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Giving Your Cat Treats

November 1 2020
Does your feline pal like treats? For some of you, the answer to that question is a resounding ‘yes.’ Others may have more finicky pets. However, most kitties do have a few favorite snacks. With Thanksgiving just around the corner, this is a great time to discuss giving your furball treats. A Cherry Hill, NJ veterinarian offers some advice on this below.

Store-bought Snacks
Does your furry friend turn her cute little nose up at store-bought snacks? Experiment with a few different types. Fluffy may very well refuse one kind, but go absolutely bonkers over another. We do advise sticking to high-quality products, though. Get into the habit of reading labels, and choose brands that contain mostly meat, fish, or poultry.
Portions
It’s very easy to go overboard with giving Fluffy treats. In fact, even giving your cat just ten calories too many each day can make her gain a pound a year. That may not sound like much, but it’s a lot for a kitty. Even a few extra pounds can turn your furball into a butterball! While chubby cats are adorable, they are also at elevated risk of developing some very serious health issues, like heart disease. Keep snacks to about 5 percent of your cute pet’s daily caloric intake.
Unsafe Foods
Some cats will naturally avoid foods that aren’t safe for them. Others will eat anything within paws’ reach. Fluffy may also eat something unsafe if coaxed to. (This is sometimes an issue with small children, as kids sometimes innocently ‘share’ their snacks with their furry buddies.) Never give your kitty anything that contains garlic, onions, scallions, or chives; fruit pits; avocado; chocolate; caffeine; nuts; mushrooms; grapes, currants, or raisins; or xylitol. Meat on the bone is also unsafe, as are raw meat, dough, and yeast, and anything high in salt, sugar, or fat.
Holiday Treats
Fluffy may be very interested in that delicious holiday dinner. Go ahead and make her a plate! Your furball can certainly enjoy some plain, cooked turkey, without the skin, bones, or fat. Deli meat is fine, too, as are canned boneless tuna, crabmeat, shrimp, salmon, or mackerel. Most types of meat and fish are also safe. Just limit organ meats, such as kidney, and anything high in fat, like bacon.
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