Can Cats Have Cranberries?
Cranberries are a pleasant fruit we don’t often see unless it is the holidays or we are making a fun cocktail. So what happens when we allow ourselves this sweet treat and mittens gets into the bag for a bite? Maybe you noticed on the bag of their favorite food, it contains cranberries. Should that calm your nerves or halt any alarm?
You may have read our article on dogs consuming cranberries, will cats react in a similar way?
If you are not sure your mind may wander to other things you know about human foods and pets. For example, many people are aware dogs cannot eat grapes? Could this be another one of those instances where human food could be toxic for our pets? Can you give your cat cranberries?
Answer: Yes! In fact, cranberries are an excellent source of nutrients for your pet! As you continue to read you will find that not only can your cat consume cranberries, but they should. These little superfruits are packed with some of the greatest nutrients for your cat.
However, it is suggested that you do not feed your cat raw cranberries directly. Rather, give them something that already contains cranberries, like cat treats or tablets. These items can be found online or you can contact your vet about incorporating cranberries into your pet’s diet.
When it comes to cranberries, there are plenty of health benefits for your cat. Cranberries are an excellent natural source of vitamin E, C, and K. You will also find these berries contain good amounts of copper, potassium, manganese, iron, and magnesium.
With all these benefits, they have got to be high in calories, right? Nope! Cranberries are low in calories and fat, so they are perfect for the fat cat. They are also high in fiber! If that wasn’t enough to get you on board, cranberries are mostly known for their incredible antioxidant contents. See cranberries get their vibrant color from proanthocyanidins, which also provide high levels of antioxidants. Antioxidants have been shown to be anti-inflammatory and help fight cancer, two things our pets need just as much as us humans do. It is truly one of the best superfruits!
If you are familiar with the benefits of cranberries you may already be aware they can help support your urinary health. This is due to the acidity they can add to your urine, thus killing some of the bacteria. For this reason, cranberries can help promote bladder health in both humans and cats. How about those other vitamins and minerals mentioned? How do those help your pet cat?
Well, vitamin C is a super vitamin that can help boost both our immune system and our cats! While manganese is essential for things like bone and joint cartilage health, super important for the cat who likes to jump, pounce, and run. It can also help improve neurological function, keeping cats of all ages sharp for hunting mice!
Things To Consider
We mentioned earlier it may not be a good idea to feed your cat raw cranberries. This is because cranberries may be a bit difficult for your pet to digest. Instead, try some other ways to help give your pet these sweet berries. This includes incorporating supplements into their diet through tablets or soft chewables. You can also check for certain pet foods that contain cranberries. Blue Buffalo, for example, does contain some cranberries in some of their pet food products.
If your cat does happen to get a hold of some raw cranberries, it should not be cause for alarm. While they are not good for their digestion, they are ultimately not toxic. Make sure mittens does not consume any more raw cranberries and watch them for the next day or so. If they spend more time than usual in the litter box or exhibit any strange behavior you may want to stop by your vet. Otherwise, practice caution and keep them out of reach from curious pets.
If you are considering giving your cat cranberries through a juice or sauce you may want to reconsider. Both cranberry sauces and juices are high in sugar, which may not be harmful to your cat but can be harmful in the long term or when consuming high amounts.
Cranberries are often a sweet holiday staple, but when you look at the nutritional information you will find they are so much more than that! Cranberries are filled with vitamins and minerals that are great for both you and your pet. While it is not suggested you toss mittens a raw berry, it is recommended you provide them with supplements that contain cranberries and their many benefits.