It is undeniable that since we spend so much time with our cats, we treat it like a person, a human. We share our thoughts, our bed, our TV, even our food with them.
However, great care should be taken as not all human foods are good for your furry housemate. These kinds of food have adverse effects on your cat’s digestive system, which may cause vomiting, diarrhea, or loss of appetite.
What are the foods that we should watch out for?
Alcoholic drinks should be kept away from your pet cat’s reach. Accidental spills must be cleaned immediately so that your pet can’t drink from it. A tablespoon of alcohol can cause severe liver and brain damage.
Caffeinated drinks such as coffee and tea, and energy drinks
For some of us, coffee, or tea may very well be our “fuel” to get through our day. However, these drinks are loaded with caffeine which can cause restlessness, rapid/difficulty in breathing, heart palpitations, and muscle tremors when ingested by your furry pet. Leftover coffee, tea, or energy drinks should be stowed away or disposed properly.
Who doesn’t like chocolate? As much as we love to share this heavenly treat, chocolate shouldn’t be fed to your pet cat. Chocolates have this chemical called theobromine which is toxic in large quantities. It is most concentrated in dark and unsweetened variety. Chocolate toxicity can cause vomiting, diarrhea, rapid heart rate, even seizures.
Grapes and raisins
Grapes and raisins have a lot of health benefits for people, however, they can be poisonous to your cats. Just a handful of raisins can cause kidney failure. Watch for signs of toxicity such as diarrhea, lack of appetite, weakness, abdominal pain, and decreased urination.
Onions and garlic
Onions and garlic have sulfoxides and disulfides that destroy blood cells and can cause serious blood problems to your pet cat. It is best to keep onion and garlic away from your feline friend.
Fat trimmings and raw food (egg, meat, fish)
Fat, in small quantities, is good; but if you feed your cat big portions of fat trimmings, it may cause stomach upset and pancreatitis. Raw foods may contain bacteria such as Salmonella and E. coli which can cause vomiting and diarrhea.
This is used as a sweetener for a lot of sugar-free foods. An example of this is chewing gum. Xylitol can cause a severe drop in blood sugar followed by liver failure in dogs. Although there are no records of cats becoming ill to xylitol, it is best to keep away your feline friend from this.
If you suspect that your pet cat has eaten something that it shouldn’t, try to determine how much it has eaten.
Call your vet for specific advice. In most cases, small quantities may not cause a problem, but larger quantities may need immediate treatment like induced vomiting or hospitalisation.
Supportive treatments are given until symptoms are resolved. Treatments may include hospitalisation, intravenous fluids, blood tests to monitor organ function, and others.
In many cases of pet poisoning, the case is accidental. In order to prevent this from happening, it is best to keep your food out of your cat’s reach or places that are inaccessible to pets. If you have children in the house, teach your children not to give candies, gums, or other food items to your pet.