Have you ever tried to eat cheez its and found your cat asking you for it? And there is a possibility that you gave cheez its to your cat and also your cat might have enjoyed it. But have you ever thought that humans can easily eat cheez its but is it safe for our cats? It’s a bit difficult to understand because of multiple reasons. If you feed your cat cheez its, they might enjoy it as a snack, but that doesn’t mean it is good for them. Cheez its has a large amount of salt that makes the cats feel more attracted to it.
Similar to other available backed crackers, there is a possibility that the ingredients are not significantly poisonous for the cats and are not going to cause any immediate harm to the cats. However, the nutritional value is less, and in that way, it might not be a good choice for cats. But how do we know that it is harmful or why it is harmful to our cat?
Why is cheez its harmful to our cats?
Cats are obligate carnivorous animals. That means most of their diet should include meat. Dairy products like cheese might not be good for cats as most cats are lactose tolerant, even if you see them preferring milk. Cats might like cheese, but it’s not good for their health. However, cats might like cheese mostly because it contains protein and fats that make them feel like they are eating something more fleshy than they usually eat. If we look at the nutrition that cheese can provide, like fats, vitamin B12, calcium, carbs, etc., this might seem healthier, but it’s not, at least for the animals. Below mentioned is all about what cheese or other dairy products have and how it can harm our cats.
Lactose is the main sugar in milk that the lactase enzyme can only digest. When mammals like cats are young, they have enough lactase enzymes that can help in digesting it. But when they grow up, their ability to digest lactose significantly decreases because of the reduction in the enzyme. This lactose tolerance is visible in cats as soon as they are six months of age. All this might result in diarrhea, stomach upset, and vomiting within a few hours after consuming milk products. There are other symptoms like constipation, dehydration, dry gums, etc. For adult cats, it is necessary to avoid milk products or lactose products to keep them healthy.
Other problems with cheese:
if your cat can tolerate lactose, you can give it cheese occasionally in small amounts. Small amounts can be fine for the cat, but excessive amounts can be harmful as every 100g of cheese has about 402 calories. If we give any form of lactose to the cats in a higher amount, it can negatively affect the health of the cat. Cheese is already not good for cats, and increasing the amount can only harm their health.
There are allergic reactions that cats can get if they eat cheez its. If your cat ate cheez its by chance, instead of panicking, wait for some time and observe the cat very carefully. If you find your cat developing any allergic reactions like rashes or an increase in scratching, or if the cat seems to be uncomfortable or not feeling well, go to a veterinarian as soon as possible. Kittens can tolerate cheez its in a much easier way than adult cats. Even in adult cats, there might be cats who can tolerate the food, but if not, it’s better to take them to a veterinarian to prevent the development of any side effects.
Sodium in cheez its
It is recommended by the association of American food control officials that cats must consume only 0.2% of sodium for their expected growth. If you compare the amount with humans, it is very small. Cheez its contains a high sodium amount of 174mg that is suitable for humans but is extremely large for cats. This can become toxic for cats. Some of the symptoms can be vomiting, diarrhea, and an increase in thirst. They might even suffer from severe diseases.
So is cheez its good for a cat?
After the above discussion, you can easily conclude that it is not good for cats. Whether they can digest it or not, cheese is still not a balanced food for cats. More amounts than required can lead to obesity and other medical cases in cats. As it was mentioned earlier, cats should have meat included in their diet most of the time, and adding cheese or dairy products instead will only put a negative impact on the cats.
Apart from the health, if cats get a habit of eating human food, it won’t take long to give up their perfect cat food. There are higher chances of getting a nutritional deficiency in such a condition because of a lack of healthy food. With improper nutrition, the cats might get prone to several diseases that might affect them later.
After all this, you can understand that “cheez its” is not a good choice for cats. And, it is not just confined to cheez its. Many milk products like cream, string cheese, parmesan, etc., are not healthy for cats. Therefore, cats shouldn’t be allowed or made to eat dairy products or cheez its. Of course, kittens are not lactose intolerant and can digest lactose without any hassle. However, this does not mean that you can change their diet to such things. Their usual diet is balanced and should be followed. These pets, like cats, do not require any milk products and can easily live a healthy life on their food diet. Their diet can help the cats a lot in keeping them healthy by providing all the nutrients that are required for your cat or cats.
Furthermore, you can also give cat feline-friendly food instead of giving something like cheez its or any milk product. These include vegetables and fruits, cooked eggs, or small amounts of fish. Keep in mind that not all types of human food are healthy and suitable for cats. The best we can do is to make sure that we are feeding them the right food.