Can cats eat bacon?
Cats can eat bacon, however, this processed meat doesn’t provide any nutritional value. Bacon contains nitrates, high saturated fat and salt content and should only be fed as a very occasional treat. Cats are obligate carnivores and the majority of their diet should be nutritionally balanced cat food.
Can all cats eat bacon?
Not all cats can eat bacon, some underlying health conditions or prescription diets may exclude treats, this includes:
- Kittens (unweaned and weaned)
- Cats with high blood pressure
- Cats who have a history of pancreatitis
- Overweight cats
- Cats on a food elimination trial
- Cats on a therapeutic diet to manage a chronic disease
How to feed a cat bacon
As always, check with your cat’s primary veterinarian before feeding any treats.
Where possible, purchase nitrate-free bacon. Shortcut bacon is the leanest cut of bacon for cats, avoid streaky or middle cut bacon. Remove any remaining fat from the bacon and grill until it is cooked. Dab with a paper towel to absorb excess fat and cut into small bite-sized pieces. Limit the amount of bacon to a piece of two. Do not feed bacon more than once a week.
Can cats eat raw bacon?
Cats can eat raw bacon but it does come with the risk of foodborne parasites including Toxoplasma gondii, and Taenia solium (pork tapeworm).
Healthier alternatives to bacon
While a small amount of bacon won’t hurt a cat, there are healthier treats cats also enjoy.
What happens if a cat eats too much bacon?
Thankfully, cats don’t tend to overeat like their canine counterparts. A cat who has eaten too much bacon may develop gastrointestinal symptoms such as vomiting and diarrhea. Some cats can develop pancreatitis if they eat too much fat.
Can cats eat turkey bacon?
Turkey bacon is a leaner alternative to pork bacon and is safe for cats to eat, but again, only in small quantities. Even turkey bacon contains high levels of salt.
Can cats eat ham?
Cats can eat ham in moderation. Remove all fat before feeding.