Just because you don't eat meat, doesn't mean your cat shouldn't. In fact, it could make Fluffy seriously ill. Which could then land you in jail. Cats are carnivores, and starving them of the nutrition they require can be detrimental to their health. England's Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals is pushing to have cat owners who feed their feline friends a vegan diet receive a criminal record. Citing the Animal Welfare Act, the charity notes that "the law requires an owner to ensure all the pet's needs are met," and that anyone in breach should be fined or face prison time.
A spokesman for the RSPCA said: `Under the Animal Welfare Act the law requires an owner to ensure all the pet's needs are met. This includes a healthy diet, as well as suitable living conditions and protection from pain, suffering, injury and disease.'
'Cats are strict carnivores and depend on some very specific nutrients that are found in meat including taurine, vitamin A and arachidonic acid so can become seriously ill if they are fed a vegetarian or vegan diet.
'If an owner is considering switching their pet's diet they should consult with their vet to make sure that it will meet all their pets nutritional needs which will depend on many factors such as age, health and lifestyle,' they added.
According to the RSPCA, cats 'need a source of animal protein to survive' – and while all mammals need the nine essential amino acids, cats are unique as they require taurine and arginine in their diets – which is only found naturally in meat.
While this idea of criminal charges are being talked about over the pond, you never know - it could come here too. Just make sure your animals are fed well and natural.
Harry Bolman faced hostile backlash after placing his cat Uma on a strict vegan diet last year (video below)