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Can cats eat kale?

Can cats eat kale?

It is interesting to know that cauliflower, cabbage, collard greens, broccoli, and brussels sprouts all belong to the same plant. Kale is one of the leafy green vegetables, full of essential nutrients, fibers, and proteins. It also has fewer calories, also called leaf cabbage.

Kale provides several health benefits to human beings because it has anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and anti-cancer characteristics. Adding this food to the human diet can be a great supplement.

As a pet owner, you might wonder, can cats eat kale? Is kale safe for cats? We humans and cats have different digestive systems, and our nutritional needs also vary.

So, things that are healthy for human beings might be unhealthy and toxic for cats to consume. It would be best if you did not feed excessive kale to a feline friend, though it is a super nutritional food for human beings. Kale can cause various health problems for cats.

Is kale safe for cats to eat?

Cats are obligate carnivores, and their dietary needs are not full filled by meat only. So, like human beings, your feline friend also needs additional nutrients to function correctly. Therefore, adding kale can be an excellent food to a cat’s diet for the cat’s body.

Leafy greens contain many nutrients and vitamins and can benefit cats significantly. Kale is a rich source of beta carotene, an antioxidant in the form of vitamin A and copper, which are essential nutrients.

It is necessary to add five to ten percent of vegetables to the cat’s regular diet. You can feed kale to your cats by slight steaming and chopping the vegetable with meat.

Always ensure to feed only kale leaves to your cat as stems are more complicated and can cause digestive issues for your cat. Kale is considered a good source of fibers and antioxidants like vitamin C and flavonoids that help your cat maintain a regular digestion schedule.

What green veggies can cats eat?

Numerous vegetables provide various health benefits to cats, like green beans, chopped carrots, frozen corns, spinach, winter squash, peas, broccoli, zucchini, lettuce, and pumpkin seeds.

These vegetables are more complicated for a cat’s digestive system, so it is always recommended to lightly steam vegetables, chop them, and serve them with meat to your cat.

What greens are poisonous to cats?

Since cats can eat vegetables, some of them, like onion, garlic, shallots, chives, leeks, and scallions, are toxic to cats.

These vegetables can cause gastrointestinal issues in cats and can damage their red blood cells. It is advised to avoid feeding foods containing these harmful herbs and vegetables like garlic bread.

Are leafy greens good for cats?

Dark leafy greens are full of nutrients and vitamins and are known as a superfood essential for a healthy cat.

For dogs and cats, magnesium and iron are essential nutrients to add to their diet for their health and energy. Other leafy greens like kale contain a lot of magnesium and iron, which are great for dogs and cats to work correctly.

Is kale bad for pets?

Kale is rich in nutrients, minerals, vitamins, antioxidants, and fibers. It is low in fat and has fewer calories. It is useful to maintain a healthy weight for cats and helps to reduce obesity in cats.

Some pet parents feed kale ribs to their cats and dogs as an occasional treat, but kale has high calcium content, which can cause kidney and bladder stones in cats and dogs and may lead to kidney failure.

Is kale toxic to cats?

It would be best if you fed kale to your cat in a moderate amount, not excessively. Providing too much kale is high in antioxidants and can cause Heinz body anemia in cats.

The symptoms of this anemia are weakness, reduced appetite, fever, and platelet depletion. Due to this anemia, the gums and skin of cats get pale and sometimes become discolored, and your cat’s urine might be ruddy brown.

In anemia, the red blood cells in the body become damaged. Your cat cannot make red blood cells properly.

The reasons behind this condition of your cat may be that your cat has eaten something having too much kale, onion, or other toxic leafy greens. Other diseases like diabetes, hyperthyroidism, and inherited disorders can damage the cat’s red blood cells.

These damaged cells can be observed by licensed veterinarians by microscope and can make a diagnosis. With the help of veterinary advice, this anemia is entirely treatable.

Symptoms that your cat has had too much kale.

Knowing how much kale can be added to a cat’s diet is essential. Kale in a moderate amount may not cause any problem for healthy cats, but even a small amount of kale can be too much for a little kitty.

It is dependent on the cat’s size and the amount of kale your cat has eaten. You can observe the following symptoms to know if your cat has eaten kale in an excessive amount and has Heinz body anemia.

  • Weakness
  • Provision of less oxygen to muscles and organs
  • Macular degeneration
  • Lack of oxygen in cat’s bloodstream
  • Fever
  • Reduced appetite
  • Digestive issues
  • Pale cat’s gums, lips, and mouth
  • Discoloration of cat’s skin
  • Reddish brown urine

Treatment for too much kale

Veterinary guidance is necessary if your cat has consumed a lot of kale in her diet. Your vet will examine the symptoms in your cat and might ask you to go for a complete red blood cell count first to identify the reason for the symptoms mentioned above. Damaged red blood cells can be observed through a microscope.

Some cats have fewer damaged red blood cells in their body before showing actual symptoms, while others show rapidly. However, the number of damaged red blood cells has no direct relation to symptoms. To check the exact amount of oxygen in a cat’s bloodstream, a methemoglobin test is done for your cat, which is vital to treat these symptoms.

If you have consulted your vet timely for your cat showing the above symptoms, the vet may try to have vomiting in case your cat has eaten excessive kale. Activated charcoal is also used to reduce the absorption of toxins.

In case of severe circumstances, it is advised to hospitalize your cat for supportive treatments like blood transfusion, oxygen, and IV fluids if your cat cannot eat or drink properly.

It is recommended to avoid all toxic food in your cat’s diet and keep an eye on your furry friend to observe the consumption of food, including kale, to mitigate the risk of severe illness.

Can cats eat fresh kale?

Kale has all the nutrients needed to provide health benefits which might seem perfectly safe for cats in the same way as humans. A few leaves of raw kale might not cause any health issues to your cat.

But too much kale can cause severe illness and anemia. If kale is a reason behind your cat’s anemia, then the amount of dietary nutrients in kale is useless.

Cats can show different behaviors toward showing signs of illness by eating kale. Some cats may have early signs of illness if they don’t have anemia, while others don’t have any symptoms until their condition worsens.

Therefore, it is essential to remember that the cat showing no symptoms of illness doesn’t mean she is not anemic.

Raw kale also consists of oxalic acid, when combined with minerals and crystalizes them. These crystals might leads to all types of severe illnesses, including inflammation and kidney stones.

Can cats eat cooked kale?

Cats can eat kale safely, but both raw kale and cooked kale in moderation. Before feeding kale to your cat in any form, thoroughly wash the kale, remove the rinds, cook lightly and make the puree to feed your cat in a small quantity to eliminate the risk of any health issues.

You should be careful while cooking kale which should not be over-steamed or overcooked, which can reduce the value of nutritional benefits. You can make a puree of kale and serve your furry friend with their regular cat food.

Can cats eat kale sprouts?

The kale sprouts are considered nutrient powerhouses. A few leaves of kale sprouts can be a great addition to human and cat food. You can feed kale both in the raw and cooked form to cats. However, moderation is the key.

You shouldn’t need to be anxious if your mischievous cat munches some leafy plants from your garden but always keep an eye on your pet to observe the amount of kale eaten by a cat.

Conclusion

Cats can properly function if fed food rich in animal protein and fats like meat or other animal products and cannot get greater nutritional benefits from vegetables. So, your cat should not eat kale in large quantities though it is rich in vitamin K, which helps blood clotting and wound healing.

It is recommended to not make kale a regular diet as it can negatively impact a cat’s digestive system, and your cat may experience vomiting, diarrhea, and upset stomach. Excessive amounts can also lead to anemia, so it is advised to feed healthy human foods to your cats in moderation.