Are you wondering whether or not your feline friend can eat one of the most consumed meats in the world?
Chicken is extremely popular, and it can be found in lots of meals. From tacos and sandwiches to pizza and burgers, it is a great source of protein for humans. Is it for cats as well? Can cats eat chicken? Can cats eat raw chicken? Are there any dangers to giving cooked or raw chicken to your cat? How should you properly feed them chicken?
Find out more by reading further down this article.
Can Cats Eat Chicken
Cats are famously known to be carnivore animals. This means that they do, in fact, eat meat, because animal protein is essential to their health. Therefore, cats can eat chicken. However, note that chicken must be cooked properly.
Benefits to Cats Eating Chicken
Chicken is a good source of lean protein while it remains low in sodium and fat. At the same time, chicken contains vitamin B6 as well as phosphorus. The nutritional value of chicken helps maintain weight, build muscle, and strengthen bones and teeth.
Besides maintaining weight and building muscle, chicken is also linked to healthy bones and teeth. The phosphorus in chicken not only helps with bones, but it also works hard in ensuring your liver, kidneys and central nervous system are in working order as well.
Risks of Cats Eating Chicken
While cats can eat chicken, it is important to distinguish what kind of chicken is safe for them to digest and what kind is not. A well-cooked unseasoned chicken is the best choice for your cat. Risks of feeding chicken to your cat include the following:
If you flash-freeze raw chicken specifically for your cat’s raw food diet, then it is possible to give the raw chicken to your cat. However, your cat is neither immune to bacterial contamination nor food poisoning from E. coli or salmonella. It is best that you consult your vet before feeding them raw chicken — provided that it is flash-frozen!
Seasonings and other ingredients in a chicken are toxic for your cat. Do not feed them any type of seasoned chicken, especially if it contains onions, garlic, and sauces. Plain, unseasoned chicken is the safest choice for your cat.
The skin of the chicken you have cooked contains the highest concentrated fat. Do not feed it to your cat. It is neither nutritious nor safe. It may induce:
- gastrointestinal upset
- pancreatitis (can lead to death if not treated)
Chicken bones are fairly brittle and can easily splinter. This makes them extremely dangerous to consume as it might result in several risks such as:
- broken teeth
- blockages in intestinal & digestive tracts
- constipation and/or rectal bleeding
- injuries to the mouth, gums, and tongue
- bone fragments piercing stomach lining & intestines
Cats can in fact, eat chicken. As long as it is plain and well-cooked, you can share some with your feline friend. Do not forget, however, that chicken protein cannot replace the nutritious value of your cat’s dry food. Always make sure that they have a balanced diet with human treats taking up less than 10% of their daily intake.