There are precautions we need to take when sharing tasty treats with our feline friends. Sometimes, our food is a healthy snack, and other times, it can be harmful, so it’s essential to be informed before sharing new food with a cat. Unfortunately, banana bread is not something you can share with your cat. In this article, we’ll look at exactly why and what to do if your cat eats banana bread.
Why Cats Can’t Eat Banana Bread
Cats have specific dietary requirements and thrive on a diet rich in animal-based protein and low in carbohydrates. They are obligate carnivores and are unable to digest plant-based food effectively. But let’s first look at why banana bread is an unsuitable option for your cat.
- High sugar content: Banana bread generally contains high levels of sugar. Eating too much sugar frequently can lead to diabetes and obesity in cats, resulting in other health problems and even shortening their life.
- Salt: Cats need salt in their diet, but it should be supplied by their cat food. Excess salt is harmful to cats, leading to vomiting and diarrhea. Banana bread doesn’t contain enough salt to be toxic, but you should still be vigilant about your cat’s eating habits and avoid foods with extra salt.
- Added ingredients: Many recipes include ingredients like nuts or chocolate. Some nuts, such as macadamia nuts, are toxic to cats, and chocolate is also toxic. Even a small amount could lead to muscle tumors, heart dysrhythmias, and seizures. Recipes might also include spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, or raisins, which are also harmful to cats.
What Should You Do if Your Cat Eats Banana Bread?
If your cat manages to eat banana bread, chances are it won’t be enough to harm them. At most, they will get a bit of an upset stomach. Still, it’s better to contact your veterinarian, especially if there are added ingredients like chocolate or raisins.
If your cat hasn’t eaten a large amount, your vet will likely advise you to observe your cat for worrying signs such as diarrhea, vomiting, or lethargy. If you notice anything to be concerned about, contact your vet again.
Cats should be getting everything they nutritionally require from their regular cat food. However, if you want to share some human food with them, knowing what is safe and what should be avoided is crucial.
Your best option is to offer your cat something with one ingredient, so if you’re serving them beef, that doesn’t mean they can eat Beef Wellington. Examples of human food you can share with your cat include:
- Eggs: Cats can enjoy plain, boiled, or scrambled eggs. Never feed them raw eggs as there is a risk of salmonella, just as there is for us.
- Fish: Fish is packed with healthy omega fatty acids, which are great for your cat’s overall health. Fish can also be beneficial for cats with kidney disease or arthritis. Never give your cat raw fish; cook it plain, and always remove the bones before serving.
- Fruit: Many cats won’t be interested in fruit since they won’t like the taste or texture. However, they are excellent sources of vitamins A and C, potassium, and fiber, and are also low in calories. Blueberries, pumpkins, peeled and deseeded apples, cantaloupe, seedless watermelon, and bananas make a tasty snack.
- Meat: Lean meats like beef, turkey, chicken, and lamb are suitable for your cat. Keep them plain, remove the skin and bones, and never give your cat raw meat.
- Vegetables: Much like fruit, most cats won’t show much interest in vegetables, but if yours does, you can offer them asparagus, steamed broccoli, peas, or cucumber. Vegetables provide lots of fiber, water, and vitamins that will benefit your kitty.
Speak to your vet before introducing new food to your cat. New food should always be offered gradually so that you can watch for signs of an upset stomach. Treats should always be shared with your cat in moderation so they don’t skip a meal.
Unfortunately, cats can’t share our love of banana bread. It isn’t considered a healthy snack and can be harmful depending on the ingredients. If your cat has eaten a piece, chances are they will be fine, but contact your vet just to be sure.
If you want to share human food with your cat, there are options; they can even eat a little banana as long as it’s been peeled, nothing has been added, and it’s been chopped into bite-sized pieces! Remember, speak to your vet first if you’re thinking of adding new items to their diet, and treats should always be offered in moderation, alongside a high-quality, nutritionally balanced diet.
Featured Image Credit: A_Lein, Shutterstock