This was a submission by a visitor upon which I commented. She was unaware of the potential hazards.
Reggie's favorite diet is canned tuna in water. He has that three times a day. I give him a few 'dental' treats with it. There is also a bowl of Whiskas, he goes through less than a cup a week.
The tuna turns bad quickly so I freeze meal-sized portions. He actually likes it with frost on it!
Price wise it's cheaper than cans of cat food and isn't taxed. It smells better too, at both ends.
I tried raw chicken bits and salmon, he walked away from it. He will eat mashed vegetables and dried potato flakes as a side dish.
At 8 months, he weighs 10 pounds but has a large frame. He spends his days speeding after birds and squirrels. His coat is shiny and his eyes are bright.
Hi Teresa.. Thanks for sharing. Sorry I changed the title. I did so because it is an interesting topic and people search for "Feeding Tuna to a Cat", so hopefully they will find this page and the comments that I hope are made. I have also included some information on mercury poisoning and the fact that tuna per se is an unbalanced domestic cat diet.
Tuna and mercury poisoning
Canned tuna is one of the domestic cat's favourite foods and it can be a bit addictive. This can lead to a steady diet of tuna if the human caregiver wants to consistently please their cat. This would be bad for a cat because canned tuna packaged for people is not a balanced diet for domestic cats. Alone it does not provide all the nutrients that a cat requires.
And it is said that too much tuna can cause mercury poisoning. That comes from a veterinarian. The website Medical News Today tells us that large fish such as tuna can have mercury concentrations in their bodies that are 10,000 times higher than in the surrounding habitat. This seems to be the case because they are top of the food chain and below them small fish consume or absorb methylmercury. It is not broken down and is therefore built up in the bodies of tuna when they eat the small fish. The mercury in the seas and oceans comes from industrial facilities where it is used in power plants, cement plants and certain chemical manufacturing processes. Tuna is safe to eat in certain amounts.
Mercury emission because of human activity is called anthropogenic. Mercury can also find its way into the seas and oceans through volcanoes and geothermal vents. This is a natural source of mercury. Natural sources account for 10% of mercury emissions while anthropogenic sources are responsible for 30% of all emissions. Re-emission accounts for the other 60%. The original source would probably be anthropogenic. "Re-emission" means that the mercury has been absorbed by say plant life and then re-released into the atmosphere.
Canned light tuna contains about 0.12 ppm of mercury. Canned white albacore tuna contains about 0.32 ppm of mercury. Medical News Today has quite an involved analysis of how much tuna you can eat over a certain period of time. There is a distinct possibility that you could end up with mercury poisoning of some description. For example, the FDA in America recommends avoiding fresh albacore tuna and tuna steak during pregnancy.
Too much tuna can cause mercury poisoning in children. Therefore, it is a short step to believe that too much tuna can cause mercury poisoning in domestic cats. Back in 2011, the California State Water Resources Control Board announced that the presence of methylmercury and polychlorinated biphenyls in Californian sport fish was widespread and a genuine concern for human health.
The worry is that mercury builds up and is not broken down. Some signs of mercury poisoning caused by eating too much contaminated tuna include peripheral neuropathy, reduced peripheral vision, loss of coordination, muscle weakness and possible impairments in speech and hearing. This applies to people of course but it is a worrying situation.
Wikipedia states that fish and shellfish contain concentrate mercury in their bodies often in the form of methylmercury. Tuna is long-lived which allows for a greater timescale for the mercury to build up in their bodies. It is recommended that people should only eat albacore tuna a few times per month to avoid mercury poisoning. This may guide us on feeding cats tuna.
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