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Can Cats Eat Cream Cheese?

Can Cats Eat Cream Cheese?

Cream cheese is a soft form of fresh cheese that’s made from milk and cream. Similar to hard cheeses, cream cheese should not be fed to cats because it contains high amounts of lactose and fat. Though kittens have the capacity to break down lactose, they lose this ability after weaning. As such, the digestive system of most adult cats cannot handle cream cheese as well as other dairy products. 

In addition, the amount of fat found in cream cheese (at least 30% for US and Canadian standards) can lead to long-term health complications. As obligate carnivores, cats need protein and fat in their daily diet. However, the type of fat found in cream cheese is not recommended for them.  

What to do if your cat accidentally eats cream cheese: Not all cats will have adverse reactions to eating cream cheese. Your cat should be okay with a few licks of plain cream cheese. However, flavoured cream cheese such as garlic, onion, and cinnamon should be avoided.   

When too much cream cheese is consumed by a lactose-intolerant cat, it can cause digestive issues such as stomach pain, gas, and diarrhea. The last symptom can also lead to severe dehydration, so it’s important to monitor your pet cat once it happens. Vomiting may also occur for cats that cannot handle fat. 

In summary: Err on the side of caution when feeding your cat cream cheese and dairy products. Giving her cream cheese may not be advisable because of its nutritional content and its potential side effects. Consult with your veterinarian before introducing cream cheese as well as any other new food to your cat. 

Instead of giving your cat cream cheese, why not feed her fruit and vegetable-based treats? Check out our blog’s “can cats eat” category to find out which human foods you can safely feed your pet cat.

References:

Wikipedia: Cream cheese

Can Cats Eat Cream Cheese? What You Need to Know

Cats and Dairy: Get the Facts

Can My Cat Eat That? 30 Foods Cats Can and Can’t Eat



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