Can Cats Eat Eggs?
The quick answer: It’s OK for cats to eat eggs in moderation, but only when cooked.
Dogs may be known as food beggars and table scrap catchers, but cat owners know their precious felines are just as dedicated to getting a bite of whatever their humans are eating. One whiff of tuna salad or baked salmon and they’re at your side in an instant! While there are many human foods that are completely off limits to cats — including chocolate, grapes, and onions — cooked eggs as an occasional treat are perfectly OK.
Cats Can Eat Eggs, but Follow These Rules
Not only can cats eat eggs, but they’re considered an excellent (and yummy) source of protein that’s easy for them to digest. As with most foods, though, there are some guidelines you should follow when feeding your cats eggs in order to keep their bellies happy and hearts healthy.
- The eggs should always be cooked. Raw eggs can potentially carry salmonella and E. Coli, which affects cats the same way it affects humans by causing an upset stomach, vomiting, diarrhea, and dehydration. Well-cooked scrambled eggs are the best and easiest form to feed your cat. You can also try hard boiled eggs and well-cooked poached eggs.
- Don’t bother with seasoning the eggs. Your cat isn’t Gordon Ramsey, so don’t worry about preparing a fancy egg dish. Plain, unseasoned eggs will delight them!
- Eggs are a supplemental treat, not a replacement. Regular cat food is prepared in a way that ensures your feline is getting all the nutrients they need in order to remain heart-healthy and strong. Eggs should be considered a special treat, not a replacement to their regular food. A diet of all eggs would lead to deficiencies.
- Small amounts are best. Moderation is key when it comes to giving your cat any sort of special treat, including eggs. A good rule of thumb is to feed your cat one-half of an egg once per week. Too much more could lead to weight gain.
What to Do if Your Cat Accidentally Eats Raw Eggs
One second you’re making breakfast and the next thing you know Scruffy is lapping up a bit of spilled, raw egg. Don’t panic! If your cat has eaten a small amount of raw egg they are likely going to be fine, but you still want to keep an eye on them for the next 24 to 48 hours.
If your cat begins exhibiting signs of salmonella or E. Coli poisoning — which include vomiting, diarrhea, extreme lethargy, dehydration — then call your veterinarian and/or the Pet Poison Helpline (855-764-7661) immediately. They’ll guide you through what to do next.
Though salmonella or E. Coli poisoning can be dangerous for cats, they’ll generally be OK when treated swiftly. In severe cases, treatment usually consists of fluid therapy to help with dehydration. Your vet may also prescribe a tiny amount of anti-diarrhea medicine and/or anti-nausea medicine to help them feel better.
The bottom line: Cooked, unseasoned eggs given in moderation as a supplemental treat are perfectly OK for cats! In fact, they’re a yummy, nutritional treat!
Want to learn more about keeping your sweet feline as healthy as possible? Check out these articles that discuss everything from cat scratching and spraying to caring for a cat after they’ve had surgery.