Can cats eat strawberries?

Can cats eat strawberries?

Our little cats are carnivorous animals that are used to a diet high in protein from animal tissue, not needing substantial amounts of carbohydrates, such as those contained in fruits such as strawberries. For this reason, strawberries are not a recommended food for cats despite their great nutritional value and their degree of humidity that benefits their urinary system.

However, from time to time they can be offered a few pieces of strawberries, always in moderation and never frequently since their diet must be based on food marketed for cats since only this is capable of providing them with all the nutrients that they need. they need daily in their correct proportions to maintain their health and vitality.

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Continue reading this Best Pets lover article to find out if cats can eat strawberries and if they are good for them, as well as the correct way to give them and their contraindications.

Do cats like strawberries?

In general,  most cats do not like fruits,  because they cannot identify sweet things, due to the physiology of their taste buds. And strawberry is no exception.

However, not all cats exhibit this behavior. Every cat is unique, in the same way, their likes and dislikes are also different. Although rare, some cats even go crazy for a few small pieces of strawberries.

If you want to know if your cat likes strawberries,   give him a little piece and see how he reacts. Don’t be surprised if he turns his nose away and rejects her, as most cats are very picky eaters. However, if he seems to like you, you can offer him a few pieces from time to time as a treat.

Are strawberries good for cats?

Before saying whether or not they are good, strawberries are not on the list of toxic foods for cats, so they can be ingested by small cats without, in principle, causing them any harm or poisoning.

This does not mean that they are good in themselves, since cats are not accustomed, designed, or adapted to eating foods rich in carbohydrates such as strawberries, but rather that they are strict carnivores like their ancestors and felines. wild, which obtains all the micro and macronutrients from the prey they would hunt in the wild, which in our cats is equivalent to feeding with feed or wet food based on animal protein, something in which strawberries are extremely far away nutritionally talking.

In addition, it is worth mentioning that cats cannot taste sweets, so strawberries, as well as other sweet foods such as other fruits, are not usually their favorite foods, although some may be interested and even enjoy small pieces of these foods.

Benefits of strawberries for cats

Strawberries are a fruit with numerous benefits thanks to their nutritional properties. To begin with, they are rich in moisture or water, which greatly favors the kidney and general health of our cats, animals that tend to drink little water and have a certain degree of dehydration. So one benefit of offering strawberries from time to time as a supplement to their feed or wet cat food is adding extra water to their diet.

The rest of the benefits are provided by the number of vitamins and minerals that strawberries have in their composition. Among these main nutrients we can find the following:

  • Vitamin C
  • Magnesium
  • Copper
  • Tannins
  • Lecithin
  • Pectin
  • Flavonoids (fisetin)
  • vitamin B9
  • Potassium
  •  Manganese

Of these nutrients, it is worth highlighting the contribution of vitamin C that strawberries can contain and the amount of potassium they have, important for reducing blood pressure. Another benefit of strawberries is that they reduce the risk of developing vision problems related to aging and protect against oxidative damage due to their antioxidant content. However, strawberries lack protein, and even less animal tissue, making them a completely unnecessary food for cats because they cannot take full advantage of its nutritional benefits.

How to give strawberries to my cat?

If, despite knowing that strawberries are not necessary for your cat’s diet, you want to know how he reacts if you offer them, keep in mind that you have to do it slowly and carefully. To begin with, you must remove any part of the strawberry that is not the fruit itself, that is, the stem and leaves. Then, you must wash it to remove any type of dirt or contaminant that is harmful to the cat and then break it into small and appetizing pieces and put them in your cat’s usual feeder. If you see that he does not show interest, do not force or encourage him to try them, it will only stress him out.

Strawberry Dosage for Cats

Our little cats cannot tolerate large amounts of carbohydrates such as those contained in strawberries, so you should not offer large amounts of these fruits because they also contain fiber that facilitates and increases intestinal transit, and diarrhea may appear in cats fed strawberries.

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The doses of strawberries for cats will depend on:

  1. If the cat is an adult and large: ideally, you should not offer more than half a strawberry if it is large, or a whole one if it is small.
  2. If the cat is small: around a quarter of a strawberry or half at most.

You must be close to your cat to see its reaction and, if you see that it wants more, do not offer it more than the indicated dose to avoid problems and poor digestion.

Introducing strawberries to a cat for the first time 

If you are curious about how your cat will react to strawberries, you should give them slowly.

  1. Get rid of the strawberry stem and leaf completely.
  2. Wash the strawberry thoroughly in cold water. This is especially important if taken from the wild. It may be full of pesticides or herbicides.
  3. Cut a small piece of the strawberry. If you try to eat too much at once, your stomach will push it out.
  4. Offer the piece of strawberry to your cat and watch.
  5. Don’t make him eat the strawberry if he refuses to.
  6. Offer no more than two strawberries every day if your pet wants more.

Contraindications and side effects of strawberries for cats

Strawberries, despite not being a food especially rich in sugar, do have enough for cats, so consumption should be very sporadic if your cat likes strawberries. However, some contraindications of strawberries for cats are:

  • If your cat is obese or overweight.If your cat is diabetic.
  • If your cat has cavities or has had.

Although it is less frequent, some cats can also suffer an allergic reaction after ingestion, manifesting some side effects such as:

  • Urticaria
  • Respiratory distress
  • Cough
  • wheezing
  • vomiting
  • Sneezing

Other cats can be affected by diarrhea or loose stools due to its laxative effect, especially if we go too far. It is also important that the leaves do not touch your eyes or nose, as it can cause an allergic contact reaction due to its irritating effects.

Side Effects of Strawberries for Cats

Strawberries are not toxic as we have mentioned, but they can cause allergic reactions in especially sensitive cats, manifesting symptoms such as:

  • Breathing difficulty or dyspnea
  • Cough
  • Sneezing
  • Vomiting
  • Wheezing
  • Hives on the skin

In cats fed with larger amounts of strawberries or that have a digestive problem, they may suffer from diarrhea or loose stools. Leaves should be removed entirely as they can irritate your cat’s eyes and nose, causing them to gasp or sneeze.

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Strawberries are a nice treat for your cat from time to time, but you shouldn’t add them to her regular diet as they are high in sugar.  You should serve the strawberries to your cat in small pieces, clean and without leaves when giving them as a reward.

Don’t overfeed your cat strawberries, and watch for any signs of digestive problems, such as vomiting or diarrhea. Call your vet if you observe any of these signs.