Many of us like yogurt in deserts or as a healthy breakfast. It comes in different flavors, including plain, fruit, or chocolate. But have you ever thought of sharing it with your cat? Can cats eat yogurt?
The answer is yes; cats can eat yogurt, plain and unsweetened. An occasional treat won’t cause harm to adult cats, but never let your kittens eat yogurt.
Although cats are lactose intolerant, they can easily digest lactose found in yogurt because of the live bacteria it contains. Like other human foods, ask your vet before feeding your cat yogurt.
Are you curious to know if cats can eat yogurt? Is it safe for them? Are there any benefits of yogurt to felines? Here is the answer to all your questions. So, let’s start.
Is It Safe for Cats to Eat Yogurt?
You might know that cats are lactose intolerant, so yogurt might not be safe for them. Right? So, let us clear this confusion for you.
Kittens can digest lactose and feed off their mother’s milk for 8 to 10 weeks. But in the case of adult cats, they can’t digest milk as they stop producing the enzyme responsible for digesting dairy. So, it’s not recommended to feed dairy products to your cat.
But that’s not the case with yogurt, and here’s how. First, it contains good bacteria, which causes the breakdown of lactose and helps your cat digest yogurt. Also, it contains some probiotics that are good for cats having digestive issues.
When it comes to Greek yogurt, there is half the lactose of full-fat yogurt in it. Besides, it is tastier because of its creamy texture. So, it’s the best yogurt to feed your cat in small amounts.
Hence, yogurt is not harmful to your furry friend in small amounts.
Can Cats Eat Greek Yogurt?
Yes, you can give Greek yogurt to your cat in small amounts as long as it is unflavored and plain yogurt.
Many cat owners prefer Greek yogurt over regular one as they consider it lactose-free. But the fact is that it contains less lactose, almost half, than regular yogurt, but it is not entirely lactose-free.
Greek yogurt undergoes several straining processes for the removal of whey and lactose. As a result, it gets a creamy and unique taste.
In addition, Greek yogurt is suitable for cats having digestive issues and reliefs diarrhea. It also eases your cat’s bowel movements if it suffers from constipation.
In case of feeding Greek yogurt first time to your cat, observe him closely. Stop feeding him yogurt if he gets an upset stomach or shows other allergic responses.
Is Greek Yogurt Good for Cats?
Greek yogurt is best to feed your cat, but it should be plain and unsweetened. It provides numerous vitamins and minerals to cats and humans.
These include protein, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, calcium, sodium, vitamin C, and vitamin B2.
Greek yogurt is beneficial to your cat, and here’s how.
Magnesium found in Greek yogurt is essential for improving heart health, bone health, and relief from anxiety. It is also essential to absorb other vitamins and proteins in your cat’s body.
It also contains calcium which aids in strengthening bones, teeth, and muscles in cats. In addition, the potassium found in the yogurt also improves your cat’s nerves and muscles.
The healthy bacteria and probiotics in yogurt make it suitable for your cat’s digestive system and bowel health.
Are There Any Health Benefits of Yogurt for Cats?
It’s a common question from many pet owners, is yogurt suitable for cats? Here’s the answer.
You can use yogurt as an occasional supplement to cat food and vitamins. But always opt for plain and unsweetened yogurt without additional sugar, as it is not suitable for your cat’s health. This kind of yogurt provides a balanced diet and offers these benefits that are as follows:
- Reduce Allergies
- Strengthen your cat’s immune system
- A supplement of vitamins and minerals
- Probiotic yogurt reliefs diarrhea
But keep in mind not to feed yogurt to your kittens. That’s because their sensitive stomachs are not made to deal with plain yogurt and can react badly. Alongside, yogurt doesn’t benefit them, and they can fulfill their nutritional requirements from milk.
Things to Know
Adult cats are natural carnivores with lactose intolerance, so please don’t feed them too much milk product regularly. The accumulation of lactic acid can cause numerous health issues.
Generally, it is considered that dairy products can be an excellent treat for your cat, but don’t overfeed him. That’s because most cats can’t digest them. As kittens become adults, many cats have developed a dairy intolerance.
In the case of lactose intolerance in cats, watch out for the symptoms like diarrhea, vomiting, and an upset stomach. Likewise, stomach pain and digestive issues can occur in your cat because of overeating yogurt.
Cats and Yogurt
Most cat owners want to know which kind of yogurt is safe for a cat. Generally, owners shouldn’t give all types of flavored yogurts to cats.
Can Cats Eat Blueberry Yogurt?
Well, it’s not recommended to feed your cat blueberry yogurt because of added sugar or artificial sweeteners. But cats can eat fresh blueberries. So, the better way of feeding them is to add some blueberries to plain yogurt.
Can Cats Eat Strawberry Yogurt?
Although strawberries are not harmful to cats, they don’t have any nutritional value in your cat’s diet. It is also important to mention that strawberry yogurt contains high amounts of natural sugars that can upset your cat’s tummy.
Can Cats Eat Vanilla Yogurt?
Vanilla yogurt is not recommended for cats to eat. Vanilla is not toxic to your cat; however, some of the ingredients of vanilla flavoring used to make yogurt are unhealthy for cats.
Ethanol is one of these ingredients which is quite toxic to your cat. He might show symptoms like drowsiness, involuntary defecation, hypothermia, and even a heart attack. Therefore, vanilla extract in yogurt should be alcohol-free.
Can Cats Eat Frozen Yogurt?
Frozen yogurt is usually considered a dessert category rather than a healthy snack. So, don’t let your cat eat it as it doesn’t need sugar and lacks taste buds.
Can Cats Eat Cherry Yogurt?
Cherries enhance anti-inflammatory properties, which are suitable for a cat having arthritis. However, cherry yogurt is loaded with additional sugar, so it’s a no-no for your cat.
Adding cherries to a plain Greek yogurt provides few benefits but ensures feeding yogurt in moderation.
How Much Yogurt Should I Give My Cat?
When introducing your cat to yogurt, add a teaspoon of it to your cat’s bowl. More than that is not suitable for cats and can make them sick.
Watch his reaction after giving him yogurt. If he seems okay, you can give him 2-3 teaspoons a few times a week but not more than that. That’s because yogurt is a supplement and not an essential part of your cat’s balanced diet.
Make sure to feed him fresh yogurt and not an expired one. Always go for low-fat, unsweetened, plain yogurt, particularly Greek yogurt, with fewer additives and sugar substitutes.
If your cat suffers from digestive problems like diarrhea and constipation, add 2-3 teaspoons of yogurt to pet food. The probiotics in yogurt help ease such discomfort. If these problems get prolonged, you should check your cat to a vet as there might be some other issue.
In the end, cats can eat plain and unsweetened Greek yogurt. It provides numerous benefits to felines. It also relieves some digestive issues because of the friendly bacteria it contains. Unlike adult cats, never let your kittens eat yogurt.
While feeding for the first time, start with a small amount and observe your cat’s reaction. You can add 2-3 teaspoons of yogurt to their cat food several times a week. Carrots, eggs, squash, blueberries, and oatmeal are also okay for cats to eat, but in moderation.
FAQs Regarding Can Cats Eat Yogurt
Why Do Cats Love Yogurt?
Many cats like yogurt, but that’s not true in all cases. If your cat doesn’t like it, it won’t eat yogurt. While giving your cat yogurt for the first time, start with a small teaspoon of plain yogurt and look at how your cat reacts. They might prefer flavored yogurt over plain yogurt. However, flavored yogurt isn’t a good choice for your cat.
Is Yogurt Good for Cats Having Constipation?
Dairy products are suitable for constipated cats; yogurt relieves the pain and softens the stool. Besides, you can try giving your cat olive oil if he suffers from constipation.
Can Cats Eat Yogurt with Honey?
Honey with yogurt is not recommended for cats as honey is rich in sugar and calories. You can give them honey as an occasional treat but not too much.