomit and experience diarrhea, gas and a loss of appetite if they encounter an ingredient they're sensitive to. Feeding a kitten -- or adult cat -- sizable amounts of canned tuna can be potentially very dangerous, so take note. Now you know that cats should never eat raw fish. World Small Animal Veterinary Association, human foods are converted to kitty calories, Cummings Veterinary Medical Center at Tufts University, Association of American Feed Control Officials, Foods that are Dangerous or Toxic to Cats, Suggestions on Treating Your Cat in a Healthy Way, Hill's® Science Diet® Adult Chicken Recipe cat food, Hill's® Science Diet® Adult Ocean Fish Entrée cat food, Hill's® Science Diet® Adult Healthy Cuisine Roasted Chicken & Rice Medley cat food, Hill's® Science Diet® Adult Savory Chicken Entrée cat food. I can answer this, and it’s not as clear-cut as you probably think… First of all, there is a big difference between canned tuna and fresh tuna. Keeping your cats away from their favorite food entirely is not a good idea. Albacore contains mercury levels that are three times higher than skipjack or other fishes. A well-balanced meal plan for cats includes protein, essential fatty acids, vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients. Make sure you include a small portion of tuna in your cat’s diet, it should not exceed 10% of the total food intake, it should not be a regular part of the cat’s diet, and this diet should never be based solely on tuna. How much tuna can a cat eat: You can feed your cat tuna occasionally. The most preferable option is going for the cooked one. Additionally, raw fish contains an enzyme called thiaminase. If you notice any of these symptoms, call your veterinarian right away to determine the causes and create a treatment plan. Also, tuna alone isn’t enough to sustain your cat’s nutritional needs. The complete-and-balanced statement on a cat food label means that the cat will get all the essential nutrients she needs, in the correct balance, as required for that life stage: adult maintenance (for adult cats), growth and reproduction (for kittens and pregnant or nursing females), or all life stages (for all cats, whether kittens or adults). The answer is yes, but in moderation. Tuna is extremely tasty, perhaps much tastier than your cat’s healthy regular diet. It’s always a good idea to talk to your veterinarian before adding any new foods to your cat’s diet. Complete dependence on seafood can surely harm your cat’s health in the long and short run. There are also potential issues with nutrient excesses. First, tuna alone doesn’t provide the critical balance of nutrients a cat needs to be healthy. Eating tuna is not natural for cats. Cooking the tuna you plan to feed to your cat not only kills any bacteria or parasites, but also destroys the thiaminase. Many cats love to eat fish because of the smell because fish is used in cat food. Make sure you include a small portion of tuna in your cat’s diet, it should not exceed 10% of the total food intake, it should not be a regular part of the cat’s diet, and this diet should never be based solely on tuna. If you are giving tuna in moderation, then it can be a healthy treat for most cats. While tuna is fine for cats in moderation or as a treat, too much canned tuna can be bad for your cat. They love the powerful smell and the robust flavor of this fish, and a spoonful of tuna has been known to make the medicine go down easily. Raw fish can contain bacteria and parasites. Onions, Garlic, Chives. But if you love too much fish and give cat disease, the cat and the owner will feel painful. It also provides some moisture to a cat’s diet. The Benefits of Tuna for Our Cats. For instance, if you’re feeding a canned food that’s made with tuna, adding more tuna on top of it might be too much. © 2020 Hill's Pet Nutrition, Inc. Can cats eat canned tuna? And can cats eat tuna that's made for human consumption? Eating tuna too often can lead to serious health issues in cats. To ensure your feline friend is getting the balanced nutrition they need without extra calories or toxic metals, choose a healthy cat food that uses tuna in a way that still meets their nutritional needs and satisfies their taste buds. However, though not on the list of toxic foods for cats, tuna that's meant for people can cause health issues for cats. Bear in mind, tuna-centered cat treats and foods are created for the consumption of feline. Cats can also be allergic to fish. The safest option for tuna to give your cat is 100 percent real tuna, as some types of tuna contain artificial fish flavors that are not healthy for cats and may be linked to hyperthyroidism. How and Why Can Cats Eat Tuna. In my ‘Can Cats Eat’ section, I have focused on a lot of common human foods that your cat may eat off the counter. This is because tuna lacks the essential ingredients proper formulated cat food has. Canned tuna can contain high amounts of mercury which can be harmful to cats if they eat it too often. In fact, many commercial cat foods contain tuna as an ingredient. Instead let’s talk about a common cat food, tuna! However, though not on the list of toxic foods for cats, tuna that's meant for people can cause health issues for cats. Feeding cats tuna can be beneficial to cat health if you understand how much tuna to feed your cat and the best types of tuna to feed him. You can also cook a fresh one at home and remove bones. Cats are intelligent animals, sometimes smarter than dogs, and they never want to compromise on their sole food and taste. Although it’s fine to feed your cat small amounts of tuna as a treat or as a supplement to her complete-and-balanced cat food, too much tuna can be harmful. They need other kinds of meat too. Pay attention to other sources of tuna your cat might be eating. In fact, they like it so much that they are likely to get addicted to it and only want to eat canned tuna. Read about 5 of the worst toxic food offenders that can kill your cat - and how much it takes to hurt them. A lot of people are probably brushing past this because cats and tuna seem to go together like peanut butter and jelly. Additionally, tuna is high in mercury, so too much tuna could potentially lead to a build-up of too mercury in your cat’s body and lead to mercury poisoning. So what human foods can cats eat? Mercury Fish generally has mercury in it. Cats can eat small quantities of tuna as part of a balanced diet. Tuna contains a number of beneficial nutrients from protein to omega-3 fatty acids. The amount depends on the conditions of the water and location of the fish. Here are some healthy options: Salmon; Some tuna now and then probably won't hurt. Raw tuna poses the same threat to cats as described above, while too much tuna in any form can increase the risk of mercury poisoning in cats. Learn how to make homemade cat treats that are healthy for your pet with this recipe from Hills Pet Nutrition. There are actually many debates over whether cats should be given raw food. Most of the canned ones are cooked or smoked before they are stored in water, brine or vegetable oil. Her work also appears in Care.com, What to Expect, and Fit Pregnancy, where she writes about pets, pregnancy, and family life. It is rich in those proteins and amino acids essential for your cat's growth and development. Can cats eat raw tuna or cooked one? If tuna is part of your cat's meal plan and you notice them acting out of sorts, consider taking them into your veterinarian for a wellness visit — it's always a good idea to get a baseline reading to ensure nothing serious is going on. Tuna contains small amounts of mercury, eating large amounts or frequently eating tuna can lead to mercury poisoning in cats. In fact, many commercial cat foods contain tuna as an ingredient. When you want your cats to eat tuna, it is better that: Canned fish tends to be very high in sodium and oil-packed varieties will be too high in fat for your cat. There are actually many debates over whether cats should be given raw food. If so, how much tuna can cats eat and what kind of tuna can cats eat? Eating tuna too often can lead to serious health issues in cats. Tuna also provides the omega-3 essential fatty acids EPA and DHA, which can contribute to overall skin and coat health, and may also help improve inflammatory conditions like allergies, arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease and skin disease. This can quickly develop into undesirable picky eating and feeding difficulties. A lot of people are probably brushing past this because cats and tuna seem to go together like peanut butter and jelly. Tuna has a high percentage of antioxidants that help keep the blood flow clean. And, too much tuna can cause mercury poisoning. Can My Cat Eat Tuna? Symptoms of mercury poisoning include dizziness and loss of coordination and balance. Eating raw fish poses the same risks to you cat as it would to you. Tuna has healthy antioxidants that eradicate free radicals from the blood stream. While cats can eat tuna, it should be done in moderation as too much tuna is bad for your cat’s health. A few ounces of canned tuna in water contains almost 100 calories, which is more than a third of the recommended daily caloric intake for many cats. Lack of Variety: If our cats are eating more tuna than cat food, they are at risk for malnutrition, because tuna doesn't contain the variety of nutrients that our cats need! Eating tuna too often can lead to serious health issues in cats. Chunk-light tuna is the best option if you’re planning to feed tuna to your cat. This is great news for cat parents, as more information can lead to more informed decisions about food, and ultimately better health for their cat. Kittens grow a lot in their first year, so it is important to provide them with the proper nutrients early, so they grow up healthy and strong. Fish is a great source of protein, but there are a few reasons why a steady diet of human-grade canned tuna can cause health problems for your cat. According to The Merck Veterinary Manual, yellow fat … It’s OK to give cats tuna as a treat . The overwhelming amount of research online suggests that not eating tuna can be hazardous to your cat’s health. There's also the B and C vitamins that improve immunity plus manganese and potassium. Author: Bridget F. Bridget is a long-time cat owner, cat sitter, and cat lover with years of feline research and hands-on experience. Of all the types of tuna, you have to steer clear of albacore tuna when it comes to your cat. If you want to cook for your cats, cooking tuna will kill bacteria and make the tuna safer for your cat to eat than feeding it raw. Delectable chunks with tender chicken smothered in a rich gravy. Cats can eat canned tuna in very small quantities and certainly not on a regular basis. Canned Tuna contains mercury, a heavy metal that is usually found mainly in bluefish, which is toxic and that, supplied in large amounts to the cat’s organism, can affect the nervous system. Id your cat has high blood pressure then tuna will help him or her to reduce the blood pressure. This is why it is a must for cat owners to really look into what their cat is eating. Gary Richter, DVM, owner and medical director of Montclair Veterinary Hospital in Oakland, California and Holistic Veterinary Care tells Rover, “Cats are carnivores so animal protein is critical to their good health. Canned tuna is quite cheaper than the soft cat food available in pet stores, but of course, that is because those are specially formulated for cats. Cats love eating tuna and all types of fish. Offering your cat cooked salmon from time to time is a safe bet, while canned tuna should just be a once-in-a-while treat. There’s also vitamin c and vitamin b that improve resistance in addition to manganese and potassium. When human foods are converted to kitty calories, it is easy to see that foods intended for humans have far too many calories for our feline companions. According to WebMD, tuna in small amounts is fine, but shouldn’t be used as a steady meal replacement. For this reason, experts recommend giving this type of tuna only as a treat in order to avoid nutritional deficiencies. Chronic kidney disease is frequently diagnosed in aging cats. I figured today I would switch it up a little. Precisely balanced nutrition with the delicious taste of savory minced ocean fish to help fuel the energy needs of cats during the prime of their life. Just like in humans, obesity in cats contributes to health concerns such as diabetes, urinary disease, arthritis, and inflammation, reports Cummings Veterinary Medical Center at Tufts University. Eating tuna too often can lead to serious health issues in cats. Tuna is high in protein and low in carbohydrates and as tuna is a fish, it provides our cats with omega-3 Essential Fatty Acids (EFA’s) which are good for skin and coat health. Can cats eat raw tuna? For example, tuna has too much unsaturated fat and is not supplemented with Vitamin E or other antioxidants. Cat foods should be predominantly made up of animal products.” To avoid potential issues that can arise from eating too much tuna, including the development of picky eating habits, avoid feeding tuna every day and instead limit tuna treats to just a few times a week. 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