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Can Cats Eat Cucumber? What You Need to Know

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By Nicole Cosgrove

cat plays with cucumber

Cats can nibble on all sorts of things around the house. It’s not uncommon to find nibble marks even on veggies like cucumbers. But, can cats eat cucumbers and be okay? Yes, cats can eat cucumbers without suffering any health effects. In fact, cucumbers are good for them since they have lots of healthy vitamins and minerals.

Human food has always been cats’ favorite, but it’s important to be cautious and know which to feed them.

In this article, we get to explore why cats love cucumbers and learn more about a suitable diet for them.

Nutritional Benefits of Cucumbers for Cats

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As mentioned above, cats love eating cucumbers, but it’s important to stress that they should be fresh. Fresh cucumbers are the safest form of vegetable that cats can eat without any safety concerns.

Cucumbers are full of water. If you suspect your cat isn’t getting enough, you can add some slices of cucumber to their meals. Cats need lots of water because it’s an important part of their digestive system.  Also, the cucumber slices can help your cat remain hydrated, especially in summer when it’s quite hot.

In addition, cucumbers have some essential vitamins such as Vitamin K that your cat needs. This vitamin plays a crucial role when there’s a need for fast blood clotting. Also, your cat must have a healthy and functional liver.

Apart from water and vitamins, cucumbers have molybdenum, an essential mineral that cats need. It aids in metabolism and better digestion.

Other vital minerals in cucumbers include copper, magnesium, and potassium. The three play crucial functions in your cat’s body, and lack of them can cause your cat problems.

Cucumbers are also a source of dietary fiber. While cats don’t need as much fiber as we do, it’s still a requirement in their daily diets, and they will need it in small amounts. If your cat is having constipation, some cucumbers can help it have a better bowel movement.

Finally, this is a low-calorie vegetable. It only contains 15 kcal per 100gms, making it quite healthy. If your cat has some weight issues, you can switch treats with more calories with slices of fresh cucumbers. An overweight cat is quite vulnerable to health issues like poor heart health.

What Is the Safest Way to Feed My Cat Cucumbers?

As stated above, cucumbers are loaded with essential vitamins and minerals that cats need. Feeding them a few slices is also a great source of water. But, what is the safest way to feed cats cucumbers?

Well, first, it’s best to understand that this should be a kind of treat. You shouldn’t feed your cats loads of cucumber slices in one sitting. Give it a few slices to ensure they don’t experience any adverse effects.

Too much cucumber can lead to nausea, vomiting, and cases of diarrhea for your cat. Therefore, it’s best to start by peeling the skin of the cucumber then cutting it into small slices. The skin can contain some harmful chemicals and is best discarded.

Once the slices are ready, take two or three and feed to your cat. You can keep the rest to give them as a treat later. Remember, only feed them fresh cucumber. It means you should avoid any pickled cucumbers, which can make your cat sick.

Other Vegetables and Fruits That You Can Feed Cats

Some human food is good for cats. But, always ensure you feed them in moderation. Cats can do well with certain vegetables and fruits, especially those with essential vitamins and minerals that help in cat body functions.

Examples include:

1. Pumpkin/Squash

Freshly cooked pumpkin or squash is quite good for your cat. Plain pumpkin or squash has loads of water that your cat needs. In addition, it’s a natural source of fiber that aids in digestion and offers relief from constipation. These are also excellent sources of Vitamin A, C, and K.

2. Peas

Green Peas
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Cats can safely eat freshly cooked peas without any call for concern. Peas have loads of benefits for your feline friends since they are a high source of fiber. They also contain vitamins B1, C, and K, as well as potassium and iron.

3. Carrots

Yes, cats can even eat carrots. A few pieces can make excellent treats throughout the day. Carrots are a rich source of fiber and potassium. In addition, your feline friend gets vitamin A, B6, and K1. As crucial as carrots are for human eyesight, they work the same way for cats.

4. Broccoli

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Broccoli is as good for cats as it is for you and your family. Cats can safely eat this healthy vegetable at any age, provided it’s fresh. Therefore, you can feed your cat a little freshly steamed broccoli. It contains loads of crucial antioxidants that tackle inflammation and are low in calories.

5. Spinach

Another leafy green that cats can eat is spinach. Spinach has loads of vitamins. But, a word of caution is never to feed spinach to cats with liver or kidney issues.

Fruits, Vegetables and Other Human Food Harmful To Cats

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Not all fruits and vegetables are good for cats. Some are highly toxic and should never be in your cat’s diet, not even as small treats. As mentioned earlier, moderation is crucial when feeding cats human food. But, some fruits are best left for you and your family only.

All feline has a specific nutritional requirement necessary for their growth and development. It’s best to feed your cats food that helps them achieve this goal. But, you can always have some human food on their meal plans as well.

The trick for better health and wellness is to know which fruits/vegies are best for human consumption only. While fruits can be a great source of vitamins and minerals, the ones listed below are quite harmful to your feline friends.

  • Limes
  • Oranges
  • Lemons
  • Grapefruits
  • Coconut (flesh and water)

The first four are all citrus fruits that contain high citric acid levels. The acid can cause your cat numerous health problems. Avoid giving your cat the juice and even the peels, stem, and leaves. A cat that eats a small part of those citrus fruits will experience an upset stomach. A lot more will lead to vomiting and diarrhea.

The fifth fruit is coconut. Never feed your cat any part of the coconut fruit, including the water and flesh. Cats tend to experience digestive issues when they consume these parts of the coconut fruit. It’s because coconut water is high in potassium which can harm your feline friend.

It’s not only fruits that can be harmful to cats. Even some vegetables and herbs can cause some health problems. Cats should never eat vegetables and herbs like:

  • Garlic
  • Onions
  • Scallions
  • Leeks
  • Shallots
  • Chives

These vegetables and fruit cause serious health problems for cats, like gastrointestinal complications. They even cause harm to the red blood cells. Therefore, avoid feeding cats these vegetables and herbs or any other meal prepared with any of them.

If you can, avoid feeding cats human food. But, if you can’t resist those lovely eyes, it’s best to know which foods are good and which aren’t.

Above are some human veggies and fruits not good for cats. Others to add to the list are as follows:

1. Alcohol

It goes without saying that no pet, including cats, should consume alcohol. Alcohol can cause serious health issues for your feline friend, including poor brain health and liver damage.

2. Raisins

As sweet as raisins can be, keep them far away from your cat. Raisins, even in small amounts, can cause kidney failure.

3. Chocolate

varieties of chocolate bar
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Yes, chocolate is quite delicious and a fantastic treat, but only for humans. Chocolate has theobromine and caffeine as part of its ingredients. These are highly toxic to pets like cats and can lead to death.

4. Xylitol

Alternative sweeteners are quite popular today. However, sweeteners like Xylitol aren’t good for cats since it causes blood sugar levels to drop. Such cats experience convulsions and seizures leading to death.

5. Cheese

Cheddar Cheese
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Cheese isn’t good for cats. This dairy product that you love so much can end up causing them great harm such as severe vomiting and diarrhea.

Final Takeaway

Cucumbers are quite beneficial vegetables to have on your plate. These are also excellent for your cat since they contain loads of water, vitamins, and minerals. However, always ensure you feed your cat cucumber slices in moderation.

Normally, human food is best left for humans, but some fruits and veggies like cucumbers are safe for cats too. However, always make sure these are fresh and not pickled.

Featured Image Credit: tugol, Shutterstock

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