Last Updated : November 21, 2022

Are cats lactose intolerant [VIDEO TUTORIAL]

Are cats lactose intolerant? Yes, most cats are lactose intolerant. Although felines will happily lap up that white liquid you give them, for most cats, this milky treat can lead to not so fun stomach cramps.

Are all cats lactose intolerant?

The truth is that not all cats are really lactose intolerant. But, lactose intolerance is in fact the norm and it is not normal to have the ability to continue drinking milk.

Are cats lactose intolerant

During the process of weaning, all housecats will become lactose intolerant with no intervention from their owner. However, since it is so popular to give milk to cats, there are some cats that don’t stop drinking milk starting from an early age up to their older years.

Cats like these don’t stop their lactase production, which means that they don’t lose their ability to process lactose. Therefore, these cats can drink and eat dairy in a safe way. A cat can become lactose intolerance if there is a gap between the weaning stage and at about 6 months of a cat’s age.

Are persian cats lactose intolerant?

It is normal for Persian cats and cats in general to be lactose intolerant. For lactose to be digested, the intestines of a cat must break it down with the assistance of the enzyme lactase. Since there is a limited production of this enzyme, some lactose may remain undigested. The intestinal bacteria will act upon the remaining lactose in the cat’s intestines and this can lead to cramps, bloating, and worst,  diarrhea in Persian cats.

Are bengal cats lactose intolerant?

Bengal kittens, and all kittens as a whole, love drinking milk. However, they usually lose their ability of processing and digesting milk’s sugar content after they are weaned. This makes them lactose intolerant once they become adults. It can lead to gastrointestinal distress for your Bengal cat. This is why it is not recommended to add milk to their balanced diet.

The levels of lactose intolerance may be different with every Bengal cat, though. You can try giving your Bengal a small amount of milk to see his reaction. If the poop doesn’t look loose, it indicates that your pet can handle milk.

Are ragdoll cats lactose intolerant?

Ragdoll cats can lap up some milk. But, it is advisable that they don’t consume a lot of it. Since ragdoll cats and other breeds have the tendency to be lactose intolerant, this can make them suffer from digestive problems that might be troubling for both you and your ragdoll.

Are siamese cats lactose intolerant?

Many Siamese cats are lactose intolerant. Basically, lactose is the sugar found in dairy items. This lactose is hard to digest for Siamese cats. This is why it is not recommended for them to drink milk or products that contain milk. The lactose content may cause diarrhea in them. 

While your Siamese cat may beg you for milk, it is best to start with a small amount first. If you don’t see signs of diarrhea or discomfort, you can increase the amount but do so only occasionally and not as a regular routine.

Are adults cats lactose intolerant?

Not all adult cats are lactose intolerant although most of them are. Also, there is no way for you to tell whether or not your pet is lactose intolerant without letting them eat or drink dairy items and put them at risk of getting sick. To stay safe, it is best to keep your cat away from cheese, cow milk, and other dairy products.  

Why are cats lactose intolerant?

Similar to other infant mammals, the kittens are born with the ability to digest lactose, the primary sugar found in milk. It is sugar considered to be an extremely valuable energy source for young mammals.

But, right after weaning, lactase, the enzyme that helps them digest lactose, starts to disappear from their cat. If an adult feline drinks milk, fermentation may occur in the undigested lactose in the gut that can lead to a stomach upset.  

What percentage of cats are lactose intolerant?

There are no statistics on the specific percentage of cats in the world that are lactose intolerant. It is possible that most cats are since it seems like it was more popular to feed milk to cats during the 20th century compared to this 21st century

In addition, it is not really a major concern. Cat foods are produced with no dairy content because even though cats might not be lactose intolerant, these animals still prefer a meat diet more than anything else.

Is milk bad for cats?

While there are cats that can tolerate dairy and milk and even seem to like it, milk is not really good for felines. Dairy milk is not necessary for cats in the first place and the possible issues outweigh the possible advantages.

Difference between cat milk and lactose-free milk

Cat milk is marketed and made by Whiskas. This may sound like milk accumulated from lactating cats but it is in fact the exact opposite. Cat milk is a drink meant for cats and kittens that are 98% lactose-reduced because cats are lactose intolerant by nature.

Taurine can also be found in cat milk and this is a type of amino acid vital for the health of the eyes and heart of your cat.

Lactose-free milk, on the other hand, is a good option for liquid treats for cats. Available in pet stores or grocery stores, this is a type of specially treated milk added with lactose enzymes to get rid of lactose. This makes this milk safe for cats without causing any discomfort. 

Why do cats like milk if they are lactose intolerant?

It seems that cats love most high-fat dairy products such as milk and cream. However, why do they still eat these even if they don’t tolerate lactose well?

The reason for this might have something to do with the evolutionary history of cats. All animals have a hard time finding shelter and food when out in the wild. It is likely that food is scarce during winter even in abundant areas.

This is the reason why fat stores are found in mammals. Wild cats convert the unused energy that came from the excess food they ate during summer to fat and store this for use later on. This is the reason why animals love foods high in calories, proteins, and fat.

Sadly, cats don’t know that they no longer live in the wild or their bodies at least don’t know it. So, every time they see foods dense with high fat, they want to devour them.

If cats are lactose intolerant why can they eat cheese?

There are instances when cats cannot tolerate milk but don’t have any issues with other types of dairy such as cheese. It is because various forms of dairy foods also contain different lactose amounts.

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