Liver is a protein-dense food and it also contains essential minerals. It can be enjoyed as a side dish or chopped and sprinkled on some delicacies. Beef liver is by far the liver with the earthiest taste. Alhough most people prefer chicken liver. Liver is a great source of vitamin A and it is mostly consumed for the same reason.
You must have seen documentaries of a wild cat tearing their meal of prey apart and proceeding to eat most parts of it, including the entrails. Now, that may have got you wondering if you can toss a piece of bloody liver to your kitty. But you must remember that your fur baby is now considered domesticated and that means their diet has changed from that of wild cats.
But the bottom line is, can cats eat liver? Is it safe to feed raw or cooked liver to your cat? To find out about cats and liver, keep on reading this article.
Can Cats Eat Liver?
Cats can eat liver and in small quantities, it is considered healthy for them. The liver is full of vitamin A and this is good for cats because cats cannot synthesize vitamin A. Also, chicken liver is preferred because compared to beef liver, it has fewer calories. However, you have to be careful when feeding liver to your cat. This is because an excess of liver can lead to vitamin A toxicity in your cat. The liver should not replace your cat's food because it does not contain all the nutrients they need.
What are The Benefits of Feeding Liver to My Cat?
Cats cannot produce the vitamin A that they need, hence they need to get it from the foods they eat. Liver has a high Vitamin A content which your cat can benefit from. Cats need vitamin A for good night vision.
Another selling point of liver is its protein content. Liver is full of protein and this is one of the reasons cat owners include liver in their kitty's diet. Cats require lots of animal protein to complete their nutritional needs and liver can be one of the ways this need is met. Although you shluldn't replace their regular food with liver as we will discuss shortly.
The liver is also a good source of minerals like copper which is used to develop healthy red blood cells. Copper is also important for bone and tissue formation.
Is Chicken Liver Good For Cats?
Chicken liver is a healthy snack option for your cat. It is packed with nutrients and vitamins like A and B. Chicken liver is also a good source of protein which is especially good for your cat because cats require animal protein to grow properly.
However, you must watch the amount of chicken liver you feed your cat. Eating too much chicken liver can cause a condition known as Vitamin A Hypervitaminosis which is a fatal condition that occurs due to the consumption of very large amounts of the liver. But a small quantity of chicken liver once in a while is good for your cat.
Can Cats Eat Beef Liver?
Technically, yes. Cats can have a small amount of beef liver every once in a while. Just like chicken liver, it comes packed with a high content of vitamin A. It also contains other minerals like zinc, calcium, and iron.
However, it is not advisable to feed too much beef liver to your cat because it has a higher tendency of causing vitamin A toxicity. Also, beef liver contains more calories and fat content than chicken liver and this is bad news for your cat because it can lead to overweight or obesity. If you want to give beef liver to your cat, make sure it is only a small amount and not very often.
How To Serve Liver To My Cat?
There's a debate on whether it is safe to feed raw liver to your kitty or not. The truth is, your cat may as well enjoy a slobby piece of raw liver but it may not be the best decision you'd make for their health. This is because raw liver will expose your cat to food poisoning due to the presence of bacteria and other disease-causing parasites.
The best and safest option to feed liver to your cat is by cooking it. Cooked liver destroys disease-causing organisms in the liver and spares your fur baby from suffering from food poisoning. Also, ensure you cook the liver without ingredients that can harm your cats such as salt, ginger, or onion.
When serving liver to your cat, cut it up into small pieces that can be easily eaten by your cat. It can also be shredded and sprinkled on their food or grated and mixed with their cat food if you are just introducing it to your cat. This also helps to prevent choking hazards.
Can Liver Hurt My Cat?
One of the downsides of feeding liver to your cat is vitamin A toxicity (or hypervitaminosis). Cats run a risk of experiencing this if they eat liver in excess. This is more common with beef liver because of the high vitamin A content but it can also occur if cats have excess chicken liver. The way to avoid this is to feed only a small amount of chicken liver to your cat once in a while and if you can, avoid feeding your kitty beef liver.
Another health concern is the fat content in the liver. While the protein and fat content in the liver can do a lot of good for your cat, it can also lead to gastrointestinal issues like vomiting and diarrhea if eaten too much. This is why it is vital that you feed liver in moderation to your cat.
The liver is a rich food that your cat can enjoy. It is packed with vitamins, minerals, and not forgetting, a high protein content that your cat can benefit from. However, it is for this same reason that you must feed liver in moderation to your because this high nutrient profile can cause gastrointestinal issues to your kitty.