Pineapple is a pretty healthy fruit for humans, largely because it’s a good source of vitamin C and it can help prevent various forms of cancer. But is it also good for cats? (Is it something cats would even care much for?)
If you’ve caught your cat licking your desert or trying to make off with some chunks, it’s natural to wonder whether you should be making an emergency call to the vet or not. So, can cats eat pineapple?
The short answer, yes, in general, pineapple is safe enough for cats to eat. But they should eat it in small amounts once in a while and it’s likely most cats will ignore it anyway. You should also make sure that your cat is only going after the fruit, not the skin or the leaves, and any chunks are small enough not to present a choking hazard.
Do Cats Like Pineapple?
Cats don’t have any capacity to taste sweet foods and they aren’t really built to go after or need fruit. As a result, most cats probably won’t care much about pineapple beyond curiosity about what you’re eating. That being said, there are some cat owners who have said their cats really like pineapple.
As usual, it’s going to be up to your cat’s tastes (so to speak) and personality more than any blanket statement. I don’t believe I’ve ever had a cat go after pineapple, but that’s not to say it won’t happen one day.
Since pineapple doesn’t do much for cats, anyway, don’t worry if your cat doesn’t care for this fruit. They get all they need from their regular cat food anyway.
Do Cats Hate Pineapple?
It’s equally unlikely you’ll meet a cat that specifically hates pineapple. They will simply ignore it if you try to offer it to them (maybe politely sniff it and then wander off).
Can Pineapple Kill Cats?
Fresh pineapple shouldn’t kill your cat unless they have a very particular and deadly allergy to it. However, too much pineapple can give your cat diarrhea, so be mindful of serving sizes.
There are three main issues with pineapple:
- Canned pineapple has far too much syrup and sugar in it which can be very bad for cats. It can cause diarrhea, a sore stomach, and dental issues. By themselves, these things won’t kill your cat so much as make it very uncomfortable, but regular exposure to too much sugar will lead to obesity and diabetes which can shorten the life of your cat.
- Fresh pineapple also has sugar in it so you should limit your cat’s intake to one to two pieces once in a while
- The skin, husk, and leaves can all cause allergic reactions. Husks can also cause swelling and bleeding in cats. While cats may enjoy chewing on these things, it’s best to redirect them to a toy.
A little bit of fresh pineapple once in a while though should not cause any issues for your cat, though of course if notice anything out of the ordinary (Swelling, itching, irritation, digestive issues, etc.), stop letting your cat have pineapple and talk to your vet.
How Much Pineapple is Safe for Your Cat?
Cats should only eat a small amount of pineapple. If your cat has never had pineapple before, give it just a few small cubes of the soft fruit (peeled, no skin, and remove all the seeds.) Then monitor to be sure that your pet doesn’t have a reaction to it.
Assuming it goes well, and your cat likes it, pineapple can be treated as any treat – a few small cubes once in a while to add variety to your cat’s diet. Keep in mind that it will be a treat and should count against their treat calories for the day.
Again, avoid canned or tinned pineapple as it has far too much sugar and as always, don’t feed your cat rotten or rotting fruit!
This can cause all manner of health problems, plus it won’t taste very good. Cats should also not have pineapple juice, again because of the sugar.
Health Benefits of Pineapple for Cats
Although cats are obligate carnivores, there are a few bits of nutritional benefits they can get from pineapple. Keep in mind that these are going to be trace benefits and pineapple should not be used as a replacement for their normal food.
Cats can pick up the following nutrients from pineapple:
- Manganese (this helps cats better use the carbs and proteins in their diet)
- Vitamin B6
- Water content (always a good thing since cats don’t drink a lot of water on their own)
Pineapple is a good way to help a cat’s digestive system get going if they are constipated. Some cats may also enjoy the texture of pineapple.
Pineapple leaves are also popular with some cats – not to eat, but rather because the rubbery texture is nice for them to chew on. If you do notice your cat chewing on the leaves, you don’t have to worry about them getting sick from it, but the leaves do contain a sap which can cause an allergic reaction.
You should also supervise your cat to make sure they don’t bite off a piece and choke on it. It’s probably best to try to distract your cat away from the leaves and when preparing pineapple, throw the leaves out right away.
In most cases, cats can eat pineapple. Whether they will is another matter, but there’s no harm if your cat made off with a piece of your fruit. If you are going to let your cat have pineapple, they should no more than one or two small pieces at a time, it should be fresh, not canned, and supervise your cat the first time to make sure there are no allergic reactions.
But if your cat doesn’t care for pineapple, they aren’t missing much. While pineapple has some nutritional benefits, the amount cats can eat is so small that they won’t get much or miss much from the experience.
Does your cat like pineapple?