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Can Cats Eat Cake? Finding The Right Treats For Your Kitty

Can Cats Eat Cake? Finding The Right Treats For Your Kitty

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Having a cake is a tradition for all of us. Every major life event, such as a birthday, graduation, or even passing a difficult exam cannot go by without us having a slice of cake to celebrate!

Maybe you had an idea of getting your cat a birthday cake, or maybe your cat has been looking lustfully at your slice of cake when you’re treating yourself… So, now you’re wondering Can cats eat cake? Is it okay if I give my cat a bit of cake, or even a whole slice?!

Let me give you the answer right away. Your cat will be fine if it has a tiny piece of cake (as long as it does not contain milk or dark chocolate) once in a while. However, it should definitely not have an entire slice, and it should only be a rare treat!

Cake is not on the cat-friendly food list, so it really should be avoided. Your cat won’t develop any health issues if they just eat a small bite of cake, but eating small bites too often can lead to medical problems.

Let’s explore why cats should not eat cake, the kind of problems eating a lot of it can lead to and some healthy alternatives to cake that your cat will love…!

Can Cats Eat Cake? Yes, BUT…

cat waiting to eat cake

Most cakes out there are perfectly safe for a cat to eat. That means eating a little bit of it will not cause any harmful short-term (or long-term) side-effects.

So, if your cheeky cat has grabbed a bite of cake from your plate – do not panic! Your cat will be perfectly okay! Of course, while a bite of cake is okay for a cat to eat now and then, it should not be happening often and especially not on a daily basis.

Cake is definitely not the healthiest treat you can give your cat, so giving them a bit of cake every time you have some is not recommended.

Essentially, if you can avoid giving cake to your cat,youshould! Cake does not offer any benefits to the cat.

Furthermore – cats can’t even taste cake as we do; they don’t have the taste buds necessary to taste sweetness (we will find out more about this later on).

Suggested Read: Can Cats Eat Pancakes? This Is What You Need To Know

Why Cake Is Not Good For Cats

black cat sitting next to cake

None of us want to disappoint our furry friends when they are begging for a treat, so it’s important to understand why we are saying no!Why can’t cats eat a lot of cake, or enjoy it often?!

It all comes down to some specific ingredients in cakes that are decidedly not good for cats.

As obligate carnivores, cats should primarily eat proteins derived from meat, as well as a healthy amount of fats, and little to no carbohydrates.

Let’s check out the typical ingredients that most cakes contain and why they are a bad choice for our pets.

Reason No1: Sugar

While not always toxic, sugar is very harmful for cats. You’ve never seen somebody offer their pet a sugar cube or a bar of chocolate, correct? There is a perfectly logical explanation for that!

Sugar is not meant to be a part of a cat’s diet. Carbohydrates, in general, should not be a big part of a cat’s diet.

Signs your cat has had too much sugar include vomiting and diarrhea. I’m sure you don’t want to have to deal with dental damage, diabetes, or weight gain as a result of long-term regular sugar consumption.

Synthetic sweeteners are also added to many cakes, as they’re used as sugar substitutes in many foods nowadays. These artificial sweeteners have been known to cause an irritated stomach, especially if eaten in large quantities.

Reason No2: Fat

Although cats should have a small portion of fat in their diet, the key thing to remember here is a small portion! Cakes contain far more fat than a cat needs.

As fat is essentially a small energy reserve, it has a high calorie content. More than twice as many calories are found in one gram of fat as in one gram of carbohydrate. Why does this matter?

One severe issue that can arise from feeding your cat a high-fat diet is weight gain. Unhealthy weight gain can cause your cat numerous health issues – especially if those extra ounces turn into serious obesity.

It is important for pet owners to take steps to prevent unhealthy weight gain and obesity because it is not something that should be taken lightly; it can significantly reduce your cat’s life span.

Reason No3: Dairy

As you may already know, cats should not have dairy in their diet, so all cat food should be dairy free.

That means no milk at all, (although some cats might like milk, it isn’t good for them), and no ice cream, no cheese… Everything that contains dairy should be avoided. This is because dairy products contain lactose.

Most adult cats cannot metabolize lactose sugar because they are lactose intolerant. This stems from an inability to process and digest lactose due to a lack of the necessary enzymes.

You definitely do not want that for your small pet because lactose can create a lot of discomfort in your cat’s digestive tract. Consuming dairy produce may cause diarrhea, gas, and cramping.

As you can already guess, most cakes do contain dairy, which is not good for your cat’s tummy, especially if your cat is particularly sensitive to lactose.

Suggested Read: What Do Cats Like To Eat For Breakfast? Plus 3 Yummy Ideas!

Carrot Cake Must Be Healthy.. Right?!

Some people think that some cakes are healthier than others just because they contain healthy ingredients such as carrots or fruits.

However, while those particular ingredients are indeed healthy, cakes do not contain a lot of them, and they still contain a lot of the unwanted ingredients that are bad for cats.

The truth is, a carrot cake does not contain enough carrots in order to justify giving a slice of carrot cake to a cat. Although there is carrot in there, there is also a lot of sugar, fat, and dairy.

The amount of vitamin A from the carrots is very small compared to the high sugar and calorie content in carrot cake, so it simply doesn’t justify giving your pet the cake! Ask yourself if there is more “good stuff” or “bad stuff” in treats before you give them to your beloved kitty.

Warning! Chocolate Cake Is A Huge No-No

cat sniffing chocolate cake

The one cake that your cat should not have under any circumstances is chocolate cake. This is due to the cake’s main ingredient – chocolate.

Caffeine is present in chocolate in modest amounts but theobromine, a similar substance, is more prevalent. These chemicals make chocolate a delicious treat for humans but they’re actually very harmful to cats.

Theobromine causes an elevated heart rate, as well as vomiting and diarrhea, which leads to rapid fluid loss, which is very dangerous. Caffeine, just like theobromine, raises a cat’s blood pressure and this can be very dangerous.

Caffeine and theobromine are typically found in higher concentrations in chocolate that contains more cocoa, making dark chocolate more dangerous than any other kind of chocolate.

Even in tiny quantities, any kind of chocolate is bad for cats (and dogs!). If your cat eats too much chocolate, they can experience chocolate poisoning.

Signs your cat is suffering from chocolate poisoning include:

• Diarrhea

• Vomiting

• Fast breathing

• Fever

• Lethargy

• Abnormal blood pressure

• Seizures

These symptoms are all very dangerous. To avoid chocolate poisoning, it’s best not to give your cat any chocolate, including chocolate cake.

Suggested Read: Can Cats Eat Honey? Health Benefits And Side-Effects

Okay, What About Cheesecake?

Cheesecake is not a healthy option either but it does not contain the toxic ingredients that chocolate cake does.

However, cheesecake does contain dairy, which is something cats should not consume.

After the kitten stage, adult cats often develop lactose intolerance due to decreased lactase production (lactase is the enzyme that is necessary for digesting milk).

While it isn’t toxic to cats, the cream cheese found in cheesecake will probably give them indigestion as they cannot tolerate the lactose it contains.

Your cat will probably feel uncomfortable (at the very least!) after eating cheesecake so it’s advisable to avoid giving your cat cheesecake.

Cats Are “Sweet Blind”

cat sniffing a cake

I’m sure all of you have a person that you would happily share your delicious cake with, just so they can taste it and enjoy it too. The same goes for your cat – you just want to give a bite to your cat, so they can enjoy it the same way you do.

Here’s the thing – cats do not perceive the taste of cake the same way as humans do.

In fact, cats cannot taste sweet things at all, as is explained in this 2006 journal article published in the The Journal of Nutrition.

Why does this matter? Well, if you know cake is not healthy for cats, and that cats can’t even enjoy the taste of cake, then why would you give them any?

Cake offers them absolutely no health benefits, and no short-time taste pleasure. This is why many cat owners make the sensible choice to simply avoid giving their cats sweets all together, including cake!

Why Can’t Cats Taste Sweet?

Taste receptors are proteins which are found in the taste bud cells. They help the brain identify particular flavors.

Cats lack the receptors for sweet flavor, and therefore they cannot taste it at all. On the other hand, cats can taste salty, sour and bitter flavors.

It is believed that a cat’s taste buds have evolved to only recognise the food that cats actually need for their body to function. As cats do not need sweet food in their diet, they don’t need the taste buds for sensing sweet flavors.

Although this is a theory that remains to be proven, it is a logical explanation for why cats don’t have receptors for sweetness in their taste buds.

What Can Happen If I Give My Cat Cake Often?

cat near a cake

Some cat owners might be not as strict and choose to allow their cats to eat cake whenever they are having some. While they may think they’re making their cat happy, that is not necessarily true.

Your cat’s health should be a priority, so saying No to their pleading give-me-a-bite look should be a standard practice, even if it is tough!
Let’s explore what can happen if you do give your cat large amounts of sweet things such as cake.

The Biggest Risk – Obesity

Obesity is a disease that is completely preventable by simply providing your cat with the right diet and enough physical exercise.

An obese cat is a significantly overweight cat that weighs 20% more than they should weigh.

Of course, giving your cat a tiny bite of cake every once in a while will not cause a significant weight gain. However, giving your cat slices of cake, or letting it have cake very often can definitely lead to excessive weight gain.

Obesity should not be taken lightly, as it increases the chances of a cat developing several serious diseases. It also shortens the cat’s lifespan, as evidenced by a number of different researchers.

It has been noted that obese cats have a tendency to:

• Develop diabetes

• Develop heart disease

• Have high blood pressure

• Develop osteoarthritis

• Have bad joints

• Get urinary bladder stones

The health issues on this list should not be taken lightly; if you can prevent them from arising by simply keeping track of your cat’s diet, you should do it, as I’m sure you will.

Also Read: How Heavy Should My Cat Be: Weight Guide

Healthy & Cat-Friendly Cake Recipes You Can Try

funny cat eating a birthday cake

If human-friendly, sugar-filled cake is not the best option for your kitty, could a non-human, non sugar-filled cake be a possibility? Is there such a thing as cat-friendly cake?

The good news is that your cat can have cake made with ingredients that are healthy and delicious for them. This is a much better option than regular cakes that are not healthy and not delicious for your cat.

The “cake” I have in mind is made from ingredients that actually do have a good nutritional value, are high in protein, and low in fat, sugar, and carbs.

What do I have in mind? Well, you can make your cat a cake using the following ingredients:

🐾 Chicken

🐾 Salmon

🐾 Tuna

🐾 Mackerel

🐾 Sardines

🐾 Carrots

🐾 Eggs

🐾 Bananas

🐾 Melon

🐾 Canned cat food

🐾 Cat treats*

*When I say cat treats, I definitely do not mean marshmallows or a little bit of whipped cream. I meant you should give your cat their favorite treats you know are healthy!

What Should You Do With The Mentioned Food Items?

You can make your cat their own personalized cake that will contain all of their favorite food (that will most likely mean fish!)!

What you need to do is simply arrange the ingredients in the form of a small cupcake.

This can be very simple to do. For example, you can make your cat a tuna cake topped with one of their favorite small cat treats.

It might not sound very appetizing to you, but that’s what I call a true cat-friendly recipe, and your cat will enjoy them much more than your sweet cake.

There are also recipes online that involve a bit more preparation and actual baking. If you feel like getting creative in the kitchen,they will surely make your cat very happy!


cat eating a cupcake

Is Cake Good For Cats?

Cake is definitely not good for cats. It is filled with sugar, fat, dairy, artificial sweeteners, and other additives. On the other hand, a healthy cat’s diet should be composed of meat-derived proteins, as cats are obligate carnivores.

Your furry friend can have a small bite of cake, but only rarely (on very special occasions!). However, if you can avoid giving your cat cake all together, you should.

What Happens If A Cat Eats Cake?

It depends on the amount of cake eaten. Your cat will be perfectly fine if they had a bite or two. If they’ve eaten a lot of cake (for example, an entire slice), that can potentially lead to gastrointestinal discomfort, as well as vomiting, diarrhea, and lethargy. If the cat has eaten chocolate cake, this could be a more serious emergency as chocolate is very bad for cats.

Can Cats Eat Birthday Cakes?

A little bite of a vanilla cake or a carrot cake does no serious harm to your cat, but even one bite of chocolate cake (especially if it’s made with dark chocolate) can result in sudden severe health issues, and chocolate poisoning is a distinct possibility.

It is important to be very careful about the type of cake you give your cat (or the type of cake you leave on the table, if your cat is a sneaky food thief!).

Can Cats Eat Cake With Icing?

Icing has a lot of sugar, as well as a high fat content. That means it is definitely not healthy for a cat. Cakes with icing are not toxic for cats, but eating this type of food a lot, or having it frequently, can lead to excessive weight gain, and in extreme cases, to obesity.

What Would Happen If A Cat Ate A Whole Cake?

Technically, cats could not eat an entire regular-sized cake; they simply wouldn’t have room! Yet some cats can eat an entire slice of cake, and may even keep going back for more.

The consequences of ingesting a large amount of sugar is a cat vomiting, having diarrhea, elevated blood pressure, and lethargy.

This is why you need to keep an eye on your cat if you know they might try to serve themselves some cake from the party table!

Do Cats Like To Eat Cake?

Some cats do like cake. It’s likely that they enjoy the texture of the cake and not the flavor itself, as cats cannot taste sweet things (they lack the receptors for this favor!).

Some cats like it so much, they will go out of their way to trick their owners, just to get a small piece of cake or to sneak a nibble when nobody is watching!

What Is A Cat’s Favorite Cake Flavor?

Cakes made for humans will not have the best taste to cats, as they’re made with a lot of sugar and cats can’t taste sugar. On the other hand, cake ingredients such as tuna and cat treats make a great cat-friendly cake your kitty will probably enjoy much more than cakes designed for human consumption.

What Kind Of Cake Should Cats Not Eat?

Although it’s not recommended for a cat to eat any type of cake, some are better than others. The one cake your cat should never eat is chocolate cake, as chocolate is very dangerous for cats (and dogs).

Chocolate toxicity is more common if a cat eats cake with dark chocolate, but any kind of chocolate should be avoided at all times!

What Is The Best Type Of Cake For Cats?

The best type of cake for cats is a cake made from cat-friendly, healthy ingredients. You can make a cake made out of cat food – just shape it in the form of a cake and put a candle on it!

Final Thoughts

Although it might sound nice to give your cat a lovely piece of birthday cake as a treat, I’m sure it does not sound like such a good idea now.

Cake contains a lot of sugar and calories, which are bad for the health of your feline friend. Cats should avoid foods that have a lot of sugar, fat, dairy, and additives.

I highly doubt that giving your cat a small forkful of plain cake on her birthday will result in an urgent trip to the veterinarian, though.

Although cake is not toxic for cats, it is not healthy either! It should go without saying that your veterinarian will never recommend cake for your cat’s nutritional needs.

This being said, a bite of cake every once in a while will do your cat no harm.

Eating a lot of cake or doing so regularly, is definitely not good for your cat’s health. That can lead to gaining unnecessary weight, and potentially even obesity.

So there you have it – now you know all about whether can cats eat cake!

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