Pumpkin for Cats: 3 Ways to Use It

If you own dogs, you may have been told that feeding them pumpkin helps with digestive issues such as constipation and diarrhoea But what is the case with cats? Can cats eat pumpkins as well?

Yes! Pure canned pumpkin can benefit your cat’s diet if you use it in the right amounts. Find out more about pumpkin’s advantages and tips on when and how to feed your cat pumpkin.

Is Pumpkin Good for Cats?

Pumpkin is not just healthy for cats but is also included in some commercial cat food products. It is low in calories and is a good source of fibre and nutrients such as vitamins A, C and E. It also has antioxidants, which protect cells from damage caused by free radicals.

Cats are obligate carnivores meaning that their diet must be based on meat. However, small amounts of other foods, such as pumpkin, could aid the cat’s diet overall. Fibre can be found in different quantities in cat food. However, particular cats benefit by having more fibre in their diets.

When feeding cats, pumpkin canning pumpkin purée is your best choice. Be sure to use pure canned pumpkin, not canning pumpkin pie filling loaded with sugar and other ingredients cats should not eat. If you’d like roasting, you can burn the flesh of the whole pumpkin and then puree it by hand. Make sure you leave out oils, butter and salt. A plain pumpkin is all you need for your cat.

Although cats can eat raw or cooked pumpkin seeds, they can pose a danger of choking, so they must be crushed or chopped. Cats may not be a fan of eating pumpkin seeds. However, most cats enjoy eating pumpkin puree.

Benefits of Pumpkin for Cats

The soluble fibre present in pumpkins can provide many benefits for cats. If cats suffer from mild diarrhoea, pumpkins can take in excess fluids and tighten the stool. Pumpkin is also an excellent aid for cats suffering from constipation because the moisture and fibre in pumpkin help move things forward.

The pumpkin can also have a similar effect on cats suffering from hairballs and hairballs, with the fibres in the pumpkin aiding in moving hair out of the intestinal tract.

Adding a tiny portion of pumpkin to the cat’s food could assist cats that need to shed some weight. The pumpkin could provide some bulk but only a few calories, making cats more satisfied and full.

If your cat suffers from stomach upset or has excessive hairballs, consult a veterinarian before trying to treat the symptoms using a pumpkin.

“Cats with severe diarrhoea or constipation may not respond to pumpkin,” said the doctor. Emily Swiniarski, medical director of the Anti-Cruelty Society in Chicago, Illinois. Your cat could also require additional treatment based on the cause that is causing the symptoms.

How many pumpkins to Give a Cat

The pumpkin should be consumed in tiny amounts- no more than two tablespoons daily. “This is because we do not want our cats to fill up on pumpkin and not cat food, which would cause serious imbalances in their diet,” Swiniarski declares. “The cat won’t be able to access sources of protein, which are vital for their overall health. Anything more than 10% of their food intake could be harmful.”

Pumpkin can cause the opposite of your intended effect, possibly causing stomach upset. “If a cat eats too much pumpkin, they may vomit or have diarrhoea due to the change in diet and change in fibre,” Swiniarski states.

Start by eating smaller portions at first, about one teaspoon, to prevent stomach upset. Then, work up slowly if you do not notice any improvement from the lower part. According to Swiniarski, cat owners feed one tablespoon a day to their pets.

Pumpkin for Cats: 3 Ways to Use It

If you’re looking to begin including pumpkin in the diet of your pet, here are some options for serving it:

Feed canned pumpkin directly to the canister.

Cats may like the flavour of plain canned pumpkins. If your cat enjoys this, allow them to take a bite of the puree straight off the spoon for indulgence.

Mix canned pumpkins into food items.

Most cats enjoy the flavour of meaty food, so pumpkin may not be their first snack choice. If that’s the case with your cat, mixing pumpkin purée into the cat’s food (wet or dry) is simple. Cats generally have no issues eating pumpkin after it’s been added to their food.

Create some treats for your cat that are pumpkin-flavoured

If you enjoy cooking, look up on the internet for a variety of recipes for pumpkin-based cat treats. To attract fussy cats, find recipes for treats that include meat and pumpkin.

Pumpkin and Cats: Other Tips and Advice

The pumpkin for cats isn’t an all-purpose food; however, it can aid cats with constipation or diarrhoea, help with the control of hairballs and aid cats with calorie-restricted diets to feel fuller after eating. Ensure you use pure pumpkin (not canned pumpkin pie filling), free of added spices, sugar or salt. Even tiny amounts of salt could harm cats, especially those suffering from heart or kidney diseases.

Before adding any food or supplement–including pumpkin–to your cat’s diet, always talk to your veterinarian for advice. Swiniarski warns that particular cats shouldn’t eat pumpkins.

“Cats that experience any symptoms like vomiting or diarrhoea after eating pumpkin should not be fed any more pumpkin,” she advises. “If cats are taking a prescribed diet and pumpkin is consumed, it will disrupt the crucial balance of nutrition and should not be considered. Cats that do not have a large appetite shouldn’t eat pumpkin, either, since they require high-nutrient balanced foods for they eat.”

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