Can Cats Eat Carrots?
We at Cornucopia Pet Foods often hear from people who ask whether they can feed their cats carrots. So, can you?
Can My Cat Eat Carrots? (Yes!)
At Cornucopia, we answer with a resounding, yes!
As curious as cats are, it is no wonder that some of your cats have been turning their sharp little teeth towards a carrot discovered on the kitchen floor. However, while cats can eat carrots, they can only do so under certain conditions: when they are cooked and unseasoned.
Not only is it a tasty treat that many cats enjoy, but carrots have many nutritional benefits for cats as well.
For instance, there’s an antioxidant in carrots called beta-carotene that gives the carrot its orange color. When eaten, beta-carotene converts into vitamin A—a very healthy supplement for both humans and cats. Add to this the fact that carrots are rich in fiber and you have a tasty and nutritious snack for kitties. And for indoor cats, the fiber in carrots is helpful as well.
In addition, carrots are also an exceptional source of manganese, potassium, phosphorus, and magnesium, and contain vitamins K and E. In a nutshell, carrots are packed full of vitamins, magnesium, and many other nutritious goodies for your carrot-eating cat.
So, even though carrots do not have protein in the form of meat, which as obligate carnivores, cats need to survive, they still have many nutritional health benefits for your tabby. Just don't substitute carrots for your cat's protein-based meals!
According to the experts at Cornucopia Pet Foods, while carrots are indeed loaded with all these benefits, based on Doc’s research in his 50+ years of veterinary practice, it’s important to prepare them properly.
Your cat should only eat carrots when they are cooked to a soft texture, and without any added seasonings. This is because raw carrots or carrots cooked with added flavoring can cause digestive issues.
How Much Carrot Can I Give My Cat?
Whenever you are thinking of introducing new foods into your pet’s diet, it is always advisable to consult the team at Cornucopia Pet Foods or your regular veterinarian. This way, you will ensure that it’s safe to give them the food you would like in the right quantities.
Generally speaking, however, less is always more. So offer it in small quantities as a treat, but-never substitute as a meal.
When doing so, always keep in mind that all new foods like carrots can cause your cat's stomach to become upset, leading to diarrhea, and vomiting.
In addition, carrots contain carbohydrates. Nearly 50% of most carbohydrates are from sugar, which is present in carrots. As such, if you feed your cat carrots too frequently and in large amounts, they could cause your cat to become obese, or develop diabetes as a result of sugar from carbohydrates.
The most common symptoms of feline diabetes are increased urination, persistent thirst, and a huge appetite. Get in touch with your vet if you notice any of these symptoms in your cat. They just might be early signs of diabetes in your cat!
Can Small Cats Eat Carrots?
According to the team at Cornucopia, a small cat or kitten eating a small piece of cooked carrot shouldn't experience any harm.
However, if your cat is still a kitten, it's best to feed it good quality kitten food instead. That is because kittens tend to be more sensitive to diet changes than adult cats. So, introducing human foods might cause gastrointestinal (GI) problems-they simply cause their little stomachs to become upset.
To avoid this happening, think twice and consult before feeding your kitten carrots.
At Cornucopia Pet Foods, we have many varieties of appropriately formulated kitten food that contains all the nutrients your kitten(s) need(s) for proper growth and development.
How to Serve Carrots for Cats
Properly served to your cat, carrots can serve as a healthy snack - not meal.
To properly serve your cat's carrot, follow the steps below.
- always wash the carrots thoroughly and peel them
- cook them by either baking, steaming, or simply boiling-until soft and chewy.
- cut the well-cooked carrot into small bite-size portions and serve as a vegetable in your tabby's main meal or as a side dish.
However, before you rush to serve carrots to your cat, PLEASE REMEMBER!
- DO NOT add any seasoning or cook them with other ingredients
- raw carrots that are hard to chew can become a choking hazard for your tabby.
Otherwise, don't worry, cooked carrots can be a wonderful occasional treat for your cat.
That said, should your cat get tired of carrots, we've some ideas on what to try for your cat. The Cornucopia team is at your disposal and we have some of the best quality cat food in town for cats with a taste for carrots.