20 September 2012

ask alli: is your cat vegan?

Nope!  Dish eats Castor & Pollux Organix cat food.  It's meaty.  Look how she wants it!  Look how she loves it!  Look at that maniacal glint in her eye as she realizes I'm wasting time taking pictures when I should be feeding her!

I wish I could tell you about some long journey of a thought process by which I arrived at my decision not to include my cat in my vegan bubble.  Truth is, I never fed Dish vegan food and I never felt the need to experiment with it.  What I can tell you are the reasons I'm sticking with meat-filled cat fuel, and the reasoning behind the opposing viewpoint.

There are really fantastic vegans out there who feed their cats - and even dogs! - vegan food.  Their pets can (but don't always) live very healthy lives.  When you consider it, most meaty cat food has lots of grains and veggies in it anyway.  Add some protein and taurine and you're golden.  Bonus points if your pet gets home-cooked meals full of all the nutrients they need.

I'm not making this up.  I met a bunch of vegan pet owners at the Animal Rights Conference.  They're nice peeps!  Well... most of them.  One guy, who I told you about in the above post, passed out a pamphlet peppered with errors and completely lacking supporting evidence.  It very militantly explained that your cat food is killing your cat (how exactly? not sure) and that you should switch to vegan cat food.  I'm skeptical of that guy.

Now.  I will try to impart myself to you better than the cat food's killing your cat guy.  I mean, why the heck would I endorse animal death to feed my cat when I won't even wear merino wool?

First of all, cats are undeniably carnivorous in a way that humans are not.  They have sharp teeth and claws.  They pack in calories and then sleep for most of the day.  Their stomachs are laden with enzymes perfect for the digestion of meat.  This is what Dish's body needs.

Secondly, taurine.  This is a compound found almost exclusively in meat.  It keeps cats from going blind.  BLIND.  Holy guacamole.  I don't want to take that risk for a being who depends entirely on me. I'll take responsibility for myself and my B12, but not for my sweet potato's taurine.

Moreover, Dish is ridiculously healthy.  She almost never pukes.  Her coat's always soft and shiny.  She has boundless energy (when she's not sleeping).  And she thinks her food is delicious.*  Obviously I'm not advocating the big commercial factory farm-linked brands with who knows how many bits of random animal body parts and offal ground up all together, here.  But organic, sustainable, meaty catfood is super healthy!

So because I feel this diet is what's best for my cat, I sanction the animal slaughter involved.  She's supposed to eat meat.  Just ask ANYONE.  I mean, Mother Nature.

* How do I know this?  I can read her mind.  LITERALLY.

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