Has cucumber ended up on your cat’s radar lately? This green vegetable is a staple in our homes, but it’s not one of the human foods you would expect a cat to be interested in.
Yet some of our feline friends may seem keen to get their paws on cucumber as soon as it touches the chopping board. If your pet is intrigued by this vegetable, keep reading to find out whether or not cats can eat cucumber safely.
Can cats eat cucumber?
Yes, cats can eat cucumber, but in moderation. However, a couple of small pieces of cucumber are often enough to put a cat’s curiosity to rest. Remember that cats are obligate carnivores, and they get all the nutrients they need from high-quality feline diets containing animal protein. Therefore, cucumbers are more of an occasional treat, rather than an ingredient that has to be present in their main meals.
It’s also worth considering other types of treats, as there are plenty of different options designed specifically for cats. There are healthy feline treats available, and many cats will also be happy with a piece of their own kibble as a treat, which means owners can make their cats happy while still being mindful of their nutritional health. For more information on how to treat your cat, check out our article on "Snacks and treats for your cat".
What are the benefits of cucumbers for cats? Although cats can eat cucumbers, they don’t need this vegetable to meet their nutritional requirements. Cats should get all the nutrients they need from high-quality, complete cat foods.
However, cucumbers aren’t toxic for cats, and their low calorie and sugar content means that you don’t have to worry about the effects of an occasional piece of cucumber on your cat’s weight. So, if you’re looking for a low-calorie feline treat, one or two small pieces of cucumber will normally be fine to offer to your cat. Don’t go overboard though, as too much cucumber could lead to digestive trouble for your pet.
How to give cucumber to your cat
If your cat seems determined to get their paws on your slices of cucumber, here is how to offer it to your pet in a safe way. But first, remember that you should always ask your vet for advice before allowing your cat to eat human foods. If the vet has given you their go-ahead, here are a few good tips to keep in mind:
Moderation is key when giving cucumber to your cat
A couple of pieces of this vegetable a week should be enough to satisfy your cat’s newfound love for cucumber. Although, don’t forget that they don’t actually need this vegetable in their diet to be healthy and thrive. It’s also a good idea to cut the cucumber into tiny pieces, roughly the same size as cat treats, so that they’re easier for your cat to eat and won’t pose a choking risk.
Cats should only eat fresh, plain cucumber
Pickled cucumber is a big no-no for cats due to the high salt content. Some recipes even use garlic which is toxic for cats. So, if you want to spoil your pet with cucumber, make sure it’s the fresh kind. Here is a list of harmful foods and substances for cats so you know some of the other foods to avoid.
Take the peel off the cucumber before offering it to your cat
The skin of the cucumber can be hard to digest, especially for cats with a sensitive digestive system. Because of this, it’s best to remove the skin so it doesn’t create any unexpected digestive problems for your pet.
Make sure you wash the cucumber before giving it to your cat
It’s also a good idea to wash the cucumber before cutting it into small pieces for your cat, as this will help to remove any dirt.
Now that you know if cats can eat cucumbers, you’re probably also wondering if cucumbers are truly a feline nemesis. You’ve probably seen the online videos of cats jumping high in the air as soon as they notice the cucumber subtly placed behind them by their owner. Discover what could be the potential reason behind this unusual reaction in our article exploring why cats are scared of cucumbers.