While guacamole is a delicious and beloved dish by many people worldwide, this doesn’t always translate to animals. Even though it is an incredibly well-known healthy food made of avocado, this question whether cats can consume them and get the same benefits since they are naturally carnivores, and therefore, they must follow a balanced diet.
There is no specific answer regarding this question; however, due to the fact that guacamole is primarily made up of avocado, there are various scientists and studies that state this can be a toxic fruit for animals, especially cats. According to Dr. Rebello from NorthStar Vet, “this is because avocados are high in fat.”
This article will review the various avocado properties, health benefits, and potential side effects on felines more in-depth. In addition to this, we will also explain when it is okay to feed this to your furry friend and how frequently you can give it to them.
In order to fully comprehend whether or not it is okay to feed guacamole to your cat, it is necessary to understand the properties of the avocado and what makes it dangerous and not beneficial for your furry pet.
Felines need to have a balanced diet to maintain their overall wellbeing. Some of the storebought cat food may contain some fillers or harmful artificial ingredients, and this is the reason why some pet owners have decided to incorporate fruits in their meals which can also be an amazing addition to your kitty’s dish.
On the contrary, avocados, formally known as “Persea Americana,” is one of those exceptions in which you shouldn’t feed them to your pet since it contains specific properties that may be harmful to cats.
Here are some health properties of avocados:
- Rich in fiber: which means that it can prevent constipation. It also regulates bowel movement and aids digestion.
- Contains vitamin C: this means that it has antioxidant properties to help fight free radicals and diseases like cancer, heart disease, or even arthritis.
- Contains folic acid: which allows the body to release toxins through your pet’s urine, aiding them with their digestive system, including breaking down proteins for easier digestion along with other nutrients such as calcium.
- Carries omega fatty acids: which are beneficial for the heart and help control blood sugar levels. However, this can also be harmful to your cat because this can cause them to have diarrhea, disrupting their digestive system even more.
Harmful Properties Found In Avocado
Avocados also carry more specific properties that may be harmful to felines which is a persin, a type of toxin found on the leaves, bark, and seed/pit part of this fruit plant, whereas cats lack an enzyme called glucuronidase needed to break down these components. As stated by the Pet Poison Helpline, this fungicidal toxin rarely affects them directly, but it can be life-threatening for larger animals and birds as well.
Persin has different effects depending upon its level per weight ratio when consumed by pets, such as vomiting or diarrhea, which is one of the most common effects on cats.
These are only some of the health benefits avocados provide, but you should take note not all parts of avocado are safe to feed your cat since it may contain this toxin, causing difficulty breathing, vomiting, diarrhea if ingested by animals, especially cats. If they eat pieces containing persin at high levels, they may experience heart problems, loss of coordination, and even death.
Is It Safe For Cats To Eat Guacamole?
There are various harmful effects guacamole consumption may provoke on cats. Many veterinarians concluded that kittens might eat small quantities of avocado flesh since this provides incredible health benefits to cats, such as:
- Improved digestion: the flesh can aid in this process since it contains fiber, key for a regular bowel movement.
- Healthy heart: avocado provides monounsaturated fats that lower bad cholesterol and triglyceride levels to keep the feline’s cardiovascular system healthy. At the same time, avocados contain potassium which is essential because it lowers blood pressure in cats as well as prevents strokes or other irregular heart conditions by keeping their heartbeat at a normal pace.
- Improved skin and coat condition: guacamole can help improve skin elasticity thanks to nutrients such as vitamin E present in this food item, thus preventing problems like poor hair growth or dermatitis from occurring on your pet’s body.
However, as mentioned above, they should not eat the fruit’s pit or leaves as these parts contain persin and can cause noxious health problems. In addition to this, traditional guacamole has onions, jalapeno, cilantro, and lime juice which is not the best idea to feed to your kitten because these ingredients can also lead to an upset stomach from time to time.
How To Safely Feed Guacamole To Your Cat?
Now that we’ve reviewed the various properties found in avocados and what makes it sometimes harmful to felines, there are safer ways to feed guacamole to your pet
Here are a couple of steps you should follow:
- First, make sure to remove the pit and skin from the fruit before mixing it with other ingredients.
- Second, you can combine a small amount of guacamole in their regular food as this will not affect them much. In addition to that, you could also offer your cat some avocado-based pet treats sold at most supermarkets or pet stores.
- Finally, for those who don’t want to give any processed foods to their pets, they can mash an avocado very well then serve it over kibble. This way is safe, just like when cats eat fresh avocados, but smaller amounts must be given so that no stomach upset occurs afterward.
Tips On Feeding Guacamole To Your Cat
Even though you can give small bites of guacamole to your kitten, you also need to know when enough is enough. But, how can you know if you fed your cat too much avocado, and how can you safely do it?
Suppose you give your furry friend large amounts of guacamole. In that case, this can result in gastrointestinal issues provoking diarrhea because it contains high fats and can deeply affect senior cats with health issues. Avoid giving this dish to your pet frequently in immense quantities.
Start by only giving them smaller portions of the avocado flesh and no additional ingredients commonly found in guacamole such as onions, peppers, and lemon, as these ingredients can be detrimental to their health. It is best to opt for one tablespoon or fifteen grams of this fruit.
Also, you can peel the avocado skin before feeding it to the cat and make sure to cut the flesh into smaller pieces and mix it with the cat food.
What To Do In Severe Cases?
Regardless of there being safe ways of feeding guacamole to your cat, this doesn’t eradicate potential health concerns and show signs of toxicosis or food poisoning, which can happen if they swallow a prohibited part of the fruit that contains persin.
Some symptoms you should look out for are:
- Vomiting and diarrhea
- Difficulty breathing or swallowing
- Abnormal coughing and abdominal pain
- Increase in heart rate
- Lethargy or weakness
- Excessive thirst and loss of appetite
It is best to call your pet’s vet or the Poison Helpline to guide you through.
It can be concluded that whether you can feed guacamole to your cat or not heavily depends on the quantity and frequency. Since avocado has extensive health benefits, some harmful properties can affect your pets’ wellbeing.
Even though a lot of cat owners like incorporating fruits and dishes into their feline’s diet, guacamole would not necessarily improve their health since the traditional recipe includes lemon, peppers, and onions, which can cause stomach upset and many other health concerns.
It is best to feed them small portions or at least a tablespoon of avocado flesh incorporated into their meals and not as a frequent dish in order to prevent any potential intoxication.