Whole Life Times article by Lindsay Rubin featuring Dr. Wakefield
Read the opinions of several veterinarians discussing vegetarian cats and dogs. Here’s what they have to say about veg kitties:
Riley, the vegetarian Whippet
“Feline intestines are specifically designed to digest raw meat quickly and efficiently. If you’ve ever seen the remains of a cat’s hunting feast, you’ll notice they eat every part of the catch, except perhaps a mouse’s tail.
Since cats also have much higher protein requirements than dogs, Dr. Wakefield, who runs the resource page www.vegetariancats.com, cautions that a cat’s vegan diet must be more regimented than a dog’s. She warns that, “Home-cooked pet food (vegan or not) without a supplement can lead to serious nutritional problems such as heart and eye disease.”
In a study group of vegan cat on fully supplemented diets, Dr. Wakefield reports no serious nutritional deficiencies, although three of the cats had low – but not critically low – taurine levels.
However Dr. Larsen, who has treated taurine deficiency in a cat that almost died on a commercially available vegan diet, cautions that, “Home-prepared options would be expected to have similar or even more concerning problems.”
See the full article and read more about vegan dogs here.
Guest post by Victoria Randall
Within the first few days of moving to Philadelphia, I found and rescued a cat from the streets. I was apartment hunting when I found him and didn’t have a place to keep him so I took him to a shelter.
A new home for a Philly street cat
A few days later I found an apartment, immediately adopted him and named him Chuck. When I found Chuck he was pretty underweight but overall healthy.
Chuck is currently about two years old and I’ve had him for almost a year. His diet consists of vegan cat kibble (Evolution Cheezburger flavor) and a few different treats that he loves such as coconut milk, Tofurky deli slices, rice and sauteed kale. Sometimes he just hops up on a chair while I’m eating and snatches something from my plate. It must be how he’s ended up liking so many odd foods.
I am a veterinarian who has been vegan longer than I’ve been a vet.
Care Bear Cold Heart
Back in 2001, I was working as a veterinary technician at Compassion Veterinary Clinic in Marlborough, MA . Somehow I ended up fostering two 3-day-old kittens who required bottle feeding. So, I took care of them like her mother had done, including feeding them a milk substitute for cats every two hours.
When it came time for weaning, they refused to eat cat food. Continue reading
Whether it meets the approval of your vet or not, many caregivers have begun to feed their cats vegetarian food. The purpose of this study was to gather preliminary data for that veterinarians can properly advise clients who want to feed their cats vegetarian food.
Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association
July 1, 2006, Vol 229, No. 1, Pages 70-73.
Evaluation of cats fed vegetarian diets and attitudes of their caregivers. Continue reading