Why do cats like fish?

Have you ever wondered why your cat’s eyes light up every time you open a tin of sardines or tuna? 

Fish isn’t necessarily the first food you’d think of when creating a tasty diet plan for our felines to follow. 

So what is it about the taste that keeps them coming back for more? 

Well, for starters, it isn’t just all about the taste. 

Cats are actually attracted to the strong smell seafood gives off, so the second they catch a whiff of that unmistakable aroma, excitement levels instantly shoot up. Fish is also an excellent source of protein and healthy fats, making it a dietary delight for nutrient-craving bodies. 

What are the historical reasons for cats liking fish?

As cats are carnivores it makes perfect sense that, on a purely biological level, they would enjoy this type of ‘meat’..   

And yet they don’t fish; many of them don’t even like water. So where does this fondness for tuna, salmon and mackerel come from?   

One theory stretches back 5,000 years and involves the Egyptians, and rats. 

Farming was a hugely important part of life in ancient Egypt. However, communities were constantly at war with hordes of crop-destroying rodents that were leaving them without their primary source of food.   

And so farmers turned to wildcats to scare away their unwelcome visitors, luring them into their homes with baskets full of fish caught from the Nile. 

This is only historical speculation, but maybe explains why cats feature so prominently in Egyptian mythology. 

It does seem more likely that cats’ love of fish simply stems from the taste, smell, high nutritional content, and the fact they thrive on being opportunistic feeders. 

Whatever the reason for their seafood soft spot, we do know that there are many benefits to including fish in our cats’ diets. 

What are the benefits of feeding fish to your cat?

  • A fantastic source of protein. Fish is an excellent source of protein, which is critical to maintaining healthy muscles, organs, and blood vessels. As well as fuelling your cat’s bodies, proteins help ensure a functioning immune system, keeping them safe from many diseases. It's also easy to digest.
  • Packed with omega-3 fatty acids. These are found in oily fish and will give your cat's immune system a boost while promoting brain health. They also have anti-inflammatory properties, can minimize arthritis issues, and are known for helping combat dull, lifeless coats.
  • Vitamins and minerals. Fish contains a treasure trove of essential vitamins and minerals that are vital for a cat's health.
  • Low in fat. Obesity in cats is a common problem, and one that poses a significant health risk. Due to the fact fish is a low-fat, low-calorie food – but still packed with essential nutrients – it’s an ideal addition to any weight loss plan.
  • Taste. Mealtimes should be enjoyed. A high percentage of felines find fish mouth-wateringly tasty. If it’s not already part of their diet, fish can be a tasty alternative to other foods.

Should your cat’s diet be all fish and seafood?

Fish, or seafood in general, can be a superb addition to a cat’s bowl.  

The benefits are there for all pet parents to see, and for all feline’s to taste. 

But should it make up the majority of their diet?  

Like with all ingredients, Reveal believes fish should be served as part of a complete and well-balanced diet, one that contains a nutritious spread of proteins, fats, oils, vitamins, minerals and carbohydrates. The more variety, the wider the range of nutrients their bodies are able to thrive on.   

Too much of any one ingredient can throw the body out of balance, while too much fish has the potential to cause other issues, too. 

For example, too much of those body-boosting fatty acids we mentioned earlier can lead to vitamin E deficiency and troublesome inflammatory conditions. Likewise, tuna’s high mercury levels can have an adverse effect on health if our cats are left to over indulge.  

It’s important to stress though that these issues are rare and only likely to arise if you were to feed your felines nothing but fish. 

The smell of seafood can also be problematic. Not for your feline – they love it – but for you.  

Our cats deserve only the highest quality ingredients

Your cat will only benefit from the nutrients fish has to offer if they are being fed a supreme selection.  

Reveal’s truly limited, grain-free cat food ticks every box when it comes to healthy, high-quality and naturally tasty.  

Our Tuna With Shrimp In Broth Pot, Tuna Fillet With Salmon In Broth Can, and Ocean Fish In Gravy Can are just some of the fish-focused recipes we create; all lovingly made, with nothing but the finest ingredients.  

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