When it comes to food, a lot of people and their pet animals share. Most domesticated animals do not vary greatly from humans in terms of their nutritional requirements.
However, we cannot easily conclude that everything good for humans has the same value for animals. There are a number of other factors aside from the food’s nutritional value in determining whether it is good or not for your dogs or cats at home.
One of the most common fruits available in regular households is bananas. Now, we already know how good this fruit is for the human body. It is rich in the good stuff like vitamin C, potassium, manganese and vitamin B, to name a few.
How about your cats? Do they benefit from bananas as you do?
The Nutritional Content Of Bananas
The topmost nutrient found in bananas is potassium. This mineral helps keep the cat’s kidneys and heart in good health.
Another good thing that cats can get from bananas is folic acid. This is helpful for the cat in metabolizing the proteins ingested for the purpose of building new cells.
Bananas are also rich in fiber. When cats eat bananas, they end up absorbing the dietary fiber that bananas contain. This helps maintain regular bowels, which is a good thing for your feline’s digestive system.
The Nutritional Requirement Of Cats
Cats are actually obligate carnivores. This means that they need to consume meat in order to acquire all the nutrients that their bodies need. In fact, all the nutrients that they need are found in meat.
Domesticated felines have a history that goes back to the wild where they are part of the hunting population. They hunt and feed on smaller animals as their prey. Their food is made up largely of protein, some amounts of fat, and very less carbohydrates.
Even though they have relocated from the wild to your home, their dietary requirements remain the same.
Do Cats Need Bananas?
Cats do not need bananas in their diet. In fact, they do not need any fruits and vegetables or even grains.
They can eat the fruit though. There are even some pet felines who like it and are eager to have a portion of this sweet delight.
Should Cats Eat Bananas?
Ideally, cats should not eat bananas. The risk when doing so is higher than the benefits because they can get the nutrients that they need from other food sources.
Bananas can trigger allergic reactions from felines. There are reports of cats experiencing the following when consuming the fruit.
- Mouth and throat itching
- Rashes and itchiness
- Swellings in the skin and mucosa
- Throat narrowing
These might not be directly fatal, but they can reach a serious level. Cats who experience these should be brought to the vet right away.
In addition to allergies, the high amount of sugar that bananas contain is dangerous for felines. They do not have the enzymes that are needed to digest sugars. Therefore, they should not ingest more than 2% of carbohydrates and sugars.
There is also the risk of unhealthy weight gain and a possible spike in blood sugar levels. Fiber, though known to be good, is also bad if more than enough. It can actually cause diarrhea in cats.
Can cats eat bananas? Yes, they can. However, they have a hard time fully digesting it. Therefore, it is best for them to stay away from this tropical fruit.
If they really cannot do without a banana, the responsibility lies in your hand as a cat owner. You should ensure that they ingest very little only. Otherwise, you might end up jeopardizing your beloved pet’s health.