Most cats are curious about the fishy scent as well as the unique flavor of shrimp. They might beg you to feed some shrimp to them when they smell it in your fridge. Many cat parents question if they should do so. Yes, you can feed shrimp to cats. However, it comes with certain conditions.
The best way to feed shrimp to your cats is a wild caught shrimp that has been cooked without any oil or seasonings. Generally, it is not advisable to provide your cats with raw shrimp. It is because when shrimp are farmed, they carry a certain level of fungicides and antibiotics. By heating them, these toxic chemicals are eliminated.
Benefits Of Feeding Shrimp To Your Cat
The following are some of the benefits of feeding shrimp to your cat
Features Of Shrimp
Benefits For Cats
Excellent Protein Source
Shrimps are an excellent source of protein. As measured, 3 ounces of raw shrimp contains 12 grams of protein. Proteins are essential to enhance the immune system of cats.
Shrimps are a very low-calorie food, meaning your cats will feel full despite eating a small amount.
By feeding shrimp to your cats, you can prevent cell damage in them which is majorly caused by free radicals called astaxanthin. This element also reduces the risk of colon cancer in cats.
Hazards Of Eating Shrimp For Your Cat
You can feed shrimp to cats. However, it is something you can only provide your cat occasionally. Some of the health issues that your cats may face if you overfeed them with shrimp are
1. Gastrointestinal Diseases
Particular cats can suffer from food allergies after eating shrimp. It can cause them to puke and end up falling sick. If such things happen, make sure to contact your vet immediately.
2. Choking Problems
Though cats can eat shrimp tails and legs, it is not advisable to be fed. These are parts that are notorious for choking. Moreover, these tails and shells can also cause constipation in cats. Thus, it is not advisable to feed your cats raw shrimp.
3. Bacterial Infection
Shrimps can contain some amount of bacteria. Hence, it can cause bacterial infection in cats if it is not adequately washed or cleaned.
One of the most common bacterial infections cats can face after eating shrimp is toxoplasmosis. It is a type of infection with a parasite known as Toxoplasma gondii. The symptoms of this condition are fever, loss of appetite, and allergies. In certain extreme cases, it may also cause pneumonia in cats.
How To Feed Shrimps To Your Cat?
The following are some ways you can feed shrimps to your cat.
- Serve Moderate Amounts
Indeed, shrimps are a tasty treat for your cats; however, they cannot replace a meal. Because shrimp is relatively high in sodium and cholesterol, you should practice moderation when feeding your cats.
An average-sized cat should not eat more than half of a jumbo shrimp in one sitting. Also, try not to provide your cat shrimp regularly, as it can be hazardous for the feline’s health.
- Cook Plain Shrimp
Try never to feed your cat shrimp cooked with spices, salt, and oil, as it is pretty toxic for your cat. Try to feed your cat plain-cooked shrimp, which is boiled or steamed. Also, before you cook or serve your cats, these shrimps try to wash them properly.
- Ensure There Are No Frills
You should feed only the meat of shrimp to cats and nothing else. It can be a shell, head as well as tail.
You can also feed your cats with a shrimp-flavored appetizer like Purina Fancy Feast Entrees. These have a flaked texture and serve as a complement to your cat’s diet.
Can Cats Eat Shrimp Chips?
Though shrimp chips are light in taste and comparatively healthier than potato chips, they are still junk food filled with starch and fats. Therefore, unless you make it from scratch, it is not advisable to feed shrimp chips to cats.
You can make shrimp chips at home. However, ensure it is made with the least amount of spices and oil possible.
It is safe to feed your cat shrimp. However, ensure you provide your pet with a moderate amount. It is best to follow the instructions mentioned above.