You likely grew up being told to eat your veggies – but do cats need vegetables in their diet?
This may seem like an odd question. All cats – from the smallest little kitty to huge lions – are obligate carnivores. This means they solely depend on meat to survive. No fruits, plants, or veggies. So it’s an easy answer really…
No. Cats do not need vegetables in their diet. However…
Vegetables are a great source of whole food fiber, minerals, and vitamins (for humans and cats). You’ll notice that all commercial cat foods include these important ingredients – but usually as synthetic additions.
Vegetables as whole food sources of these important ingredients provide great benefit for a cat’s digestive system and microbiome. They help keep the skin and coat healthy, naturally help fight disease, and strengthen bones.
Some safe and healthy vegetables for cats include: Broccoli, green beans, leafy greens, carrots, brussels sprouts, cucumbers, and asparagus. Mushrooms also have many health benefits – but you’ll want to be sure you only share mushrooms that are safe for people. Don’t just find one in your yard and see if your cat will eat it!
We add in a small amount of fermented veggies to our cat’s fully balanced raw diet, but you can also puree veggies to mix into their food too.
It’s also interesting to watch a cat self-select a veggie to munch on. Broccoli, leafy greens, and sliced cucumbers are favorites for some of our cats. next time you’re making a salad, leave a few healthy options out for your kitty and see what they snack on!