Can Cats Eat Corn?

Can Cats Eat Corn?

Corn

Humans enjoy corn in a variety of forms. Boiled, grilled, sweetened, spicy, popped... the list goes on. Corn is one of those all-rounder foods that everybody can eat; vegans, vegetarians, and omnivores alike. Known especially for the fiber content it provides, corn also contains other nutrients like protein and vitamins. 

Sweet, tasty corn is surely a safe and healthy meal for humans. So, what about cats? Can cats eat corn? Is corn safe for our feline friends? 

Keep reading this article to find out about everything related to feeding corn to your cat and the health risks that may be involved.

Can Cats Eat Corn?

Absolutely! Cats can eat corn. In fact, a lot of commercial cat food contains corn as a filler ingredient. Cats can safely consume corn but it should be in a moderate quantity. Corn hardly offers any nutritional benefit to cats. Rather, corn can take up space in your cat's stomach, leaving them feeling full faster.

Cat

Is Corn Good For Cats?

Cats can eat a few kernels of plain boiled corn occasionally and not suffer any harm. Although corn is packed with nutrients like protein, vitamins, and minerals, cats are not able to harness all these nutrients.

However, corn is an excellent source of dietary fiber. Commercial cat foods contain corn as a filler ingredient, not for any nutritional purpose but to make cat food satisfying and filling for cats. Corn has the same effect on cats when consumed in other forms. Dietary fiber helps in digestive processes and also adds bulk to your cat's bowel content. 

In addition, if you are worried about your cat's weight, introducing an occasional small amount of corn in their diet is one way to get them feeling full for longer, and hence, they eat less.

Also, whole corn is considered to be low in fats. This means it can serve as an alternative to high-fat snacks or treats. Your cat does not need fatty foods, so feeding them corn can be a good escape from unhealthy fatty foods.

Will Corn Harm My Cat?

Cats can eat corn in moderate amounts and not be sick. But even good things can become too much and too much can be a lot in terms of health complications. Here are all the reasons why feeding too much corn to your cat will harm them:

Indigestion

If consumed in excess, the fiber content in corn can become harmful to them. Too much dietary fiber in your cat's diet can lead to stomach upset, indigestion, and other digestive issues. Also, corn contains Phytic acid which is a chemical substance that prevents the absorption of some minerals during digestion. The effect of Phytic acid can be reduced by sprouting, soaking, or allowing the corn to ferment but this will also lead to further loss of other nutrients. This means if such corn is fed to your feline, it will be of little or no benefit to them.

High Carb content

Corn contains carbohydrates and sugar, majorly. Cats are obligate carnivores that do not need carbohydrates. The sugar content can lead to spikes in blood sugar levels and this in turn can set off several health issues such as cardiovascular diseases.

Allergic reaction

It is not unusual for cats to suffer from allergic reactions when they eat corn. Some symptoms of corn allergic reactions include diarrhea, skin irritation, vomiting, coughing, sneezing, etc. If you notice any of this, quickly stop feeding them the corn meal and contact your vet. 

Corn

What Kind Of Corn Snack Can I Feed My Cat?

Corn can be eaten in different forms. While your cat may enjoy most or all of these forms, not all are safe for them. Below is a list of some of the common corn varieties and how they can benefit your cat or not:

Grilled or Boiled Corn

This is by far the safest option for your cat. They contain a low amount of fat and retain all the nutrients of corn. Either grilled or boiled, it should be served in small quantities to cats and without any seasoning.

Sweet corn

Sweet corn is another safe option for your cat. It can be served grilled or boiled, with no seasoning added. A few kernels given to your cat will not harm them.

Canned or Frozen corn

Cats can feed on canned corn as long the kernels are preserved in water with no ingredients that can be toxic to cats. Cats can also eat frozen corn but it should only be served when it is no longer cold.

Popcorn

Popcorn is no doubt, a tasty treat for humans. However, if you want to feed some to your cat, make sure it does not contain any seasonings or dairy products like butter that can be bad for your cat.

Polenta

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Polenta, like cornmeal, takes up space in your cat's stomach and offers no nutritional value to them. Additionally, polenta contains ingredients that can be harmful to your cat.

Tortillas and Cornbread

Tortillas, just like any other type of bread, should be off the snack list for your cat. Bread takes up a lot of space and offers no nutritional benefit to your furry guy. Cats can eat an occasional piece of tortilla or cornbread but it is not a recommended snack for them.

Fried Corn

Fried corn kernels are the most unhealthy form of corn and should not be considered an option at all. These pre-packaged corn kernels are high in fats and salt, both ingredients which are bad for your cat.

Corndog

The sausage in corndog is one of the worst meat options you can feed your cat. Also, the fried corn batter is not healthy for your cat at all. Hence, corndog should not be fed to cats.

Conclusion

If you choose to feed corn to your cat, make sure you still to the healthy options. Cats should only eat small amounts of corn occasionally. You can also discuss healthier snack options with your vet. However, if your cat shows any prolonged negative symptoms from feeding on corn, make sure to consult your vet immediately.

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