Mango is a fairly popular fruit for its flavor and just how appealing it looks on the counter once it’s all dried. It also has a nice smell, making it just an all-around pleasant fruit for people. Is it equally pleasant and attractive for your cat? Potentially – cats are curious about what their humans are up to and this often extends to what we are eating. If your cat snuck a chunk of mango, you’re probably wondering just how safe it was and whether you should be preparing for a trip to the vet. Can cats eat dried mango?
The short answer is that yes, a small chunk of dried mango here and there is perfectly safe for cats to eat. Mango is considered to be completely non-toxic and even has some minor benefits. However, like all fruit, cats shouldn’t try to live on mango, and it should be a special treat.
Do Cats Like Mango?
It’s doubtful that most cats will actively go for mango – dried or otherwise. Cats are evolved to eat meat and to crave it. They smell and taste meat the best and their digestive system handles meat. Fruit on the other hand isn’t well tolerated and so most cats don’t particularly crave it.
That being said, there are always cats who steer away from convention and some cats probably will enjoy mango for the texture and water content, if nothing else. And some may genuinely enjoy it! You won’t know until you offer your cat a small piece and see how it reacts.
I’ve never had a cat show interest in mango, but that could be simply because I don’t have mangoes very often in the house.
Do Cats Hate Mango?
Cats aren’t exactly designed to handle fruit, so they won’t generally crave it. This does not mean that your cat hates mango per se, just that they don’t care. If you offered your cat some mango and it turned up its nose and wandered off, don’t worry about it. Mango is not something that cats need in order to be healthy and they won’t miss anything by not having it.
Can Mangoes Kill Cats?
The mango fruit is perfectly safe for cats to eat; however, you will want to be very careful about the skin and the pit.
The skin on its own isn’t toxic; however, it can be a bit tough for cats to handle, presenting a choking hazard and not really providing much in the way of benefits. They will probably turn up their nose at it as well and never bother with the fruit inside, so it acts as a deterrent.
The real problem is the pit. The pit of mangos contains cyanide. It’s in trace amounts for humans, but for cats with their far smaller body weight, it can pose a real hazard. Eating too much cyanide can lead to poisoning with symptoms ranging from dilated pupils and hyperventilation to shock and death. The pits can also be a choking hazard, so they’re just bad news all around.
Otherwise, the mango fruit is non-toxic and should be safe for your cat to eat. As always, it’s a good idea to monitor your cat the first time it has some for allergic reactions. Allergies in cats can manifest as:
- Stomach pains
Obviously, if your cat is showing signs of discomfort after eating mango, don’t let it have anymore. And if your cat is showing truly worrying symptoms after eating mango, talk to your vet.
Mangos also have a decent amount of sugar in them. Sugar is problematic for cats because it doesn’t get digested properly and can quickly lead to obesity and diabetes. Feline diabetes can cause other problems for cats in the long run and can greatly shorten their life. With that in mind, it’s important to greatly limit how much sugar a cat has in its diet.
How Many Mangoes Are Safe for Your Cat?
Mango might be nontoxic, but it’s still fruit, it still has plenty of sugars, and it’s still not something that cats can digest easily. With that in mind, mango is best used as an occasional and small treat, not something to be added to the daily food roster. With that in mind, a small, dried piece of mango once or twice a week is probably about as much as a cat should ever eat.
You could also mix a small amount of mashed mango with a cat’s regular food to add some variety. Depending on how picky your cat is, this will either encourage them to eat more or make them turn up their nose, so don’t be surprised in either event.
Cats can also have frozen mango, though again, make sure the piece is small enough not to present a choking hazard. Pureed mango is fine too, but don’t put in any extras.
The Health Benefits of Mangos for Cats
Mangos have a few health benefits for cats which can help to justify their status as a treat! Mangos are high in a few vitamins that are good for cats:
- Vitamin A, which boosts the immune system.
- Vitamin B6 which helps in the absorption of fats and protein – things that cats need to get a lot of in order to be healthy!
Mangos also have fiber in them which can be helpful, water, and low calories which can help cats that are trying to lose weight.
Keep in mind though that since cats can only have a small amount of mango per week, these benefits are quite minute. It more means that mango is a healthier treat than a commercial treat or many other human foods.
We may not think of mango and cats going together, but if your cat makes off with a chunk once in a while, you probably don’t have anything to worry about. The fruit is nontoxic with some healthy benefits, and some cats enjoy the texture.
If your cat doesn’t care much for mango, don’t worry about it as mangos are hardly necessary for a healthy diet. Just be sure that your cat doesn’t go near the pit or the skin and you have nothing to fear.
Does your cat like mango?