As carnivores, cats naturally consume the flesh and bones of their prey when living in the wild.
It stands to reason, then, that the domesticated house cat in your home would also enjoy a good bone meal.
The good news is that on occasion, you can give your cat bones. Worse yet? Some people think it’s dangerous for cats to eat bones.
We’ll investigate the claim that cats can eat bones to learn the pros and cons of this theory.
We’ll also discuss the best bones for your cat. After reading this, you’ll know all the facts, and can make the best decision for your feline friend.
Is It Safe for Cats to Eat Bones?
As we’ve already established, there’s debate over whether or not it’s safe to give your cat a bone as a treat. It is common knowledge that bones given to a pet should always be given to them in their raw form.
What’s the deal with never eating bone broth? Because bones that have been cooked run the risk of splintering, which can lead to intestinal obstructions and other health problems. Yikes!
But your pet’s health can be improved by feeding them raw bones. You may be aware that some dogs, like some cats, enjoy the occasional chew toy.
Chewing can help cats’ teeth and gums, which is especially important given that many pet owners don’t bother to brush their cats’ teeth.
Your cat’s overall health improves with regular chewing, not just its teeth and gums.
That’s because periodontal disease doesn’t just impact the gums. Oral bacteria have been shown to reach distant organs like the kidney and heart via the circulatory system. In the long run, organ failure may occur as a consequence.
Cats can get a nutritional boost from eating bones, which is just one more reason to give them to them.
While bones aren’t packed to the gills with the vitamins and minerals your cat needs, they are a good source of calcium and other minerals. Additionally, bone marrow is a good source of iron, vitamin E, and vitamin B12.
Eating Bones vs. Chewing on Bones
First, there’s a big difference between actually eating a bone and just chewing on it.
When your cat chews on a bone, it digests it the same way it would a piece of meat or a piece of cheese.
On the other hand, if you eat a bone, chances are good that you’re swallowing it whole and unchewable pieces of bone.
Are Bones Healthy for Cats?
If you want your cat to have healthy gums and teeth for its entire life, it’s a good idea to give it a bone every once in a while to stimulate its gums and teeth.
The high protein content of bones is one of the main reasons why they are good for cats. Protein is essential for a cat’s proper development, growth, and maintenance of body functions.
Your cat can easily digest meat and its bones, making them an excellent source of protein.
Your cat can get a lot of the iron she needs from bone marrow, which helps her body make red blood cells.
The calcium in the bones is beneficial for your cat’s bone and cartilage development, whether she’s a kitten or an adult.
You can also boost your cat’s magnesium intake by giving it the occasional bone.
This nutrient aids in healthy heart rhythm, digestion, and restful sleep.
If your cat has constipation due to a deficiency, offering a bone as a treat is a good idea.
Certain B vitamins (especially B12) are essential to your cat’s energy levels and can only be found in meat.
You can feel good about giving your cat a bone because it improves their quality of life and encourages healthy activity and muscle development.
What Kinds of Bones Can You Give Your Cat
You can’t just give your cat a bone and leave it at that.
You need to be careful when giving your cat a bone so that it doesn’t get hurt but still gets to experience the benefits of the bone.
Your cat will appreciate raw bones.
Bones become more brittle and dry after cooking, which makes them more likely to break, splinter, and potentially injure or kill your cat.
Cats shouldn’t eat the bones of every animal. Necks, wings, and drumsticks of chicken, as well as lamb shanks, are excellent options.
Canned fish like sardines or salmon (though smoked salmon should be avoided) are also fine to eat because their bones are small and soft.
Fish is great for cats, but it doesn’t provide all the nutrients they need, so be sure to serve it with other foods as well.
It is important to keep vigilance any time you give your cat a raw bone to gnaw on or eat.
Never give a bone to your cat and then forget about them.
This way, if the toy breaks or splinters, you can remove it from your cat’s reach and be there to help if an emergency arises.
The Dangers of Giving Cats Bones
There are a few things to keep in mind, but raw bones can be a great treat for your cat and a healthy source of many nutrients.
Knowing the risks associated with giving your cat a raw bone can help you make an informed decision about what’s best for your furry friend.
Bones are indeed a choking hazard for cats, as was previously mentioned.
Avoid having the bone become lodged in your cat’s airway by making sure it is neither too small nor too large.
Never give a bone that has been cooked or that has been broken.
While it’s true that many specialists advise only feeding cats raw bones, it’s important to understand the potential health consequences of following this advice.
There are cases where ingesting raw meat, especially the bones, can make your cat sick.
Even mild symptoms, if left untreated, can cause severe dehydration and even death.
How to Give Bones to Your Cat
It’s not as simple as giving your cat a bone and watching them chow down.
It is important to know what kind of bones are best for your pet and how to give these bones to your pet to avoid any potential health and safety issues.
- You should have your pet’s teeth professionally cleaned before giving them bones if they have dental problems like periodontal disease. The risk of tooth and gum discomfort will go down as a result of this.
- Never cook a bone for your cat.
- Pick your skeletons with care. You can find fresh, raw meaty bones for cats at pet stores, but make sure to get a bone of an appropriate size. A bone for your cat shouldn’t be the same size as one for your dog. You can trust raw chicken necks and drumsticks because they are small enough. The same holds true for sardine and salmon bones found in canned goods.
- Before feeding your pet a bone, make sure there are no sharp edges or splinters that could hurt them.
- Gradually introduce your cat to bones. Start by giving them a single bone every few days to see how they react and to avoid giving them an upset stomach from giving them too much.
- Don’t trust your cat with a bone unattended. Mishaps are a real possibility.
- Make sure bones aren’t getting stuck between your pet’s teeth or cutting into their gums by checking their teeth regularly.
Feline furballs can benefit from eating bones, but you should exercise extreme caution if you decide to feed them to your pet.
Raw bones pose risks to one’s health, including those posed by bacteria that can cause illness and those posed by small pieces that could cause choking.
However, occasionally feeding your cat a bone is probably fine if you think it’s safe for them to do so.