Is Fish Good For Cats?
Last Updated October 10, 2020
As do most cat-parents know, their babies love fish! Try opening a can of fish and your cats will flock to you and would be more than just curious. But is this really the case? Is fish really healthy for your cats? Well, the short answer is yes - but not all fishes are healthy for your cats and fish should not be the sole diet of your cats.
The common argument for this is that fish is never part of a cat’s diet. Way back then before cats were domesticated, they did not really have access to fish and mostly preyed on other animals available to them such as birds. While this is true, fish still gives a lot of excellent benefits to cats and should not be discounted only because of what they used to do.
So what exactly can cats get from fish? Well, for this article we will only focus on the fishes that we use in our cat food - tilapia, salmon, and fish oils.
We actually covered the benefits of salmon for your cats, so here is a quick summary of what your cats can get from salmon:
“...salmon is actually considered as a superfood as it is high in Omega 3 fatty acid which is good for the heart and lessens cholesterol. Additionally, Vitamin B12 and B6 come with your salmon to fight anemia and metabolize protein in just one serving. It also contains Vitamin A to improve immunity and strengthen bones. Furthermore, potassium, selenium, and niacin are very helpful especially for nursing and pregnant feline mothers to lactate and produce good and healthy milk for the litter.”
Salmon is truly a superfood that your cats can benefit from! It's important to note though that it is still important for your cats to have a balanced diet.
Similar to salmon, tilapia is also packed with nutrients. Tilapia is a good source for Protein and Omega 3 fatty acid (although not as much as salmon) and Omega 6 fatty acid. Protein is used by your cats to maintain muscle support and development and energy while omega 3 fatty acid is good for your cat’s heart. Omega 6 fatty acids keep your cat’s cholesterol under control and keep their fur coat shiny. They also prepare your muscle cells to respond to insulin -- the hormone that helps turn sugar which ultimately gives them energy too. All these makes sure that your cat stays active and healthy.
Various studies show that Fish oil Supplements are also quite beneficial for your cats. According to AMC Chicago (Animal Medical Center of Chicago), here are the benefits of fish oil for your pets:
Protects the heart.
Fish oil has been found to reduce the heart’s vulnerability to developing an irregular heart rhythm, called atrial fibrillation. Additionally, it can act as an anti-coagulant and prevent blood clots from forming in cats with heart disease.
Provides support for dry, flaky skin in allergy pets.
Giving fish oil to pets with allergies may reduce their itching by decreasing their body’s production or release of potent stimulators of inflammation, called cytokines.
Helps slow down the progression of kidney disease.
In failing kidneys, fish oil may lower elevated blood pressure, decrease undesired protein loss in urine, and reduce the production of pro-inflammatory substances that aggravate kidneys.
In a study of 146 cats with kidney disease, cats fed diets supplemented with omega 3 fatty acids lived a median of 17 months compared to 7 months for those who were not supplemented.
Aids arthritic joints.
Fish oil decreases the production of potent prostaglandins that stimulate inflammation in the joints. Arthritic dogs and cats given fish oil are more comfortable and agile than those not supplemented.
Improves neurologic development and cognitive function.
A Hill’s Pet Nutrition 2012 study found supplementing puppies with DHA increased their ability to learn and retain certain skills when compared to those not receiving additional DHA.
Older pets suffering from cognitive dysfunction had improved recognition of family members and other dogs when supplemented with fish oil. Additionally, it decreased pattern-pacing behavior in these pets.
Lowers blood triglyceride levels.
Supplementing patients with fish oil may decrease harmful triglyceride levels in some patients. This is especially critical in pets suffering from heart disease, pancreatitis and inflammatory bowel disease.
Cats and fish go together, however it is important to note that like all pet foods, cat foods with fish should be always complete. It is not advisable to just feed your cats these types of fishes as their main diet. The food you give them should also contain other ingredients that would give them the other nutrients that they need in order to stay strong, healthy, and active. This is actually what BidaBest does - fish (tilapia and salmon) and fish oil supplements are ingredients in their cat food together with other ingredients to keep the cat food healthy and balanced for your cat.