So, you landed here because you wanted to know that if “can cats eat honey,” right?
In short, yes, cats cat eat honey, but it depends on various things like the age, size, and breed of your cat.
Honey is an outstanding source of natural sweetener and widely popular for its high antioxidant, and on top of that, honey is loaded with essential nutrients and medicinal properties.
In addition, honey is highly beneficial for humans, but we often get more concerned when it comes to feline friends.
So can cats eat honey? If yes, is it a safe treat for them?
Let’s find out!
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Can Cats Eat Honey? Yes
Honey is safe for cats to eat in small quantities. It contains natural sugar and a small number of essential nutrients.
Besides, honey is used as a natural sweetener in many food and beverage items as it is loaded with medical properties.
So, is honey safe for cats? Well, honey is high in natural sugar, and it can cause obesity in cats if you overfeed it. Also, sugar is famous for causing tooth delays in cats.
Honey is sweet, and you know that cats do not have a sweet receptor that means they can’t taste the sweetness. If your cat is diabetic or has a history of diabetes, then you should avoid giving honey to your cat.
According to experts, cats usually don’t get attracted by honey, but exceptions are always there.
So if your cat is fond of honey, you should talk to your vet before you start serving honey to your cat.
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Are There Any Benefits for Cats?
Honey is highly beneficial for us, but what about cats? Is there any health benefit for cats?
Honey is purported to have antimicrobial and antifungal properties, known to reduce inflammation and soothe stomach ulcers, sore throats, and cure allergies.
It is considered the powerhouse of antioxidants and other vital nutrients such as vitamin C, copper, zinc, and potassium. It is also high in anti-bacterial properties.
However, there has not been much conclusive scientific evidence validating these claims.
If you are looking for additional treatment for your cats, then honey is relatively safe and inexpensive even though, some of the above claims are subjective
1. Can Soothe Allergies:
If your cat quickly acquires allergies due to seasonal changes, then you should consider giving raw honey to your cats as it is high in local pollen. Besides, honey is high in anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties, and it has the potential to soothe the allergies in your cat.
So, when your cat is eating honey, they basically ingest local pollens that act as an immunity booster. With time, your cat’s body will become less susceptible to outer pollen and may experience fewer seasonal allergies.
But, do not overfeed it as honey is not a part of the cat’s diet which means, there are possibilities that your cat may get negatively affected, and it may cause stomach issues like diarrhea, vomiting, and stomach pain.
In fact, serving a small portion of honey to your cat won’t likely cause any harm as honey is famous for its medicinal properties for curing allergies, soothing throat and affecting heart diseases too.
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2. Relieve Sore Throat:
Honey is quite popular for its medicinal properties, and sore throat relieving capability is one of them.
If your cat has developed an irritation in their respiratory systems such as coughs and sore throat due to seasonal change and you already have consulted with your vet and followed the treatment instruction, then with advice of your vet, serving little honey could help soothe any remaining inflammation.
In addition, if honey is fed occasionally, it also helps your cat have a sounding sleep without any serious side effects.
3. Honey is Immunity Booster:
Honey, being a natural source of antioxidants, provides immunity and instant energy to our cat, which means if your cat is tired and less energetic, you should consider giving ½ teaspoon of honey to your cat but occasionally.
In addition, honey is an excellent source of organic acids, flavonoids, and polyphenols, which help to increase immunity in cats.
4. Lower the Risk of Heart Disease:
First, honey is an excellent source of antioxidant compounds like phenols and polyphenols, known to reduce blood clotting, strokes, heart attacks, and blood pressure.
These antioxidants are linked to protecting your cat’s body, which gets injured due to free radicals.
In addition, honey is well-known to lower blood pressure, which reduces the risks of heart disease in cats. Also, it plays a vital role in lowering LDL cholesterol and improving the rate of HDL cholesterol (good cholesterol).
The antioxidants in honey dilate the artery, which reduces blood clotting and increases the blood flow in cats.
Can Cats Have Honey?
Yes, cats can have honey. In fact, honey is healthy for cats as it helps in sore throat, lowers the chance of heart diseases, cholesterol, and antioxidants in honey also boost the immunity in cats.
While honey is not toxic, it is not recommended by experts as it may cause stomach ache, vomiting, and diarrhea if ingested more than one teaspoon.
But you can serve honey to your cats when they are sick, mostly with a sore throat or facing allergies but with the advice of your vet.
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Is Honey Safe for Cats?
Honey is relatively safe, and serving ½ teaspoon sometimes won’t harm your cat but not more than that. It is not considered toxic, but it can cause some unpleasant health issues such as vomiting, diarrhea, and digestive problems if overfed.
And including honey in your kitty’s regular diet is not recommended as your cat’s digestive system is much more sensitive compared to us, and some cats may begin experiencing problems in their digestive system.
When is honey bad for Cats?
Usually, honey is not bad for cats, but there are several situations when giving honey to the cat is not ideal. Thus you should avoid giving honey as it may cause more harm than good.
So, when honey is considered bad?
- If your cat is diabetic
- Avoid honey to newborn kittens
- When your cat is overweight
- Or your cat has weaker immunity
Firstly, honey is naturally sweet, which means it can spike the level of insulin if fed. Thus, if your cat is suffering from diabetes, you must not serve any sweetened food, including honey.
In addition to this, it is crucial to talk to your vet before serving any sugary treats, even if your cat is not diabetic.
If your cat is overweight, don’t serve him/her any sugary food, including honey.
Honey is considered harmful for overweight felines as it is not a regular part of their diet.
Moreover, honey is known to cause and promote tooth decay, and a small teaspoon of honey is about 64 calories, and it is not ideal for feeding something to your cat that is merely empty calories.
Honey shouldn’t be given to small kittens as their stomach cannot handle anything except milk. In addition, the immune system of a kitten is not fully developed in this stage, which means the bacteria botulinum in honey can cause several reactions.
So, you should never serve honey to kittens, and if somehow your kitten has licked honey, then you should immediately contact your vet for the best possible solution.
Similarly, the bacteria in honey botulinum may cause severe issues if your cat has weaker immunity, which means your vet will tell you whether honey is suitable for your cat or not.
How Much Honey Can Cats Eat?
Ok so, we have discussed about the benefits of honey for cats, but you might be thinking about how much honey is safe for my cat?
First of all, there is no fixed amount, but according to experts, ½ teaspoon is considered safe along with a regular diet. And it also depends on the size and breed of the cat along with the purpose of feeding, such as the sore throat or as an immunity booster.
Remember, if your cat is going to taste the honey for the first time, you should start with a small amount or just let your cat lick the empty spoon after use. And observe the reaction for about 24 hours to understand if your cat is facing any digestive issues like vomiting, diarrhea, or allergic reaction.
While honey is not toxic for cats, it is high in sugar content, which means if your cat is suffering or recently diagnosed with diabetes, you should talk to your vet before giving honey to your cat. It is always best to get expert advice in case your cat gets into trouble.
Why Don’t Vets Recommend honey?
Well, there are several reasons for this. Firstly, there are way too many side effects of honey if fed wrongly.
Secondly, honey isn’t needed for your cat to stay healthy, and vets usually recommend healthy and reliable alternative foods for cats with no or minimum side effects on cats.
Besides, cats are really not fond of sweets as they lack sweet receptors like us, which means your cat may eat or lick sweet but still unable to enjoy the taste.
But if you still want to treat your cat with sweetness, then the best way is to consult with your vet as they are the most qualified person to tell you what is best for your kitty.
Honey is relatively safe for cats, but if you ask me, I would prefer feeding something more nutritious to my cats.
But several experts do not advise giving honey to your feline friend as it may cause a digestive issue like vomiting, diarrhea, and stomach pain in some cats, while others may show no negative reactions.
While honey is highly nutritious, you should always consult with your vet about the pros and cons of feeding honey to your cat.