Long Story Short
- Watermelon won’t harm cats, but it’s also not a must health (get it? 😹)
- It contains nutrients that aren’t particularly valuable to cats. They already get what they need from cat food. 🍉
- Cats are so sweet, they don’t need the watermelon sweetness! (seriously tho, that would be too much, and they’ll feel bad) 🍉
- Your kitty has sneaked a bite? No worries! Just keep an eye on her. 🍉
Watermelon? You mean antioxidants, vitamins, and other valuable compounds? Yea, they are wonderful for us, but not that valuable to the kitties, though. As carnivores, they rely on the nutrients in animal products only (no matter how similar watermelon looks to meat). So, can cats eat watermelon for any additional health benefits?
Health Benefits of Watermelon for Cats
Watermelon is unlikely to provide any health benefits for cats. Vitamin C is an important nutrient for all animals, and watermelon does contain this vitamin. Sounds legit right? Wrong! Cats can synthesize vitamin C in their bodies and don’t need to get it from fruits or vegetables (which is super cool).
Watermelon also contains lycopene, a carotenoid that protects animal cells from damage. This can be actually beneficial to cats. The catch? There ain’t much lycopene in watermelon. (In fact, eggs contain carotenoids too – they give the yolk its orange color.)
What About Hydration?
So, what about that water in the melon? Can cats eat watermelon as a hydrating snack? Cats are prone to dehydration, especially if their diet mainly consists of dry food. But when you’re thirsty, you’d sooner just drink water than eat a watermelon, right? Well, so would cats.
Risks of Feeding Your Cat Watermelon
The sugar in watermelon can be harmful to cats and lead to weight gain, as cats’ bodies aren’t optimized to use carbohydrates for energy. It’s not as risky as feeding them chocolate, but too much can give your pet an upset stomach.
Watermelon seeds can also be dangerous – your cat may choke on them or the seeds can get stuck in their digestive system. Make sure to remove all the seeds before giving your cat a watermelon. It’s best not to let them play with the seeds, either (too much of a risk, and too big of a mess).
What to Do if Your Cat Eats Watermelon?
If your cat has eaten watermelon, she will probably be a-okay. Look out for vomit, have diarrhea, or general bad mood. These symptoms can also be caused by other things, so let’s not panic, just yet. Sometimes, a kitty just needs a good old barf to get better.
Which Cats Should Never Eat Watermelon?
We know we’ve just said watermelon won’t harm your kitty, but there is a catch. Some cats should NEVER eat watermelon (because of sugar, sensitivities, or ingestion problems). These include:
- diabetic cats;
- overweight cats;
- cats with any liver disease;
- cats with sensitive digestion tract, or stomach.
Editor’s Note 🍉A perfect feline diet is based on animal products. Fruits like watermelon can be an occasional treat, but they shouldn’t replace your cat’s regular food.
Can Kittens Eat Watermelon?
Like adult cats, kittens shouldn’t eat this fruit either. Their digestive system is still developing, so they can’t process plant-based foods very well. Even seedless watermelon can give them an upset stomach and diarrhea.
Can Cats Eat Watermelon Rind?
What about the green rind? Is it safe for cats to nibble on the watermelon rind? The rind is actually more nutritious than the flesh, as it contains high concentrations of vitamins B and C. But again, it’s still not something that cats need in their diet. The hard texture makes it difficult for them to digest.
A cat is trying to eat watermelon rinds may need more fiber in their diet. In that case, potted grass is a more natural option for your feline friend. You can easily grow your own wheatgrass or oat grass and let your cat munch on it whenever they want.
Can Cats Drink Watermelon Juice?
Just in case someone has any doubts about all watermelon products. Nope! All of them are bad, including the juice. That’s a feliNO!
Are Other Melons Safe for Cats?
The answer is the same for all melons: no, cats should not eat them. This includes cantaloupe, honeydew, and other varieties of melon.
Your Cat Doesn’t Need Watermelon – Try These Treats Instead
Can cats eat watermelon on occasion, or just once? You’d better try one of these options that cats can eat safely:
- cooked chicken;
- canned tuna (in water);
- salmon (cooked or canned);
- a boiled egg;
- a teaspoon of plain yogurt.
Again, if your cat has any health issues, check with your vet before giving them any new food. Some of the above options are high in fat, which makes them bad choices for obese cats.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Fruit Is Toxic to Cats?
Fruits like grapes and raisins contain toxins that can cause kidney failure in cats. Other foods to avoid giving your cat include avocado, citrus fruits, onions, garlic, cherries, and rhubarb.
Why Does My Cat like Watermelon?
Cats may like watermelon because of its sweet taste and juicy texture. It’s also a great source of hydration on hot days. However, cats should not eat large amounts of watermelon due to the high sugar content. If you’re looking for a healthy treat to give your cat, try cooked chicken or canned tuna instead.
What Fruit Can Cats Eat?
Fruits that are safe for cats to eat include apples, bananas, cantaloupe, strawberries, blueberries, and watermelon. But remember that they don’t need fruit in their diet and can get all the vitamins and minerals they need from animal products. Feed them fruit as an occasional treat only!
Can Watermelon Cause Diarrhea in Cats?
Yes, watermelon can cause diarrhea in cats.
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