Can cats eat bananas? Bananas are not toxic to cats and are safe to feed, but only in moderation.
Cats are carnivores, so get their nutrients from meat rather than fruits. They do not need bananas to keep them healthy or complete part of a balanced diet.
Plus, bananas have a high sugar content. So, too many treats like this can contribute to health problems like upset stomach, obesity, and diabetes.
Not all cats like bananas. So introduce this treat slowly, and don’t force your cat to eat it if it doesn’t want to. Let’s find out more about cats and bananas.
Can Cats Have Bananas?
Cats have different nutritional needs and tastes than we do. They are true obligate carnivores who obtain all their nutrients from meat.
So, their digestive systems are not designed to receive nutrients from plant-based food sources, such as bananas.
Bananas are an excellent source of natural sugars. They also have high levels of protein, vitamin C, potassium, magnesium, fiber and vitamin B. Yet, they manage to be relatively low in calories.
Research in humans has proven that eating bananas lowers our blood pressure. This reduces the risk of heart attacks and strokes. Bananas are also known to lift our mood.
But, these benefits don’t transfer over into cats. Cats cannot absorb the vitamins and nutrients this fruit contains, apart from the fiber.
But how does fiber affect your cat? Can cats eat bananas?
Cats and Bananas
Although fiber is not a necessary component of cats’ diets, it can be useful.
For example, it can help to prevent obesity. Adding fiber to a cat’s diet makes their stomachs feel fuller without the addition of calories. This means they eat less.
Fiber also aids the digestive system and can assist in the treatment of diarrhea or constipation.
But, compared to humans and dogs, a cat doesn’t need that much dietary fiber anyway. So, if your cat eats a high-quality commercial feed, it will receive all the fiber it needs.
Moreover, bananas are also high in sugar. So, quite simply, a banana has no real nutritional value for your feline friend. But how do cats feel about bananas? And ultimately, can cats eat bananas safely?
Do Cats Like Bananas?
We now know that bananas aren’t necessary for cats. But, an occasional one probably won’t hurt as long as your cat isn’t allergic. We’ll talk more about cats allergic to bananas in a bit.
But before letting your kitten try this fruit – do cats even like bananas?
As cat owners, we are only too aware of how picky our feline friends are where food is concerned. So, when it comes to cats liking bananas, it is very much personal preference.
Some cats may love bananas, whereas others may turn their noses up and walk away.
Every cat is different. So, don’t feel disheartened if your kitty doesn’t like this treat. There are plenty of other foods you can offer that your cat will love.
Are Cats Scared of Bananas?
Many cats are afraid of bananas too due to their shape, along with the odor which can smell disgusting to a kitty.
So, if you’re offering your cat some banana as a treat, you should shop it into bite sized pieces. Don’t just thrust an unpeeled banana in your cat’s face!
But whether or not they like it, can cats have bananas?
Are Bananas Safe For Cats?
Yes, it is safe to feed bananas to your cat so long as you take the necessary precautions.
When feeding any new food, always give a small piece first to see if there is any reaction afterward. Some cats may show worrying symptoms such as stomach pains or vomiting.
Also, only ever feed a banana that is fit for human consumption.
For example, feeding rotten bananas with mold on will make your cat extremely ill. This can lead to vomiting and diarrhea as their stomachs are much more sensitive than ours.
Don’t Overload Your Cat
Do not feed any other fruit or vegetable when giving a banana for the first time to your cat. Always feed one new food at a time.
That way you can monitor their tolerance for certain types of food.
Remember to only feed in moderation, too. A cat eating bananas too often can result in diabetes and weight gain as well as being bad for their teeth.
Allergic to Bananas
Most cats can eat a small piece of banana without any problem. But some may have an allergic reaction to the fruit.
The breed of your cat can be a contributing factor to any allergic reactions. So, it is best to do your research first to see if they are prone to anything.
Also, talk to your vet who can advise you accordingly if you have any doubts or are unsure.
Are Bananas Bad For Cats?
They can be. Compared to other fruits, bananas have much higher quantities of carbohydrates and sugars. So, eating bananas in excess would be bad for cats.
Even more so when overripe because as a banana ripens, it naturally produces more sugar.
Your kitty is unable to digest and absorb sugar and carbohydrates the same way the human body can. So, a build-up of sugar in a cat’s system can lead to many health-related issues, including obesity and diabetes.
If a cat consumes too many bananas at any one time, it risks having an upset stomach.
Its digestive system cannot cope with the amount of sugar and fiber found in this fruit. But can bananas be good for cats? Can cats eat bananas in a safe way?
Are Bananas Good For Cats?
We know that bananas are one of the most nutritious fruits you can eat, with many health benefits for humans. Bananas are a much-favored fruit, with over 100 billion eaten around the world each year.
This bright yellow fruit is tasty, nutritious and full of health benefits for humans. It’s no wonder their scientific name of “Musa sapientum” translates as “fruit of the wise men.”
But are bananas good for cats too?
They can be. But, like every good thing, they should be had in moderation.
Too Much of a Good Thing
Since bananas do not provide any real health benefits, only feed very small quantities infrequently. This way your cat can have a sweet treat without endangering their health.
If you give your cat too much banana, the negatives will massively outweigh any potential benefits.
Can Cats Eat Banana Peel?
Many people may wonder if they can give their cat banana peels. No, cats should not eat banana peels.
Before giving your cat a banana, you should always remove the peel first. This is because a cat would find it difficult to digest banana peels. Plus, cats can choke on banana peels.
Also, some banana peels are likely to have some pesticide on them as many farmers use chemicals to terminate insects and pests. So, on top of all the risks, banana peels may be toxic to your cat.
Can Cats Eat Banana Bread?
If all your banana bread ingredients are cat-safe, banana bread is safe for your cat to eat.
However, banana bread is very sugary. So, it can be bad for your cat’s digestive health and dental health.
If you really want to share this treat with your cat, it should be fine. Just ensure that nothing you add to your banana bread would harm your cat. And as always, only small pieces.
But, there are many other better snacks you can feed your cat.
Can Bananas Give My Cat An Upset Stomach?
Yes, if your cat eats too many bananas it can get an upset stomach.
Bananas are useful for humans as a fast release of valuable energy. You will often see tennis players eating a banana during matches to keep up their strength.
However, this is not the case for cats.
They find it difficult to break down and digest bananas, especially if fed a whole one. These problems with digestion can also cause problems like constipation.
Can Kittens Eat Bananas?
Kittens should feed on only milk or milk replacers for the first eight weeks of their lives.
After week eight, you may begin to feed your kitten specialized kitten food until age one. But during this time (8 weeks to 1 year), you can feed them treats (including bananas!).
How Much To Give
Remember that kittens are smaller than our adult cats, so you should give them even smaller amounts of treats.
Just ensure that bananas make up 10% or less of their diet.
While kittens are growing they need more protein than adult cats. They do not benefit as much from high sugar content.
Cat Banana Treats
There are a few ways to serve bananas to your cat or kitten. These tips will help you vary your feeding methods.
- Dried bananas treats
- Cat kibble with added bananas
- Fresh chunks of bananas, mashed
- Fresh chunks of bananas, mashed with water. Softening and wetting may make it easier to swallow, especially for kittens.
Alternatives to Banana for Cats
If your kitten or cat dislikes bananas, all hope isn’t lost. There are other fruits and vegetables you can feed them instead of bananas.
Can Cats Eat Bananas Summary
Bananas don’t give your cat any real nutritional value. Yet, they are not harmful either, so long as you feed them in moderation.
Feeding bananas to your cat too often can lead to health issues due to the high sugar levels.
So, you should always feed a tiny piece when introducing banana to your kitty and make sure you do not give any other fruits or vegetables at the same time.
Only feed fresh, ripe bananas to your cat and remove the peel beforehand.
Has Your Cat Eaten Banana?
Does your cat like to try different foods?
Does your cat have a favorite fruit? Does he like bananas? Share your stories with other readers. Have you given bananas to your cat?
You can let us know about your experiences with cats and bananas in the comments below.
Can Cats Eat Bananas has been extensively revised for 2020.
References and Further Reading
- Wyrwicka, 1978. Imitation of mother’s inappropriate food preference in weaning kittens. Springer.
- Bradshaw, 2006. The evolutionary basis for feeding behaviour of domestic dogs and cats. The Journal of Nutrition. Am Soc Nutrition.
- Bourgeois and Elliott. 2006. Dietary behavior of dogs and cats. Bulletin de l’Académie Vétérinaire de France
- PetMD. Do Cats Need Fiber in Their Diet? Dr. Tudor, K.
- WebMD, Pets. Foods Your Cat Should Never Eat. Flowers, A. DVM
- WebMD, Pets. Feeding Kittens: What, When, How Much. Larsen, J. DVM, PhD
- Healthline. Are Bananas Fattening or Weight-Loss Friendly. West, H. RD.
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