What screams “tropical paradise” more than the bright, yellow pineapple? They are sweet, juicy, tangy, and incredibly flavorful, and can be enjoyed in all kinds of dishes and desserts, or just on its own.
And in addition to being tasty and versatile, pineapples also contain a host of health benefits to humans. They contain a considerable amount of vitamins and minerals, such as Manganese, Vitamin B6, Fiber, and of course the most popular one – Vitamin C. In fact, one serving of pineapple (165grams) contains a whopping 131% of a human’s recommended bodily intake of vitamin C. Talk about an overachieving fruit!
So now we already know that this tropical superfood is good for us in more ways than one, which means that it only makes sense to share all this vitamin goodness with our feline companions, right? After all, an abundance of vitamins is always better than a lack of, no matter if you’re human or cat!
So, Can Cats Really Eat Pineapple?
If you find yourself cutting up a tasty pineapple for a snack or as part of your meal and seeing your kitty pawing at you with those pleading meows to share a bit of that sweet fruit with them, then you’re probably wondering if it’s safe to do so. And just as luck would have it: pineapples are perfectly safe for cats. There – case closed. Or not?
See, pineapples have many health benefits for us humans, but cats are obligate carnivores, which means that they get all of the nutrients they need from eating meat. Fruits and veggies may boost the vitamins and minerals in their bodies, but in the long-term, meat food always ends up giving them more nutrition to keep healthy and happy.
Furthermore, cats can’t taste sweet. That’s right – they have no taste receptors on their tongue that can detect sweet tastes. So why does kitty paw at you when you’re cutting up a pineapple? Well, the truth is, they are just curious and want to have whatever you’re having because you’re their bestest friend in the whole world!
Considerations when feeding your cat pineapple
Before you start going on a sun-soaked tropical pineapple bender with your feline companion, there are several considerations you will need to know about beforehand. Here are some of the most notable ones below:
- Fructose content
Fructose is present in all fruits, and is a natural sugar that makes fruits so tasty. When it comes to pineapple however, a cup of this tasty fruit contains about 15 grams of fructose, which truthfully is quite a lot of fructose for a cat to handle. This is because fructose is processed as sugar in the bloodstream, which, if consumed in large amounts, may lead to health complications such as diabetes.
- How pineapple is served
Ensure that the pineapple that you feed to your cat is fully skinned, and that the pieces that you serve are of a soft texture. This avoids any risk of choking hazard, and ensures that your cat will not be spending too much time chewing on hard, nasty bits that will diminish the enjoyment of the delicious pineapple eating experience.
- Underlying health conditions
If your cat has any diseases or any underlying health conditions, it’s always best to check with your vet first before feeding them any food that hasn’t been approved by a professional. By doing so, you avoid having to face any emergency situations that may result in a trip to the vet surgery as a result of ingesting food that is not right for their current state of health.
Even though cats can’t taste sweet, their bodies process sugar in the same way. And too much pineapple equals too much sugar in their bodies. Any guesses as to what too much sugar in the diet leads to? That’s right, obesity, diabetes, and a host of other cardiovascular related diseases which will swiftly reduce the quality of life for your little furball.
Is canned pineapple any good for cats?
Canned pineapple may taste amazing, but should always be avoided if you’re planning on giving your cat a tropical snack. This is because pineapples that are stored in a can or a container are processed to have an extended shelf life. These processes involve saturating the natural pineapples in syrups and juices that have a crazy high sugar content, which stops them from going bad prematurely.
Always serve fresh pineapple cut straight from the fruit if you’re planning on sharing with your feline companion. And remember to only serve the soft bits of the fruit – cut off the skin completely and any hard bits that can be found near the core of the pineapple.
Sharing food with your cat can be a great bonding experience for the both of you, and nothing beats spending some quality time together enjoying some sweet treats such as pineapple in the presence of each other.
However, always remember that your cat’s digestive system is a lot different from the human one that you have – and commercial cat food pretty much ticks all the boxes when it comes to a fully nutritious diet for your little furball. Pineapple should always be a snack food for your cat, and should not comprise more than 10% to 15% of your cat’s total diet.
That’s not to say that it’s totally out of bounds for your cat – chances are, kitty will love sinking their teeth (or fangs!) into the unique and satisfying texture of this bright yellow tropical fruit. Just remember that even a few tiny bite sized cubes of pineapple may already be too much for your cat, so enjoy in moderation.
Alternatively, there are other nutritious fruits and veggies such as broccoli, celery, bananas, and pumpkins that offer a whole list of vitamins, minerals and nutritional benefits for your cat. If your cat tries pineapple and doesn’t like it, don’t force them to eat it – you can always try other snacks to find one that you both enjoy!