Can Cats Eat Sweet Potatoes?

Sweet potatoes are a healthy and filling treat for humans, and they are often given to dogs for the same reasons. In fact, they are found in commercial dog food as a means of providing nutrition and meeting the vitamin and mineral requirements for canines. But does the story change for cats? Are sweet potatoes also a good source of nutrition for felines, or should they avoid it?

While a dog is an omnivore and eats fruit and vegetables as well as meat, cats are strictly obligate carnivores. Feeding cats protein from vegetables also means that they will get less of this essential ingredient from meat sources.

It meets the nutritional requirements of the species and it helps ensure that they get everything they need in their diet without eating foods they shouldnt. They can be fed as a treat in very small amounts, although they offer no nutritional benefit to your cat and may cause stomach upset. Image Credit: sweetlouise, PixabayIf you do intend to feed this food to your cats, you should cook them first.

Although raw sweet potatoes are not toxic, they are more likely to give your cat diarrhea and stomach complaints. Do not fry it, and always avoid feeding processed foods that are prepared for human consumption because these can incorporate additional ingredients that are unsafe for your feline. Image Credit: ivabalk, Pixabay Strictly speaking, peanut butter itself is not toxic to cats.

Strictly speaking, cats can eat sweet potatoes because they are not toxic, either when raw or cooked. Nicole is the proud mom of Baby, a Burmese cat and Rosa, a New Zealand Huntaway. A Canadian expat, Nicole now lives on a lush forest property with her Kiwi husband in New Zealand.

What happens if a cat eats sweet potatoes?

Sweet Potato Pitfalls. Gastrointestinal Complaints – Sweet potatoes are very high in fiber. A teaspoon of this food can help a cat suffering from constipation. It also means that sweet potatoes can lead to vomiting and diarrhea, especially if fed in too large a quantity and if fed raw.

How much sweet potato can I give my cat?

The occasional bit of mashed potato mixed in with their wonted kibbles, or slice of sweet potato as a special treat, isn’t bad for our furry friends, but it also shouldn’t make up more than a fraction of daily feline food intake.

Are sweet potatoes harmful to cats?

Although the sweet potato itself is not toxic to felines, the vines of the sweet potato plant contain the toxic principle LSD. Consuming a small portion of the sweet potato vine can cause a dermatitis-type reaction, causing the cat’s skin, mouth or throat to blister and swell upon contact.

Why do cats like sweet potatoes?

Sweet potatoes are packed with fiber and full of vitamins and minerals. Of course, your cat can get these perks from their daily diet, so there’s no need to add sweet potato just for these nutritional benefits.

Sweet potatoes seem to be gaining traction in the pet food world. You may see lots of dog foods advertised with sweet potato as a main ingredient. Thats great for dogs, but it may make you wondercan cats eat sweet potatoes?

But, if your cat is a sweet potato connoisseur, there are a few nutrients that wont be terrible for them to have occasionally. Of course, your cat can get these perks from their daily diet, so theres no need to add sweet potato just for these nutritional benefits.

Unlike some other plants, the vines, shoots, and stems of sweet potato are non-toxic to catsaccording to the ASPCA . Image Credit By: Suanpa, pixabayCooked sweet potatoes can cause digestive issues if your cat overeats in one sitting. However, small amounts can relieve constipation and keep your cat regular since theyre so high in fiber.

Raw sweet potatoes can be hard to digest and can wreak havoc on your cats insides. If you caught them munching on a raw sweet potato, watch for symptoms of general upset. If you ever give your cat sweet potato, always make sure to serve it plain without any extras.

Sweet potatoes are essentially a non-food item for cats since it isnt in their natural diet. If your cat ate a sweet potato and you still arent convinced of its safetyalways contact your veterinarian for medical advice and guidance.

The long answer: Cats can occasionally enjoy sweet potatoes in either raw or cooked forms. Unlike potatoes that belong to the nightshade family and cannot be eaten raw, sweet potatoes belong to the morning glory family. Additionally, ASPCA notes that sweet potato vine is non-toxic to cats.

A freelance editor based in the Philippines, Mimi Tiu is a proud paw aunt to a family of Terriers and a Ragdoll-Persian cat.

Sweet Potato Benefits

Sweet potatoes are a surprisingly regular addition to commercial cat foods, and brands including Purina regularly include this ingredient in their cat food ingredient list. In these cases, it is claimed that the high rates of antioxidants and high fiber are beneficial to the cat. Most feline nutritionists, however, claim that there is little to no benefit in feeding sweet potatoes to an obligate carnivore like a cat.

Not Species Appropriate for Obligate Carnivores

Sweet potatoes might be beneficial to dogs, but cats and dogs are very different. While a dog is an omnivore and eats fruit and vegetables as well as meat, cats are strictly obligate carnivores.Obligate carnivores eat meat and do not eat other foods unless found in the stomach of their prey.Cats need to get their protein from meat sources, and while vegetables do provide protein, it is not considered beneficial to cats. Feeding cats protein from vegetables also means that they will get less of this essential ingredient from meat sources.A species-appropriate diet is one that an animal species would enjoy when living in the wild. It meets the nutritional requirements of the species and it helps ensure that they get everything they need in their diet without eating foods they shouldn’t.A species-appropriate diet for a cat would consist primarily of small animals and rodents. They would eat mice, the occasional rabbit, and may eat young chicks. They would rarely eat fish, would never eat grain, and only 1% or 2% of their diet would be fruit, vegetable, and grass.

Are Potatoes Toxic for Cats?

Regular potatoes, when raw, are toxic to cats and you should seek veterinary help immediately if your cat ingests any raw potato. This is also true if your cat eats green potatoes, whether they are raw or cooked.Again, once cooked, potatoes are not considered toxic for cats. They are safe, although offer no nutritional value.

Can Cats Have Cheese?

Cheese is high in protein and tasty. As such, many people mistakenly believe it is a good food source for cats.However, cheese is a dairy product and most cats are lactose intolerant. Feeding cheese to your cat can, therefore, increase the likelihood of gas. It can also lead to diarrhea. You should avoid letting your cats eat cheese.

Are Sweet Potatoes Nutritional for Cats?

It’s important to understand that cats only need meat and water to survive. Unlike dogs, who are omnivores, cats are strict carnivores. That means that some ingredients found in cat food aren’t necessarily required, and your cat doesn’t really need any plant-based protein to help them along.But, if your cat is a sweet potato connoisseur, there are a few nutrients that won’t be terrible for them to have occasionally. Sweet potatoes are packed with fiber and full of vitamins and minerals.Of course, your cat can get these perks from their daily diet, so there’s no need to add sweet potato just for these nutritional benefits.

When in Doubt, Call the Vet

If your cat ate a sweet potato and you still aren’t convinced of its safety—always contact your veterinarian for medical advice and guidance.