Yeah, yeah. Felix is a member of your family and enjoys sharing your meals. But is it a good idea to give him people food?
The simple answer is: sometimes.
It’s probably not a good idea to allow your cat to sit at the dinner table or even to sit under it begging for morsels from your plate. At some point that will become an annoyance and may lead to unwelcomed leaps onto your lap and table top. More importantly, people food doesn’t have all the nutrients cats and kittens need. In fact, most of their diet should be a nutritionally complete cat food. And it should be eaten from their bowls.
That said, Felix may be allowed the occasional table scrap if you choose feline-friendly snacks. That is to say, cats are carnivores. They need meat protein for a strong heart, good vision, and a healthy reproductive system. So by all means share cooked beef, chicken, turkey, and lean deli meats, but nothing raw. Cooked or canned fish also is fine; it helps their vision. But sushi is a no no.
Having white rice with your meal? Don’t invite Ms Kitty. You can try brown rice, but you probably will need to mash it first; cats like smaller grains like couscous and polenta, but they must be cooked for proper digestion.
Ms Kitty will no doubt turn her nose up at vegetables and fruits, but try slipping her cucumber, cantaloupe, steamed broccoli or mashed potatoes. They’re a rich source of vitamins and water.
Felix and Ms Kitty may take more of a liking to things like eggs (cooked, of course) and cheese, but only in moderation. In fact, any people food should be shared in moderation and only occasionally to avoid weight and health problems.
Speaking of which, skip the milk (cats don’t need it and it may cause diarrhea) and shun such toxic foods as chocolate, grapes, raisins, onions, garlic, macadamia nuts, bread dough and alcohol.