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Home > Cats > Can Cats Eat Steak? Here’s What You Should Know!

Can Cats Eat Steak? Here’s What You Should Know!

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When it comes to table food, cats can be just as persistent as dogs at getting what they want. And when the table scraps are meat like steak, cats aren’t above sampling some on their own. Whether you choose to give some human food as a treat or your cat is a thief, you want to be sure that what it gets is safe and healthy.

So, can cats eat steak? Is it healthy? Yes, cooked steak without any seasoning or sauce is generally safe for your cat in moderation. If you are curious to learn more, read on!

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Is Steak Safe and Healthy for a Cat?

Cat is trying to steal
Image Credit: Nechitayka, Shutterstock

Cats are obligate carnivores, which means they require the nutrients in meat for a healthy diet. Cooked steak can be a healthy treat in moderation, providing high-quality protein and the amino acids cats need for vital functions.

Keep in mind that steak must be cooked and free of excess fat. Raw meat harbors bacteria that can make your cat sick, such as Salmonella and E.coli. Excess fat can lead to obesity, digestive upset, or in severe cases, pancreatitis.

If you cook your steak with onions, garlic, or other seasonings, it shouldn’t be given to your cat. Both garlic and onion are toxic to cats, and other seasonings could cause adverse effects. Any steak you give your cat should be plain.

You should also avoid giving your cat a steak bone, cooked or raw. Chewing on a beef bone can damage your cat’s teeth. Or worse, splinters can come off and lead to an intestinal blockage or perforation, which is a veterinary emergency.

Some people give pets table scraps if they’re on the verge of spoiling, believing that animals have more resistance to bacteria. Feeding spoiled food can be just as dangerous for your cat, however, especially if it is immunocompromised. If you wouldn’t eat it yourself, your pet shouldn’t have it.

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Feeding Your Cat a Proper Diet

Cats evolved as hunters, eating a lot of animal sources of protein and fat with minimum carbohydrates. Even today, commercial cat food has similar proportions with precise nutrients to ensure a properly balanced diet.

If you’re offering steak as a treat or a meal topper, it’s important to do so sparingly. Cat food is carefully formulated, and adding too much of any one ingredient can throw that balance off. Feeding too many calories can also contribute to obesity, which is linked to various health problems in cats. Ideally, treats shouldn’t exceed 10%–15% of your cat’s daily caloric intake.

With some cats, feeding a special treat like steak can contribute to finicky eating habits. If you offer treats too often, your cat may learn to avoid eating in favor of getting the “good stuff.” Keep treats as exactly that—treats.

maine coon cat eating treats outside
Image By: Nikola Cedikova, Shutterstock

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Conclusion

Cats enjoy the occasional treat of human food as much as dogs, but that doesn’t mean it’s safe. Steak is one of the few human foods that you can safely feed your cat, as long as you’re only feeding cooked, lean, plain steak in moderation.

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Featured Image Credit: Zhuravlev Andrey, Shutterstock

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