Cats are known for loving their meat. But did you know that your feline companion can benefit from consuming fruits and veggies like cranberries, too? Cranberries would make a great addition to your cat’s diet over time thanks to the health benefits they have to offer.
Cranberries are easy to source and can be served to your cat in a variety of different ways. These tangy fruits aren’t just for holidays either. Why not enjoy cranberries with your cat all year long? Here’s what you need to know about serving cranberries to your cat.
The Benefits of Feeding Cranberries to Cats
Like humans, cats need a wide array of nutrients to stay healthy and lead a high quality of life. Your cat needs a good dose of vitamin C every day, and unlike humans, cats are usually able to create their own vitamin C.
Vitamin C strengthens the immune system so your cat can more easily fight off bacteria and viruses. It also aids in wound healing and offers thymus gland support. Cranberries happen to be full of vitamin C.
Cranberries contain a host of other vitamins and many minerals, such as vitamin K and manganese, that support good health in cats. These small bright red fruits even contain phytochemicals that can help prevent the onset of bladder stones and urinary tract infections caused by certain strains of E. coli.
And cranberry extract should help prevent the development of plaque and tooth decay, which can save you some money on vet visits in the coming years. The truth is that even though felines are carnivores by nature, cranberries can be just as beneficial to your cat’s diet as it is to yours.
The Various Serving Options
Fresh, raw cranberries are tart so your cat might not want to eat one in the first place. Luckily, there are a variety of other serving options to consider when it comes to feeding your cat cranberries. Here are a few ideas to consider:
- A Simple Supplement – You can just give your cat a supplement that includes cranberry extract for ongoing health support.
- A Fun Treat – Try giving your cat a dried cranberry or two in addition to or in place of their regular treats every so often.
- A Juicy Experience – Treat your cat to a refreshing drink of water infused with a tablespoon or so of cranberry juice.
- A Homemade Meal Option – You can always bake some fresh cranberries with carrots chunks and some chicken pieces to feed your cat at mealtime. Add some flax oil to the mix to optimize intake of essential fatty acids which are necessary for your cat’s good health.
- The Leftover Option – There’s no crime in sharing your cranberry laden leftovers with your cat. Felines would gladly eat up a pile of mashed potatoes, stuffing, and cranberry sauce mixed together.
Think outside of the box and surprise your cat to some cranberries treats occasionally. They’ll enjoy the treats while enjoying a higher quality of life throughout their elder years.
The Health Considerations
No matter how much your cat likes them, there are some health concerns that may need to be considered when feeding your cat cranberries depending on things like their age, health condition, and medical history. Cranberries can be beneficial to your cat’s overall diet, but because felines are carnivores, they don’t necessarily require the addition of fruits and vegetables in their daily meals like humans do.
It’s no big deal if your cat gets a hold of a fresh raw cranberry or two every once in a while, but cranberries are best fed as treats or supplements depending on your cat’s health and your vet’s expert opinion. It’s a good idea to seek the advice of your veterinarian before you begin a cranberry feeding regimen of any kind.
Make a list of questions you have about feeding your cat cranberries before consulting with your veterinarian to ensure that you don’t overlook anything important. We’d love to hear about how your cat reacts to cranberries – feel free to leave a comment below!
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