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Can Cats Eat Radishes? Is It Healthy for Them?

Vet approved

	Dr. Lorna Whittemore Photo

Written by

Dr. Lorna Whittemore

Vet, MRCVS

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

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We all know that cats are carnivores. However, we also know that some cats enjoy human foods, whether animal-derived or plant-based. Many cats do not want to eat veggies unless they’re secretly hidden in their food, but some do like to venture out to the vegetable world.

If your household enjoys eating radishes, you may notice that your kitty shows an interest in them. So, you might wonder whether it’s safe to share a bit of radish with your pet. Can cats eat radishes? Are radishes safe for them? The answer isn’t simple. Here is what you should know about feeding radishes to your cat and what to expect if you do decide to do so. Radishes are not toxic to cats, but they shouldn’t be a regular part of your cat’s diet.

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Cats Can Eat Radishes But Should They?

Radishes (Raphanus sativus) are not toxic to cats, so if they get their paws on one, there is no reason to worry about them becoming seriously ill. Radishes are a bit spicy, though, so your cat might do nothing more than nibble on a piece before abandoning it. However, if your cat likes crunchy things or doesn’t mind spicy foods, they may eat an entire piece of radish.

This is especially true when it comes to kittens that are teething. They might eat a radish just to satisfy their chewing instincts and curiosity. It is important to note that just because a cat can eat radishes doesn’t mean they should. Radishes are known to cause gastrointestinal discomfort, which isn’t fun for your cat, and excessive gas, which isn’t fun for everyone else in the household.

These problems will not endanger the overall health of your cat, but they will make your cat uncomfortable, and they could disrupt your cat’s normal eating schedule. A disrupted eating schedule can result in your cat not eating their usual amount of more cat-appropriate food.

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Image Credit: matthiasboeckel, Pixabay

If You Do Feed Your Cat Radishes

There are a few things that should be considered before you decide to feed your cat radishes.

Firstly they have little nutritional content that is beneficial to cats. Cats require a diet high in protein with moderate fat content, radish has almost no protein and fat content.

They do contain some vitamins and minerals such as potassium, calcium and Vitamin B6 but these can be better provided to your cat from animal sources.

Whilst we don’t recommend feeding your cat radishes we know that sometimes they will get hold of them by themselves or solicit them from you while you are eating.

If you are intent on giving your cat radish it is important to make sure you don’t feed your cat too much in one sitting, to avoid gastrointestinal problems. Start by offering your cat just a small piece of radish to see how they tolerate it.

If they handle that well, you can try giving them a little more next time. Your cat shouldn’t eat more than a whole radish each week.

By no means does your cat need radishes in their diet to thrive. You don’t have to make any special preparations just to get your cat to enjoy radish. If they don’t like radish as it is, you should not go through the trouble of trying to encourage them in the hopes that they will eventually enjoy the vegetable.

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Final Thoughts

Now that you know how radishes can affect your cat after consumption, you have the power to decide whether to feed the vegetable to your pet or not. Radishes won’t kill your cat, but they can cause intestinal discomfort. If your cat likes radishes and doesn’t show signs of gastrointestinal distress, by all means, allow them to enjoy the veggie as an occasional treat. If signs of distress are displayed, though, they are best avoided.

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Featured Image Credit: kungfunamhuynhdao, Pixabay

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