Originally Posted by SweetPea24
I'm sorry if this is not the information you are looking for but I think it would be difficult to find someone who would support a vegan diet for a cat. I am also reading a book called Raw and Natural Nutrition for Dogs and it speaks of how a vegan diet is not even good for dogs who are ostensilby omnivores (which I don't believe). Ethical or not, animal protein is what a cat needs. If you want to discuss ethics, how ethical would it be to feed your cat something it can't use and will be detrimental to its health? I applaud your choice for yourself but you can still provide your cat with the meat it needs and obtain it from ethical sources.
The original question asked if anyone has actually tried it. I have. For ten years my cats have been on VegeCat vegan formulas. For 14 years before that I fed an ovo-lacto vegetarian diet.
Results: The first cat, who was ovo-lacto from weaning at 7 weeks until she was 14 years old, then went vegan, lived almost 17 years and died from complications of thyroid disease, which is not known to be caused by inadequate diets.
Six of my seven current cats, ranging in age from 8 months to 10 1/2 years, have been with me and fed a vegan diet made with the VegeCat supplement since they were kittens (ranging from 4 to 12 weeks when I got them). The seventh cat was an adult when she moved in, and has been vegan for 4 or 5 years now.
As I am involved in animal rescue, over the past 20+ years I have also had a large number of rescue cats come through my home and stay temporarily until being adopted by other people. These have included two mother cats with newborn kittens who were nursed by vegan mothers then weaned onto vegan kitten food.
I keep my cats indoors, so I know they're not supplementing the vegan diet by hunting, because there's nothing in my house to hunt.
I am not a veterinarian or a food chemist. I would not try to create a vegan cat diet on my own, because I don't have the expertise to do so. But my experience using a product that has been around since 1986, was developed by people with expertise I don't have, and is approved by my own veterinarian, is that it certainly seems to work for the cats I've fed it to.
As for dogs, I feed Natural Balance Vegetarian Formula dog food, which is vegan. Much easier than the cat food because I don't have to make it myself. The dogs have strong muscles, shiny coats, bright eyes, and LOTS of energy.
So there it is. Not theory, not philosophy, not chemical analysis, but the empirical first-hand experience the original questioner asked for.