Great Remedies For Sick Cats & Dogs—Canned Pumpkin or Sweet Potatoes

by Diane Burket                  

Canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie mix) or sweet potatoes are great home remedies for treating constipation, diarrhea, upset stomach, indigestion and vomiting in both cats and dogs.  It’s also good for hairballs—much more healthy than the oil-based hairball formulas.  I always keep a good stock of canned pumpkin or sweet potatoes in the pantry.  It has saved me lots of money on vet bills!

Besides being high in fiber, pumpkin and sweet pototes are a low calorie source of valuable vitamins and minerals.  The calcium and magnesium are very soothing on an upset stomach and a healthy source of Vitamin E, Magnesium, Phosphorus and Potassium.
Most dogs will eat pumpkin or sweet potatoes without hesitation.  Cats—well, it depends upon how finicky they are. Dogs and cats that eat only dry food can often become constipated.  The high water content and fiber in pumpkin & sweet potatoes should get things moving.  😉
Just mix the pumpkin or sweet potatoes with wet or dry food.  For a large dog, mix about 1/4 cup with dog food.  Small dogs—just a few tablespoons.  Cats— a teaspoon or 2 should do it. I buy organic pumpkin and sweet potatoes from or the baking section in your local grocery store.
Warning:  Do not give your pets pumpkin pie mix.  Some of the added spices can be toxic to dogs and cats.
Be aware that both diarrhea and constipation that continues for more than 24 hours can be very dangerous.  If adding pumpkin to the cat or dog food does not solve the problem, take your pet to the veterinarian ASAP.

11 thoughts on “Great Remedies For Sick Cats & Dogs—Canned Pumpkin or Sweet Potatoes

  • Great information – I've never heard about it. Can the pumpkin or the sweet potato be freshly cooked instead of the canned veggies? Does it help with… gas problems?

  • Andrea—Yes. You can use freshly cooked pumpkin or sweet potatoes. Most people, like me, go for the convenience of the canned food. However, you're such a fantastic cook—I'm sure Alma will be a happy camper to have your fresh cooked food! And yes, it can help with gas. Please let me know if it works for Alma. I've been on the receiving end of her gas—and it can clear a room!

  • Diane- I will try this. I only have butternut squash at home, but I put sweet potato on my tomorrow shopping list. Alma loves the Blue Basics dry food you suggested but it does not stop her farting. We just laugh and live with it.

  • Alma has been eating a cup of cooked sweet potato with every dinner for 4-5 days now. It is working! Thanks, Diane!

  • Andrea—-good news for everyone!

  • Just an update. I cook lamb with carrots and lots of sweet potato in a large pot and mix/puree the soup with Alma's regular dinner. Oh she cleans the bowl.

  • I have heard that canned pure pumpkin works wonders for older cats with tummy issues- I am wondering, is it a safe way to help a very fat cat (she is 23 pounds and 14 years old) to lose weight? I am just wondering if serving her a tiny breakfast daily with a bit of her Iams dry food might wean her off her wet food (and all those calories). She is an indoor cat,and her main hobby (after eating)is sleeping….

  • Please read the article I posted tonight about dry food. It is VERY bad for your cat. I would highly recommend feeding your cat wet food with a little pumpkin and some warm water—perhaps 2 – 3 times a day. If you need to transition off dry food—start by putting the food up on a desk or table where she has to jump up for it. The key is to make her work for her food (jumping) and adding enough water to it so she feels full. Sometimes, adding another cat to the mix will help. Does she have a cat tree, scratching post, toys, etc.? We have an older cat that was grossly obese. She's now a great weight from exercising, playing with other cats—and no more dry food! Occasionally—just to get rid of our leftover dry food, we give the cats 1 or 2 bits of kibble. They think it's a treat. Good luck. You're doing a great thing by slimming down your girl. She'll be much healthier and happier. Let me know how it goes, OK?

  • My cats, picky beasts that they are, refuse to eat most raw foods. Because of this, I am hyper-vigilant about ensuring they have adequate fluid intake/hydration, as cats have a poor natural thirst mechanism. I do this by feeding them high-quality canned food daily, in addition to high-quality kibble.

  • I'm so glad to hear you're giving your cats great food. Personally, I always give my cats wet food and mix in a little warm water. That way, they are assured of getting adequate water. I've tried using a fountain to encourage them to drink water….but they couldn't care less about it. Thanks for caring. Sounds like you're a very compassionate person. 😉

  • My cat (16 years) absolutely loves to drink water as do I. He is also in love with sweet potato and gobbles it up

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