Is it okay to feed cat tuna every day?

smosmosmo

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The only wet food my cat will eat consistently are Inaba's Churu treats, which she usually eats in a mixed tuna flavor. Other than that she's on an all-dry diet of Dr Elsey's Cleanprotein in chicken because she's extremely picky - she has issues with flavor and texture, and has been through every wet food I think she'll try at Petco. I had her eating Tiki Cat's salmon-flavored mousse for a few months a couple years back, but she suddenly got sick of them one day and I couldn't get her to start eating wet food again.

Recently I gave her some Weruva's Slide n' Serve pate to try in the tuna flavor, and this is the only wet food I've ever seen her eat up so quickly. It's getting hot here and she could use more water, especially since I've also never been able to get her to start using a fountain. Would it better to keep getting her tuna-flavored wet food over not feeding it at all? I've tried other flavors and textures, but she won't touch anything pureed and rejects about 95% of everything she's tried that hasn't been tuna flavored. I've always tried to limit how much tuna she gets because of the mercury, but I don't know if that's worse than not any water in through food (all she gets is one Churu treat a day).
 

Caspers Human

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The ingredient list for Churu Treats:
  • Water
  • Tuna
  • Tapioca
  • Natural Flavor
  • Guar Gum
  • Natural Tuna Flavor
  • Gelatin
  • Vitamin E Supplement
  • Green Tea Extract.
Other than tuna, there isn't much nutrition in those treats. It's mostly tapioca, guar gum and gelatin. They throw in some vitamin E and some green tea extract just to make things look good. Companies throw around the word "natural," often times, to make their products look good even though they are legally required to use it.

The term "natural flavor" actually has no meaning when you think of whether it is wholesome or not. When the government specifies the use of the term "natural" they only refer to whether the substance originates from a source in nature, even if it is made via an industrial process. If you buy "natural maple flavor," what you are really getting is the extract obtained by crushing and boiling pieces of wood from a maple tree. The result is mixed with water and alcohol then bottled and sold in a grocery store. It is only considered "natural" because it originally came from a tree.

There is also tapioca, guar gum and gelatin. They are used as thickeners but they are really just starch and empty calories.

I'd say that Churu Treats are fine if used as intended... a treat, given occasionally. I wouldn't feed them as food, no matter what kind of pretty pictures and nice words are printed on the package.

However, if you are trying to entice your cat to eat other foods, you might be able to mix a little bit of Churu into the food you are trying get her to try.

Maybe that extra, little punch of flavor would get her to eat more food like she's supposed to eat. :)
 

FeebysOwner

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Hi.
There are essentially 3 elements to consider when feeding a cat food that contains tuna (that is - canned/wet foods made for cats, not for humans). Thiamine, Vitamin E, & metals.

As noted in the article (see link):
"If you’re feeding good quality commercial cat food manufactured by a reputable company, you can safely feed fish-based food without risking thiamine-deficiency or pansteatitis [Vitamin E deficiency]...At this point, it’s hard to tell whether heavy metals are a possible issue when feeding fish or fish-based products. With no established data as to the long-term effects, you may want to contact the manufacturer of your brand of cat food and ask if they test their product for heavy metals. Otherwise, consider limiting the consumption of fish-flavored products until more information becomes available on this topic."

These are the reasons why you hear so much about people limiting tuna (and, other fish) in their cat's diet. You also need to take into consideration how much tuna/fish is in the food compared to other proteins, the more non-tuna/non-fish proteins the less risk. So, you might be able to find some foods that still contain enough of the tuna 'flavoring' that would be amenable to your cat's palate, but have a higher quantity of non-fish based proteins included.
Can I Feed My Cat A Fish-based Or Fish-flavored Diet? – TheCatSite Articles

You could also try to mix a bit of another wet food with the Weruva that she likes to reduce the amount of tuna - perhaps she would like the mixture enough to enable to you test increasing the other food and decreasing the tuna over time?
 

Babypinkweeb

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My older cat who hates wet food gets churu but only as a topper or slight mixed in to his main wet food. Churu are treats only and should not be depended upon for substituting wet food. I only feed the chicken variety of churu as well as I want to avoid fish as much as possible due to many dietary issues with fish in cat food (I'm sure many are more educated on the specifics than I am)

I've read others accounts on cats becoming addicted to Tuna flavor if they're given the chance, so it might be why your cat will only consume tuna foods.
 

Caspers Human

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Fish have Mercury in them.
Not all fish have mercury but, yes, some do.

It depends on the species and the location where they live and feed.

Some species of fish are carnivorous. Small fish often pick up toxins from the food they eat but they don't build up to dangerous levels in one particular specimen. However, when larger fish eat smaller fish, they also eat the toxins which concentrate in the larger fish's body. Every time a progressively larger fish eats a smaller one, the toxins get more and more concentrated.

Also, if you compare farm raised fish versus wild fish, you are likely to find different levels of potential toxins. Farm raised fish would be less likely to contain toxic substances as compared to wild ones.

The bottom line is that it's smart to do your homework before buying fish and try to find out which are the healthiest ones to eat.
 
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