This fluffy cat ponders whether it should drink milk even though it has lactose intolerance.

Is Milk Good for Cats? Discover the Truth


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We dive whiskers-deep into the question that has baffled feline enthusiasts for ages: is milk good for cats, or is it just a lactose-loaded landmine? We’ll explore the world of cat milk and the tale of cats and lactose intolerance, with puns so cheesy they’ll make you say, “meow that’s udderly hilarious!” Here we go…

Is milk good for cats?

Cats and milk—like mice and cheese, they seem like a match made in whiskery heaven. However, the truth is that not all cats can handle lactose, which is the sugar found in cow’s milk.

You see, lactose requires an enzyme called lactase to be properly digested, and many adult cats lack sufficient amounts of this enzyme. This deficiency can lead to an upset tummy, digestive issues, and a not-so-pleasant trip to the litter box.

But fret not, there are alternatives! While cow’s milk may not be the best choice for our lactose-intolerant buddies, there are specially formulated cat milk products available. These beverages are typically lactose-free or contain reduced amounts of lactose, making them a safer choice for your kitty’s delicate tummy. So go ahead and check your local pet store for some feline-friendly milk options.

Adorable cat with lactose intolerance  laps up a bowl of nutritious cat milk, enjoying a moment of pure bliss.
Image by Freepik

Which milk is good for cats?

So, now you know that carton of moo juice sitting in your fridge isn’t a great choice for your whiskered buddy who’s lactose intolerant. Nor is it really a good idea if your cat isn’t lactose intolerant.

But don’t despair! There are alternatives that will have your cat’s stomach doing happy somersaults. One option is lactose-free milk, which is cow’s milk with the lactose removed. This way, they can enjoy the creamy goodness without tummy troubles. Just be sure to read the label and check it’s specifically labelled as lactose-free.

Another fantastic choice is cat milk, specially formulated with our feline friends in mind. Cat milk is often made from lactose-free cow’s milk or other animal milk, such as goat’s milk. It’s designed to provide easier digestion and pack all the necessary nutrients your cat needs.

Perhaps some yoghurt?

But wait, there’s more! Some cats go absolutely nuts for a little taste of yoghurt. Yes, you heard that right—yoghurt. However, not all yoghurts are created equal, so it’s essential to choose wisely.

Opt for plain, unsweetened yoghurt without any added flavours or artificial sweeteners. There are plenty of lactose-free and plant-based yoghurts available these days. The bacteria found in yoghurt, such as probiotics, can be beneficial for your cat’s digestive system. Just be sure to introduce it gradually and in small amounts to see how your cat reacts.

What about adult cats who can’t resist a dairy milk mo’?

If you must, it’s best to think of dairy milk as an occasional treat rather than a daily indulgence. If your cat has shown no signs of lactose intolerance and has a hankering for milk, you can offer them a small amount as an infrequent treat.

However, always monitor their reaction closely. If you notice any tummy troubles, it’s best to skip the milk altogether.

Remember, milk should never replace your cat’s primary diet. Cats are obligate carnivores, which means their bodies are designed to thrive on a meat-based diet. Their nutritional needs are best met through high-quality cat food that provides all the essential nutrients, vitamins, and minerals they require to maintain optimal health.

What milk should kittens be drinking?

Just like human babies, kittens rely on their mother’s milk for proper nourishment in their early stages of life. Mother’s milk provides them with essential nutrients and antibodies that help them grow into strong and healthy cats.

So, during this critical phase, kittens should stick to their mum’s milk and avoid any other forms of dairy.

As kittens grow older and start weaning, you can introduce them to a high-quality kitten formula specifically designed to meet their nutritional needs. These formulas are made to mimic the composition of mother’s milk, providing the necessary nutrients for healthy development.

Remember, it’s always a good idea to consult your veterinarian for guidance on the best options for your fluffy little bundle of joy.

Answers to common queries about cats and milk

Below we answer the pressing questions you have about the types of milk cats can consume. We separate fact from fiction and guide you toward the purr-fect choices for your furry friend…

Is oat milk ok for cats?

While cats are natural-born carnivores, their taste buds might not dance the tango with this plant-based milk substitute. You might say it’s a bit of a “cat-astrophe” for their digestive systems. Oat milk lacks the essential nutrients that cats need to thrive, so it’s best to stick to options specifically designed for our whiskered pals. Remember, oat milk might make us humans jump for joy, but for cats it’s more like a “purr-plexing” pass.

Is it ok for cats to drink almond milk?

Ah, the almond milk question is a nutty conundrum indeed! When it comes to our feline friends, almond milk might not be the cat’s meow. You see, cats lack the necessary enzymes to properly digest almonds and their milk. So, let’s keep the almonds for trail mix and reserve the milk for lattes.

A clear glass filled to the brim with chilled, creamy soy milk. Cats are lactose intolerant so they require specially formulated milk.
Image by Freepik

Can cats drink soy milk?

While cats are obligate carnivores and their primary diet should consist of meat-based foods, some can tolerate small amounts of soy milk without any issues. It’s important to remember every cat is unique, so it’s essential to monitor their reaction and consult with your veterinarian before introducing any new foods.

If you’re considering offering soy milk to your feline friend, make sure it’s unsweetened and doesn’t contain any additives or artificial sweeteners. As always, moderation is key. Keeping your cat’s overall diet balanced is crucial for their health and well-being.

Whether it’s lactose-free milk, cat milk, or a touch of yoghurt, there are plenty of ways to indulge your cat’s milk cravings safely. Just remember, moderation is key, and always keep an eye out for any signs of discomfort or tummy upset.

More dietary reading

If you’re eager to dive deeper into your feline’s dietary needs, whether your cat’s lactose intolerant or not, take a look at these blog posts:

  1. Yay or Nay – Can Kittens Eat Adult Cat Food?
  2. Is it Okay for Cats to Eat Peanut Butter?
  3. Can Cats Eat … Cheese, Raw Chicken, Chocolate? What About Avo?!
  4. What Do Cats Like to Eat for Breakfast?
  5. Dry Cat Food or Wet? How to Choose

Protect those milky whiskers

Now we’ve cracked the code on the purr-fect milk for our furry friends, let’s milk this opportunity to talk about something equally important: our award-winning cat insurance! Just like a saucer of milk brings comfort to your whiskered pal, our insurance will bring peace of mind to you, knowing they’re protected from the unexpected.

Our cat insurance plans help protect your finances after accidents and when other injuries and illnesses strike. Wherever you are in Australia, whichever qualified vet you choose. We’ll take the stress away by enabling you to make fast, care-based health decisions and paying your claim quickly.

Don’t whisker away this chance— click below to get one or more months of FREE pet insurance (and potentially a multi-pet discount if you insure more)!

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