Olive oil is a vital part of kitchens in almost every household, as it is known for its various antioxidant properties. But weirdly enough, some cats are also very fond of olive oil, so before you decide to incorporate it into their diet, it is important to make sure that is olive oil safe for cats or not?
Addressing Is olive oil safe for cats?
So, is olive oil safe for cats to consume? Yes, olive oil is non-toxic which means it is okay to consume for cats, but certain precautions must be taken care of to make sure no harm is afflicted, which will be addressed later in this article.
Cats generally have an instant liking to olives and olive oil, and unless harsh spices and seasonings are added to the food, your cat should do just fine.
Of course, if you are looking to give your kitty a diet containing olive oil, then make sure to consult a veterinarian for the appropriate amounts of consumption for your kitty based on factors such as age, breed, etc.
Benefits of olive oil
Pure olive oil has various scientifically proven health benefits that are limited to humans and cats.
Did you know olive oil helps improve calorie intake in cats and also reduces fat? An average teaspoon of olive oil contains 40 calories. This is great for increased metabolism for cats in specially in their early months, and it also helps reduce obesity in cats.
A proper calculated proportion of olive oil is also great for younger kittens as it helps in the digestion of food and other large molecules such as fatty acids.
Reduces risk of diseases
Even small amounts of olive oil can help prevent digestion problems and help with constipation. Since constipation occurs when there is a lack of fiber in the body, olive oil acts as a lubricant and helps the stool pass out of the cat’s body with ease.
Ideally, most pet owners found feeding olive oil right when their cat showed any signs of constipation to be most effective.
Moreover, other illnesses such as diabetes and heart diseases such as stroke are also reduced by the intake of olive oil.
The vitamin E from the oil can help your cat treat flea allergy and eczema.
Not only in their diet but olive oil is also used to clean ear mites out of cat’s ears. If the infection is not widespread, then you can use heat the olive oil and then use a dropper to drip it into the cat’s ear, then slowly clean it out using a cotton bud or tissue paper. This is a very gentle process, as ears are delicate and you don’t want to harm your feline friend.
But if the infection is a lot, you should refer to a vet’s expert advice.
Helps keep your cat healthy
Since it has such a low composition of fat, olive oil helps your cat stay fit and keep the skin and fur nourished and free from dandruff.
Most cats cough around 2 to 5 hairballs over a month, and as a remedy for that, some cat owners suggest mixing half a tablespoon of olive oil in your cat’s food, and this should solve the hairball problem within 3 days.
Moreover, olive oil is also great to be fed with wet cat food, and can also be a good alternative to it sometimes.
The nutrients from the oil also promote muscular development in cats, and this helps fight laziness and keep your cat healthy and active throughout the day.
Olive oil and its antioxidant properties also play a big part in improving your cat’s immune system. The vitamin E and the chlorophyll in olive oil are known to boost immunity, so it is especially good for younger cats because their immune system is constantly developing.
Can olive oil harm your cat?
While olive oil has its fair share of benefits, too much of something is almost always harmful.
Olive oil is fat after all with low calories, hence, instead of cutting the healthiness of your cat, it can cause fatal obesity if large amounts are fed to the cat.
Too much olive oil consumption can also cause severe cases of diarrhea in cats, as the oil also plays a role in making the stool thinner.
While olive oil is used to avoid diabetes, if your cat is already diabetic, you should avoid using olive oil in their diet as it can cause insulin sensitivity, which can cause a hormonal imbalance in your cat. Consult a vet on what to do if your cat is diabetic and having a constipation problem.
Besides this, using infused olive oil or oil that contains onion, garlic, or any other flavoring can harm your cat’s internal functions such as immune systems functionality, and even cause diarrhea. So, if you plan to give your cat a cooked chicken treat, using no spices and pure olive oil you have nothing to worry about.
How much olive oil is safe for cats?
Cat experts suggest that young kittens can have up to three tablespoons of olive oil, and large cats can afford half a tablespoon. They also suggest that while feeding, the oil should be very well incorporated into the meals, and a weekly track note of your cat’s olive oil intake is also a good idea.
Sometimes a cat may have some trouble coughing up a hairball, in this case, the cat owners put a few drops of oil on their paw. This does the trick because many cats do not like the oily feeling on their paws, so they try their best to lick it off. This will cause the oil to mix with the hairball and cough up with much more ease.
Moreover, as with any new substance you feed your cats (after your vet’s consultation), always try to introduce it to your cat in a small amount first, and then gradually increase the portion size once you see they’ve adapted fine.
Under any circumstance, if your cat has diarrhea or any other side effect because of the olive oil, immediately reach out to your vet and get it checked.
Which olive oil should you pick?
When you go to the store to grab olive oil, don’t be confused as there may be a few other options available. The best variation for your cat will be extra virgin olive oil because it is pure and has low levels of fat. It is also less acidic, and not treated chemically, hence it is great for both cats and even humans. Some bottles may also refer to this as ‘cold-pressed first’, and this is the one you want to pick.
Make sure to read carefully through the ingredients to ensure that it is not flavor-infused, you don’t want your cat to get sick!
In conclusion, olive oil is good for your cat, if given in appropriate amounts as suggested by your vet. It is great for strengthening your cat’s immune system, and helps them stay on top of their skin and fur game!
However, while it has its benefits, the wrong type or proportions can affect your cat badly, and even prove to be fatal to your furry friend.
Always consult a vet before making any changes to your cats’ diet.
Because after all,
A healthy cat equals a happy home!