Mint ice cream is a popular flavor of ice cream, loved around the whole world, and is a combination of sugar, chocolate, mint leaves, cream, and milk. In this article, we will cover the concern “Can cats eat mint ice cream?”, what are the ingredients involved in it, how it affects your cat’s health, etc.
Can cats eat mint ice cream?
No, cats cannot eat mint ice cream, because the artificial flavors, sugar, dairy products, and chocolate components of mint ice cream are toxic to cats and they cannot be digested in the cat’s digestive tract. The combination of these ingredients makes mint ice cream a junk food for cats.
Cats are obligate carnivores and their daily diet intake mainly comprises animal-based proteins. The contents like sugar and dairy products are not digestible for cats. Some cats also have mint toxicity, attributed to the characteristic smell and taste of mint.
What are the ingredients of mint ice cream?
The main ingredients of mint ice cream are listed below:
Mint is generally considered toxic for cats and can be detrimental if ingested in larger quantities. These leaves contain specific essential oils in them which can cause upset stomach, painful cramps, loss of appetite, diarrhea, and vomiting in cats.
Sugar is the main component of mint ice cream and isn’t poisonous for cats. But if consumed in large amounts, xylitol content in sugar can inflict serious damage to a cat’s health, causing deleterious effects like hypoglycemia, acute hepatic failure, etc.
Milk and milk products have been an important part of ice cream since the 16th century, but these dairy products are harmful to cats because of the absence of lactose digestion enzymes in cats. Therefore, cats are lactose intolerant and can’t digest dairy products.
Most ice creams around the world are incomplete without additives like artificial flavors. These flavors are developed for the human diet but they are detrimental to a cat’s health.
What are the possible side effects if your cat eats mint ice cream?
The possible side effects in cats associated with eating mint ice cream are as follows:
- The most common side effect associated with the consumption of mint ice cream is diarrhea or loose stool for several days. If this condition is prolonged, it can even lead to dehydration.
- Mint ice cream can also cause vomiting and upset stomach in some cats which can lead to severe stomach discomfort, bloating, fever and seizures.
- Mint contains a compound called pulegone, which is toxic to cats in the large amount. Pulegone toxicity can lead to vomiting, diarrhea, and difficult walking and sometimes can cause liver damage.
- The high sugar content of mint ice cream can cause obesity and weight gain in cats which, in turn, causes tooth decay and diabetes-like metabolic complications.
- Lactose in milk products, added to mint ice cream, is always a health hazard for cats and causes toxicity in them.
- Xylitol (an artificial sweetener) part of mint ice cream can cause low blood sugar levels and liver damage in cats.
How to make your own cat-safe mint ice cream?
The answer is maybe you can make your own cat-safe mint ice cream at home. Since a small amount of mint ice cream won’t be harmful to your cat, there are certain things to be kept in mind while making ice cream for your feline friend.
- First, mint ice cream should contain the least possible milk content in it because cats are lactose intolerant.
- There shouldn’t be any artificial flavors added to mint ice cream due to their associated toxicity.
- Mint flavor may be too strong for your cat’s sensitive taste buds, so use it in moderation while making ice cream.
- Last but not the least, use a small amount of sugar content in the making of mint ice cream.
What to do if your cat has mint poisoning?
Cats affected with mint poisoning can be treated with antiemetics to give the pet’s body time to recover. If your cat faces such a situation, consult your veterinarian immediately about the poisoning and your cat can be hospitalized overnight to rehydrate.
Treatment for mint poisoning starts with complete history and a proper physical exam. X-rays, ultrasounds, and MRIs can be used to diagnose the cause. After the determination of the cause, treatment suggested may include an antidote or an antiemetic.
Mint poisoning is usually not life-threatening, but it can be serious at times. Depending on the severity of the poisoning, medication for several days can be suggested. Vomiting in this condition can occur, but it’ll not harm your pet. Stick to the suggested medication and your cat will recover soon.
Today, we covered the article, “Can cats eat mint ice cream?”, what are the ingredients involved in it, how it affects your cat’s health, etc. From the above discussion, it’s concluded that you cannot feed mint ice cream to your cat on regular basis, but it can be given as a treat on occasions.
If your cat has eaten a chunk of mint ice cream from your cup, look at the signs of vomiting and diarrhea. If shown any, consult with your veterinarian about the situation and ask the relevant guidance.