Cat’s Can’t Taste Sweetness

by Rebecca on May 1, 2011

in Animal Stories

Chris is a 12-year-old, 400-pound lion

Courtesy Zoo New EnglandChris, a 12-year-old, 400-pound lion at the Zoo New England, has been on a lifelong, radical Atkins diet — super-high protein and absolutely no carbohydrates. It turns out Chris, like other cats, lacks the ability to taste the sweetness in carbs.

Some scientists have long suspected that cats, which are strict carnivores, are “sweet blind.” Now there’s proof: Cats lack the receptor for sweetness. The discovery opens a window on what taste is for and how it evolved. It may also help cat food makers producer a product that even sick cats will eat.

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