“I do let my cats have turkey,”
said Ingrid Johnson, Atlanta-based veterinary technician,
cat behaviorist, and owner of
Fundamentally Feline. “I think that
it is a nice reward. I try to offer
it to them after the meal, after
the hubbub. Offering some of the
turkey meat in their safe room is
a really nice alternative to make
it a positive experience for them.
My husband chops it up into nice
shredded pieces — minus the
bones, of course.”
Not-so-good side dishes
Personally, the side dishes are my
favorite part of the Thanksgiving
meal, but I have to be careful not
to overindulge, as many of these
foods are high in carbohydrates,
which are main culprits in our battle with obesity.
Cats also need to go easy on
the carbohydrates, because they
lack sufficient enzymes to digest
carbs. What that means is that
overloading their system with
carbohydrates can cause obesity,
diabetes, and pancreatitis.
“I strongly endorse the move
away from carbohydrates for all
cats,” Dr. Norsworthy said, adding
that stuffing, cakes, and pies might
still appeal to some cats. I guess
cats struggle with being drawn to
some foods that aren’t the best
for them just as we do.
The stuffing, mashed potatoes,
gravies, and green bean casseroles
might also contain onions and
garlic — two things that both Dr.
Norsworthy and Ingrid said are
toxic for cats.
“Cats generally don’t like citrus,”
Ingrid said. “People put orange
in cranberry sauce, so that can
deter them. I don’t think (
cranberry sauce) would be harmful
in any way, but I don’t think they