Can cats eat sausage, or is it the wurst thing to feed them?
A cat’s diet should be based on meat, so sausages could be the perfect snack for your feline.
Whether they are a treat between meals, a way of showing your love, or a complement to your kitty’s normal food, sausages are bound to be wolfed down by most cats.
Can cats eat sausage, though, or are you making the wurst kind of mistake when you offer a piece of banger?
What is a sausage made of?
Sausages are a great British tradition and come in myriad varieties.
The basic ingredients are common to most types, though, namely:
- Sausage meat— Bangers and other sausages usually contain pork, beef, chicken, or turkey. Most sausage manufacturers won’t be explicit about what the exact composition is, but it’s a fair bet that the largest meat component will be pork
- Generous amounts of fat— Many sausages contain large amounts of trans fats, which add flavour and cause the typical bang when the sausage bursts its skin during cooking
- Seasoning, herbs, and spices—Salt is used in abundance in most sausages, and other commonly-used herbs include coriander, mace, marjoram, black pepper, and cloves
- Grains and fillers—Cereal flours and starches from rice, potatoes, or corn are often used to bulk up the sausages and hide the fact that the meat content may be as low as 32%
With a high proportion of meat and fat, you could be forgiven for thinking that sausages are good for your feline.
A closer look will reveal that there are some dangers you need to be aware of, though.
Nothing better than a good cleansing ritual after snack time!
Is there anything dangerous in the average banger?
A cat’s natural diet is a fine balance of the various food groups, and upsetting that balance can have serious consequences.
The dangers in sausages mainly concern the:
- Fat content
- Use of cereals and fillers
- Preservatives and artificial additives
- Salt and flavour enhancers
- Meat quality
Fat is great for a cat as a secondary source of energy, but too much fat can lead to:
- Heart issues
Cats have naturally high levels of HDL cholesterol, and the level of calories from fat in your cat’s nutrition should not be above 20%. Sausages often contain up to 30%.
Use of cereals and fillers
The fillers used in many sausages are predominantly carbohydrates, which are definitely unhealthy for your feline.
Carbs are an excellent source of fast-burn energy for activities like hunting or fleeing, but any unused carbs are quickly stored as fatty deposits.
In tandem with this, a carb-rich diet can cause lethargy as the body struggles to cope with the massive influx of sugar into the bloodstream.
- Mobility issues
- Diabetes and pancreatitis
- Liver ailments
Preservatives and artificial additives
Many sausages contain preservatives and additives to enhance their shelf life.
While all of these are fit for human consumption, cats can react badly to the sulfites and nitrates used in sausages, salami, and similar products.
Too much sulphur dioxide, potassium sulphite, and sodium sulphite in your cat's nutrition can lead to a deficiency in Vitamin B1 or thiamine.
Thiamine deficiency in cats has been linked to neurological issues, and even small amounts of sulphites should be avoided to ensure the thiamine in your cat’s diet is not destroyed.
Salt and flavour enhancers
Cats should not eat too much salt and need a relatively bland diet.
Sodium is necessary for maintaining water balance in your cat’s body, and excess salt will normally be excreted in the urine, but too much sodium can be an issue, particularly if your feline suffers from:
- Urinary tract infections (UTIs), such as cystitis or bladder stones
- Kidney insufficiency
- Liver weakness
Other herbs and flavour enhancers should also be avoided as they add nothing nutritionally and may even be dangerous.
You can never be 100% sure what meat has gone into a sausage.
- Food allergies
- Digestive issues, such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), constipation, nausea, vomiting, or diarrhoea
A kitten’s digestive and immune systems may not yet be fully developed, and senior cats‘ bodies begin to lose functionality over time.
“I ate the whole pack of sausages. Again.”
What should cats be eating?
As the person responsible for what your cat eats, the more understanding of cat nutrition you have, the better choices you can make to keep your feline healthy and happy.
Cats‘ nutritional needs are fairly simple, based on the fact that they are obligate carnivores.
A cat’s diet should be made up solely of:
- Animal protein
- Animal fat
- The correct vitamins and minerals
The largest component of your cat’s diet should be animal protein as this delivers the amino acids—like taurine—your feline needs for:
- Muscle build
- Skin and coat health
- Organ development and maintenance
Evolution as predators has made cats highly efficient at processing animal protein—far more so than vegetable sources.
The efficiency with which a cat can metabolise protein is measured through the biological value (BV) of the various protein sources. The BV of the best plant proteins is considerably lower than that of the worst meat proteins, as follows:
Animal protein, including:
Vegetable protein, such as:
To be on the safe side, you should be able to identify the animal protein your cat is eating to avoid potential food sensitivities. Sausage producers are rarely clear about what has gone into their sausages.
Healthy protein sources, Untamed-style!
Image (c) Untamed
Fat plays a role not only as a secondary source of energy for your cat but also as a deliverer of:
- Essential fatty acids for cell integrity
- Great taste that your feline will go wild for
Fat levels in your cat’s food should not be too high, though, and many sausages deliver too much of a good thing.
The correct vitamins and minerals
Cats need vitamins A, B complex, D, and E as part of their diet. They also need the following minerals:
Good cat food provides the correct proportions of vitamins and minerals as imbalances can have serious consequences, examples of which are:
- Too much vitamin A has been linked to bone malformation in kittens
- Too much of any of the minerals can wreck a cat’s water balance mechanisms and cause kidney or liver problems
Sausages may or may not offer the correct quantities of vitamins and minerals. As such, they are a risk you would be best to avoid.
The bottom line is that sausages, even though they contain a lot of meat and fat, don’t offer the correct proportions of the food groups that your feline needs.
What does Untamed have to offer?
Untamed cat food understands exactly what your cat needs and wants.
Our recipes started out as homemade meals and, since then, have been further developed to give your kitty the best of the best.
What you get with Untamed is:
- Exclusively animal protein
- Vet-formulated nutrition
- Human-grade ingredients
Exclusively animal protein
Each can of Untamed contains twice as much protein as you would find in most commercial cat foods.
With this amount of goodness, you can be sure that even the fussiest cat will love Untamed.
We make sure that every tin of Untamed contains the correct balance of protein, fat, vitamins, and minerals.
Our food is complete and balanced and contains no known allergens. After switching to Untamed, you may even notice that your cat has fewer problems with:
- Weight management and calorie control
- Shedding and hairballs
- Regular eating instead of boom-and-bust gorging
The quality of our ingredients determines the quality of nutrition your cat gets.
We make sure that only the best ingredients go into each tin of Untamed, and we are upfront about what is in our products.
Our ingredients lists are short, concise, and consistent to ensure you can entrust your kitty’s wellbeing to Untamed.
We also believe that a healthy cat deserves a healthy planet to live on.
To live up to this, we strive to be an ethical company, so we:
- Source our meat and fish from sustainable and cruelty-free suppliers
- Ensure our packaging is 100% recyclable
- Operate as a carbon-neutral manufacturer
Now is the best time to get your kitty on the road to health and happiness by trying Untamed!
The Untamed range in a monthly meal pack.
Image (c) Untamed
How can you get your paws on Untamed?
Getting Untamed for your kitty couldn’t be easier.
No need to go hunting for Untamed in the supermarket or pet shop—we come to your door.
To get our cat food delivered to your home, all you have to do is:
- Give us some info about your feline friend
- Create a tailored meal plan
- Order your first trial pack online
Once your trial pack arrives, your kitty can start exploring the taste explosions in every Untamed tin.
Your pantry will be replenished every month thanks to our convenient cat food subscription service. We'll make sure you don’t run out, and you should start seeing the following:
The Untamed effect
After a week
Within two months
After four months
- Cut out the unhealthy snacks like sausages from day one
- Gradually introduce Untamed by mixing it in with the previous diet
- Watch as your feline gradually ignores their old food in favour of Untamed
Check out our other guides to what cats can or cannot eat: