Ahh bread, the great love of many humans across the globe. Baguettes, buns, loaves, bagels, we love them all. Did you know that the average American consumes around 53 pounds of bread every single year – it’s a true foodie addiction.
But what about your cat, do they love bread? Should they even be eating it?
You know your cat likes to look like a loaf, but should they be tucking into one too? Read on to find out:
Can Cats Eat Bread?
Can cats eat white bread? Yes, they can eat baked plain bread, but it is not something that you should be giving them regularly at all.
Cats don’t need carbohydrates because they are obligate carnivores, which means they primarily need meat in their diet. Bread is an empty calorie for them, potentially helping them gain weight and giving them no nutritional value either.
Can Cats Eat Any Bread?
If your cat happens to steal your bread and that bread is white and plain, you shouldn’t have much of an issue. But what about other bread? Let’s take a look:
- Can cats eat wheat bread? Yes, wheat bread is generally the same as white bread so it shouldn’t be harmful to your cat to eat a small amount.
- Can cats eat garlic bread? No, garlic or onion bread would be toxic to your cat.
- Can cats eat pumpkin bread? No, the seeds in this kind of bread could cause a gastric blockage for your cat.
- Can cats eat bread crust? Yes, but only if the bread is plain and unflavoured.
- Can cats eat sourdough bread? Yes, if it is plain it is unlikely to be harmful to your cat.
Can Diabetic Or Overweight Cats Eat Bread?
Cats at risk of diabetes because of feline obesity should not have any bread as the sugar in the carbohydrates could push them towards diabetes. At the very least, the empty calories won’t make their condition any better.
Cats with diabetes are particularly at risk if they have carb-heavy foods like bread, so it should never be given to a diagnosed cat. Instead, they should only be consuming vet-approved snacks and cat food that works for their condition.
If you think your cat might be diabetic, you can read more about it here. You should also consult your vet who can do the appropriate testing, and go through managing the condition if your cat is diabetic. A diabetic cat can live a happy, healthy life but ideally, the condition is avoided altogether with a healthy lifestyle.
What If The Bread Has Toppings?
Some toppings like plain cheese, or plain butter, may not be harmful to your cat if they steal a piece. Garlic butter, chutneys and jams, for example, could be highly toxic for your cat.
In all instances, if your cat has a piece of bread, the best way for them to do so is with plain bread with no toppings.
Can Cats Eat Raw Bread?
The yeast in even the smallest piece of dough can be incredibly dangerous for cats. Whereas a cat stealing a piece of baked bread will often be safe, as long as it is plain, when the bread or dough is not baked, you need to seek immediate medical attention. The problem is that the dough will quickly create alcohol and carbon dioxide that is dangerous for the cat. The alcohol toxicity could even be fatal for your cat.
In addition, the dough will expand and cause all kinds of issues internally for the cat.
It is absolutely an emergency if your cat has managed to ingest any raw bread or dough. Symptoms of yeast ingestion in a cat include:
- Excess flatulence
- Stomach distension
If you suspect yeast has been ingested by your kitty, you must contact your vet immediately.
Why Do Cats Love Bread So Much?
Lots of cats go wild for bread and nobody really knows why. The cute cat on this video shows us exactly how bread crazy some cats can be!
It could be because they like the smell, especially when it has been baked or toasted. They aren’t designed to eat it though, so it’s another (of many) cat mysteries that we will likely never be able to solve!
How To Feed A Cat Bread
If your cat gets angry if you don’t share the bread, that is something to train them out of. It is hard to say no to an angry or bug-eyed kitty but, we have to be strong and do what’s best for them, as hard as it is. Ideally, you will feed your cat with cat food specially designed for their age, weight, health status and lifestyle. If you do give them snacks, steamed chicken or fish (or freeze-dried) is best for them. If you need something more convenient, there are endless kitty-suitable snacks on the market.
When it comes to bread, if they sneak a plain, baked piece, it shouldn’t harm them. If they love it, bread can also be a handy way to get them to take medication. However, it really isn’t recommended as a regular treat for a cat.
Let Your Cat Be The Loaf, Rather Than Eat It
Now you know that although your cat is perfectly ‘bready’ to get stuck into your favorite carb, it really isn’t good for them overall. Stick to cat-suitable snacks and foods, and if you’re ever in need of specific advice for your pet’s diet, consult a vet.