Oatmeal is one of those well-liked, nutritious, and adaptable human foods, whether you enjoy it as oatmeal cookies or with brown sugar for breakfast. But can cats consume oats?
You may rest certain that oatmeal is completely safe for cats if you’re unsure whether to feed it to them or are considering the potential health advantages. Oats can be fed to cats either cooked or raw, but doing so is not required. If you choose to do this, there are a few things to take into account. For more details, continue reading!
Nutritional Facts About Oatmeal
Oatmeal, when looking at human foods, is a well-known for its nutritional benefits, packed with antioxidants, healthy amino acids and vitamins such as vitamin B6. It can reduce cholesterol levels, has anti-inflammatory properties, and also contains minerals such as calcium and manganese.
So how does this fit into a cat’s diet? Well, cats are obligate carnivores and get all their nutritional benefits from meat. Therefore, their commercial wet food or kibble can provide all their dietary needs, and adding extras such as oatmeal doesn’t have huge nutritional value. However, small quantities of oatmeal are fine as an occasional treat and may provide some small health benefits.
Oatmeal Benefits For Cats
Cats’ digestive system is designed to digest meat, and so although cats may eat oats, they may not gain all the health benefits that we do from this healthy food. Cat foods are usually high in protein and low in carbs, so foods high in carbohydrates should be avoided as this can lead to a higher calorie intake than is necessary.
Oatmeal is actually fairly high in protein and fats, making it one of the more suitable human foods for cats. The fats in oatmeal also contain linoleic acid and amino acids that are good for a healthy skin and coat.
Oatmeal has a good dietary fiber content, which can be good for the digestive tract, preventing constipation, but too much can overwhelm the gut and cause digestive issues. Cats will be able to absorb small amounts of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants from oats.
How Much Oatmeal Can A Cat Eat?
A small portion of oatmeal is the recommended way to feed cats oats if you wish to. Cat foods should be mostly meat-based, and foodstuffs like oats should only be given in small quantities (a tablespoon is a reasonable amount for a cat) to avoid health issues.
How Often Can A Cat Eat Oatmeal?
Oats should only really be given as an occasional treat, as eating them too often and as the main part of their diet can cause digestive issues and an imbalanced diet. Commercial cat food should be the major part of your cat’s diet, with cat treats or safe human foods as little extras.
What Are The Risks Of Eating Oatmeal For Cats?
Oats are safe for cats, both as raw oats and as cooked oatmeal. However, there are some things to watch for before you give oatmeal to your feline friend.
Oatmeal Cooked In Milk
Many cats are lactose intolerant, as they lack the enzymes necessary to digest milk. Cat oatmeal should only ever be cooked in water.
These are often buttery and fatty and can have extras added to them which are not suitable for cats. Oatmeal raisin cookies should always be avoided as raisins are toxic to cats. Apple cinnamon oatmeal cookies should also never be fed to cats.
Too much oatmeal can overload your cat’s digestive system, leading to discomfort, vomiting, or diarrhea. Always feed oatmeal in a small portion, especially uncooked oatmeal.
Do Cats Like The Taste Of Oatmeal?
Cats are mostly drawn to meaty and fishy tastes but are known to experiment with new tastes and textures. If you want to try adding oatmeal to your cat’s diet, try a small amount of uncooked oats on their wet food, plain oatmeal cooked in water, or some oat tea.