Excited Cats is reader-supported. When you buy via links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you. Learn more.

Can Cats Eat Whipped Cream? Vet-Reviewed Information to Know!

Vet approved

	Dr. Paola Cuevas Photo

Reviewed & Fact-Checked By

Dr. Paola Cuevas

MVZ (Veterinarian)

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

Learn more »

Heading to a cafe and ordering a mocha topped with a mountain of whipped cream is one of the many small joys in life. Sharing those special moments with your pet feels like a natural thing to do, yet should you be feeding your cat whipped cream?

The short answer is no, cats should not eat whipped cream. Whipped cream isn’t only made with dairy but also with sugar and vanilla extract. Each of these ingredients presents problems for your cat’s digestive system.cat face divider 2

The Myth Around Cats and Dairy

Image Credit: fvk, Pixabay

Growing up, many of us watched cartoons like Tom and Jerry. We are all well-acquainted with the idea that cats love dairy products, and giving them a bowl of cream or milk is a much-appreciated treat.

It is hard to believe, but we have all been deceived when it comes to cats and dairy products. Although they might seem to like it, you may find out quickly that it doesn’t seem to like your cat quite as much.

When younger, kittens have a specialized enzyme in their system called lactase. These lactase enzymes make it possible for them to break down the sugars found in dairy products, mainly lactose. Lactose is found in almost all dairy products, including milk, ice cream, yogurt, and yes, even whipped cream.

The need for these enzymes is due to the way that kittens feed when they are young. Up until about 8 weeks old, kittens feed primarily on their mother’s milk. Although they might begin to transition much earlier than this, the production of lactase enzymes in their systems steadily stops.

As cats grow older, there is no reason for them to continue taking in any milk products or anything else with lactose. They are carnivores by nature and don’t need those enzymes anymore.

Since adult cats are typically missing any of these necessary enzymes, they find it almost impossible to break down lactose successfully. In other words, nearly all cats have a lactose intolerance by nature.

It means that when cats eat products like whipped cream, they won’t digest it, and their digestive systems will suffer.

3 cat face divider

Signs of Lactose Intolerance in Cats

Some cat owners are very aware of what lactose intolerance looks like in their cats. However, if you have a new cat or a young one that is just growing up into lactose intolerance, watch out for these signs. They might point to your cat eating a dairy product they shouldn’t have.

The signs include:
  • Flatulence
  • Stomach aches
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting

If your cat begins to experience these signs, take them to a safe place where they can be sick without making a mess. That might be outside in a guarded area or perhaps a tub. Once their system has worked out the dairy products, they should be fine. If vomiting or diarrhea continues for several hours, take them to your vet.

A white cat sits in an empty tub
Image Credit: Bonsales, Shutterstock

Other Ingredients in Whipped Cream

Dairy isn’t the only product in whipped cream that poses a danger to a healthy cat. You also need to be careful when it comes to your cat eating sugar and vanilla extract.

Sugar isn’t toxic for a cat, but it is superfluous to their system. Eating too much of it or too often can lead to obesity, a predisposing factor for diabetes.

Although vanilla is not a toxin for cats, the vanilla extract contains about 34% ethyl alcohol. Too much of this can poison your cat.yarn ball divider

What Happens When Cats Eat Whipped Cream

Cats are sneaky creatures. If your cat sneaks up on the counter for a sly lick or two of whipped cream, don’t panic. Your cat will likely experience more gas than usual for several hours, but beyond that, they will probably be okay.

If you know that your cat has an intense intolerance to lactose, then you might want to gear up for some vomiting or diarrhea when it hits their stomachs.

Even if your cat doesn’t seem to have lactose intolerance, it is still a poor idea to feed them whipped cream. The sugar and vanilla in it won’t sit well in their digestive tracts and can cause long-term illnesses in the future.

Sick cat medicines
Image Credit: one photo, Shutterstock

cat + line divider

In Summary

Most human food is a bad idea to feed to your cat. Unfortunately, this does include whipped cream. It is best to avoid these kinds of treats to protect your cat both in the long term and the short term.

See Also: 

thematic break

Featured image credit: HomeMaker, Pixabay