Honey is a tasty treat with many health benefits and can be given if you have flu, want to add a little sweetness, etc. But this human food is only good for sore throats, or is it also good for your cat’s sore throat? The answer is debatable because our cats are obligate carnivores, and they love animal protein not present in honey. Honey does have some antibacterial properties, can be applied to open wounds, and is good for seasonal allergies but is it truly great for your feline friend or not? Let’s find out.
Honey, What Is It?
As cat owners, we need to know whether the food we are feeding our feline friends is a great addition to the cat’s diet. Cats easily get a hard time once they start having allergic reactions and health issues. Honey is a healthy treat packed with minerals, amino acids, antioxidants, etc. It has many potential benefits for us human beings, like anti-inflammatory properties, wound healing, and boosting the immune system.
However, the issue arises when we talk about honey having too much sugar content and causing problems like tooth decay, higher insulin levels, stomach aches, etc.
Human babies are given a spoonful of honey with some ginger when they have sore throats. Due to its medicinal properties, honey is quite common, but that does not mean it is not a toxic food for our furry friends. So, what is the relation between cats and honey, is it good or not, might be a question that you are thinking.
Honey, Cats, and Their Health
So, here is good news, licking a few drops of honey will not harm your feline friend but if you have a sick cat or adult cat facing diabetes, giving your cat honey is a bad idea. For diabetic cats, even a teaspoon of honey is hazardous, so adding it to cat food is totally out of the question. Honey is known for its nutritional value and medicinal purposes in the human world, but when it comes to cats, honey is nothing but a sweet treat that they cannot even taste.
Never allow a young kitten to consume honey. Like in human babies, honey carries a serious danger of causing botulism. The kittens have a small digestive system, and cats’ immune systems are still growing, so kittens are especially vulnerable to the bacterial spores found in honey. A neurotoxin is released into the circulation by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum, which causes a severe and perhaps fatal disease.
Small doses of honey can also be fatal for obese cats. Unless there is a good reason and you have asked your vet, you should not give your cats even small amounts of honey. For your feline friend, there are no benefits of honey, and healthy cats do not honey even if the cat comes down with cat flu.
Can Cats Enjoy Sugar?
Cats are sweet blind because they cannot taste sugary foods, smaller cats have weak immune systems, and a cat’s digestive system is designed to digest protein. Since honey is all about sugar, your feline friend will not enjoy it. Cats generally hate honey because it is all sugar. Giving your feline friend too much honey will only increase their discomfort, causing tooth decay, unnecessary weight gain, upset stomach, diarrhea, and vomiting.
Your feline friend already has a tough time digesting sugary treats, so they will never enjoy sugar in any form because their body has to work extra hard to digest such sugary treats, and that is something that your feline friend will not love. In worst cases, honey can also make breathing difficult for your feline friend, so take care of them and keep them away from honey.
How Much and How Often Can a Cat Eat Honey?
Feeding raw honey is not advisable for cats as it contains too much sugar, which brings with it health problems for your feline friend. Cats do not have taste receptors to detect sweet foods and giving them honey, and other sugary treats will only make their weight gain and nothing else. The sugar in honey spikes the blood sugar levels of cats and gives them an upset stomach and other health problems.
However, suppose your cat licks a little bit of honey. In that case, it won’t have any negative side effects but feeding honey for its nutritional benefits and including it in a cat’s diet on a regular basis is not a good idea for their healthy life. Cats also hate the taste of honey, so as pet owners, there is no need to feed them honey because it will only create issues for your cat’s health.
What Will Happen, My Cat Ate Honey
Most cats are fine with eating human foods such as honey; a small amount of honey will never harm your feline friend. However, offering honey to your little friend is not a good thing to do as it has some potential risks. After eating large quantities of honey, such as a tablespoon of honey, your cat’s digestive system might get disturbed, with occasional vomits or diarrhea.
In such a case, it is better to take them to a vet to get the required treatment, but if your young kitten is unlucky and gets botulinum, the case is severe. This condition is rare but can happen, and immediate care is required. Your feline friend will need to be hospitalized and treated with antibiotics, IV fluids, and oxygen therapy and will need its essential nutrients to be delivered through tubes. So, it is better to take your feline friend directly to a vet after they eat sweet treats containing honey.
Do not feed honey in the small mouths of your feline friend because they do not like it. Giving honey in large amounts is also not the best decision because honey lacks all the beneficial nutrients required in a cat’s diet and only offers sugar to them. This sugar, in the long run, can become the cause of obesity and other health diseases. So, to avoid potential risks, avoid giving your feline friend any type of honey, whether it is local honey, natural honey, honey with artificial sweeteners, manuka honey, or other.
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