Why Do Cats Eat Grass? Is it Dangerous?
You might have looked out your kitchen window recently only to see your cat grazing on your grass.
"Oh no, has my cat turned into a cow?" Probably not.
Most cats will actually eat grass if they are given the opportunity to do so, and there seem to be some valid reasons behind this.
Reason #1: Clearing the Stomach
Cats digestive systems can become clogged, especially if they eat things like small rodents. Due to the fact that they do not have the enzymes required to digest grass, this causes them to be sick not long after they have consumed it.
Regurgitating the grass is not bad for them, it’s actually beneficial (but a little annoying, if they are sick inside your home no doubt!) This helps to clear their stomach from undigested animal parts/other food items, which can make them feel much better.
It can be quite similar to you or I suffering from an upset stomach and the instant feeling of relief, when whatever is lurking inside is expelled.
Cats cough up a lot of fur balls and these can over time get stuck in the felines stomach. Grass can help to loosen the hair, bringing it back up the way it came!
This is known to be the major reason why cats eat grass. It’s a natural function that can really help them.
Reason #2: Acts as a Laxative
Another reason is that the grass can act as a natural laxative. Just like humans, from time to time cats can have trouble with their bowel movements.
Grass is filled with fiber, which is a natural remedy for constipation. Your cat somehow knows the amazing things that grass can do for their insides, which is why they gravitate towards your garden and graze happily on the green stuff.
Grass also contains folic acid, which is actually really important for the basic functions of your cat. This is what is in their mothers milk, so they were used to receiving folic acid as a kitten.
Another thing that is found in grass is chlorophyll – another known natural remedy for ulcers, anaemia and infection. Your cat might be feeling a little under the weather but after a little nibble on some grass outside, they’ll likely to be back to their old self in no time.
Is eating grass dangerous at all for my cat?
Although it is not known as a staple part of a cat diet, it is not said to be dangerous if your cat does eat grass from time to time.
Cats can not actually digest grass properly and they will in fact regurgitate it, as explained previously. This is not harmful for the cat however. Being physically “sick” from the grass, can actually help clear out their stomach – like a cleanse of sorts.
A Few Things to Be Careful Of
The idea that a cat eating grass isn’t dangerous is true, but this obviously depends on where the grass is located.
Munching on the clean, fresh grass from your garden can be quite nutritious for a kitty. However, if he/she is eating grass from a dirty location or where there may be harmful chemicals, this could definitely be dangerous.
For the most part, you should just keep an eye on where your cat is eating from, especially if you are in a new location that you’re not familiar with.
Likewise, if you are an avid gardener but your cat has been grazing on the grass, you need to be careful about what you are planting. Make sure that your plants are of the non-toxic variety, so that the cat does not accidentally ingest any pesticides.
Some Quick Tips
- Buying a small patch of fresh grass for your cat when he/she feels the need to eat it is one way to avoid the dangers of chemicals on the lawn
- Be careful of your cat eating household plants that you might have because this is completely different than eating grass and can some can be quite poisonous to cats
While you should not encourage your cat to eat grass, don’t discourage it either because they are likely doing it for a good reason. This habit can actually help them flourish and give their health a much needed boost.