As we all know, cats are obligate carnivores. So, they need to eat meat to stay healthy and satisfy their nutritional needs.
But, sometimes it might be tricky to decide whether a cat should eat some other, non-meat food. Spinach, for instance. This vegetable is a very beneficial food for humans, supporting their eye health, and reducing stress, and is even known to reduce blood pressure levels.
Sounds like marvelous food, right? So, a little bit of spinach could also be good for felines?
In general, yes, cats can eat spinach. Of course, you shouldn’t give this leafy green vegetable to your cat too often. Also, you should first check with your vet whether spinach would be a good idea for your kitten.
Is Spinach Good For Cats?
Spinach can be good for cats. There are several features of this vegetable that make it suitable for felines.
Let’s look at each of them.
1. Vitamins And Minerals
Spinach is rich in minerals and vitamins, such as A, C, B2, and B6. Even some of the best dry cat food on the market have spinach as their ingredient!
According to the National Academies , vitamin A is crucial for a cat’s visual and immune function, while vitamin B6 is beneficial for hormone regulation and red blood cell function.
When it comes to minerals, spinach has manganese and iron. While manganese supports a cat’s nervous system, iron is responsible for the oxygen transportation in her body.
Spinach also contains fiber, which can be beneficial for felines with gastrointestinal issues.
So, if your cat has problems with diarrhea or constipation, a food containing fiber, such as spinach, might be helpful for her digestion.
Some veterinarians might also recommend adding fiber to your cat’s diet if she’s having problems with obesity.
3. Low In Calories
Another great thing about spinach is that despite it having so many essential nutrients, it’s low in calories at the same time!
So, you don’t have to worry that your cat will get obese by occasionally eating some spinach.
Of course, this doesn’t mean you should give this veggie too often to your cat. After all, cats don’t actually need spinach as a part of their regular diet.
This can make a nice occasional treat, but only if your vet has given you a green light on this.
How To Serve Spinach To Cats?
You can give a small amount of raw spinach to your cat; this is the way for spinach to retain the highest amount of vitamins and minerals.
You can also steam the spinach and offer it to the cat without oil, salt, or any other spices.
How Much Spinach Should A Cat Have?
A general rule for giving treats to felines is limiting their amount to 10% of their daily calories.
Spinach can be considered as a kind of healthy treat for your cat, but you should still give it to your cat only occasionally.
Always contact your veterinarian for all questions related to your cat’s diet, and stick to meat-based nutrition.
And, this general rule doesn’t mean your cat is actually supposed to eat spinach on a daily basis!
Do Cats Even Like Spinach?
This is hard to answer.
I believe many of you have struggled to find tasty food for your picky kitten. However, some cats will simply eat anything you serve them. They will also enjoy stealing some of your food!
Spinach is probably not a standard part of your cat’s diet, so she might be surprised by its taste. Some cats might eventually like it, while others will refuse to eat it.
The only way to find out is to see your cat’s reaction to this veggie!
But, Can Spinach Be Bad For Cats?
Spinach shouldn’t be bad for healthy cats. However, cats with certain health problems might have an issue with this veggie.
If your cat has a urinary or kidney problem, you shouldn’t give her spinach, since this vegetable contains calcium oxalate, which can cause stones in her urinary tract.
Urolithiasis is a term for stones that can be found in a cat’s bladder or kidneys. According to Joseph Bartges , calcium oxalate accounts for 40-50% of urolithiasis in felines.
Therefore, spinach is definitely the type of food that a cat with urinary or kidney issues shouldn’t eat, ever!
The Verdict On The Spinach Issue
Cats can eat spinach and this vegetable can have beneficial effects on their health.
However, keep in mind that your kitten is a carnivore, so, the best type of diet for her is based on meat, where vegetables should only be served occasionally.
Spinach, like all other vegetables, cannot substitute meat and its benefits for felines.
Also, although some type of human food is theoretically safe for cats, you should still always check with your veterinarian before serving any of these foods to your kitten.
 National Research Council of the National Academics: Your cat’s nutritional needs: A Science-Based Guide For Pet Owners. DOI, Retrieved April 21, 2023.
 Bartges JW: Feline Calcium Oxalate Urolithiasis: Risk factors and rational treatment approaches. Journal of Feline Medicine and Surgery. 2016;18(9):712-722. DOI, Retrieved April 21, 2023.