5 Thanksgiving Foods That Are Toxic to Cats

5 Thanksgiving Foods That Are Toxic to Cats

Thanksgiving is a wonderful time for humans, as they gather with family and friends to enjoy their holiday traditions. Unfortunately, it can be quite a hazardous time for your feline friend. With potentially toxic foods easily accessible, more and more cats end up requiring emergency care each year. Here’s what you need to know about foods to avoid so that you and your kitty have a safe and happy Thanksgiving.

Thanksgiving Foods That Are Toxic to Cats

Here are five Thanksgiving foods that are toxic to your feline friend:

#1 Stuffing: Stuffing is a staple Thanksgiving side. However, the savory dish often contains onions, scallions, and garlic, all of which are extremely toxic to cats. They damage the membranes of the red blood cells, often leading to life-threatening anemia, a condition characterized by a low red blood cell count.

#2 Raisins and Grapes: Raisins and grapes are ingredients often found in stuffing or Thanksgiving salads. Veterinarians aren’t quite sure why, but even the tiniest amounts are highly toxic, potentially leading to vomiting and diarrhea before shutting the kidney down.

#3 Turkey Bones: Ingesting turkey bones can cause severe indigestion, vomiting, and even bowel obstruction. Worse yet, the bones may splinter and cause devastating damage to the inside of the stomach and intestines. A puncture through the stomach can sometimes cause a potentially fatal abdominal infection.

#4 Uncooked Bread Dough: Everyone loves the smell of freshly-baked Thanksgiving rolls. However, make sure to keep the uncooked dough out of reach. If ingested, it can lead to bloating. As it breaks down in your feline friend’s digestive tract, fermenting yeast converts the sugars in the dough to carbon dioxide and alcohol, leading to alcohol poisoning, which is a potentially life-threatening emergency.

#5 Xylitol: This artificial sweetener is often used in baking Thanksgiving treats. However, xylitol is highly toxic to all pets. It can elicit a sudden insulin release, resulting in your furry friend’s blood sugar dropping, a condition known as hypoglycemia. Unfortunately, many xylitol exposure survivors end up with liver damage and even liver failure.

What Thanksgiving Treats Can You Give Your Cat?

While it’s always best to stick to cat food, as long as your cat is not allergic or prone to diarrhea with dietary changes, a small amount of turkey is healthy and won’t hurt your feline friend. You don’t have to leave your furry friend out! 

Quality Veterinary Care in Kirkland, WA

We, at All About Cats Veterinary Hospital, hope that you have a wonderfully safe and happy Thanksgiving. Make sure you keep foods that can harm your furry companions out of reach. If, however, your cat ingests a toxic Thanksgiving treat, don’t wait! Contact us immediately for evaluation and emergency care. You can also contact the ASPCA National Animal Poison Control Center for information.

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