It’s difficult not to treat your furry friend to a little piece of your meal, but there’s always some concern as to whether or not our cats can indulge in the same foods that we do. That concern is amplified with foods that can cause health-related issues for us. Hard-boiled eggs, for example, are healthy and nutritious but can cause problems with cholesterol if we eat them in excess. So, is it safe to feed our cats hard-boiled eggs? Luckily, the answer is yes!
Eggs Are Nutritious, Even for Cats
First, we should mention that hard-boiled eggs provide a great source of protein for us humans and also for our cats. Cats are meat-eaters by nature, which means that their diet is one of very high protein. According to an article published by the ASPCA, cats are “obligate carnivores,” meaning their diet must consist of meat. They also state that cats don’t process carbohydrates well, so their calories should come mostly from protein.
Enter: the hardboiled egg! Eggs are high in protein and are a great food for your kitty.
Do Eggs Need To Be Hard-Boiled?
Most certainly not. Eggs provide the same nutrition to your cat regardless of how they’re cooked, as long as they are fully cooked. Raw egg or undercooked egg can be just as detrimental to your cat’s well-being as it can be to yours according to leading experts at Purina.
To be on the safe side, make sure that any egg you serve your cat is entirely cooked. This means sunny-side-up, over easy, or any other runny egg shouldn’t make its way to your cat’s food dish.
How Should Eggs for My Cat Be Prepared?
It’s worth mentioning again here: make sure the eggs you serve your cat are fully cooked. Beyond that, don’t add seasonings, butter, or cheese to the eggs that you’re giving your cat. Researchers at Family Pet state that the things we add to our eggs may cause issues if consumed by cats, so keep the egg simple and unseasoned. For this reason, hard-boiled eggs are probably best.
It’s also very important to make sure that you remove the entirety of the shell; you can probably imagine pieces of shell can cause your cat to choke. If you are hard-boiling your eggs, you should also remove the thin eggshell membrane that can sometimes remain stuck to the egg, as that can also cause your cat to choke. To help further prevent choking, chop or cut the entire portion of the egg that you’re serving to your cat into small pieces that your cat can chew and swallow easily.
How Often Can Cats Eat Eggs?
Like all things in life, too much of a good thing is bad. A guide at All Feline Hospital suggests that average house cats should consume somewhere between 200 and 350 calories a day based on weight and activity levels.
Considering one hard-boiled egg contains around 100 calories, feeding your cat eggs every day or multiple times a day can quickly get out of hand. To keep your feline’s weight at a healthy level, consider adding egg to his or her diet two to three times a week or so in relatively small portions.
Can Kittens Eat Hard-Boiled Eggs?
One of the leading cat food providers suggests that eggs are just as safe for kittens as they are for fully-grown cats, so yes! However, kittens need far fewer calories than grown cats, and so kittens should be given eggs in much smaller quantities to avoid over-feeding.
Follow all of the same protocols for preparing eggs for your kitten as you would your cat: cook fully, remove all portions of the shell and shell membrane, and chop into tiny pieces that your kitten won’t have problems chewing and swallowing.
What If My Cat Doesn’t Like Hard-Boiled Eggs?
It’s no secret that cats can be exceptionally picky eaters. If your furball turns his or her nose up at the egg you’ve prepared, don’t worry. Eggs are certainly not essential for your cat’s health and well-being, so as long as you’re providing your cat a balanced diet without eggs, your cat will be perfectly fine.
So…Eggs Are Safe for Cats?
Our conclusion: yes, eggs are perfectly safe for cats to consume provided they’re fully cooked, unseasoned, entirely de-shelled, cut into small pieces, and aren’t added to their diets too often. It may seem like a high-maintenance breakfast, but the protein in an egg is great for your little kitty’s health…and did you really think owning a cat wasn’t going to be a little high maintenance?
Featured Image Credit: Leilani Angel from Unsplash, Aline de Nadai from Unsplash