With summer approaching, we all tend to crave the cooling sweetness of fresh fruits. One of those popular fruits is mango. If you’re thinking that our kitties are craving the same things, it’s important to know if eating mangoes are safe for them.
While mango isn’t considered toxic to cats, it’s also not a necessary staple for their diet. Read on to find out how much mango is okay for your cat to consume.
Are There Any Potential Issues With Feeding a Cat Mango?
Mango may have many benefits in its corner, but does that mean that it’s suitable for your cat?
You may have a hard time getting your cat to eat sweet fruits, such as mango. That’s because cats don’t have tastebuds that sense sweet, so they don’t tend to crave it the way humans or even dogs can. But that doesn’t mean that they won’t get curious or enjoy the texture that mango provides.
Other issues can come about if you feed your cat too much mango. The fiber and sugar that come with the fruit can create digestive upset if your cat eats too much in one sitting. Look for things like vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal pain if you exceed your cat’s digestive tolerance of mango.
Mango can also be a choking hazard if you give your cat large chunks of it. While the ripe fruit tends to be fairly soft, indiscriminate chewers may gobble pieces that are too large to be easily swallowed.
Mango is a stone fruit, meaning that it contains a large, hard pit in the center. It’s essential to remove this pit before giving the fruit to your cat as the pit contains poisonous amounts of cyanide. Plus, the pit is a choking hazard and doesn’t taste good.
How to Feed Your Cat Mango
If your kitty is into it, feeding them mango once in a while can be a healthy vitamin and antioxidant boost. But that doesn’t mean that mango should make an appearance at every meal or be given to your cat’s heart’s content.
Rather, feed your cat one to two slices of mango with the skin and pit removed. Removing the skin helps to increase digestion and decrease the likelihood of fiber-induced digestive issues. Of course, remove the pit to prevent cyanide toxicity.
You’ll also want to dice the mango up, especially if you have a kitty that prefers to eat their food whole. This will also increase digestion and decrease the possibility of choking.
Make mango a once or twice a week treat at the most, and remember that since cats don’t taste sweet, they might not be interested. So, don’t force them to eat mango if they don’t want to. They can get all of the nutrients that mango provides from other, more desirable sources.
The Health Benefits of Mango
Mango is a great-tasting and pretty fruit. It also boasts a pretty impressive nutrient profile.
- Vitamins: Mango is packed with vitamin C. It also contains vitamins A, E, K, and many of the B vitamins. This makes mango especially important at boosting immunity and growth and repair of cells. They also aid in healthy vision, hair, and skin.
- Minerals: Mango also brings potassium, magnesium, copper, manganese, and small amounts of iron, calcium, and selenium. These minerals help to support heart health and many other bodily functions.
- Fiber: The fiber in mango helps to regulate digestive health and helps us feel full for longer.
- Antioxidants: Mango is a great source of polyphenols that help to reduce damage to cells. These antioxidants are essential for healthy aging and fighting chronic diseases.
- Anti-Cancer Activity: The polyphenols in mango are also important for preventing certain kinds of cancer.
Mango is a great summertime, or anytime, treat for us. Not only that, but it’s packed with many vital nutrients. If your cat is interested in snacking on mango, be sure to give it to them in small amounts every once in a while. This will help prevent digestive upset and potential toxicity from eating the pit.
Dr. Chyrle Bonk has been practicing veterinary medicine since 2010. She lives in Idaho with her husband and two sons, where they spend their free time exploring the great outdoors that is right in their backyard.