Cats are carnivorous animals that require a diet rich in proteins from animal tissue. They do not need large amounts of carbohydrates as some fruits contain. This is the case of strawberries, whose food is not recommended for felines despite their great nutritional value and the benefits they bring to human health.
However, if you offer small amounts of strawberries to your cat, always occasionally and in moderation, they will be able to obtain some of the benefits of consuming this fruit. You must keep in mind that their ideal diet is based on food marketed for cats, since it is their most suitable food because it provides them with all the nutrients they need daily, making it easier for them to stay healthy and vital.
To discover if cats can eat strawberries, the benefits of consuming this fruit for the animal, its contraindications, and how to give it to them in the most appropriate way, we recommend that you continue reading this article.
Can cats eat strawberries or not?
Strawberries are not a toxic food for cats. That is, they can eat them without causing any damage to their body or possible poisoning. This does not mean that strawberries are a good food for felines since they are not used to it nor are their bodies prepared to eat foods like strawberries, which are rich in carbohydrates.
They are strictly carnivorous animals by nature, obtaining macronutrients and micronutrients from the meat of prey that they would hunt in the wild. In today’s domestic felines or cats, this diet is equivalent to feed or wet food based on protein of animal origin. They contain nutritional values very far from those provided by strawberries.
It is also important to note that cats do not have the ability to taste sweets, so they are not able to taste the sweetness of strawberries, as well as that contained in other fruits and sweet foods. For this reason, they are not one of their favorite foods, although it is true that some cats are interested in them and enjoy eating small pieces of strawberries.
In short, cats can eat strawberries, but in moderation, in small quantities, and occasionally to obtain their benefits, since it is not one of the essential foods in their diet.
Benefits of strawberries for cats
Strawberries contain multiple benefits due to their nutritional properties and cats can obtain some of them through moderate consumption. They are a fruit with a large amount of water in their composition, thus promoting kidney health and proper hydration of the animal , since kittens tend to drink little water and have some dehydration problems.
Being a fruit rich in vitamins and minerals, strawberries provide more benefits thanks to these nutrients. The main nutrients found in this food are the following:
- Vitamin B9
- Vitamin C
- Flavonoids (fisetin)
From this list of nutrients, it is worth highlighting the contribution of vitamin C and the amount of potassium that strawberries contain, since it is important for reducing blood pressure. Another of their benefits is that they help reduce the risk of developing vision problems related to aging. They also protect against oxidative damage thanks to their antioxidant content.
However, strawberries lack protein and even less animal tissue , making them a completely dispensable food for cats, since they cannot take much advantage of their nutritional benefits.
Contraindications of strawberries for cats
Despite not being a fruit rich in sugar, it has enough for these felines. Therefore, they should consume strawberries very sporadically, as long as your cat likes them. These are some of the contraindications of this food for kittens:
- If they are overweight or obese.
- If they are diabetic.
- If they have cavities or have had any.
Despite being rare, some cats may suffer allergic reactions after ingesting strawberries, showing side effects such as the following:
- Respiratory difficulty
Additionally, your cat may suffer from stomach problems, diarrhea, or loose stools due to the laxative effect of strawberries, especially if you offer an excessive amount. You should also be careful and avoid letting the leaves of this fruit touch the animal’s nose or eyes, as this contact could cause an allergic reaction due to its irritating effects.
If you decide to give strawberries to your cat, you should do so carefully. Before offering them, remove any part other than the fruit itself, that is, both the stem and the leaves. Afterward, you wash them to remove dirt or any type of contaminant harmful to the animal.
When you have the strawberries well washed, cut them into small pieces and put them in their usual feeder. If you detect that he does not show any interest in eating them, do not force or encourage him to try them because you can stress him out.