Cats are often very choosy with everything. They decide their own nap times, their own play times and even their own menu. That makes most people think that cats probably know what’s best for them. But just like human, cats get tempted to eat things that may be harmful for their system. So here is a list of food items that may be really unhealthy for your cats in the long run.
This may be surprising because as Indians, we take onions for granted while cooking, it simply has to be a part of everything. But onions in any form, raw, fried, boiled or even powdered, may be a major reason for the breaking down of the red blood cells in a cat’s body, which in turn leads to anaemia. A small dose, once in a while, won’t hurt much but large quantities and regular doses are a definite no since it can cause onion poisoning. Along with onions, garlics and chives must also be avoided.
Milk and Dairy Products;
The “Tom and Jerry” show taught us, that a cat and mouse could almost kill each other over milk. True that! But most cats are lactose intolerant and any kind of food with dairy products included can get a cat down with diarrhoea and make them more weak and inactive.
Alcohol makes human tipsy in small quantities. If consumed regularly in large quantities, it may lead to death. It has the same effect on cats as well, only, it takes far less to make the damage in them. Just two teaspoons could send a cat in a coma and another two will lead to death. It ruthlessly damages the liver and brain.
Cats love fish and tuna is their drug. A little tuna, now and then, does not make much difference, but a regular diet of tuna packed for human consumption will lead to malnutrition in cats, since cats need more protein and food meeting higher nutritional requirements.
Grapes and raisins;
What is it exactly in grapes and raisins that are harmful for cats is not an established research as yet, but it causes kidney failures in them. Even a small amount can make cats ill. Few of the early signs of poisoning are hyperactivity and repeated vomiting. Some cats may not show ill effects immediately but that does not mean you should take chances. It’s better that whatever the risk is is kept off the table.
Cocoa, chocolates, beverage, cola and stimulant energy drinks contain caffeine in them which are responsible for restlessness, heart palpitations, uneven breathing, muscle tremors and fits in cats. So be careful about this item because the symptoms mentioned above clearly shows how much a cat may have to suffer because of its consumption.
Most cats do not eat chocolates by themselves but sometimes owners feel that chocolates are such a delight and their cat must have them as a treat and force feed them. This is a really bad idea. The main toxic agent in chocolate is theobromine. It is present in white chocolates as well but the extremely harmful ones are found in dark chocolate and baking chocolate. Consumption of chocolates can cause uneven heart rhythm, seizures, tremors and even death in cats.
Gum and Candy;
Xylitol is a sweetener contained in candies, gum, toothpaste and other sweet stuff. Xylitol causes an increase in the insulin circulation in a cat’s body, which leads to a drop in the blood sugar levels. It also leads to liver failure. Initially, a cat would show symptoms of vomiting, lethargy and show a weird un – coordinated behaviour. Seizures may happen within a limited time of consumption while liver failure is just a few days away.
Fat trimmings and bones;
A lot of people have this habit of tossing over leftover bones and fat trimmings off their plate to their cats. Fat trimmings, both cooked and uncooked can cause intestinal problems in cats while bones can make them choke to death. Bones also cause splinters and obstruction in the digestive system.
Raw eggs contain salmonella and E.coli which can cause food poisoning in your cat. Raw egg whites also contain a protein called avidin, which interferes with the absorption of a B vitamin called biotin. This may be problematic to your cat’s coat and cause skin problems as well.
Raw meat and fish;
Raw meat and fish like raw eggs contain bacteria that can cause food poisoning. There is also an enzyme in raw fish that destroys thiamine, which is an essential B vitamin for a cat. Lack of thiamine cause major neurological problems in cats leading to convulsions and even coma.
There is a reason why cat food and dog food come packed in different tins. Most of the ingredients are not same plus cats require more protein and certain vitamins and fatty acid contents that dog food does not contain. Keeping your cat on dog food diet, just because it seems to do fine with it, will lead to serious malnutrition.
Consumption of liver in huge amounts can cause Vitamin A toxicity, which is very harmful for a cat’s bones. Bones get deformed, irregular growth of bones on elbows and spine is detected and osteoporosis is another possibility. Vitamin A toxicity even causes death. So liver in little amounts is okay but don’t make it a regular part of your cat’s diet.
Yeast ferments dough to make it rise before it is baked. This will happen inside your kitty’s tummy if it eats up dough, causing a painful swelling in the abdomen. Also, during the process of fermentation, alcohol is produced which can also lead to alcohol poisoning.
Human medicines will be too strong and dangerous for a cat. Give your cat medicines only prescribed by your vet, otherwise everything else is supposed to be kept away.
In spite of taking all the precautions, its possible that your cat may eat something harmful, if you think your cat is poisoned call your local vet immediately. Have all the emergency numbers at hand and its always better to know at least two different veterinary doctors, just in case one isn’t available. Consult your vet for a balanced healthy for your cat which will help you with making your cat happy and healthy.