As a cat parent, it’s natural to want to share your favorite foods with your feline friend. However, when it comes to cheese, you may be wondering whether or not it is safe for cats to consume. In this blog post, we’ll take an in-depth look at the question “can cats have cheese?” and explore what types of cheese are safe for our furry companions.
The Risks of Feeding Cheese to Cats
Before diving into the types of cheese that are safe for cats, let’s first discuss why feeding them this dairy product can be risky. First and foremost, many types of cheese contain high levels of fat and sodium – two things that don’t mesh well with a cat’s digestive system. Consumption of large amounts of fatty or salty foods can lead to upset stomachs or even pancreatitis in some cases.
In addition to digestive issues, some cats may also be lactose intolerant – meaning they lack the enzyme necessary to properly digest lactose (the sugar found in milk). For these kitties, consuming any type of dairy product can result in severe diarrhea and vomiting.
Lastly, certain cheeses like blue cheese or those made from unpasteurized milk contain bacteria that could cause food poisoning in both humans and pets alike.
Safe Cheeses for Cats
Despite the risks associated with feeding cats dairy products like cheese, there are still a few options that are considered safe (in moderation!). Here are some examples:
1. Cottage Cheese: Low-fat cottage cheese is often recommended as a treat option for overweight or obese felines since it’s high in protein but low in calories.
2. Cheddar: While cheddar does contain higher levels of fat than other cheeses on this list, small amounts shouldn’t pose too much risk – especially if given as an occasional treat rather than part of their daily diet.
3. Mozzarella: This mild-tasting Italian-style cheese contains lower levels than most other types of cheese, making it a safer option for cats.
4. Swiss: Another mild-tasting cheese that is low in fat and sodium – making it a great choice for kitties with sensitive stomachs.
While feeding your feline friend the occasional piece of cheese may be tempting (especially when they look up at you with those big pleading eyes), it’s important to remember the potential risks associated with doing so. If your cat has any digestive issues or is lactose intolerant, we recommend avoiding dairy products altogether. Otherwise, keep portions small and treat them as an infrequent indulgence rather than part of their regular diet. And always make sure to speak with your veterinarian about what types of treats are safe for your specific pet!