Sometimes, you may feel the urge to vary up your kitty’s regular diet and introduce them to some different foods. And rather than giving them something fattening and unhealthy, it seems to make sense that you offer something that is going to provide some nutritional benefits like fruit, right? But before you rush off to feed your cat anything unusual, you need to know that it is entirely safe for them to consume. In this blog post, we are going to solely focus on watermelon to find out whether this is safe and healthy to offer to your cat.
If you are just looking for a short answer, then it is yes – watermelon is safe to feed to cats. However, you should bear in mind that you should only offer it to them in moderation. There are some nutritional benefits, but you need to make sure that you are preparing the fruit in the correct way for your kitty. So, let’s go into more detail about the topic of can cats eat watermelon here and how.
Benefits of Feeding Your Cat Watermelon
Can cats have watermelon? Well, there are plenty of natural advantages involved in feeding your cat watermelon. First, it contains a high water content, which is great for dehydrated kitties. This is especially likely in those cats on dry food diet who aren’t getting a huge amount of moisture from their food. The majority of watermelon consists of water (which may seem quite obvious!) which makes it a tasty treat without substances that are harmful for cats.
One of the other main substances contained in watermelon is fibre, which is an important part of your cat’s diet. Some cat foods don’t contain a huge amount of it, so it can provide a useful boost in this department. And it is especially good for cats who are prone to constipation from time to time. Other positive parts of watermelons include vitamins and minerals such as Vitamins A and C, magnesium, and potassium. All of these play a role in the healthy diet of a cat. Heart and bone health are just two of the parts of your cat’s body which could get a boost from watermelon.
Obesity is a common concern for many cat owners, but a cup of raw watermelon only contains around 46 calories, so it is not going to add to your kitty’s waistline.
Risks of Watermelon
While there are plenty of positive aspects, feeding your cat watermelon comes with some risks as well. Most crucially, you need to be very careful with the seeds as they contain compounds like cyanide, which can be harmful to cats. The quantity in watermelons is low, but you have to remember that cats are much smaller than humans. Even if you get a seedless watermelon for safety, it is still worth rising it under water. If your cat does consume any seeds, it is likely that they could suffer from diarrhea and vomiting. And if your kitty has digested a lot of them, there may even be the possibility that they require a blood transfusion. If you suspect poisoning, you need to get in contact with your vet as soon as possible.
The other main part of a watermelon which is not safe for your cat to eat is the rind. While it doesn’t have the same major health risks as the seeds, your kitty is still going to have trouble digesting it. Cats are natural carnivores who do not have the appropriate enzymes to break down this plant matter. So, make sure to cut off the rind before offering it to your cat.
As with any other type of sweet treats, you should limit the amount you offer to your cat. If your cat already suffers from diabetes, you should avoid giving them any. Whenever you offer any kind of new food to your cat, it is always a good idea to monitor them closely when you introduce them to it.
How Much Watermelon Should I Offer My Cat?
Watermelon is best seen as an occasional treat rather than a central part of your cat’s diet. As a rule of thumb, treats should only make up around 10% of your cat’s food intake. And you are not going to want to take up this entire allowance with watermelon as you always have that risk of diabetes to worry about. We have already talked about removing the seeds and rind, but when you are preparing the watermelon, you should cut it up into bitesize chunks for your cat to enjoy. A couple of cubes in a feeding session is normally fine. After all, cats only have small stomachs.
Symptoms of Watermelon Allergy or Toxicity
As we mentioned earlier, you shouldn’t continue feeding your cat watermelon if they show any adverse reactions. There are a few symptoms of allergy or toxicity to water out for. A few of these include a change in bathroom habits (diarrhea or constipation), vomiting, or indigestion. If you think that your cat is having a bad reaction to watermelon, there is no point in continuing to offer it to them. There are other healthy treat alternatives out there, and there is no need to put your cat’s health at risk.
Going back to our introduction, watermelon is safe to offer to cats, but it is best viewed as an occasional treat rather a food you offer on a regular basis. If they are suffering from a condition like diabetes, it is best avoiding sweeter treats such as this one. And even if they are not, it is still important that you monitor them closely to watch out for any harmful adverse reactions. Speak to your vet if you are feeling at all unsure on the subject as they will be able to provide more specific advice based on your cat and their individual needs. Also, remember that if you do feed your cat any watermelon, you should prepare in the right way to ensure that it is safe for consumption.
- Can Cats Eat Watermelon – CanCats.Net