HAVING A VEGETARIAN CAT
Is it ever really possible to have a vegetarian cat? In theory, it is possible due to advances in synthetic production of diet supplements, but is it ever advisable to have a vegetarian cat? No, it really isn't.
Why Would You Want a Vegetarian Cat?
The real reason for creating a vegetarian diet for your cat is because you, yourself, are a vegetarian. For a vegetarian, it is hard to justify feeding meat to a cat when you feel ethically wrong about consuming it yourself.
The problem is that cats are not biologically vegetarian. They are actually obligate carnivores or biologically they must eat meat to survive. It is hard to ethically balance owning a meat eating cat and being a vegetarian.
While there are some supplements that have been produced to add to a cat's vegetarian diet to attempt to make them complete, the problem is that they are synthetic. For example, taurine is an absolute must for a cat or else the prolonged lack of it will progressively make a cat blind. Taurine only naturally occurs within animal flesh, so any supplements that are vegetarian are not natural but lab created.
What is An Option?
Many vegetarians do own cats, and some adopt a more naturalist point of view. This is the more logical and realistic point of view as a cat would choose to hunt if given the choice. As we cannot tell a lion on the Serengeti plains of Africa not to stalk, chase, and kill a zebra, we should not tell our barely domesticated housecat not to eat what is natural for it.
A naturalist point of view looks at what is natural for the cat: eating other animals, but frames it in a way that can be more acceptable for a vegetarian. Instead of attempting to make a cat something it is not, a naturalist and an ethical vegetarian looks at how to feed their cat well but not contribute to factory farming and animal suffering.
The answer to this is organic and locally produced food. Get to know the farmers in and around your area and become part of the Fresh Food and Local Food movements occurring around the world.
While a vegetarian still might not want to contribute in any way to the killing of farm animals, in order to own a cat, you must provide them with what they require to sustain their lives. By getting to know local farmers and feeding organic, you can feed your cat well but also know how the farm animals have been treated and raised, thereby not contributing to factory farms.
Admittedly, feeding meat to your cat is diametrically opposed to being a vegetarian, but while as humans we have the right to select what we eat, it is not fair to make these choices for animals that biologically do not have a choice in food consumption. A vegetarian cat does not naturally occur for a reason.
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