What are some foods never to leave on a kitchen counter that may be accessible by a cat?

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Cats have a different metabolism so people, so some foods that you consume and digest easily can harm your cat.

To keep your cat safe, never leave the following items on a counter that she can access:

• Any toxic food, including chocolate, grapes, raisins, macadamia nuts, onions, garlic or mushrooms
• Moldy and spoiled food—contains bacteria and toxins
• Raw meat can contain salmonella
• Raw eggs: These have an enzyme called avidin, which interferes with the absorption of Biotin, a B Vitamin. Biotin is utilized for skin and coat
• Milk and dairy products. Contrary to popular myth about cats loving milk, the truth is most are lactose intolerant—so these items can result in diarrhea.
• Marijuana. Really? Need an explanation? It can depress the nervous system, cause heart rate changes and vomiting.
• Persimmons. Delicious, yes—but the seeds can cause intestinal obstructions in cats.
• Fish, poultry or other meat bones; can cause obstruction
• Canned, raw or cooked fish: Can result in thiamine deficiency which, in turn, results in appetite loss, seizures and even death.
• Canned tuna: Your cat might beg for it, but it can cause malnutrition, since it lacks the proper level of vitamins and minerals—so use a tiny amount as a treat, but don’t use it as an exclusive diet!
• Coffee, tea, other caffeine: Can be toxic to the cardio and nervous systems
• Rhubarb leaves. Especially now when gardens are in full bloom, rhubarb is seen in great quantity—but the leaves contain oxalates and that causes urinary problems.
• Salt can cause electrolyte imbalances
• Sharp objects, such as knives, scissors, glass.
• Plants. Some are toxic to cats, so be sure to check with your veterinarian, local ASPCA or gardening nursery.

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