Cat grass is a healthy, nontoxic treat to give your indoor cat. It may seem strange that a carnivore is so interested in grass, but there are good reasons behind this quirky cat behavior.
What is Cat Grass?
Cat grass is what we call grass that is grown for cats to enjoy. Cat grass could be from wheat, oats, rye, or other grasses. Sow Right Seeds cat grass is from 100% oat seed. We chose this as our go-to cat grass because we found cats enjoy the sweet taste, and it’s easy to grow.
Why Do Cats Eat Grass?
Your cat can’t tell you exactly why they enjoy cat grass so much, but there are some theories as to why you’ll find these little carnivores munching like cows.
Benefits of Cat Grass
1 - Fiber
Cat grass can provide fiber. While cats don’t need a lot of fiber, it can help move things along in their digestive tract. Cat grass can also act as a laxative and help push out hairballs.
2 - Vitamins
Some vitamins found in cat grass are folic acid, vitamin A and vitamin D. Folic acid is an essential vitamin for cats that helps with digestion and cell growth. Vitamin D is needed to help the body absorb calcium. Unlike humans, cats don’t convert sunshine into vitamin D so they need it in their food.
3 - Chlorophyll
The bright green chlorophyll in cat grass can help their breath smell better.
4 - Mental stimulation
Cats are naturally curious. They love sniffing new things and finding fun ways to interact with their world. The smell and look of grass is interesting to them, and they will want to explore. Munching on grass is different from a bowl of dry kibble. And it can be entertaining for them to tear and pull at as well. And who knows, they may even hide behind it to stalk their prey.
5 - Tasty Treat
As a carnivore, cats don’t need grass to survive, especially when they are fed well-balanced cat food. But the sweet taste of oat grass is a change of pace from the flavors of cat food. It’s a healthy treat they enjoy and that you don’t have to worry about.
How to Grow Cat Grass From Seeds
Choose a container
The container will need to hold a minimum of 1” of potting soil and has holes in the bottom for water to drain. You will also want something that won’t tip over easily. While some cats will gently munch on blades of grass, others will pull and can make a mess if the container falls over.
Put enough potting soil in the container to hold the roots. A minimum of 1 inch is recommended.
Sprinkle the soil with cat grass seeds and cover the seeds with 1/4” of potting soil.
Water cat grass
Soak the seeds thoroughly with water and keep them moist until they start to sprout. Generally, in 5 to 7 days.
Keep the container in a bright room. Cat grass needs light to grow, but it doesn’t require direct sunlight.
Harvesting Cat Grass
Once the grass is about 4” tall, is it mature enough for your cat to start eating it.
Place the container where your cats can get to it, but apart from other houseplants, so they will know the grass is for eating when the other plants aren’t safe for nibbling.
Young grass is the sweetest, so you might notice your cat has a lot of interest in the grass at first.
When the cat grass starts changing color or dying off, it’s time to plant a new batch of seeds.
Why You Should Grow Cat Grass Indoors
- Cat grass is an easy, non-toxic treat to give your pet. When you grow grass indoors, you can keep it free of pesticides too.
- You may also discover that providing grass for your indoor cat will keep them away from your other indoor plants.
- Sow Right Seeds Cat Grass is also safe for human consumption. You can grow it for a healthy addition to green smoothies.
Growing a container of cat grass can provide your indoor cats with a fun and tasty way to interact in their home.
Cat Grass vs Catnip
Cat grass and catnip are very different plants. Catnip is a member of the mint family and contains nepetalactone. That’s what gives cats a happy feeling. Cat grass does not contain anything that modifies behavior. Another difference is catnip continues to grow while cats munch on it, while cat grass has just one growing cycle.
Can Dogs Eat Cat Grass?
Dogs like to nibble on all kinds of things, and grass is one of them. Sow Right Seeds Cat Grass is 100% oat grass and is safe for dogs. They might not love it as much as cats, but then they might. It depends on the dog.
One of the concerns with dogs eating grass is the contaminants that could be harmful to them. Growing grass indoors will ensure it isn’t contaminated with pesticides that are often applied on outdoor lawns.
Your dog may enjoy it for some of the same reasons that cats eat it. They may need more fiber, like the taste, or just find it fun to munch on.
We might not know all the reasons our furry friends want to eat grass, but we can provide them with a safe and healthy option that makes them happy.
Talk to your vet if you have specific concerns about your pet eating grass.
Written by Beverly Laudie