Chocolate ice cream is a delicious treat, but it is not as healthy as many people think. It contains saturated fat, cholesterol, and calories. Because of its high caloric content, it should not be eaten on a regular basis.
It’s tempting to share your ice cream with your pet, especially when they are begging for it. But is chocolate Ice Cream safe for your cat?
Can Cats Eat Chocolate Ice Creams? No, cats should not eat Chocolate Ice Cream. Cats are carnivores. They love the taste of meat. Cats lack enough enzymes in their stomach to digest them. But many pet owners make the mistake of giving Chocolate Ice Cream to their furry friends.
- What Exactly Is Chocolate Ice Cream?
- Why Is Chocolate Ice Cream Not Good For The Cat?
- Do Cats Like Chocolate Ice Cream?
- How Much Chocolate Ice Cream Is Bad For Cats?
- Will A Few Licks Of Chocolate Ice Cream Kill My Cat?
- What If My Cat Eats Chocolate Ice Cream, What Happens?
- How Much Chocolate Ice Cream Will Hurt A Cat?
- Does The Age Of The Cat Matter In Relation To Chocolate Ice Cream Intake?
- What Do You Do If Your Cat Eats Chocolate Ice Cream?
- What Are The Alternatives To Chocolate Ice Cream For My Cat?
What Exactly Is Chocolate Ice Cream?
Chocolate Ice Cream is a dessert that is frozen and stirred to create a soft, creamy texture.
Its ingredients include:
- fresh cream
- natural flavors, and other ingredients.
Chocolate may be milk, white, or dark. With your cat’s health, the type matters more than the amount.
Dark chocolate contains the most amounts of cocoa solids. But it also contains less sugar than milk or white chocolates.
Why Is Chocolate Ice Cream Not Good For The Cat?
Theobromine In Chocolate Is Toxic To Cats
Cats, like most animals, are susceptible to theobromine poisoning. Theobromine is a chemical found in chocolate and some other foods.
Theobromine is a bitter alkaloid of the cacao plant and is also found in tea, cola, and other foods.
Cats are very sensitive to theobromine and can become sick or die after eating chocolate.
If your feline friend has ingested this alkaloid, watch for the following symptoms:
- increased heart
- increased respiratory rate
The amount of theobromine that your cat eats will determine how sick they become and how quickly you need to take them to a vet. The darker the chocolate your cat eats, the more toxic it will be for them.
Cats are more sensitive to the effects of theobromine than dogs. A genetic factor makes them unable to metabolize this chemical as dogs.
The darker the chocolate, the more dangerous it is to your feline friend. Darker chocolates have higher theobromine levels.
Sugar And Artificial Sweeteners In The Chocolate Ice Cream
Sugar is not something you want to feed your cat. It is a source of calories that should be used in moderation.
But what happens when your cat consumes too much sugar?
Their blood sugar levels will spike and then they will crash, resulting in them getting tired and grumpy.
That’s not all.
They may get mood swings, have difficulty sleeping, develop diabetes, and even go blind! They may also get hyperactive or unable to control their movements.
Milk In The Chocolate Ice Cream
Milk, a nutritious and natural drink for people, is also a tasty treat for pet cats.
Cats are attracted to dairy products, which they seek when they are sick or feeling under the weather. The same can’t be said about lactose intolerance.
Some cats can consume milk and experience no adverse health effects. But, most cats are lactose intolerant.
They don’t have enough digestive enzymes- lactase to break down lactose (the sugar present in dairy products). So it passes through their system undigested.
This can cause them to become bloated and gassy–two symptoms no one wants to see in their cat.
Caffeine Found In Chocolate Ice Cream
Cats have an enzyme in their liver called cytochrome P450 1A2, as do most species of mammals, that metabolizes drugs.
Cats are sensitive to the effects of caffeine because their CYP1A2 is not as active as that of humans or dogs (but still much better than rabbits).
Humans metabolize caffeine with a half-life of 3.5 to 5 hours, and it can take up to 12 hours for humans to eliminate all traces of it from their system.
Eggs Found In The Chocolate Ice Cream
A cat’s digestive tract does not digest proteins from eggs. Eggs are also a common allergen in cats, so you should avoid products containing eggs for them.
Stabilizers And Emulsifiers Used In Chocolate Ice Cream
There are many stabilizers and emulsifiers in chocolate ice cream. Stabilizers and emulsifiers bind the ingredients together.
For example, carrageenan, locust bean gum, and xanthan gum are emulsifiers. They are safe for human consumption but are not safe for cats.
Do Cats Like Chocolate Ice Cream?
Yes, but it’s more of a curiosity thing. Cats don’t have a sweet tooth – they can’t taste sweets.
However, they can smell the sugar and cocoa in the chocolate, which explains why they would want a bite.
It’s tempting to give your cat a treat once in a while. Like all animals, you need to treat them with caution when it comes to food treats.
Chocolate Ice Cream has no real nutritional value for cats anyway, so you can avoid it altogether.
How Much Chocolate Ice Cream Is Bad For Cats?
The type and amount of chocolate your cat has consumed will determine how bad the effect will be.
Theobromine, in small amounts, is harmless to cats. However, large amounts (more than 100mg per kg of body weight (0.1%)) can be fatal to the pet.
Cats are more sensitive to the effects of caffeine than humans. 50 mg/kg or even small amounts of caffeine may be harmful to them.
Will A Few Licks Of Chocolate Ice Cream Kill My Cat?
It’s dangerous for them to eat.
It’s important to keep chocolate Ice Cream out of reach of your cat. Chocolate can be toxic to them.
If you find your cat has eaten a lot of chocolate, call your vet immediately. They will tell you what to do.
What If My Cat Eats Chocolate Ice Cream, What Happens?
If your feline pal eats Chocolate Ice Cream, depending on the amounts taken, the following may happen:
- Hypersensitivity – sensitivity to touch or sound or other stimulation may appear
- Anxiety – Your pet may suffer from anxiety because of excess stimulation
- Vomiting – cat vomits because of nausea. Vomiting is a way for the cat to rid itself of anything that may be harmful to them.
- Diarrhea – cat suffers from diarrhea
- Hyperactivity – cat suffers from hyperactivity. Sensitivity to touch or sound or other stimulation may appear
- Irregular heart rate and rapid breathing
- Death- If your cat ingests large amounts of chocolate; it may lead to its unfortunate demise.
How Much Chocolate Ice Cream Will Hurt A Cat?
The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals says that small amounts of Chocolate Ice Cream may be OK for your cat to eat.
However, if your cat has eaten a sizeable amount of Chocolate Ice Cream, or has eaten it with different food, it’s best to contact your veterinarian.
Does The Age Of The Cat Matter In Relation To Chocolate Ice Cream Intake?
The age of a cat and intake of Chocolate Ice Cream taken are two important factors in determining the health risks.
If the cat is young than one year, then it will suffer from obesity and high blood pressure. Older cats also have a lower tolerance for lactose and may be affected more than the middle-aged.
What Do You Do If Your Cat Eats Chocolate Ice Cream?
Follow these steps for a safe recovery.
- Contact your vet immediately for help.
- Watch your cat closely for signs of illness, such as vomiting, diarrhea, or weakness.
- If you see signs of illness within 8-12 hours after ingestion, induce vomiting. Then contact your veterinarian immediately.
- Check your cat’s gums – if they have taken enough chocolate to cause toxicity, the gums may become pale or white/blue and the cat may vomit or have diarrhea.
- If the situation is severe, call the emergency line for quick help.
What Are The Alternatives To Chocolate Ice Cream For My Cat?
There are healthy and ‘perfect’ ways to treat your cat and keep them stimulated and active.
Rather than give your cat Chocolate Ice Cream for a treat, consider the following alternatives:
- Occasionally offer them cooked brown rice or beef in small portions. This will be a healthy treat than Chocolate Ice Cream. It will nourish and entertain their taste buds. You may also freeze the broth and feed it to your furry friend as a treat.
- Replace Chocolate Ice Cream with catnip in ice cubes! Catnip is a plant that cats like. The leaves and seeds of the catnip plant have a chemical similar to valium in them. It is safe and your furry friend will be thrilled for the treat.
- You can also get them high-quality snacks with no artificial colors or flavors, salt, soy, or corn from the pet stores/shops. When you are enjoying your Chocolate Ice Cream, your furry friend will be enjoying a healthy snack too.