If you have grown parsley in your garden, then you must be knowing some of the great benefits of this herb on our health. But have you also seen your cat trying to take a nibble of this herb from your garden? If so, you must be wondering that your cat has suddenly turned into a vegetarian or what. Well, the reality is, it is perfectly normal for felines sometimes to develop a liking for greens. Now comes the main question that the herb that your little kitty is munching is safe for it or not. Can cats eat parsley?
To be precise, the answer is Yes. If your cat has developed a taste for parsley, there is no need for you to fret. Parsley is safe for cats to eat if it is consumed in moderation.
Let’s dive deeper and look closer at all the necessary things that you need to know about your cat eating herbs like parsley.
Is It Safe For Cats To Eat Parsley?
Parsley is an aromatic herb that is usually used for culinary purposes. Most people like to garnish their favorite dishes like steak, fish, chicken, or rice with this green plant. Its intense aroma is what attracts cats the most. But is it safe for cats to eat this herb?
In simple words, Yes, parsley is completely safe for cats to consume. But, this doesn’t mean that you add this to every meal of your cat. Parsley is safe as well as beneficial for cats if eaten in moderation. Occasional consumption of it can offer various health benefits to cats.
Health Benefits Of Parsley
Parsley offers numerous health benefits to cats. Let’s take a look at them:
- The green herb has got infection-fighting and anti-fungal properties that benefit cats by maintaining cats’ urinary tract health.
- It is overflowing with several vitamins and minerals, which include
- Vitamin A,
- Vitamin B-complex,
- Vitamin C, and
- Vitamin K
along with the richness of
- Iron, and
- Potassium minerals.
It also consists of high levels of antioxidants as well as folic acid.
- Vitamin A assists in the improvement of vision as well as immunity of cats.
- Vitamin K helps in promoting the functioning of the cat’s liver and also prevents the formation of any blood clots.
- Vitamin C is known to improve the health of a cat’s joints. It is because vitamin C, which is also known as Ascorbic acid, is an efficient vitamin that helps in the maintenance and production of collagen in the body.
- In simple words, you can understand collagen as a connective tissue that helps produce cartilage. Cartilage is what makes the joints work smoothly. Vitamin C is an essential component that nurtures youthful collagen in cats.
All these health benefits that parsley offers make it a vital ingredient to supplement a cat’s health. However, there is no need for you to give supplements to your cat as long as it is perfectly fine and healthy. In most cases, premium cat food covers most of the vital nutrients that a cat needs for good health.
Note that there are multiple ways in which you can feed parsley to the cats. Letting your cat munch on some of the parsley leaves is not the only way. You can also sprinkle some of the parsley leaves on your cat’s food or even makes parsley puree or parsley water.
Is Parsley Toxic For Cats?
In general, parsley is not toxic for cats. But, it can be toxic if the cat eats it in large quantities. According to ASPCA (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals), parsley is highly toxic for cats, dogs, as well as horses if consumed in large quantities. The herb contains furanocoumarins, whose large consumption can result in photosensitization. Therefore, even if the herb offers a lot of benefits, you should avoid considering giving your cat parsley as a food supplement.
Articles relating to parsley on The Nest and various other sources suggest that this herb is safe for cats to eat. But, they also give a noting that it is the Cymopterus watsonii, also known as spring parsley, which is toxic to cats.
There are a number of studies that suggest that if a cat eats large quantities of parsley, it can suffer from seizures. Other than this, cats can also suffer from photosensitization effects, such as sunburn and dermatitis. Photosensitization is a condition in which the skin of a cat becomes too much sensitive to sunlight. In this, some of the molecules present in the cat’s skin get energized by light. In such a case, when the molecules come back to a less energized state, then there will be a release of energy resulting in some chemical reaction in the skin of the animal.
However, as we have discussed earlier, if you add a limited amount of parsley to your cat’s meal, then everything is going to be fine. Additionally, cats are carnivore animals, which means there is a higher chance that they will not be interested in consuming a large amount of greens. Stealing and eating a few nibbles from the garden is completely okay.
One of the best options is consulting a vet before adding any supplements to your cat’s diet to be on the safer side.
The vet will guide you on the right supplements to feed your cat so that you can avoid giving your kitty anything that can prove to be toxic when eaten in large quantities.
Whether you are giving your furry friend a natural supplement like parsley or a manufactured one, it is always wise to consult a vet first. This also applies to the drugs that your give to your cat. Always follow the prescribed instructions whenever you give your pet any supplement or medication.
Parsley Water For Cats
As we have mentioned earlier, one of the safe ways to feed parsley to cats is by giving them parsley water. It is just a simple mixture containing parsley and water. It is an easy mixture to prepare and offers tons of health benefits to cats.
One of the benefits that parsley water provides is that it works as a natural dewormer to eradicate parasitic worms, such as roundworms, tapeworms, and various others.
In addition to making your cat uncomfortable, parasitic work can negatively affect your cat’s health and make it extremely sick. Therefore, it is highly essential that you take the necessary steps as soon as you suspect that your cat is suffering due to these worms. Regular consumption of parsley leaves can prevent worms and provide relief to your cat.
Parsley water is a natural home remedy which means it will not be loaded with artificial chemicals, just like commercially sold dewormers. This makes parsley water a safer option to get rid of parasitic worms. That’s why this natural mixture is a popular choice amongst most cat owners.
Regularly feeding your cat parsley water in moderation can result in the complete eradication of parasitic worms.
In addition to preventing worms, parsley water also offers many other wonderful benefits. It works as a urinary tract ailment if your cat is suffering from cystitis. The water also works wonders to maintain the health of the cat’s kidney. It helps in preventing the development of any kidney stones or renal gravel.
Remember that feeding parsley water to your cat for a long duration can have some harmful effects. As we have discussed above, large quantities of parsley can adversely affect cats. So, maintain the quantity of parsley water to a moderate level only.
Your cat can face liver as well as kidney issues and anemia due to high levels of parsley. So, it is advisable only to give your cat two teaspoons of parsley water mixture three times a day.
Also, note that the best way to give parsley water to your cat is by giving a small amount of it for two weeks. After that, stop and wait for the next two weeks and then again start giving it for two weeks. Sticking to such a dosage will help you to avoid any type of complications in your cat.
Just like humans, cats also like some change in taste. That is why, even if parsley has a bitter taste, cats like to munch it every once in a while. Even after belonging to the carnivore family, cats like to eat some amount of greens. It’s mainly the strong aroma of parsley that attracts the cats. Parsley has a unique scent that cats love.
So, can cats eat parsley? Yes, they can. A small amount of parsley is not only safe but also offers many health benefits. Parsley is rich in several vitamins and minerals, which helps the cat to stay healthy. But, the consumption of it should be moderate. A high level of consumption can be toxic. Remember also to avoid giving your cat spring parsley as they are highly toxic for cats. The best way to give parsley to your cat is by making parsley water.
Many veterinaries even believe that cats instinctively eat parsley to get rid of parasitic worms. So, it is advisable that if you notice your cat munching parsley regularly, take it to a vet. It may be an indication that something is wrong with your cat. Also, you should always consult a vet before making any alterations to your cat’s daily diet.