Is it safe to give my cat ginger and in what form?

Certain herbs, such as pennyroyal, evening primrose, borage, eucalyptus and comfrey, are toxic to cats, but many herbs are beneficial for a lot of conditions. Herbs come in many forms–such as tinctures, capsules, ointments and teas–and can be obtained from a holistic veterinarian, some pet supply stores and natural health stores.

Ginger has been well researched and many of its traditional uses confirmed. It is well known as a remedy for travel sickness, nausea and indigestion. It is fine for cats. Cat owners are familiar with the occasion hairball, but sometimes, an upset stomach can be caused by a virus, discomfort from surgery or motion sickness.

As always, the caveat is to thoroughly discuss giving ginger to your cat with your veterinarian. Ginger needs to be administered according to weight and also keep in mind that just because something is natural doesn’t mean there’s no potential for a harmful interaction. Discontinue use at the first sign of allergy.

Some sprinkle a few drops of ginger root extract in the food or offer mild ginger tea. It has properties that settle both human and feline stomachs, but be sure it’s cool and only mildly brewed.

Sometimes you can shred a tiny bit of ginger root to place in food. Many cats love the taste, but some don’t. You always need to be careful, because ginger root can be very spicy and irritating to the intestine and the last thing you want to do is make matters worse!

NOTE: If your cat is lethargic, lacks interest in food or has a painful or sensitive belly, a trip to the vet is warranted. While occasional indigestion is sometimes nothing more than that, a chronic upset stomach should be checked out in case it’s a symptom of something more severe.

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