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Is it bad for a dog to eat cat food?

Started 1381584434.42 in Pet Lovers | Last reply 1382569215.3 by kingtut

We have a 10 year old yorkie. He's very healthy and still acts like a puppy.

We also have 3 cats. We feed the cats canned and dry food (Eukanuba Hairball control) and our dog gets Eukanuba dry

Our dog likes the dry cat food. He's constantly eating their food. I think that he is being bossy, but he likes it. Is there any harm feeding him the cat food instead of dog food?

Sometimes I catch Nauti (a cat), eating the dog food. They all are healthy, so does it matter?

God is Great, Beer is Good and People are Crazy.

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mima1381584602.4314548 PostsRegistered 10/19/2004KS

I have no firsthand experience, but I have read it isn't good. Their needs are different such as fat content, etc.

Mima

luvpoos1381587537.6536051 PostsRegistered 5/3/2006Kingston Ma

I don't have a cat, but I don't think I would recommend it either. They each have different needs. You might want to talk with your vet about his opinion on this the next time you are there.

you can't always get what you want, but if you try sometime, well you just might find, that you get what you need...The Rolling Stones

JeanLouise­Finch1381595232.9311143 PostsRegistered 10/3/2011

Are you sure your dog "likes" the cat food or is he just being a dog (no impulse control)? Dogs will usually eat anything they can get anytime they can get it whereas cats will nibble off and on throughout the day.

When we first brought our dog home we moved the cats' food away from any main areas where the dog would be and relocated it to the laundry room which was supposed to be off limits for him. Because he's nosy by nature and was still learning our expectations, he would sneak in the laundry room and steal the cat food. We learned we had to keep the door completely closed or it was a constant battle to keep him out of there. I know there are owners who will disagree with me, but after we got an electric training collar for him all his bad habits went away. We can now leave the laundry door open and he stays out. The funny thing is that one of the cats decided she likes using his water bowl in the kitchen. He's learned about being gentle with the cats, but it's kinda funny to see a big dog and a small cat in a stand-off and the cat winning. LOL

There's a reason why there are different foods for different kinds pets. I wouldn't purposely feed one kind of pet's food to another.

hyacinth0031381605532.756668 PostsRegistered 11/8/2005

It is overall not a good thing.

Dogs and cats have different nutritional needs. Cat food is higher in fat, which is why dogs like it!

An occasional bite won't hurt anything. But it is NOT recommended to feed them both the same.

Hyacinth

JamicaJamm­er1381606616.382344 PostsRegistered 1/14/2013

Funny - was just discussing this yesterday with my neighbor as she's watching my critters this coming week while we're on vacation.

I think the cat food's too high in protein for dogs.

luvmyteddy1381609054.1738682 PostsRegistered 9/4/2010Royals/Chiefs

Dogs have a harder time digesting cat food and with the higher content of meat and such can make them fat. There's a reason for both.

I feed my cat up high and my dog is always hoping he will drop some which he does. A tiny, tiny bit won't hurt them. My cat will not touch dog food.

Must love dogs and cats

Floppo1381627883.313518 PostsRegistered 4/7/2012

Cat food is way too high in protein for dogs and it can give them a very explosive case of the "runs". And of course dogs love the remains of the day via litter pan. Have a fortress around my cats litter pan and the cat's food is served up on a high area.

depglass1381768315.8324150 PostsRegistered 11/14/2006

It might be bad for the cats that get short changed.

Nadjalu1381773391.3071971 PostsRegistered 9/7/2007
It is fact cat food is a much higher protein and fat content than dog food. It won't hurt him other than make him gain weight, which can be dangerous and unhealthy. Now the cat eating the dog food is dangerous. Cat food has a special nutrient that cats need to live, dog food doesn't have it. So the cat can get extremely sick, even die if eating mostly dog food. It is best they eat their own.

BonnieBelle1381774030.41319443 PostsRegistered 4/13/2007

I feed ferals (all spayed/neutered), and my dog insists on having a few pieces of their dry food in the morning when I'm getting it ready to put out to them and then in the afternoon, I give them can food along with the dry and I give her a few morsels of their canned food. She loves it. I don't know if it's good for her, but it's our routine now going on 7 years.

Last edited on 10/14/2013

Topaz Gem1381775133.7616001 PostsRegistered 10/31/2007Scenic New Hampshire
On 10/14/2013 BonnieBelle said:

I feed ferals (all spayed/neutered), and my dog insists on having a few pieces of their dry food in the morning when I'm getting it ready to put out to them and then in the afternoon, I give them can food along with the dry and I give her a few morsels of their canned food. She loves it. I don't know if it's good for her, but it's our routine now going on 7 years.

It sounds like you're giving it to your dog as a treat and not for his primary diet. In that case, I think it would be okay. I bet that he looks forward to it every morning. Smile

Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower. ~ Albert Camus








Indy-Blond­e21381776827.42699 PostsRegistered 9/23/2013Indy

Cat food is normally higher in protein and fat than dog food. Plus cat food has taurine in it which I don't think dog food has....so no, I wouldn't let your dog eat the cat food. When I had a dog, I let my cats eat free-choice by keeping the cat food up where the dog couldn't reach it.

Formerly OK4aBlonde2

BonnieBelle1381785129.2719443 PostsRegistered 4/13/2007
On 10/14/2013 Topaz Gem said:
On 10/14/2013 BonnieBelle said:

I feed ferals (all spayed/neutered), and my dog insists on having a few pieces of their dry food in the morning when I'm getting it ready to put out to them and then in the afternoon, I give them can food along with the dry and I give her a few morsels of their canned food. She loves it. I don't know if it's good for her, but it's our routine now going on 7 years.

It sounds like you're giving it to your dog as a treat and not for his primary diet. In that case, I think it would be okay. I bet that he looks forward to it every morning. Smile

Yes, she does. She's 12 and the only thing that gets her up and going in the morning is when she hears me with the cat food, LOL!!

glmama1382048881.68719970 PostsRegistered 12/8/2006

Um, if it is, my dog's in trouble. {#emotions_dlg.crying} We have a bigger auto-feeder type container for our cat food and I often find my dog sneaking bites out of it (only holds dry food, of course). When the cat isn't in the kitchen, and if I remember, I try to pick it up off the floor. The big problem is that dogs who eat cat food gain weight. So this is not good. My dog gets 3/4 cup of food for breakfast and dinner as per my vet. He was looking like a little keg on legs for a few months until I realized he was eating the cat food!

Over 40. Dark hair. Fair, with mild-moderate Rosacea. Finicky skin. Did I mention--Gorgeous? ;)

Tissyanne1382056475.9433572 PostsRegistered 12/6/2012
Kittens that are fed dog food instead of cat/kitten food usually have sight problems. I don't know about dogs eating cat food.

I love my family, which includes two cats.

Luv2Decora­te1382131393.3076438 PostsRegistered 5/2/2008Floating on Lake Michigan

I don't know if there is anything I can do about it. We feed the cats can food once a day and we keep dry cat and dry dog food out all of the time.

One of my cats likes dog food too. Our yorkie hasn't gained weight and he's active. He hasn't had any "blow outs" either{#emotions_dlg.lol}.

God is Great, Beer is Good and People are Crazy.

Proudmommy1382132633.381 PostsRegistered 10/18/2013
So I have the same problem...only my brat parti poodle who does have very sensitive skin, requiring him to eat a no grain diet LOVES our kitty's Iams hairball control. Now he's refusing to eat his normal food! So pet problems continue..put the kitty food up high, I suppose if he gets hungry enough he will eat his food!

Floppo1382386879.09518 PostsRegistered 4/7/2012
On 10/18/2013 Luv2Decorate said:

I don't know if there is anything I can do about it. We feed the cats can food once a day and we keep dry cat and dry dog food out all of the time.

One of my cats likes dog food too. Our yorkie hasn't gained weight and he's active. He hasn't had any "blow outs" either{#emotions_dlg.lol}.

Luv2Decorate---Is there a way of putting your cat's food on a high place? I have to keep all my cat's food on a high counter area (exclusively for them) in a unused breakfast room.

Otherwise I'd have 5 dogs living it up ---have a folding pet fence around the litter pan as well.That's dessert otherwise. {#emotions_dlg.crying}

kingtut1382569215.3402 PostsRegistered 10/6/2004

My dog loves dry cat food -- that is all I give my two kitties -- so I put it up high enough that he can;t reach it -- but I do give it to him as a treat -- the vet says he shouldn't have it but he over 15 now and I like to spoil him -- that and cheese are his treats -- or if I have any meat. He of course thinks the kitty box is a gourmet restaurant -- don't think he eats anything from there just drags it into the living room. He also likes preeaten cat food -- one of the cats eats too fast and spits it up and I have to rush to clean it up before the dog eats it.

The cats will not eat dog food -- one time a long while ago I ran out of cat food on a stormy day and thought just once dog food would be ok -- they would have called the cruelty to animals if they knew the number.

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