Cats can eat sour cream since it’s not toxic to them, however, it’s not an ideal treat to feed them.
Cats are carnivores and eat high protein, medium fat, and low carb diets. Aside from a little bit of protein, sour cream provides no nutritional value to your cat and can be harmful to their health if it’s given to them often enough.
Before feeding your cat sour cream, even as a treat, it’s best to consult your veterinarian. Your cat’s health isn’t in danger if they sneak a lick or two off your plate, but it’s generally not a good idea to feed it to your cat regularly. There are much better cat treat options on the market.
The following are reasons why you shouldn’t feed your cat sour cream as a treat.
SOUR CREAM CONTAINS LACTOSE
Most adult cats are lactose intolerant. When cats are kittens, they produce lactase, which helps them digest their mom’s milk. As they are weened of their mother’s milk, their bodies slow down the production of lactase, which can eventually lead to an adult cat being lactose intolerant.
Sour cream is obviously made from milk and cream, so your cat may have a hard time digesting it. They may experience some indigestion, which can be as mild as an upset stomach, or could lead to vomiting and/or diarrhea. They may only have mild symptoms that go unnoticed by you, but are still uncomfortable for your cat.
SOUR CREAM IS HIGH IN FAT
When cats are fed little bits of human food here and there, they tend to be the higher-fat foods cats beg for. Sour cream is also higher in fat. Too many high-fat foods can lead to feline obesity, which can cause several health issues.
IT MAY HAVE ADDITIVES
Sour cream may be mixed with other ingredients, some of which can be toxic to your cat. For example, if you’ve made sour cream and onion dip, it will likely contain onion powder, dried onions, or even fresh onions. It may even contain garlic in some form. Onions and garlic are alliums, which are toxic to cats.
If you’ve gotten into the habit of feeding your cat sour cream, they may even go for your baked potato, which may also be topped with bacon bits, and chives. Again, this can be a poisonous food for your cat, due to the chives, which are also an allium. Bacon isn’t toxic for your cat to eat, but it’s also not an ideal treat (read more about that here).
YOUR CAT MAY FORM BAD HABITS
One other reason you may consider not feeding your cat sour cream, even as a treat, is that it can form bad habits.
Once you begin feeding your cat human food, they may come to expect it and be at your feet every time you walk into the kitchen. Worse yet, they may jump up on the table at dinner time.
They may even decide to skip their nutritional kitty food in favor of human food that lacks nutritional value for them.
It’s a hard habit to break once it starts and if you give in each time your cat begs for a bite off your plate, it can snowball into larger health issues.
There are many foods that may seem like they’re harmless, but that can actually be toxic to your cat. It’s better to be safe than sorry and try to stick to more natural foods your cat would eat in the wild.
I hope this article answers the question “can cats eat sour cream?” 🙂