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Differences between Cat and Dog Food

author Lucy Byrne | Health and diet

Cat and dog food are not different only by the picture on the package. There are differences in the contents as well. It’s not wrong to say that a cat is no dog. And their nutrition needs are no exception. They are different in certain aspects. If you give dog food to cats or vice versa, you could observe your pet is not doing well after some time, it starts to suffer and even some more serious health issues occur.

Cats will do worse. They lack some enzymes thanks to which they are able to get some important stuff and they need to be given those directly in the food. One of them is vitamin A. While a dog’s body is able to transform it from beta-carotene, cats can’t do that. That’s why vitamin A is added to their food, most commonly in the form of livers which have plenty of it. And why is it important for cats to have enough of this vitamin? Besides other things, it maintains eyes and skin healthy.

Also, cats are not able to synthesize amino sulfonic acid Taurine which works as prevention of heart diseases. Therefore, quality cat food contains it while it doesn’t have to be in dog food. We can find it in lower concentrations in almost all animal tissues.

On the contrary to cats, dogs can create arachidonic fatty acid. It is very important for the quality of skin, blood clotting or proper functioning of reproductive system. It is contained in animal fats in cat food and these contain more animal fats than dog food.

Another difference between cat and dog dry food is the content of proteins. Cats need more proteins. For cats as exclusive carnivores, the proteins are vital. This is the main reason why you shouldn’t give cat dry food to your dog. They are much more calorie-dense than dog dry food because of proteins and fats.

Dog eating cat food (even though it has good quality) would start gaining weight very soon, suffer from diarrhoea or vomit. Also, inflammation of pancreas might occur. On the other hand, cat eating dog dry food would be malnourished and would start to compensate the lack of proteins in food by using its own muscle tissue.

Try to have a look at dog and cat dry food, from one producer in a perfect case, and compare their contents of nutrients. You will soon see the differences. Cat food will contain significantly more proteins, less saccharides and you will find taurine in them on the contrary to dog dry food.

Besides the contents, these two pets also differ in the frequency of eating. While dogs, as the offsprings of wolfs  – occasional hunters, are used to eat in longer time periods, cats hunt and eat in smaller amounts a couple of times a day.. Therefore, they can have their dry food available all day.