It can sometimes seem as though the Internet was created solely for the purpose of sharing cat videos. From cute kitties snoozing, to fluffy felines leaping through the air, we can't get enough of cat memes and viral videos, and up until now it's all been a bit of harmless fun. However, the latest Internet trend of giving your cat "brain freeze" is raising concern among animal experts and kitty lovers.
If you're a fan of cold drinks, slushies, or ice creams, there's a good chance you're familiar with the concept of "brain freeze", that feeling of utter helplessness as the chill takes over your senses. Believed to be caused by the effect of cold on the palate, and arteries at the back of the throat that feed the brain, "brain freeze" isn't thought to be harmful to humans. However, the latest videos hitting the web, which include pet parents feeding their kitties ice cream in order to induce "brain freeze" have raised some questions about the health risks and its effect on cats.
While little is known about the effects, some experts have attempted to explain the risks of deliberately causing "brain freeze." Speaking to the Washington Post, Amy Cousino, veterinarian and owner of the Cat's Meow Cat Clinic in Sebastian, ventured her opinion: "It’s pretty unhealthy for the cat. Cats have very similar nervous pathways [to humans]."
Other experts aren't so sure. Veterinarian and director of The Cat Practice in New York, Eric Doughtery, has queried the amount of research that has been done so far: "I can't imagine that [brain freeze] would be different in cats."
Whatever the truth, most vets agree that human food, including ice cream and yogurt can be bad for our pets. Just like people, some cats can suffer from lactose intolerance. If you want to learn more about the special dietary requirements of your cat, or simply want to know whether canned food or kibble is better for her, check out our articles on diet and nutrition.