Can Cats Eat Raspberries? Are They Safe?

Russell Cargill

Cat food plays a direct role in the quality of feline health and, as a result, overall lifespan. We know that fresh raspberries are an excellent source of vitamins, minerals, and dietary fiber, which begs the question, can cats eat raspberries?

Certain foods are more beneficial than others, while some should be avoided completely to lessen the chance of health complications arising.

Let’s take a closer look below.

Can Cats Eat Raspberries?

Cats can eat raspberries in small quantities (1-2 berries per week) so, feeding your cat the occasional raspberry is fine, but too many can result in a sick kitty.

This is because cats are carnivores, and their digestive systems aren’t designed to process plant-based foods. Instead, they need a diet consisting of animal protein to get all the nutrients they need. But, that doesn’t mean they can’t get some benefits from eating raspberries.

Health Benefits Of Raspberries For Cats

Cats can derive some benefits from eating either fresh or frozen raspberries.

First, the antioxidants they contain can slow your cat’s aging process by protecting them against diseases. Second, they’re great brain food, helping improve cognitive functions and boosting memory, which comes in handy if you’re going through pet training.

Giving your cat raspberries also provides them with a high source of vitamin C, which can help regulate and restore oxidative stress in their cells, in turn, boosting their immunity.

Additionally, the soluble and insoluble fiber contained in raspberries slows the digestion process and regulates bowel movements while promoting the growth of friendly gut bacteria.

Side Effects Of Cats Eating Raspberries

Cat owners should be aware of the following side effects that can occur if their pet ingests a large number of raspberries:

Upset stomach: Your cat will develop some gastrointestinal distress in the hours following consumption. Excessive flatulence, abdominal pain, and diarrhea are common symptoms as their digestive tract struggles to break down the fibrous food. Foul-smelling feces is usually the result once the food is passed. An upset stomach can also lead to nausea, vomiting, and constipation.

Dehydration: It may sound strange considering raspberries are 85 percent water, but mild to severe dehydration can occur in cats that have eaten too many. This is a side effect of the cat losing too many fluids either through diarrhea, or vomiting. You’ll have to up their water intake while they’re on the mend.

Damage to the kidneys: Too many raspberries could lead to your cat developing kidney stones. The formation of calculi in the kidneys can lead to kidney failure in some cases. Damaged kidneys can also cause anemia, which is when the body doesn’t produce enough red blood cells to carry oxygen to the body’s tissues, resulting in lethargy and weakness.

Berries That Are Safe For Your Cat

Though raspberries aren’t the ideal treat for cats, some berries are 100% safe for them to eat.

Strawberries: While they offer very little nutritional value, strawberries are considered to be a very safe treat for cats. However, strawberries are a sweet fruit that’s high in sugar. If your cat has an underlying health condition such as diabetes, you should avoid feeding them these.

Cranberries: Most cats will refuse to eat cranberries due to their tart flavor, which is a shame because cranberries are safe for cats and provide some nutritional benefits. They contain high oxalate levels which stave off bladder stones, and also contain a plant compound called proanthocyanidins which fight urinary infections.

Blueberries: Blueberries are considered to be one of the healthiest superfoods for humans, and the good news is they’re also a safe fruit for your cat! However, like raspberries, cats won’t get the same nutrition from them that their owners do. However, what they will get is a good dose of water and fiber.

Blackberries: Blackberries are a safe treat for your feline, but like the previously mentioned berries, they won’t offer much in the way of nutrition other than providing fiber and water. It’s important to note that you should be extra careful with these as they break apart and can sometimes get lodged in your cat’s throat.

What Berries Are Poisonous To Cats?

As a responsible cat owner, you should be aware of winterberries. Also known as holly (the kind you see everywhere during Christmas), winterberry is a shrub with a mixture of foliage and bright red berries. It’s also poisonous to cats as well as humans.

Winterberry contains theobromine which is also found in chocolate, and can cause symptoms similar to a caffeine overdose if a cat ingests it in large quantities. This includes loss of appetite, nausea, stomach pain, drooling, vomiting, and general lethargy.

The good news is that winterberries are rarely lethal, however, you should always take the situation seriously as it will cause a lot of discomfort for the cat.

Knowing how to alleviate their pain is important, and you should keep a poison control phone number handy in case your vet isn’t open. The ASPCA or the Pet Poison Helpline are both excellent resources that are open 24/7, 365 days a year. 

Can Cats Eat Raspberry Yogurt? 

We all know cats love milk so it makes sense they’d enjoy similar dairy products. When it comes to yogurt, cats will likely prefer plain yogurt over raspberry, as they’re generally turned off by artificial sweeteners. However, if you want to feed them raspberry yogurt it’s perfectly safe. You can also make yogurt by mixing fresh or frozen raspberries with plain yogurt.

Most kittens outgrow their need for milk/dairy as they develop into adult cats, and as a result, they become lactose intolerant. For this reason, you should be wary of how much yogurt you give your cat (a spoonful or two is sufficient), so they don’t suffer from lactose intolerance symptoms such as bloating, gas, and diarrhea.

Yogurt that contains natural live bacteria cultures will also help, as it breaks down lactose and lactic acid during the digestion process.

Frequently Asked Question’s 

Can Cats Eat Fruit?

Cats can eat most types of fruit. Cats are attracted to novelty, so introducing new foods will always pique their interest, but the food they enjoy is based on texture rather than taste. While humans like fresh fruit for its sweet flavor, cats don’t have the same receptors and can’t taste sweet flavors. Even if your cat likes fruits, make sure you limit the amount they eat.

Can Cats Eat Mangoes?

Mangoes are a non-toxic fruit for cats that they can safely consume. Due to their high sugar content, mangoes are more of a sweet treat than a nutritious one, and you should only feed your cat a small cube per week. Remember that mango seeds contain cyanide and should never be given to a cat.

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