One of the questions we often ask ourselves when it comes to cats’ diet is can cats eat chocolate? Most of us simply can’t resist sweets or any type of food that contains chocolate. So, it’s natural that we wonder if it is harmful to our cat’s health. We all love our cats and we wouldn’t want to cause them pain. Although there are more cases of dogs getting poisoned by chocolate consumption, some cats may fall victim to sweets too.
Chocolate toxicity is not something that you should ignore. In fact, it is very common food poisoning in cats and it can be quite harmful to your cat’s health.
Can Cats Eat Chocolate?
The short answer to this question is ‘no’! Chocolate is not good for cats or dogs so you should never feed them with any food that contains chocolate. Keep in mind that your cat may steal some chocolate or milk-based product away. Maybe just a small amount wouldn’t be fatal, but it’s better to keep an eye on your cat and make sure she doesn’t consume it.
Why is Chocolate Toxic to Cats?
What is the ingredient that can be toxic to cats and the chocolate-based products contain it? – It’s theobromine. Apart from it, it contains caffeine, and both can be toxic to cats. Theobromine is absorbed by cats much slower than it is by humans. For that reason, even a small amount of theobromine can be toxic to cats. Consuming chocolate can cause abnormal heart rhythm in cats especially because they are more sensitive to it.
Symptoms of Possible Chocolate Poisoning in Cats
Sometimes our cats eat something when we don’t see them. Often they can get curious about what you have on your table or in the kitchen and may steal away food that is not good for them. If you notice that your cat ate chocolate you should act immediately.
But, how to recognize if she has been poisoned by eating chocolate? – Here are the symptoms of chocolate poisoning in cats:
- Increased heart rate
- Rapid breathing
- Increased thirst
Since cats are much more sensitive to this type of food as opposed to humans, the symptoms will appear even when a small amount of chocolate has been consumed. The first symptoms will probably be vomiting and diarrhea, but if it is a larger amount in question then it can be much more severe. Therefore, it’s very important that you take your cat to the vet if your cat eats chocolate or shows any of these symptoms.
Treatment of Chocolate Toxicity in Cats
In case you try and give your cat a chocolate treat or she finds it and eats it, it’s important to know how to avoid serious chocolate poisoning. If you take her to the vet he will probably try and induce her to vomit in order to take it out of her system. Maybe you could try that at home and then take her to the vet’s office. Try using one or two spoons of hydrogen peroxide and this should make her vomit and get rid of anything bad she ate.
At the vet, the cat should get fluid therapy and get hydrated. It’s also important for the vet to get a urine and blood sample, and perform an ECG to check the heart rhythm. In these cases, it’s recommended a specific bland diet for the cat. Sadly, if the cat isn’t promptly treated chocolate poisoning can result in death.
Other Foods that can be Toxic to Felines
It’s not only chocolate that can be harmful to your cat’s health. Some of the foods that you should avoid feeding your cat with are:
- Raw dough
- Raw meat or bones
- Onion, garlic
- Uncooked eggs
So, if you ever wonder again can cats eat chocolate, it’s better that you opt for some healthier alternatives to food. For example, if you want to switch from her regular cat food give her some tuna, cooked chicken or turkey, or other types of meat. Finally, remember that health comes from a proper diet, so if you want your cat to stay healthy watch out for what you put in her bowl.