If you’ve got a mouse problem in your home or barn, one of the most frequently suggested remedies people will recommend is to get a cat. Instinct will kick in for most cats and they will take care of your mouse problem. They may not eat it but they’ll play with it till they kill it and then bring it to you. But what if you have an extra slice or two of bacon that you don’t want to go to waste? Can cats eat bacon?
It’s common knowledge that big cats need to eat meat but the truth is domesticated cats need meat too. They need the protein in meat to thrive, just like any other carnivorous animal. But many owners of domesticated cats who have grown accustomed to feeding their cat dry or canned cat food may not realize how important meat is to a cat’s diet.
If your one of these cat owners and you sit down to a breakfast of eggs and bacon and your cat begins to meow and beg for a share of the bounty, you may wonder if cats can eat bacon?
Cats can eat bacon only it really should be as an occasional treat only. Bacon comes from pigs but curing bacon takes a lot of salt which is unhealthy. Cats also have very vulnerable digestive systems which means that your cat may not be able to tolerate bacon as well as a previous cat or the neighbor’s cat.
Can Bacon Make Cats Sick?
Any food, even nontoxic foods can make cats sick if precautions are not taken. If you decide to feed your cat bacon, start with several small pieces the first time. Wait a few days to a week and observe how your cat responds. Watch for any signs of digestive distress including abdominal discomfort, excessive meowing, vomiting or diarrhea. If your cat experiences any of these symptoms after eating bacon, do not give them any more until they’ve been evaluated by a vet.
If you feed your cat bacon and they do not show any negative symptoms after several days, you can give them a couple more pieces. One slice of bacon every other week or so is probably sufficient as a treat. Fatty meat, even if cooked, can give cats an upset stomach as can bacon grease. Make sure any pans used for cooking bacon are kept out of reach of your cat so they can’t lick them clean at night.
What Meats Can Make Cats Sick?
Fatty meat even if cooked can give cats an upset stomach and even result in diarrhea or vomiting. The same is true for bacon grease. It’s just not a great idea. Meat bones, especially cooked ones can get lodged and cause your cat to choke or can splinter and cause digestive issues.
Even though it’s commonly known that cats love to eat raw fish, keep in mind that raw fish and other raw meats may be hiding the types of bacteria that result in food poisoning. In addition, one of the B vitamins essential for cats, thiamine, can be destroyed by an enzyme in raw fish.
If your cat eats too much raw fish (such as salmon) with that enzyme, it can result in a thiamine deficit resulting in major neurological health problems. Believe it or not, tuna fish can make cats sick if they eat too much so it’s best to limit this to occasional treats only.