can vegans own cats

Can Vegans Own Cats? 3 Valid Reasons For and 3 Against Owning a Furry Friend

There is a lot of debate surrounding veganism and pets. Can vegans own cats? What about dogs? I’ve had pets most of my life, but I see things from a different perspective now that I’m vegan. The relationship between veganism and pet ownership is complex and you’ll find out why.

Can vegans own cats?

Some people who identify as vegan choose to have cats and some don’t. One of the reasons some vegans don’t is that they feel like it’s not morally right to keep another living being in captivity. Yet, there are many vegans who do adopt cats and care for them very well.

Reasons for and against owning a cat

I have had pets from a very young age. Anything from dogs, and cats, to hamsters. Animals teach us so much about joy, respect, responsibility, and unconditional love.

Owning an animal gets a bit complex as a vegan. That’s why I decided to explore how veganism and pet ownership go together. There are several valid reasons why a vegan person could decide to own a cat and why they are against it.

Reasons for owning a cat

Can vegans own cats? Some think they can. Here are a few reasons, why some vegans don’t want to have cats or any other animal.

  1. Some feel it is wrong to keep an animal in captivity, even if the animal is well-cared for. 
  2. Others believe that animals should not be treated as property and that owning a pet perpetuates the idea that animals are here for our use and enjoyment. 
  3. Some vegans also worry about the impact their pet might have on the environment since cats typically eat meat.
Can Vegans Own Cats

Reasons against owning a cat

However, some vegans do choose to own cats. 

  1. For some, the bond they share with their cat companion is too strong to give up. 
  2. Others believe that they can make a difference in the life of their cat by providing a loving home and ensuring that the cat is taken care of. 
  3. Lastly, some decide to have a cat because they enjoy the companionship of a furry friend.

See also: Do Vegans Keep Pets? 1 Answer That Polarizes the Thriving Vegan Community

Why OWNING a cat is not the best term to use?

Using the term “own a cat” may not be the best one to use as vegans believe that animals are not property and therefore, we cannot own them. The best way to think about it is that we provide a home for them, care for them and give them love and attention when they need it. And they give us companionship, love, and cuddly relief when we need it.

What do cats eat?

Cats are obligate carnivores, which means that they require animal protein to survive. The diet of a wild cat includes both meat and vegetation, although the majority of its diet is still animal-based.

Domestic cats also typically have a diet that is mostly animal-based. However, there are still some plant-based ingredients in most commercial cat foods. And, while it might not be a large part of their diet, many cats still enjoy nibbling on grass or other plants.

2 reasons why cats can digest both animal and plant-based foods

First, cats have shorter intestines than dogs and other carnivores. This is because their intestines are not as efficient in breaking down and digesting plant-based material.

However, the shorter intestines of cats also help them absorb more nutrients from the animal-based part of their diet. Cats can extract more protein and fat from animal flesh than any other carnivore.

Another reason why cats can digest both animal and plant-based foods is that they have a higher level of gut bacteria than other carnivores. This gut bacteria helps to break down plant-based material so that it can be used by the cat’s body.

While cats are not strictly carnivorous animals, they are still able to digest and use both animal and plant-based foods. This makes them omnivores, and it is one of the reasons why they are such versatile and adaptable creatures.

What do vegans feed their cats?

There’s a lot of debate among pet owners about what the best diet is for their cat friends. For those of us who are vegan, the question becomes even more complicated. Can cats live healthily on a vegan diet?

There isn’t a ton of research on the subject, but there are some studies that suggest it might be possible. A study published in the BMC Veterinary Research found that cats who were fed a vegan diet showed no adverse effects.

There are a few things to keep in mind if you’re considering a vegan diet for your cat, though.

  1. Firstly, it’s important to make sure that the diet is complete and balanced. Cats need certain nutrients that can only be found in animal-based foods, so it’s important to work with a veterinarian or veterinary nutritionist to make sure that your cat is getting everything they need.
  2. Secondly, some cats may not do well on a vegan diet. If you notice your cat losing weight, having diarrhea, or otherwise appearing to be unhealthy, it’s important to consult with a veterinarian and make sure that the diet is right for them.
  3. If you’re considering a vegan diet for your cat, it’s important to do your research before making the change and consult with a professional to make sure that it’s the right decision for your furry friend.

Vegan pets

As more and more people adopt vegan lifestyles, they often wonder if they can extend their ethical choices to their pets. After all, companion animals are part of the family, and we want what’s best for them.

The good news is that there are vegan options for our animal friends. More and more pet food companies are offering vegan formulas, as they recognize the growing demand for animal-free products.

And which pets can be vegan? The simple answer is that any pet can theoretically be vegan, as long as their nutritional needs are met. However, some pets may do better on a non-vegan diet, so it’s important to consult with a veterinarian before making any changes.

Cats, for example, are obligate carnivores, which means that they require animal protein to survive. While there are some vegan cat foods on the market, some experts agree that it’s best to feed cats a diet that includes meat.

Dogs, on the other hand, are not obligate carnivores, and can therefore thrive on a vegan diet. Many commercial dog foods already contain plant-based ingredients. However, as with cats, it’s always best to consult with a veterinarian before making any changes to your dog’s diet.

Why adopt and not buy cats?

When I went vegan, my view of pets changed. If I bought a pug a few years ago, I wouldn’t do that today. 

There are so many reasons to adopt a cat (or any other animal) rather than buy one. Here are just a few:

  1. When you adopt a cat, you are giving a home to an animal in need. There are so many wonderful cats waiting for homes in shelters, and by adopting one you are helping to reduce the homeless pet population.
  2. Adopted cats are cheaper. The adoption fee is generally much lower than the price of purchasing a kitten from a breeder or pet store.
  3. These cats have usually been spayed or neutered, which saves you the cost of having to do this yourself.
  4. They come with a complete medical history, which can be very helpful in knowing what health problems to watch for.
  5. Usually, the adopted cats are already litter box trained.

How many stray cats are there?

There’s no denying that stray cats are a problem in many communities. But just how many of them are out there? The number of stray cats in the United States is at around 58 million.

One of the main reasons for the high number of strays is that many people don’t have their cats spayed or neutered. This causes overpopulation of cats, which in turn leads to more strays.

How can I help stray cats?

There are many ways that you can help stray cats, and every little bit makes a difference. Here are some ideas:

  • Provide food and water. Stray cats often struggle to find enough to eat and drink, so leaving out some extra food and water can help them out. Just make sure to clean up any leftovers so that they don’t attract pests.
  • Give them a place to stay. If you have an outdoor space like a porch or shed, consider setting up a little shelter for stray cats to use. They’ll appreciate having a dry, warm place to sleep, especially in bad weather.
  • Take them to the vet. If you find a stray cat that seems sick or injured, the best thing you can do is take them to the vet for treatment. Many times, these cats just need some basic care to get back on their feet.
  • Find them a home. If you’re able to care for a stray cat long-term, that’s great! But if you’re not, there are lots of people and organizations out there who would be happy to give them a forever home. You can also look for “foster homes” to temporarily care for cats until they can be placed in a permanent home.
  • Take the cat to get spayed and neutered.
  • Support your local animal shelter with food, money, toys, and blanket donations.
  • Help out by volunteering at local shelters.

Every little bit helps when it comes to stray cats, so even if you can only do one or two of these things, it will make a difference. Thank you for caring.

Key takeaways

There are a few different reasons why someone might choose to be vegan. Some do it for environmental reasons or their health. Others see it as an ethical decision based on the belief that all animals should be treated humanely.

And what does this mean for pet ownership? Can vegans own cats? The answer is yes. There are many vegan cat owners out there. While you might not be able to feed your cat a strictly vegan diet (most commercially available cat food contains animal products), you can certainly provide them with a loving home.

See also: Vegan for the Animals? Here are 5 EASY Ways to Help Them



Petra profile image

Hi, I’m Petra and for most of my life, I was an omnivore. A vegan couple made me curious about veganism, so I did some research. What I found out about the animals, our planet, and the health benefits of a vegan diet made me go vegan overnight. It’s been 5 years now and it’s been one of the best decisions of my life.

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