Vegetables are one of the staple foods in our daily diet. At any point in time, we have some vegetable type in our refrigerator. We are also very aware of their numerous benefits to our health.
Hence, it is not a surprise that many pet owners, including cat owners, often ask themselves whether they can feed vegetables to their cat. One of the more common questions is can cats eat beans. This is mostly due to the fact that beans can be found in every pantry, and they can be a great addition to your cat’s regular meal, or a temporary replacement for a meal, while you’re preparing them their favorite food.
In this article, we will go over beans, and other vegetables, and discover whether they are good for your cat, and if they are – what quantity would be recommended for your cat to maintain their healthy diet. Let’s get started!
Can Cats Eat Beans?
Part of the Fabaceae family, beans are a seed that is considered a vegetable and is consumed by both animals and humans. Other members of this family include soybeans, peas, chickpeas, peanuts, liquorice, and many more.
In the human diet, beans are one of the most common foods, due to their nutritional values (which also deems them as “superfood”), as well as the versatility of how they can be prepared. They can be found in every corner around the world.
Beans are full of antioxidants and proteins. They are helping in cancer prevention, lowering blood sugar levels. They are also great at fatty liver prevention and for overall well being of the digestive system.
Having all these factors in mind, it would be great if we can share some of our bean meals with our favorite pets. Can cats eat beans?
Yes, beans are definitely not toxic for cats. However, this does not mean that ALL the beans are good for your cat. And not all cats are great fans of beans. Make sure your cat actually enjoys a bean meal before continuing to feed them with this food.
As with many other foods, beans are not harmful for your cat, however, larger quantities might create problems with your cat’s digestion. Your cat might get a stomach pain and intestinal discomfort, which can grow into an overall digestive distress and Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) over time. If you see some of these symptoms in your cat, stop feeding them with beans immediately, regardless if they’re great fans of them.
In fact, despite the benefits we have as humans from beans, the cats do not get a lot of nutritional value from the beans. You have probably noticed that some food mixes for cats contain beans, apart from meat, but they are usually inserted as fillers – your cat doesn’t have a great benefit from them.
Can cats eat baked beans, though? Unfortunately, no – they disrupt the cat’s digestive system, and are definitely not a good solution for your cat. They can cause vomiting and pancreatitis, which might make your cat seriously ill over time.
What about canned beans? This is also a no – the canned beans usually come with a wide array of salt and other, stronger spices, which might cause a whole lot of trouble for your cat. These spices, especially the salt, can cause great thirst and dehydration for your cat, as well as constipation, diarrhea, vomiting, lethargy, and decreased appetite. A large amount of salt might even be fatal for your cat, so make sure you do not feed your cat with a portion of canned beans.
Can cats eat refried beans? This is also a no – and also due to the spices and the salt amounts.
Cats and Other Foods
We have seen that the beans can be fed moderately to your cat, if it prefers them. Let’s check out some other similar pantry staples and see how beneficial they are for your cat.
Can Cats Eat Corn?
Yes, they can. They are also very often present in the cat food as fillers, together with beans. Keep in mind that the corn does not contain salt, butter, or other spices.
Same as beans, they do not offer a nutritional value for your cat, so they cannot be considered as a meal replacement. It cannot compensate for the proteins the cats get from their carnivorous diet.
Still, cats are great fans of corn. So, if your cat likes to chew some corn kernel, you definitely can allow them. Just make sure they do not eat too much.
Can Cats Eat Rice?
Also yes – and also in moderate amounts. Same as the beans and the corn, rice does not provide any nutritional value for your cat, but it is not harmful either. It can also be found in some store-bought cat food as a filler. Just make sure the rice is boiled – you do not want to feed your cat with raw rice grains.
One of the main flaws of rice, especially white rice, is that it is packed with carbohydrates – which on a long run can make your cat overweight and even cause obesity – if you overfeed your cat with rice.
However, there are also certain benefits to feeding your cat rice; white, but especially brown rice, is often recommended as a relief for particular digestive issues your cat has, such as constipation. You might be familiar with this “remedy”, as it is often recommended by veterinarians when cats have digestive distress.
Can Cats Eat Beans Conclusion
Beans, corn and rice are all some of the most common ingredients in meals around the world. They can be easily found, they are rather cheap, taste great, and offer great nutritional value for humans.
Still, cats do not have the same nutritional benefits from these foods, being carnivores, and largely benefiting from meat mostly. That does not mean that they are not fans of this food – cats most definitely would be interested in your beans snack, or your corn cob. It’s up to you whether you would share this delicious treat with them.
However, make sure that your cat does not eat any of these foods if they contain salt, spices, or other preservatives. Also, when it comes to beans, baked and refried beans are a definitely no.
If your cat likes eating beans, do not deprive them from this delicious snack, as long as your portions are moderate.