Papaya is one of those fruits you simply can’t get enough of. Delicious and juicy, packed with vitamins and minerals, it promises to keep you healthy and hydrated all summer long. It almost makes you want to share it with your favorite furball! But can cats eat papaya?
Your cat has shown some interest in papaya before. She sniffed it, pushed it around with her little paw a couple of times, before leaving it on the floor and looking back at it suspiciously every now and then.
Do cats even need fruit in their diet? Aren’t they carnivores?
It’s true, cats don’t require fruit in their diet. They’re not even drawn to sweet flavors so your feline friend might just be curious about the orange, odd-looking thing on the floor. Does that mean they shouldn’t eat papayas? Absolutely not!
Papayas are safe for cats. They aren’t toxic to felines (beware of grapefruit), and they contain a lot of vitamins, antioxidants, and fiber.
That doesn’t mean you should let your furry friend go to town on these tasty snacks. Too much papaya can make anyone sick, and your cat is no exception!
Is papaya good for your cat?
Here’s the thing – if you have some extra papaya laying around and your trusty sidekick keeps throwing glances at it, go ahead and share the fruit. However, you don’t want to give your cat too much papaya as it might lead to an upset stomach and other digestive issues.
You have to keep in mind that cats normally require a high protein diet, and their digestive systems aren’t designed to break down fruits and vegetables. That means that you shouldn’t make papaya a regular part of your cat’s diet.
If your feline friend enjoys the taste and texture, you can use papaya as an occasional treat. Your cat might even reap some nutritional benefits as papayas are normally rich in vitamins, antioxidants, and dietary fiber.
So, can cats eat papaya regularly? Keep reading to find out.
Papaya contains plenty of vitamins (including vitamins A, E, and C). Unlike humans, cats don’t require a bunch of vitamins to keep them functioning properly.
A small portion of papaya every now and then can provide your furry friend with the necessary nutrients. Without vitamins, enzymes that are essential for your cat’s metabolism can’t function properly. So, your cat might not need a lot of vitamins but she still needs some.
Papaya is rich in lycopene. Lycopene is an antioxidant responsible for so many great things in your kitty’s little body. It can also be found in fruits and vegetables that are toxic to cats, so papayas are pretty much your only option if you want to provide your furry friend with this amazing antioxidant.
Lycopene is believed to be able to prevent some forms of feline cancer, fight inflammation, and positively affect your cat’s heart. It can also help prevent some types of degenerative diseases like dementia, which is quite common among older cats.
Believe it or not, papaya is 88% water. If you’re a cat parent, you know well how bad our furry rascals are at drinking necessary amounts of water. It seems as if they’re always on the verge of dehydration!
An occasional papaya treat should help your cat achieve her daily hydration goals from food. Everybody knows drinking water from a bowl is for losers (insert a collective cat eye-roll).
4. Dietary fiber
Dietary fiber is a very important part of your cat’s metabolism. It’s hard to imagine, but if your kitty was in the wild she would get her dietary fiber from indigestible animal parts like fur and bones. I’m sure your beloved pet doesn’t get much of those in her cozy little cat bed!
Papayas have plenty of dietary fiber that could do wonders for your cat’s digestive system. Since your feline friend only eats kibble and wet cat food, an occasional papaya treat should help soothe her stomach and improve her digestive health.
Is papaya bad for your cat?
There are two sides to every coin. You shouldn’t be surprised to find out that papayas aren’t always all rainbows and butterflies. If you’re still wondering ‘Can cats eat papaya?’, you might want to take some of these downsides into consideration.
Firstly, your cat shouldn’t eat too much fruit. Humans are advised to eat multiple portions of fruit throughout the day, but you shouldn’t apply the same advice to your cat. Fruits are normally packed with sugar and fiber, both of which can cause serious digestive issues if consumed in excessive amounts.
Keep in mind that your fluffy friend has a sensitive belly. You should think twice before introducing anything new to your cat’s regular diet. It’s always a good idea to consult your vet if you’re not sure how to enhance her daily menu.
So, can cats eat papaya? Yes, but only as an occasional treat. Papaya contains a lot of sugar and fiber, and you want to avoid overfeeding your cat (especially if she already has some digestive issues).
1. Papaya contains a lot of sugar
Sugar might not be toxic to cats, but you definitely don’t want your furry friend consuming too much of it. Since papaya contains a lot of sugar you have to make sure to control the amount you give to your cat or to avoid it altogether.
Too much sugar can cause infinite issues in your cat’s body. It can cause an upset stomach, liver damage, a severe drop in blood sugar, or even seizures.
Keep in mind that we’re talking about excessive amounts of sugar. If you’re afraid that your furry friend might eat too much papaya, you might want to hide it somewhere safe. A couple of bites now and then won’t hurt your beloved pet.
2. Papaya can harm your cat’s sensitive digestive system
If your cat has a sensitive belly, you might want to avoid feeding her any fruit. Fruit is normally packed with sugar and fiber which can cause a lot of digestive stress to your beloved pet. Unfortunately, papaya is no exception.
If your cat is already diabetic, suffers from IBD (Inflammatory Bowel Disease), or IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome), eating too much papaya can cause serious digestive imbalances. Make sure to consult your vet before making any changes to your cat’s diet.
Can cats eat papaya seeds?
Cats can’t eat papaya seeds. Still, you should never let your ball of fur eat seeds from any fruit or vegetable. Believe it or not, some seeds can be extremely toxic to cats.
Apple seeds, for example, contain cyanide that could cause poisoning. The amount of cyanide contained won’t harm you, but your cat is a lot smaller than you.
Even a tiny dose might cause some serious damage. Papaya seeds might not be as toxic as apple seeds, but they’re still a choking hazard.
They’re small and hard, and they might get stuck in your cat’s teeth. Imagine how annoying that might be to your pet, and I’m sure you don’t want to spend hours trying to get them out with a toothpick. You might even end up with a scratch or two!
Lastly, papaya seeds have no nutritional value so you shouldn’t intentionally include them in your cat’s diet. If your feline friend happens to steal a piece of papaya before you remove the seeds, there’s no need to be worried.
Anticipate the attack next time you decide to treat yourself to this delicious fruit!
Can cats eat dried papaya?
Cats can’t eat dried papaya. If you were worried about the amount of sugar in fresh papaya, dried papaya should make you run for the hills.
In fact, the very process of making dried fruit relies on getting rid of the water and leaving a higher concentration of sugar. This makes it an undesirable snack for your beloved pet.
Trust me, your cat doesn’t need that much sugar. There aren’t many nutritional benefits in dried papaya, so there isn’t any reason why you would want to include it in your cat’s diet. If your feline friend happens to sneakily snack on some dried fruits, don’t worry.
Dried papaya isn’t toxic to cats. A nibble or two won’t cause much harm, but you should still avoid feeding your cat unnecessary sugary treats. Too much sugar can cause numerous health issues to your pet, including pancreatic disease, diabetes, and feline obesity.
Moreover, some dried fruits are toxic to cats! Sultanas, for example, can cause kidney damage (and even kidney failure) if eaten in large quantities. If your cat happens to eat sultanas or raisins, make sure to contact your vet immediately.
Luckily, cats aren’t naturally drawn to sweet flavors so your fluffy friend isn’t likely to get caught red-handed. If your cat is a papaya lover, make sure to avoid dried papaya and purchase a fresh one from your local market.
You can make a delicious fruit salad and share it with your favorite papaya connoisseur.
Can cats eat papaya – yes or no?
Cats can eat papaya! Obviously, fruit should never be the main part of your cat’s diet, so make sure to only feed your cat tiny bites of fresh papaya from time to time.
Papaya is packed with vitamins, antioxidants, and dietary fiber. Your beloved feline friend will gain so many benefits from stealing your food!
There are some risks to take into consideration, especially if you have a ravenous cat. Excessive amounts of papaya (or any fruit, for that matter) will harm your cat’s digestive system.
Too much sugar could cause diabetes or feline obesity, and too much fiber could cause diarrhea and vomiting.
Don’t let that discourage you from trying to enhance your cat’s daily menu. If you’re not sure whether you should feed your feline friend some delicious papaya treats, you can always contact your vet and ask for advice. It’s better to be safe than sorry!
Steer clear of papaya seeds and dried papaya! There are too many risks and not enough benefits. If your trusty sidekick is a big fan of papaya, you can always go to the farmer’s market and buy some fresh, organic ones. After-dinner cuddles guaranteed!
Read more: Can Cats Eat Kiwi? Is This Fruit Harmful To Cats?