Can Cats Eat Eggs?
Eggs are one of those things that many cat owners are not sure about. The question of Can Cats Eat Eggs? is one that less than half of all cat owners will be able to answer with any degree of certainty. There are a few reasons for that, as we’ll discover here, looking at cooked eggs, raw eggs and more.
Can Cats Eat Raw Eggs?
Many cat owners assume that raw foods are okay based on the fact that cats will eat raw meat and eggs in the wild. But it’s different in your home. Not only are domesticated cats not used to those foods and that risk, but the meat and fish you bring into your home is different to fresh meat and fresh fish caught and killed in the wild.
For one thing, it takes time to get from the field or the sea to you home and then to you cat, and all kinds of bacteria can develop in that time. That bacteria is also one of the risks with raw eggs, but this is not just the result of handling and processing.
Eggs can carry salmonella and e.coli. Cooking kills these, but if they are eaten raw and that bacteria is present, then it can pass onto your cat and cause serious problems. The symptoms related to raw egg consumption mimic food poisoning and can be as minor as digestive distress and as major as death.
There is also a chemical present in egg whites, known as avidin, that can interfere with the absorption of Biotin. This is an essential B Vitamin that your cat needs to maintain healthy cells. Take away that vitamin, add the risk of bacteria and you have a recipe for disaster. That’s why cats can not eat raw eggs.
This all probably sounds a lot worse than it is. The risk of bacteria like this is actually quite low, and they would need to eat a lot of egg whites for the avidin thing to become a serious problem. However, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Also, why allow cats to eat risky raw eggs when they could eat healthy cooked eggs?
Can Cats Eat Eggs Cooked?
Eggs are a good source of taurine and healthy fats. They are far from a balanced diet, so they should be given as a treat, but they can be a healthy treat. Not only does the cooking process kill the bacteria present in eggs, but it also denatures avidin and allows for the absorption of biotin.
Most cats love eggs. They are in that strange grey area between meat and dairy. They are not meat, yet they are consumed with the same veracity as meat would be. They are not dairy and do not cause the same issues that milk would, but they attract just as much interest from you feline.
So, don’t be afraid to let your cat finish off a little scrambled egg on your plate, to lick a little cooked egg yolk off your finger, or even to tuck into a boiled egg.