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Can Cats Eat Vienna Sausages? What You Need to Know!

There’s no question about whether cats love meat or not. These obligate carnivores have a way of suddenly appearing next to you whenever the slightest aroma of chicken, turkey, beef, or salmon lifts into the air! Cats are food motivated, and natural predators and will try just about anything to get their teeth into your homecooked dinner.

Unfortunately, cats sometimes grab the wrong types of foods. Ones that smell like meat but are processed, full of preservatives, and lack the nutritional value that your cat needs. Vienna sausages are an example of processed meat. If your cat has run off with a few chunks of sausage, you don’t need to be concerned. The only time to be concerned is if it happens frequently or in large amounts. Too much Vienna sausage will cause discomfort in your cat, and they’ll be much better off without it.

In this article, we’ll discuss what Vienna sausages are made up of that make them so unhealthy, what to do if your cat eats some, what beneficial value they have, and what your cat should be eating instead.

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What Makes Up a Vienna Sausage?

Vienna Sausages differ in ingredients, size, taste, preparation, and packaging throughout the world, but they all typically contain a number of different ingredients. The meat ingredients are usually cut-offs of pork, beef, or chicken, which are grounded into a paste and stuffed into an edible thin casting. For flavor, salt, cloves, coriander, garlic powder, onion powder, nutmeg, and dry red pepper are added to the paste.

Cooked meats are an ideal option to treat your cat with because their ancestors hunted birds, fish, and other wildlife to eat in the wild. Processed meat, along with all the salt, spices, additives, and preservatives which make up Vienna sausages, are not designed for your cat’s body, and they’ll struggle to digest it.

vienna sausage on wooden cutting board
Image Credit: ra3rn, Shuttterstock

Can Vienna Sausages Have Negative Effects on My Cat?

If your cat has eaten a Vienna sausage today or in the past, they should be okay. What is dangerous is if they’re consuming the food on a daily basis or as part of their diet. There are several ingredients in Vienna sausages that can have harmful effects on your cat. Both garlic and onion are inside the food and can cause digestive issues in cats and should be avoided whole and in foods that contain them.

Sodium is necessary in a cat’s diet; however, the high levels that Vienna sausages contain are too much for your cat’s body and can cause them to have diarrhea, stomach discomfort, vomiting, excessive thirst, loss of appetite, and can produce other unusual behavior.

High levels of additives and preservatives are bad for humans, but especially for cats, and can result in a vitamin B1 deficiency called Thiamine. It can cause serious neurological problems, with some symptoms being that of falling, dilated pupils, seizures, curling of the neck, a strange head tilt, and many others.

Not only can Vienna sausages leave your cat in discomfort, but its high-calorie content will cause unhealthy weight gain if given to your cat frequently. As cute as it is to have a chubby cat, obese cats are at a high risk of developing diabetes, liver disease, arthritis, skin problems, etc., along with a higher likelihood of cancer.

An average cat has a lifespan of between 10 to 15 years, but an overweight cat has a much shorter lifespan of only 5 to 10 years. A cat isn’t supposed to be fat, and their weight will interfere with their play and take away from the happy life they deserve.

cat eating food
Image Credit: Seattle Cat Photo, Shutterstock

Are There Any Benefits?

Vienna sausages offer some benefits to cats, although there are many better product options and meats available that offer the same benefits without the list of negatives associated with them. We highly recommend choosing unprocessed meats and fish over Vienna sausages as a treat.

However, Vienna sausages do contain protein which is necessary for a cat’s diet. Protein helps your cat’s body develop well and provides them with good, strong muscles and the energy they need to survive, play, hunt, explore, and stay active and healthy.

Another factor is that it’s made up of meats, which cats are drawn to and enjoy. Many cat foods contain fillers, corn, and soy ingredients that don’t appeal to cats and don’t resemble their natural diet.

calico cat having treats
Image Credit: Andriy Blokhin, Shutterstock

What Foods Can My Cat Eat?

Vienna Sausages aren’t toxic to cats but aren’t good for them either, so you may be wondering which foods in your pantry are safe to share with your kitty. The good news is that there are plenty but remember that a cat’s snack should only take up 10% of their calorie intake for the day.

Meat and Fish

As we’ve already discussed, cats need meat in their diets for energy, strong muscles, good vision, and a healthy heart. You can offer pieces of cooked chicken, beef, turkey, and fish. The omega-3 fatty acids also help with regulating their heart rate, arthritis, and kidney disease and prevent blood clotting in cats that suffer from heart disease.

Always make sure the meat and fish you give your cat has been properly cooked to avoid salmonella poisoning.

kitten eating
Image Credit: Okssi, Shutterstock

Oats

You may be surprised to read this one, but it’s true – cats can eat, and benefit from, oats. They’re high in protein, fats, and vitamins, and cats are able to digest them well.

Eggs

Your cat will not only enjoy eggs, but they’ll benefit from them as they contain protein and essential amino acids. Although they can be eaten raw, we suggest giving them to your cat cooked to lower the risk of salmonella.

Vegetables

You’ve probably never seen your cat meow and get excited over vegetables, but they’re good for your kitty. Vegetables contain vitamins, fiber, and water that aid in digestion and boosts your fur baby’s immune system.

cat eating eggs and veggies
Image Credit: Anastasiya-Tsiasemnikava, Shutterstock

Cheese

If your cat can handle the dairy, cheese is a great treat choice that is high in protein and may be more beneficial to your cat than a bowl of milk. However, if your cat’s tummy is sensitive, avoid dairy altogether as it’ll leave them in discomfort and with bad gas.

Foods To Avoid Giving Your Cat

If your cat shows interest in a certain food, it doesn’t mean it’s safe for them to eat. There are several foods around your house that may look innocent but will have negative results on your cat’s health.

  • Chocolate –contains theobromine which, if large amounts are consumed, is toxic to cats.
  • Raisins– can cause renal failure in cats as they’re highly toxic.
  • Macadamia Nuts –can cause vomiting, hyperthermia, and tremors in cats.
  • Bread Dough– may cause your cat’s stomach to bloat and may result in bowel obstruction.
  • Alcohol – just a small amount of alcohol can cause ethanol poisoning in cats.

If you’re working with or drinking any of these dangerous foods, don’t leave them open and unsupervised. Your cat is less likely to find themselves eating the wrong things if you’ve fed them adequately with the right foods, kept these foods in a safe place that your cat can’t get into, or avoided having them in your house altogether.

feeding cat
Image Credit: Dora Zett, Shuterstock

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Conclusion

Although your cat may benefit from the protein found in Vienna sausages, they won’t benefit from much else. Although it isn’t toxic to cats, if they eat them frequently, they will suffer from the high levels of sodium, additives, preservatives, and calories that Vienna sausages contain.

Instead, treat your cat with beneficial foods such as unprocessed meats and fish, eggs, cheese, vegetables, and oats. Store toxic household foods away in cupboards your cat can’t get into and never leave them unsupervised when cooking or snacking on them.

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Featured Image Credit: Namphon2U-Shutterstock

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