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Can Cats Eat Oranges?

Updated: August 11, 2022 by Kristen Chapple

We enjoy them both during summer and in a cold winter day due to their high content of vitamins and their refreshing taste. Oranges provide us with a lot of vitamin C and a juice made from them is one of the most popular ones you can get. But that being said, can cats eat oranges? The acidity might be something to worry about so let us find out all about this subject together!

For a cat on its own it would be really difficult to eat an orange and they are generally uninterested in this fruit for anything else except maybe its color. If they would consume a bit of the orange what would probably happen is that your cat will start to vomit and get diarrhea. They might also lead to depression and sensitivity to light making it a really bad idea to try and give some to your pet.

Are There Any Benefits?

We eat citric fruits like orange, lemon, and grapefruit for their high levels of vitamin C that we need to boost our immunity but for cats this vitamin is produced in their body so they really do not need it. If there are cases when your cat has an illness and the vet recommends you some additional vitamin C they there are supplements for this. Aside from this there aren’t actually any real benefits to feeding your cat some orange so it’s better to stay away from the idea.

Problems With The Fruit

The reason they are dangerous is due to the essential oils they contain which require glucuronyl transferase to be metabolized properly. We have these in our body but that isn’t the case with cats so it will build up to toxic levels. Oranges also contain psoralens which will give your cat indigestion as well as depression.

The menthol that we can metabolize with ease is also impossible to assimilate for cats making it toxic. Unlike many other mammals, cats don’t have the ability to break down some ingredients and this means that you shouldn’t feed those to cats.

If your cat manages to ingest some of this fruit out of curiosity then the effects it will have on their digestive system should be enough to make them never touch the fruit again. The face they make when eating a citrus fruit is similar to the one we make when eating a slice of lemon but it’s not worth the pain and suffering of your pet to just have a few laughs on their behalf.

It is worth mentioning that the other citrus fruits have the same reasons for being bad for cats so you should keep your pet away from lemons, limes, grapefruits or tangerines as well.

Short Answer:

No, cats shouldn’t eat oranges because the essential oils in them are toxic for cats.

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