Cats and Mushrooms – Crimini Gate

This is Spinner, my cat, yes I love him to death but that doesn’t mean he isn’t naughty

014_11AHi I am Spinner aren’t I handsome? Innocent and cute yes, but I am full of sass to!

Today there was a frying pan with some Crimini mushrooms all fried up…and left unattended. This is something that I rarely do, leave food things unattended, especially food that a cat might be interested in. After the Asparagus incident a few years back I never expected Crimini-Gate. He had a clandestine meeting with a cooled down frying pan and had eaten at least 3 or 4 mushrooms by the time I got to him. First thought was OMG are they poisonous?! The fact that it was just National Poison Prevention Week was not lost on me. I am very aware of household toxins when it comes to plants and most foods, but he had never gone after mushrooms before.

Quick check revealed that most store bought mushrooms are not dangerous (not that I suggest warming up a mushroom stir-fry for kitty) but outdoor mushrooms are very toxic and symptoms range from upset stomach to seizures. As spring approaches anyone with outdoor cats should be aware of this.

Cats need meat (protein) so why mushrooms? It turns out “Mushrooms have a lot of glutamate, an amino acid that gives them their rich, savory flavor. Glutamate is one of the chemicals responsible for the umami flavor. “

Cats, tigers and other felines have genes for the receptors that detect the umami flavor (amino acids in protein). So Spinner was really looking for protein, not for fungi!

So Spinner is safe, and looking quit pleased with himself at the moment I might add likely plotting his next move.

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