Grapes are a healthy and refreshing snack that definitely fall under the category of "can't have just one." From fruit salads to midnight snacks, grapes pop up on many occasions, so it's important to know whether or not this food is safe around our pets. As much as we love grapes, lets see if we can share them with our cats.
Can I feed my cat grapes?
If you find your cat nibbling on a grape that has rolled away from its bunch, don't worry, there is no imminent danger. Grapes are not scientifically proven to be harmful to cats; however, it is advised that pet owners refrain from feeding grapes to their cats. Why, you ask? Because of dogs. That's right, dogs.
The harmful effects of grapes
Grapes and raisins are a big no-no for dogs. If a dog accidentally ingests grapes or raisins it can cause sudden kidney failure or other gastrointestinal issues. Signs of toxicity include vomiting, lethargy and diarrhea. Although there is no concrete scientific evidence that grapes and raisins have the same toxic effect on cats, cat owners have reported similar reactions. In some cases, cats that ingested grapes were known to fall under gastrointestinal distress. Because of this, it is best to stay on the safe side and keep grapes and raisins away from our feline friends.
Can grapes ever benefit my cat?
Maybe you want to feed your cat fruits and vegetables to supplement his diet with added nutrients. That's all well and fine, but a cat's regular diet of store-bought cat food will provide him with all the nutrition he needs. Unless your veterinarian says otherwise or your cat has specific dietary needs, there is no need to add extra foods to his meals, including fruits and vegetables. If you would still like to, choose foods that are known to be safe and stay away from the grapes.
What should I do if my cat eats a grape?
Maybe you've fed grapes to your cat in the past and didn't see any negative side effects. If so, that's great! This should absolutely not be a regular occurrence, however. Because the toxicity of grapes in cats is so unclear, it's always best to keep your pet away from any potential harm, even if they've been lucky in the past.
If your cat accidentally ingests a grape, watch for signs of distress like lethargy, vomiting or diarrhea. Most symptoms will likely appear within the first 12 hours after ingestion. If your cat starts acting strange or suddenly loses his appetite, he could be having a toxic reaction. Contact your veterinarian immediately for further guidance and continue to monitor your cat for signs of distress for up to 24 hours.
Although there is no current scientific evidence that grapes are toxic to cats, this fruit is known to cause severe harm to dogs including acute kidney failure. Because many foods that are harmful for dogs can also harm cats, it is important to keep grapes away from your kitty. If your cat does accidentally eat a grape, watch for signs of gastrointestinal distress like diarrhea or vomiting and be sure to contact your veterinarian. Grapes are a sweet treat for us humans but let's be sure to keep them away from our furry friends!