Cats are curious creatures, especially when it comes to trying out new food items. Maybe this time, your cat has become interested in your stash of fresh fruits and that has got you wondering if these furry guys can safely eat fruits. Or maybe you are wondering what type of fruits are safe for them.
Our pets can decide they want to try anything and everything but it is up to us to ensure they eat only what is good and safe for them. In this post, I'll answer all your questions about feeding fruits to your furry pet. Keep reading to find out more.
Can Cats Eat Fruits?
Yes, cats can eat fruits. Some fruits are safe for cats while others are considered toxic and should never be given to your cat. Cats are obligate carnivores that do not need to eat fruits, however, they may enjoy a few nutritional benefits from eating fruits. Fruits should only be fed as a treat to cats; a few bites on rare occasions will do your cat a greater good.
What Are The Benefits Of Feeding Fruits To My Cat?
Most fruits contain natural antioxidants that are good for your cat. Apart from that, fruits are also packed with nutrients and minerals that can benefit your cat. Here are some of the benefits of feeding fruits to your cat:
Source of vitamins
A lot of fruits are packed with vitamins that are beneficial to cats. Cats cannot synthesize vitamin A for example, so any fruit that can supply them with vitamin A is a good choice for a treat for them. Other important vitamins can also be gotten from different kinds of fruits.
Source of dietary fiber
Fruits are a good source of dietary fiber and this is good for your cat because fiber adds bulk to your cat's excreta. This aids in digestion and ensures your cat enjoys free bowel movements.
Effects on blood sugar level
Studies have shown that some fruits have a positive effect on blood sugar. Fruits of the citrus family though sweet, can help reduce blood sugar. Citrus fruits are referred to as glycemic fruits, that is they don't affect blood sugar as much as other fruits like watermelon and pineapple do.
Source of antioxidants
Antioxidants keep your cat healthy and less prone to diseases. Fruits are a great source of antioxidants. Your cat can benefit from this by feeding on small bites of fruits that are safe for them occasionally.
Prevention of diseases
Fruits can boost our immune systems and thus, keep diseases such as heart disease and stroke at bay. Your feline can also enjoy this benefit by feeding on small bites of healthy fruits once in a while.
Which Fruits Can Cats Eat?
Some cats can become curious about fruits while others may remain indifferent. But either way, if you choose to feed fruits to your cat, you want to be sure you are doing it right. Here's a list of some healthy and safe fruits you can feed your cat:
- Bananas: Bananas are a good source of vitamins B6 and C. They also contain potassium which is good for your cat. You can offer some sliced bananas to your cat once in a while.
- Apples: Apple is high in calcium and vitamins K and C. Apple in small quantities is good and healthy for your cat. Feed small cube-sized apple flesh to your cat occasionally.
- Mangoes: They are sweet and succulent and not to forget, rich in fiber and vitamins. Cats can eat mangoes on some occasions, so you can give small bite-sized portions to your kitty.
- Watermelon: Watermelon is another fruit that is safe for cats. Make sure to feed only the seedless flesh to your cat as they can choke from trying to eat or swallow the seeds.
- Blueberries: Blueberries are good for cats. Other types of berries that are safe for cats include blackberries, raspberries, cranberries, and strawberries. You can feed small pieces to your cat but be sure to wash them properly.
- Pineapple: Fresh pineapple should be preferred over canned ones. Pineapple is rich in minerals and several vitamins. When feeding pineapple to your cat, remove the leaves, thorns, and rind before serving it to your cat.
Other fruits that are safe for cats include cantaloupe, kiwi, pears, and cucumber. If you are not sure which fruit is safe for your cat, you can confirm with your local vet first.
Which Fruits Are Not Safe For Cats?
As much as fruits can be a healthy snack for cats, some fruits are toxic for them and should be avoided at all costs. Examples of such fruit are grapes and raisins. These fruits can cause serious digestive issues and even kidney failure if consumed by your cat. On no occasion should they be fed to your cat.
Other unsafe fruits include citrus. Fruits from the citrus family like lemons, oranges, and limes are toxic to cats. These fruits can cause digestive irritation, vomiting, and diarrhea.
What Do I Do If My Cat Has Eaten An Unsafe Fruit?
First, you want to be sure that the symptoms you see are due to the ingestion of unsafe fruits. Some of the symptoms to watch out for include loss of appetite or refusal of food, continuous diarrhea and vomiting, swollen gums, abdominal pain, and drooling. Also, lethargy may be another sign to watch out for.
If your cat eats an unsafe fruit and begins to show any of these symptoms, you must act fast as it may quickly become an emergency. To be on the safe side, don't try to self-medicate rather get in touch with your vet immediately.
Cats are obligate carnivores that do not need to eat fruits. However, you can feed fruits to your cat occasionally. Just ensure they are fruits that are considered safe for your cat. Allergies are rare but they can happen. So, if your cat shows any allergic reactions after eating any type of fruit, stop feeding it to them and consult with your vet if symptoms persist.