For many people, strawberries are the taste of summer. These delicious fruits are sweet, juicy, and delicious; but if your cat agrees, you may be wondering whether cats can eat strawberries, whether strawberries are safe for cats, and whether you should be giving your cat strawberries as a treat. can.
We’re going to take a look at strawberries in detail, so you can have all the information you need to make a decision about feeding strawberries to your cat.
What are Strawberries?
You’ll probably be surprised to hear that strawberries aren’t actually berries! This is because they are not made from the ovary of the plant, but from the ‘eclipse’ that the ovary sits in. They are red (sometimes white), fleshy, and covered in small seeds.
Strawberry plants are commonly cultivated in gardens, and you may have seen your cat snacking on strawberries straight from the plant! These lower plants put out runners and clone themselves, meaning they can quickly ‘escape’ your vegetable beds and into your garden.
There are many varieties of strawberries that fruit at slightly different times, meaning the strawberry is available throughout spring and summer—and is grown under the glass or imported year-round.
Strawberry Nutrition Statistics
Strawberries contain a range of different nutrients, vitamins and minerals. According to the USDA , 100 grams of strawberries contain the following macronutrients:
They are higher in protein content and lower in calorific value than apples, but they also contain very little healthy fiber.
In addition, strawberries contain the following vitamins and minerals:
Strawberry Nutritional Benefits
Strawberries are low in calories, high in fiber, and low in water. This makes them an excellent healthy snack that is great for the digestive system and for treating constipation.
However, they also contain 5g of sugar in every 100g of strawberries, making them a little too sugary to eat in large quantities on a regular basis. Despite this, the amount of fiber helps control the rise in blood sugar, giving strawberries a relatively low glycemic index.
Luckily, strawberries are also loaded with vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C and potassium. They also contain several important phytonutrients such as polyphenols and the antioxidant compounds quercetin and pelargonidin.
These nutrients are currently being studied for their significant benefits for blood pressure, heart disease and cancer. Strawberries have one of the highest polyphenol content of all fruits.
Can Cats Eat Strawberries?
Now you may wonder whether cats can eat strawberries or not? The good news is that cats can eat strawberries, as long as you follow a few important rules.
Strawberries are considered a safe human food to feed to your kitten. The ASPCA lists them as non-toxic to cats, dogs and horses. They are tasty, nutritious, and attractive to cats.
It is not clear why cats want to eat strawberries as cats have no ‘sweet’ taste receptors and therefore lack the ability to taste ‘sweet’ things. However, if you are a cat owner, you will know just how curious cats are, and how much effort you are putting into whatever they eat.
Hang on… Cats Are Carnivores- Can You Really Eat Strawberries? Yes, cats are obligate carnivores, and you may have heard that means they can’t digest strawberries and other fruits and vegetables. However, this is not true; The ‘obedient carnivore’ means that cats require amino acids that are only found in meat; they can eat plants if they choose, but they cannot live without meat.
Are Strawberries Good for Cats?
OK, so cats can safely eat strawberries, but are strawberries good for cats? Do cats really get any nutritional benefit from eating strawberries?
As with so many things, vets and researchers don’t yet know whether eating strawberries is good for cats. However, we do know that the high sugar content of strawberries means that cats should not have too many strawberries, especially if they are diabetic. The high fiber content can also pose a problem; Too much fiber can cause constipation or diarrhea.
The problem is, despite all the wonderful nutrients in strawberries, they are mostly found in small amounts. Unless your cat can eat several hundred grams of strawberries (which we certainly wouldn’t recommend trying!), they are unlikely to gain any health benefits from eating strawberries—or any other fruit!
However, many cats like the taste of strawberries, and the water and fiber content can be useful additions to their diet. Compared to many treats, strawberries are relatively low-calorie, so if your cat likes them, they can be given as a healthy reward.
How many strawberries can a cat eat?
This brings us to the point of how many strawberries you can safely feed a cat. As always, I would recommend that your cat’s diet is mostly a prepared complete and balanced diet. This cat food should be his staple food; making up at least 90% of his daily calories. The last 10% of their calories can come from snacks and treats, such as strawberries.
For the average cat, this means that 20 calories a day could come from an unbalanced source. Assuming you make a variety of other cat treats, you should not give your cat more than 20 grams of strawberries per day to avoid obesity. Having said this, many cats will get upset with fiber if they are eating more than a teaspoon (10g) of strawberries a day.
With this in mind, you may want to feed your cat a small piece of strawberry as a reward, or cut it into smaller pieces and sprinkle it on their food. Don’t forget to wash the strawberries to remove any traces of pesticides, and remove any greenery (stem and top) if it’s still present, as it can get stuck in your cat’s throat.
As with all new foods, the first time you give your cat a piece of strawberry, you should cut a piece smaller than your fingernail, then monitor your cat for 48 hours for adverse effects. Although strawberry allergies are rare, the best way to make sure your cat can deal with strawberries in his diet is by the way.
Strawberries are a safe treat for cats and contain a variety of nutrients. They are also full of water, which is important for maintaining your cat’s hydration. Having said that, you should bear in mind that the fiber in strawberries can upset the digestive system if you feed too much- and this could prevent your cat from getting any health benefits from strawberries. If you choose to feed strawberries to your cat, only feed them in very small amounts.
Frequently asked questions
Do Cats Eat Strawberry Wafers?
Strawberry wafers are ’empty calories’ – they contain no useful nutrition but lots of calories. They can be very high in sugar and are not recommended to be fed to cats. You should also watch out for ‘diet’ or ‘low cal’ versions, which may contain artificial sweeteners such as Xylitol.
Can Cats Eat Fruits?
As well as strawberries, cats can also eat other berries including raspberries and blueberries, and fruits such as bananas, watermelons and mangoes.
Can Cats Eat Strawberry Yogurt?
Strawberry yogurt is not toxic to cats. However, it is usually very high in sugar and hence you should avoid giving it to your cat. Many cats cannot tolerate yogurt and other forms of dairy as well, so yogurt should be avoided.
Can cats eat strawberry ice cream?
It is never a good idea to feed ice cream to your cat; it is very high in sugar and fat and has no nutritional value. While not directly toxic, ice cream is likely to cause an upset stomach.