We humans probably don’t think of strawberries as something of interest to cats. While we may put them on shortcakes, in frozen drinks, or on salads, typically, our cats don’t care. Or do they? Many people have reported that their cats go nuts over these little red berries! But what drives their interest? Why do cats like strawberries?
Cats like strawberries because they enjoy the smell and taste. Strawberries are non-toxic if fed to cats in moderation if they are interested.
In this post, we’ll look at why some cats are strawberry fiends, whether they can eat them, and things to watch out for.
Reasons Cats Like Strawberries
Cats like strawberries for various reasons. Below are the key ones to keep in mind.
Strawberries make cats act goofy
While strawberries are not directly related to catnip, many believe the leaves provoke a similar “high” feeling.
Cats have been reported to act similarly around strawberries as they do the catnip, rubbing their faces on them, licking them, and tossing them around. It’s possible that the leaves, not the strawberries themselves, induce this effect.
The sweetness is appealing to cats
Cats are picky eaters, as we know. But like humans, their tastes vary. Some cats are very attracted to sweet objects, and a particularly sweet strawberry or one with a little bit of sweetener on it could taste delightful to your kitty.
They’re fun to play with
It’s possible your cat’s attraction to strawberries has more to do with the round, ball-like quality and the fact that they’re about the size of a mouse.
Cats can easily grab strawberries in their mouth and nicely fit their paws around them, resulting in entertainment similar to playing with their favorite toys or killing their prey. Cats also find fun in stealing them from you!
Strawberries have health benefits
Just as humans can feel great when we’ve eaten something fortifying, cats notice when they get a new food that makes them feel great.
Strawberries are chock full of vitamins and antioxidants, so when a cat gets a taste, they’re likely to feel a burst of energy and relate that good feeling to the fruit.
They’re similar to treats
If you give your cat a strawberry once as a treat (or if they snuck one without you seeing), chances are they may begin to associate it as such.
The appealing taste and catnip-like reaction could mean your cat feels very special when you give them a strawberry and keep coming back for them again and again!
Do Cats Like The Smell Of Strawberries
Cats like the smell of strawberries.
Cats are susceptible to certain smells. While citrus fruits and others with a bitter quality will likely turn them off, kitties are likely to be attracted to the more sweet-smelling fruits such as watermelon, peach, and strawberries.
Do Strawberries Make Cats High
Conventional wisdom and commenters online have claimed that strawberries have similar qualities to catnip. However, there does not appear to be any scientific proof of this. Strawberries are from the Rosaceae or rose family of plants, and catnip is from the Lamiaceae or mint family.
Still, many cats react similarly to strawberries as they do to catnip, so there could very well be properties to the rose family of plants that cause a “high” feeling in cats. It has not, however, been scientifically confirmed.
Can Cats Eat Strawberries
Strawberries are non-toxic to cats. They contain high amounts of vitamin C, potassium, fiber, magnesium, omega-3 fatty acids, and a long list of other benefits. This means a small amount of strawberry can be a nice treat for your cat.
However, it’s essential to limit the strawberries your cat eats to small amounts. Cats are obligate carnivores, and their digestive systems are only equipped to handle a minimal amount of vegetable and plant matter.
Overloading specific vitamins and minerals can also harm their digestive systems. Therefore, a small slice or chunk of strawberry every so often is the best way to let your cat enjoy. If they tend to steal, make sure those berries are out of reach!
Can Cats Eat Strawberry Leaves
Cats should not eat strawberry leaves. Strawberry leaves are jagged and attached to thick stems and therefore are very difficult for a cat’s sensitive stomach to digest.
The best way to share a strawberry with your cat is to cut the leaves off first. The leaves may have a pleasant smell for your kitty, but if they eat them, they could be in for some tummy trouble, which could potentially be serious.
Are Strawberry Leaves Good For Cats
Strawberry leaves are not good for cats.
It’s generally not a good idea for cats to be around strawberry leaves. In addition to the potentially harmful digestive side effects, being in contact with the leaves can cause skin irritation, sneezing, and other allergic reactions.
Can Cats Eat Strawberry Yogurt
If you’re eating strawberry yogurt and would like to share some with your kitty, check the sugar content first.
Yogurt comes in many forms and often masquerades as a healthy snack, even though it’s packed with hidden problematic ingredients. Greek, lactose-free, or live culture strawberry yogurts are best for cats, but still only in moderation.
Is Strawberry Ice Cream Bad For Cats
Cartoons, movies, and stories have always shown cats lapping up milk and cream products with great enthusiasm, so it seems natural that a cat should be able to have some of your strawberry ice cream.
But in reality, that ice cream is probably full of sugar, which is very bad for cats. Dairy products, in general, can also wreak havoc on your kitty’s stomach, as cats’ systems are not built to digest them.
So even if your cat is dying for a taste of your strawberry ice cream, it’s best to skip it and give them a small chunk of a regular strawberry instead.
Is It Normal For Cats To Like Fruit
It’s normal for cats to like fruit. Many cats do enjoy sweeter fruits like bananas, peaches, and watermelon, in addition to strawberries. The smell is pleasant and leads to a yummy taste.
If we know anything about our feline friends, they are picky eaters, and sometimes it’s difficult to explain their preferences.
So some cats may be drawn to delicious fruits, while others could find them repulsive. Cats aren’t losing out on anything in their diet if they don’t like fruit, but if they do, it’s okay to give it to them in moderation.
Things To Consider
Sharing small amounts of fruit with your cat is okay. However, if your cat seems obsessed with fruit or gets into your grocery bag and gobbles down a lot, you’ll want to contact your veterinarian to see what to look out for in the cat’s reaction.
You’ll also want to ask your veterinarian if your cat’s obsession with fruit means they’re not getting some essential nutrients out of their diet. It could be time for a food switch if your kitty can’t get enough strawberries or other fruits and won’t let up trying to get them.
While this particular fruit is non-toxic, it’s always essential to check on any food to make sure it’s okay for cats if they get into it. Their curiosity can lead them down dangerous paths from time to time. You can use the ASPCA’s Poison Control Database to get the information you need.
There are some things we can chalk up to cats being weird. Their desire for strawberries is one of them. Some cats love them; others are indifferent. The good news is that they’re okay in small amounts. Their love or hate for strawberries is just one more interesting thing about your feline’s complex brain!