For us humans, salami is a great quick snack or a tasty option to put on our pizza. The mix of spices and ingredients makes salami a very popular tasty treat but while we get to enjoy and savor its flavor, but can cats have salami with us?
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Cat’s are obligate carnivores after all, they gain no nutrition from fruits and veggies with most of their daily diet being centered around meat.
However cats digest and process food differently to us humans, what we can eat on a regular basis, may have some underlying ingredients that could be harmful or even fatal to your furry companion.
It is therefore important for every owner to know the dos and don’ts if you’re considering feeding your cat a piece of salami as a tasty treat, or if you accidentally drop some as a pleasant surprise for your feline friend.
So, Can Cats Have Salami?
There is no real yes or no answer to this, it all comes down to moderation. Salami should never be a replacement for your cat’s regular food diet, and there are a few reasons for this.
For starters, salami has high amounts of fat content meaning too much of it can put your cat at risk of obesity and other weight related issues, and since cats rarely move around and get home stretches in any way, they won’t be working that fat off.
The high amount of salt intake is also harmful for cats. It is well known that high amounts of salt can put humans at risk for several health issues ranging from hypertension to kidney disease, so for cats with smaller bodies and weaker immune systems, high amounts of salt can cause similar issues down the line like kidney or renal disease.
Cats already get enough salt from their regular diet and extra salt will also only make them want to drink a lot more water.
The spices and ingredients mixed in with salami is another major reason they can be harmful to cats like chili peppers and paprika. Garlic is probably the worst offender, appearing on the ASPCA’s list of foods that are toxic to cats, it contains chemicals that can damage or even destroy red blood cells and while being a tasty ingredient to us, it is worth avoiding for your cat.
Finally, while it is rare, because of the way salami is prepared it has been the culprit of salmonella poisoning in the past, with the 2010 outbreak specifically impacting hundreds of people. While salmonella affects cats slightly differently, it can still cause nasty side effects like diarrhea and abdominal pain, and is always something to keep in mind.
Cats That Should Avoid Salami
While salami can be unhealthy for cats, try to avoid giving it to pregnant cats and kittens specifically since it can be very harmful to their development.
Just like pregnant mothers, deli meats like salami are advised to be avoided, in cats it could infect them with septicemia and endotoxemia which can spread to different organs and cause pneumonia, potentially causing a miscarriage. Kittens should also be avoided to protect their developing immune systems.
Because of the many toxins and bacteria lurking inside salami, it can make it even more likely for kittens to feel nasty side effects and be sick.
This also makes them much more vulnerable to salmonella poisoning since their immune system does not fully mature until 12 months of age, so if you do decide to feed a kitten salami it should always be a very small amount on very special occasions.
Best Cat Food Options
When it comes to keeping your cat healthy and happy, it’s important to choose the highest quality food. Our team has curated a list of the best cat foods, based on customer reviews, quality ingredients, and price.
How And When To Feed Cats Salami
Salami is definitely not the healthiest option to give your cat, however it’s completely normal for them to crave the taste of it and want a slice now and again. If you do decide to give into those sad eyes and give them a piece of the tasty snack, there are a few things to consider to make sure you don’t harm your cat.
As much as cats may look like they like salami, and they do, an owner should never replace a cat’s regular kibble or wet food routine with salami since they provide all the supplements a cat needs. Salami should therefore be an occasional snack or special reward for a trip to the vet or a long hard day of training.
It should also be given to cats in small and only a few nibbles so they don’t consume too many of the fatty ingredients. Because it is a meat, salami also does have some nutrients that are beneficial to a cat especially with its high levels of protein and vitamin B, so it works best as an occasional tasty treat for your feline to enjoy.
When looking for salami to give your cat make sure to buy the healthiest options if you can. Try to find salami low in sodium and containing no other additional spices or ingredients, and try to avoid the more popular commercial salami.
Lardo and Prosciutto are often seen as the most cat friendly variants with Genoa Salami being the worst for all its added ingredients and spices.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I Feed My Cat Any Other Deli Meats?
Deli meats should be generally avoided, however if it’s all you have in the house or are looking to share just a little bit with your cat, chicken, turkey and beef are the slightly healthier and more beneficial options.
Always make sure the meat is fully cooked, as raw meat can make a cat very unwell and sick.
If your cat is feeling a bit peckish or you want to reward them and all you have is that spare salami in the fridge, it will be okay to give them small bite sizes to snack on and keep them happy, just try not to feed it to them regularly and always stick to veterinary recommended foods if you are unsure on health risks.
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