Filed under: Animals
And he seems receptive to the idea… It’ll take some very slow change and creativity, but I think with some patience on both our parts, my Mister will soon be loving vegan cat food. I was looking for info on how to create a satisfying and nourishing vegan cat diet, when I ran into this article by Franny Syufy at About.com: Cats (http://cats.about.com/b/2006/03/22/vegan-cats-dialogue.htm). I was inspired by the passionate and respectful discussion taking place on the comments board to put virtual pen to virtual paper and try to explain my thoughts. Below is what I came up with (you can see all the comments in the discussion at the link above).
Everyone (including me) accepts wholeheartedly that cats deserve not only to survive, but to THRIVE. But we too often ignore that the animals we are feeding to our cats also deserve thrive — to have healthy, social, meaningful lives.
I (vegan and companion human) adore my cat — he’s my best friend! But when I’m in the grocery store and I look at those rows and rows and rows of canned ‘meat’ (though as many have already pointed out, this meat is actually ground-up male chicks, by-products and the like), I find myself wondering, “Who loved these pitiful animals?” The answer, of course, is no one. The animals in these cans lived grotesque lives of suffering and torture, inflicted by the humans that claimed ownership of them at birth. Some were only out of the egg a few minutes before the conveyor belt reached the giant crushing machine (these are the males, who lack valuable reproductive capacity).
Some were alive a few years, during which time they were repeatedly mechanically raped, impregnated, and had their children and their children’s milk stolen (by the time the bodies of these poor wretched females gave out, their flesh was not ‘high enough quality’ as meat to be sold for human consumption… so who gets it?… our cats!).
These animals also deserve to thrive; therefore, I have a moral obligation to not deprive them of that right. I cannot decide that this cheap and fast way of feeding my cat (let’s face it, these store foods require NO effort on our part in feeding our cat friends!) is worth the suffering, deprivation and violence that was inflicted on the animals in the can.
I want to see my cat survive and thrive. I have made a life time commitment to love, protect and nourish him. I fully believe he can survive and thrive on a well-balanced vegan diet. After all, the animals taurine in grocery store cat food is an artificial supplement anyway. I know this means I will have to watch him closely for certain signs of deficiency, but we should always do this for our companion animals anyway. People continue to feed their cats grocery store food – yet, I think the rising cases of obesity and diabetes in cats shows that the current status quo diet is not exactly keeping cats fit and extending lives!
On another note, comments above have assumed that vegans are opposed to, and would like to prevent, their cat catching it’s own food. I know my cat hunts. He’s pretty awesome at it. That IS the natural order of things. Cats do have instincts to catch, kill and eat. Though I’m never pleased to find evidence of his killing (who is?), as a vegan, I’m more upset when he doesn’t eat the animal (then it seems like it was pure sport for him). And the bird, mole, worm that he catches outside was living a free and natural life up until the time he got it. And it was not unnaturally forced by me.