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The Role of Pumpkin in Your Cat’s Digestive Health

For a healthy cat of normal weight, simply adding a bit of pumpkin to one meal a day (not more than a tablespoon a day) can keep everything running smoothly.

Pumpkin is a miracle worker on a cat’s digestive system. Thanks to its high fiber content, canned pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling) is a great way to get your cat’s gastrointestinal system moving if it’s a bit backed up. On the other end of the spectrum, if your cat has diarrhea, pumpkin will firm up your cat’s stool—the dietary fiber is very good at absorbing excess water.

It also helps to clear out fur from the digestive tract. When the pumpkin passes through your cat’s gastrointestinal tract, it sweeps hair along with it, which reduces the incidence of hairballs. If that wasn’t enough, pumpkin can also be used as a tool for weight loss. If your cat is overweight, replace 25 percent of its regular food with the same amount of pumpkin; it will leave it feeling full, but with far fewer calories consumed.

Ways to Incorporate Pumpkin into Your Cat’s Diet:

Look for high-quality wet cat foods that contain pumpkin.
Mix plain canned pumpkin into your cat’s wet food.
Freeze small individual servings of pumpkin in the freezer and give them as treats.