If your cat is eating grass outside, don’t flip out – just yet. Cats eat grass for different reasons – but you want to be sure that the grass they consume is also safe.
Why do cats eat grass?
In the wild, cats will consume the stomach contents of their prey – which usually contains some grass. Instinctively they will also consume grass from the earth to help regurgitate the pieces of their prey that aren’t so digestible to them.
Kitties will also eat grass to help hairball control. Since ingested grass activates regurgitation, eating some grass can help them throw up the hair that their bodies can’t push through. (I just learned this and think it’s awesome! Grass for hairball control is brilliant!)
Sometimes your cat will eat grass outside and not throw up. This could mean that their bodies actually needed the extra vitamins, minerals and fiber that can be offered through consuming grass. PetMD states, “Much like mother’s milk, the juices in grass contain folic acid. This is an essential vitamin for a cat’s bodily functions and assists in the production of hemoglobin, the protein that moves oxygen in the blood.” So if your baby is a bit anemic, offering some healthy grass could be beneficial!
Cats eating grass: What grass is safe for my cat to eat?
First, don’t just let your cat eat any grass. Not all grass is created equal. If you use fertilizer or pesticide on your lawn, for example, the grass is not safe for ingestion. We have weeds in our backyard and don’t use chemical pest control back there, so when our kitties go to munch on the grassy weeds, we let them.
If your cats are indoor – and you want to offer them the benefits of grass – just grow your own! Get some wheat, barley, rye or oat seeds, soak them in water for 6-8 hours and then plant them in soil. You can do this in a regular ceramic planter and place it somewhere comfortable for your kitty. Placing the grass up high in a vertical space can also encourage your kitty to climb. 🙂
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