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What Do Stray Cats Eat? 4 Surprising Things You Need To Know

There is always a stray cat or two out in the open living its life. Whether it’s your neighborhood park or your backstreet you are sure to come across a population of stray cats.

Mostly, these cats appear well-fed despite being homeless. Most strays are domestic cats that have lost their way and cannot get back to their owners.

These cats are already socialized with humans and are more approachable, unlike feral cats. Feral cats, on the other hand, are wild cats and they can generally be very vicious when approached.

Most cat lovers wonder what they eat and how even manage to live the way they do. Feeding stray cats is something a cat lover cannot help but do. Here are a few things stray cats eat which help them survive.

What do stray cats eat?

Stray cats feed themselves by preying on small insects, bugs, and rodents.  However, a lot of their nutrition comes from the local garbage cans as well, where people throw their leftover food. Cats are natural hunters. Hunting comes naturally to them, like an inborn instinct. Hence, it is not difficult for them to chase and prey on small insects and rodents.

 

What Do Stray Cats Eat?

What Do Stray Cats Eat?

1. Cats as natural hunters

The natural hunting capabilities of a cat ensure that it can prey on small insects, birds, and reptiles. Cats are carnivores by nature, hence it is only natural for them to prefer meat over plants.

The superior eyesight and sharp claws of cats cause them to be excellent at tracking down prey, killing, and devouring it.

Most cats prefer small rodents and insects. They are easier to catch and cats can use their eyesight as an advantage while catching them. Furthermore, cats love chasing after things.

They love playing with their food before actually eating it as seen in countless households.

Rodents and insects prove to be a challenge for the cats hence, cats are often seen chasing after a particularly fast-moving creature with great enthusiasm.

Cats Prefer Small Rodents and Insects

Cats Prefer Small Rodents and Insects

2. Bird eating cats

Small birds often make a good meal for cats. However, birds because of their amazing flying capabilities and their heightened residence are more difficult to catch.

Most cats cannot leap high enough to catch a bird between its claws. Hence, most cats do not bother chasing after birds.

However, a stray cat is lucky if it lands a claim on a bird. Still, there is a lot of confusion and difference of opinion surrounding the fact if cats eat birds or not.

Cats Eating Bird

Cats Eating Bird

3. The easiest food source for cats is garbage

There is a reason why the most population of cats is found in back alleys and back streets. These are the places where generally most of the garbage cans are housed.

More often than not, an overturned garbage can is spotted and this is where a cat or rather a colony of cats has been at work.

Cats are notorious for eating whatever is kept in front of them and rightly so. Unfortunately, stray cats do not have the privilege of having a dish full of treats being presented to them.

Felines need to fend for themselves, including finding their food for the day. Still, they try to source food in the easiest possible way and garbage is one of the best sources of food out there.

Garbage that is thrown by humans often contains leftover scraps of food. Leftover food makes a hearty meal for stray cats and is something they wholeheartedly devour.

Despite being carnivores, cats will eat generally anything and everything. This includes grains and sometimes even vegetables.

Easiest Food Source for Cats is Garbage

Easiest Food Source for Cats is Garbage

4. Stray cats depend on kind humans

Cat lovers ensure that cats in their areas are well fed and well looked after. They keep dishes full of food for cats and many cats have their fill by this.

Many people are also in the habit of throwing their leftovers outside porches or keeping them in dishes for small animals and birds.

Many stray cats, feral cats as well as other animals such as rabbits and hares benefit from this.

Stray Cats Depend on Kind Humans

Stray Cats Depend on Kind Humans

Where do stray cats get water from?

There is a reason why you find so many stray cats in neighborhood parks or back alleys. These are places where water is always available much to the benefit of stray cats.

Neighborhood parks always have puddles or ponds from which stray cats can easily drink water. Furthermore, parks are rich in birdbaths as well by which many cats have their fill.

Back alleys have dripping water lines more often than not. This is where cats living in back alleys get their share of water from.

Moreover, dripping air conditioner water sources is also a great way by which cats get their water.

Many people also make sure to keep bowls of water or milk for cats so that they do not get dehydrated.

Stray Cats can Easily Drink Water from Puddles/Ponds

Stray Cats can Easily Drink Water from Puddles/Ponds

Frequently Asked Questions About What Do Stray Cats Eat?

What food is the best to give to stray cats?

You do not require store-bought meals to feed a stray cat. Boneless meat, whether it is chicken, fish, etc. is a special favorite of cats. You can easily give boneless meat to stray cats without causing it harm. Rice and eggs are also a good option while feeding stray cats.

Will stray cats eat anything?

A stray cat will eat anything that is easy to find and is fulfilling.

Is milk good for cats?

Cats enjoy the taste of milk. However, it is a misconception that milk is essential in a cat’s diet. On the other hand, as cats grow older, they lose the ability to digest lactose present in the milk. They become lactose intolerant. Hence, milk should not be given to older cats as it might cause digestive problems.


Conclusion About What Do Stray Cats Eat

Stray cats can survive a particularly anything and everything. Their natural hunting skills help them score prey easily and are one of the main ways by which cats survive. Garbage and leftover food is another option by which cats have their fill. This, accompanied by people putting out food for cats help cats survive while being homeless.