Cats are true carnivores. Meat is a necessary main ingredient of their diet. But what about fruit—is it safe for cats? And if so, which fruits can cats eat?
Due to their lack of sweet taste receptors, cats are usually not interested in the sweetness found in fruit. However, there are several kinds of fruit that cats can eat as a treat in moderation. A few bites are all that their digestive systems can tolerate.
Check out our list of safe fruits for cats.
Can Cats Eat Bananas?
Yes, cats can eat bananas. These are a good source of vitamins B6 and C, potassium, and carbohydrates. Offer sliced bananas that are either fresh or frozen.
Can Cats Eat Watermelon?
Yes, cats can eat a small portion of watermelon flesh on occasion. Do not give your cat the rind or seeds. The occasional thin, pale seed from a “seedless” watermelon should not cause harm if accidentally ingested. If your cat eats a tiny portion of rind, it may lead to bowel cleansing.
Can Cats Eat Strawberries?
Yes, cats can eat strawberries in small amounts. Although they provide an excellent source of vitamin C, folate, potassium, and manganese, as well as antioxidants and fiber, the benefits are not noticeable in cats because they cannot safely consume large amounts. Be sure to remove the stems and leaves, then wash the strawberries before cutting them into small pieces.
Can Cats Eat Blueberries, Raspberries, Cranberries, and Blackberries?
Yes, cats can eat other berries. Blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, and cranberries are all safe for cats to eat. They are high in antioxidants, flavonoids, and fiber, as well as vitamins A, C, K, and E. Be sure to cut each one into bite-size portions before offering to avoid choking hazards.
Can Cats Eat Apples?
Yes, cats can eat apples. The flesh of apples is high in calcium, vitamin C, vitamin K, and pectin, and the skin is high in phytonutrients. Cats can get the same health benefits from apples as humans do. Small slices or cubes with the flesh and peel may be offered. The stems and seeds should be avoided.
Can Cats Eat Mangos?
Yes, this sweet fruit can be a treat for cats as well as pet parents. They are rich in fiber, vitamin C, vitamin B6, and vitamin A. Small cubes or slices of mango flesh are allowed, but avoid the skin and seed.
Can Cats Eat Pineapple?
Yes, cats can eat pineapple, with a few stipulations. This tropical treat is high in fructose and contains several vitamins (A, B6, folate, C) and minerals (magnesium and potassium). Fresh pineapple is preferred over canned, which is often packed in a sugary syrup that may contain preservatives. Be sure to remove the leaves, thorns, and rind completely before sharing with your feline friend.
Can Cats Eat Cantaloupe?
Yes, cats can eat cantaloupe, which is a good source of vitamin C, beta carotene, fiber, and antioxidants. This relatively low-calorie fruit is often a favorite of felines because the scent that cantaloupes produce mimics the scent of the proteins in meat. Offer small cubes or slices of the flesh, but avoid the rind.
Can Cats Eat Fruit Snacks?
No, cats should not eat fruit snacks. Cats should not be offered gummy snacks, because these are made from fruit juice concentrate without the fruit fiber. Some even have more sugar than candy, which makes them especially unhealthy for cats.
How Much Fruit Can a Cat Have?
Limit fruits and other treats to 2% of your cat’s diet. This is about a 1-inch portion each day. Fruits are best given as an alternative to cat treats, especially when weight loss is desired. They may be offered as a fresh or frozen treat that is cut into small pieces. They should be given separately from their regular pet food.
If your cat is unable to comfortably digest the fruit, you may see signs of digestive upset (upset stomach) such as vomiting, diarrhea, or constipation. Due to the high sugar content, diabetic cats should not be given fruit.
Other Fruits That Are Safe for Cats
These fruits are also safe for cats to eat in small quantities. Be sure to remove the seeds, stems, pits/cores, and rinds:
- Apricots (avoid seeds, stems, pits)
- Pears (avoid seeds, stems, pits)
Fruits That Are Not Safe for Cats
- Grapes and raisins: Ingestion of grapes and raisins by cats can cause serious digestive issues, vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, and even acute kidney failure.
- Lemons, limes, and oranges: The oils and compounds in citrus fruits like oranges, lemons, and limes can cause digestive irritation, vomiting, diarrhea, or even central nervous system depression.
Which Other Human Foods Are Safe for Cats?
Your cat can also enjoy these foods safely, in moderation. Be sure to remove any seeds, stems, pits/cores, and rinds:
- Carrot (cut into small bites to avoid choking hazards)
- Celery (cut into small bites to avoid choking hazards)
- Green beans
- Pumpkin (avoid seeds, stems, pits, rinds)
- Sweet potato
- Winter squash (avoid seeds, stems, pits, rinds)
Which Human Foods Are Toxic for Cats?
Do not give these to your cat:
- Green tomatoes
- Wild mushrooms
- Most seeds, stems, pits, rinds, and roots
Featured Image: iStock.com/MaxBaumann