Harper Jefcoat
Harper Jefcoat

Can Cats Eat Peanut Butter? Things You Need To Know

Read Time

12 min read

Can cats eat peanut butter

On This Page

  • Should Cats Eat Peanut Butter?
  • Risks Involved With Feeding Cats Peanut Butter
  • Can I Feed My Cat Peanut Butter Safely?
  • Other Foods That Cats Can't Eat
  • What Foods Cats Can Eat?
  • Keeping Your Cat Away From Poisonous Food

Unfortunately, you cannot feed your kitty with a jar of peanut butter!

There are some foods that you should avoid feeding your cat. Peanut butter is one of them, as it can cause serious digestive problems for your feline.

As a cat owner, you should know that your cat can’t have peanut butter because of its creamy and thick consistency. It can stick to your cat’s throat and make them choke.

Dogs are enthusiastic peanut butter fans which is why many pet owners think that cats might also like it.

Nutritionally, peanut butter is a mixture of salt, fat, protein, carbohydrates, and added sugar for taste. Its distinctive nutty aroma seems to tickle the fancy dogs, but cats usually exhibit boredom when presented with it. Some cats do not like the smell of peanut butter, others may like the aroma, or some might not like the taste. There can be other reasons as well, but the fact is CATS DO NOT LIKE PEANUT BUTTER!

Should Cats Eat Peanut Butter?

The bottom line: nutrients over fancy treats. Peanut butter is often used in tasty treats for dogs, but it can be dangerous for your cats. If your cats do not take medicine easily and you think that peanut butter coating might help, you can use it a little bit. However, otherwise, you should not provide peanut butter to your cat.

Peanut butter can be a great addition to treats for cats, but it does not contain enough protein and nutrients necessary for your feline. It is not a part of a balanced and complete diet for felines, so you should not go out of the way to provide them some. Unnecessary feeding of peanut butter can lead to an upset stomach or other health complications in felines. Cats are unable to tolerate peanuts, so their stomach might get upset.

Not even a little amount of peanut butter is safe for cats; it can stick to your cat’s mouth and throat and cause them to choke easily. Before you provide your cat with peanut butter, you should consult your vet. Your vet can guide you on how you can safely provide your cat with peanut butter if it is really necessary. Or he might guide you about other alternatives that best suit your feline furball.

Why Can’t Cats Eat Peanut Butter?

Some pet owners believe that peanut butter is safe for cats, but that is not the case. Cats cannot eat peanut butter, and they should not eat it as well. Peanut butter often contains a sweetener called xylitol that is toxic to cats. It can cause your feline to suffer from diarrhea, vomiting, lethargy, and other digestive problems.

The simpler the butter, the better. Due to the thick and sticky consistency of peanut butter, it can be a choking hazard for cats. Moreover, it can cause the loss of coordination, and signs can lead to liver failure and seizure. So, it should not be given occasionally to your feline but in moderation.

Furthermore, most of the cat’s calories should come from food, and peanut butter is not the nutritionist source. It does not provide your cat enough nutrition that they need. Since cats are carnivores, they rely on meat for nutrition, and peanut butter has no nutritional value for cats. Moreover, it has an excess of the following things:

  • High Sodium

    Most of the brands add a high amount of salt to give a unique taste to peanut butter which increases the amount of sodium. And as they say, excess of anything is bad.

  • High Fat

    Peanut butter has trans-fatty acids that make it shelf-stable. Too much trans-fatty acid can be harmful to your feline.

  • Calorie Dense

    Peanut butter is a calorie-dense product that can cause your indoor cat to gain weight. Excessive weight gain will lead to obesity which eventually contributes to several health problems.

Risks Involved With Feeding Cats Peanut Butter

Peanut butter is listed as safe for humans and dogs. But is it safe for cats, too?

Well, as discussed above, peanut butter is not good for cats. Here are some risks involved with feeding cats peanut butter.

  • Obesity Problems: The biggest issue involved with feeding cats peanut butter is calorie-dense content. Indoor and lazy cats are prone to gaining weight which leads to obesity. However, it is considered safe for healthy cats.
  • Gastrointestinal Upset: Every cat is unique, some might digest peanut butter, but most cat’s stomachs cannot handle it. Some cats may digest a particular food item, but it might cause problems for other cats. It can cause some gastrointestinal upset in most cats.
  • Allergic Reaction: Not all, but some cats can have peanut allergies. The serenity can vary from cat to cat. However, the symptoms range from itchy skin to life-threatening anaphylaxis.
  • Xylitol Poisoning: Many companies have replaced sugar with xylitol due to the high demand for products low in sugar. Xylitol is a chemical compound that is extremely toxic to animals. It can cause vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, and other health problems.

Peanut Butter Allergies

Yes, you have read it right; your furball can have an allergy to peanut butter. You may not know that your cat is allergic to peanut butter, and that could be life-threatening for your cat. In general, cats are known to have food allergies, but they vary from cat to cat. One cat is allergic to a particular food, while others do well on that same food.

Some cats are born with allergies, and others might develop over time, or some may not develop any at all. The same goes with peanut butter allergies; some cats might be allergic to it while others may not. However, it is important to know what kind of allergies can be caused by peanut butter in cats. So that you can recognize the symptoms and act quickly in reserving the allergic reaction.

Common symptoms of peanut butter allergic reaction include:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Hair loss
  • Ear infection
  • Itchy skin
  • Skin irritation
  • Weight loss
  • Lack of appetite
  • Gastrointestinal upset
  • Stomach infection

If you notice any of these signs, rush immediately to your vet and seek their help. An allergic reaction can range from a mild infection to a severe medical emergency, so you should not take it lightly. Consult your vet immediately and provide your cat the best medical help.

Can I Feed My Cat Peanut Butter Safely?

Although, peanut butter is not recommended for cats. However, if you really want to feed your feline peanut butter, you need to make sure that you do it safely. Here are some general rules that you need to follow while giving your cat peanut butter.

  • Talk to your vet

    Have a discussion with your vet before giving your cat any food, even if it is considered safe for cats. It is a good idea to talk to your vet and decide what is suitable for your cat. Then you can purchase the recommended cat foods from a pet supermarket.

  • Determine the right amount

    Do a little math and determine how much peanut butter is sufficient for your cat. The maximum amount of treats should only constitute 10% of your cat’s entire food intake. For example, if your cat’s caloric need is 300 calories per day, only 30 of those calories should come from treats. Peanut butter is caloric dense; even a small amount can increase a lot of calories.

    When you choose peanut butter, make sure to check the nutrition label on the jar to see the calorie count per serving. Double-check the ingredients list to ensure that no item is harmful to your cat. Cats vary in the amount of food they need on a regular basis to maintain a healthy weight. So, you should consult your vet about developing a nutrition plan that is specific to your cat.

  • Monitor the food intake

    According to the Clinical Nutrition Service, even safe foods can have unexpected reactions. So you should watch your feline whenever she consumes new food. If your cat starts showing signs of illness after eating peanut butter, stop feeding them immediately.

Peanut Butter Alternatives

Luckily, there are countless peanut butter alternatives that are not just healthy options but provide your cat sufficient nutrition. People who would like to experiment with various kinds of treats should go for vegetables instead of nuts. Vegetables contain some specific good nutrients that help you make a balanced diet for your cat.

The list of veggies given below is the best peanut butter alternative.

  • Celery: A crunchy food packed with flavonoids, beta carotene, vitamin C, and 12 other types of antioxidant nutrients.
  • Zucchini: It contains a variety of minerals, vitamins, and several other important nutrients.
  • Green Bell Peppers: Peppers are an excellent source of potassium, vitamin C vitamin, and vitamin B6.
  • Pumpkin: Pumpkin provides a wide range of health benefits to your cat. It is full of vitamins and minerals and helps ease constipation.
  • Peas: It is a vitamin-filled addition to your cat’s meal. Your feline would love these small spherical seeds.

No doubt, veggies provide enough nutrition but do not forget that cats are carnivores. They do need meat to fulfill the protein requirement and prefer meat over veggies. So, do not replace full meals with vegetables as they will miss out on vital nutrients.

Other Foods That Cats Can't Eat

Unlike dogs, cats are picky eaters. They have their preferences and like to eat their favorite foods. Cats do not like certain foods, and some may be toxic for them. Here are the ten foods that cats can’t eat.

  1. Chocolate

    Chocolate is one of human’s most favorite delicacies. But cats usually have trouble eating chocolate. It can be toxic to your furball and cause breathing problems, heart failure, diarrhea, low blood pressure, and vomiting.

  2. Caffeinated Drinks

    Beverages that contain caffeine like coffee, energy drinks, and tea are dangerous for cats. Caffeinated drinks can cause agitation, muscle spasms, restlessness, and rapid breathing.

  3. Bones

    Bones are not toxic for cats, and they love to eat bones, but they are dangerous for your cats. When your cat crunches the bone, the splinter or break can damage your feline's throat, and your cat will choke easily. It can also cause laceration to your furballs digestive system.

  4. Raw Eggs

    Eating raw eggs can cause several health issues for your feline as they are a great source of salmonella and E. coli. Moreover, the white part of the eggs contains avidin (a type of protein). It decreases your cat’s ability to absorb vitamins from food.

  5. Dairy

    Not all, but some cats cannot digest dairy products. Cats do not have the necessary enzymes that help in digesting the lactose in dairy products. This leads to stomach issues and causes your cats to suffer from diarrhea.

  6. Fat Trimmings

    It is observed that people love to feed their cats with their leftovers. The fat left on your plate might seem delicious to you. But, it can cause your cat to suffer from diarrhea, vomiting, and pancreatitis.

  7. Grapes and Currant

    Just like currants and grapes cause kidney failure in dogs, they can cause the same problem in cats. Vets are not sure, but they recommend not to feed your cat grapes or current to avoid taking the risk.

  8. Raw Dough

    The yeast present in the raw dough produces a large amount of alcohol and carbon dioxide. It can put your can at a serious health risk and cause serious health problems. Moreover, the yeast causes the dough to expand, so it will expand in your cat’s stomach, causing the obstruction.

  9. Garlic and Onion

    Garlic and onion contain thiosulfate that causes some serious health problems in cats. It will cause the destruction of RBCs which leads to hemolytic anemia.

  10. Raw Fish

    Cats are carnivores, and they love to eat meat. But feeding them raw fish can cause serious health problems. Raw fish contains an enzyme that destroys vitamin B, which causes neurological problems like seizures. And, some harmful bacteria can make your cat suffer from food poisoning.

What Foods Cats Can Eat?

Unlike dogs, cats cannot eat everything, and usually, they do not gobble every bit of food they see. Cat owners are tempted to proffer their cats with special treats, but the fact is, not every meal is a superfood for cats. They cannot eat dog food or even human food. However, cats should be provided with high-quality cat food specifically prepared for them.

You need to make sure that your feline gets the best food that fulfills all of her nutritional requirements. You can purchase good nutritious cat foods from a pet supermarket. Cats need adequately cooked food and a properly balanced diet to meet their nutritional requirements. Here is a list of food that cats can eat.

  • Oatmeal

    Oatmeal is a gluten-free product, rich in vitamin B and a perfect source of fiber. It improves the metabolic rate in cats and healthy food for your felines.

  • White Rice

    Rice is another gluten-free product that helps in metabolism and perfect nutrition for cats. It adds precious nutritious value to your feline’s diet.

  • Broccoli

    Broccoli is a good source of vitamin C and contains plenty of carotenoids which helps in improving metabolism. It is a perfect cancer preventive agent and offers sufficient dietary fiber.

  • Spanish

    Spanish is not just good for humans, but it also provides high nutrition values to your cats. It is packed with dietary fiber, vitamins, folic acid, calcium, iron, and minerals. It is also a very good source of zinc and Niacin.

  • Melon

    Melon is a refreshing treat, and most cats enjoy eating it. It supports the immune system of your cats by providing sufficient nutrients. Moreover, it contains a high amount of cancer preventive agents.

  • Berries

    Berries are healthy food and completely safe for cats. These sweet, juicy, sour, and tart, brightly colored berries are loved by all cats. These are rich in antioxidants and the perfect food to provide your felines during summer.

  • Carrots

    Carrots are a good source of vitamin C, vitamin K, potassium, and magnesium. It provides rich dietary fiber to your felines. However, you should boil all the vegetables before providing your furball.

Keeping Your Cat Away From Poisonous Food

What your cat eats will have a great impact on your feline’s overall health. Therefore, ensure that your furball has no access to dangerous and poisonous foods. Make sure you give them a healthy and balanced diet. Below are some tips that you can follow to prevent your feline from eating unhealthy food.

  • Do not feed your cat your leftovers or remaining portions of your meal.
  • Make sure your cat does not have access to any food items.
  • Properly close all the cupboards and cover all the food storing places.
  • Train them to have meals only two or three times a day.
  • Try not to let them on the kitchen shelf when you can't keep an eye on their activities.
  • Make sure your kids do not share their food with cats while playing with them.

If you are a cat lover, you sure want to keep your cat safe and healthy. Follow these tips, and you can easily prevent your cat from eating dangerous food. Your cat is not just simply a pet; she can be your perfect companion. So make sure you take care of your feline friend as much as they take care of you.

Do you have an ESA letter? Or thinking of getting one?

Visit RealESALetter.com now and get your ESA letter within just 48 hours.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do Cats Like Peanut Butter?

FAQ Icon

It varies from cat to cat, but in general, most cats do not like peanut butter. When you provide them with peanut butter, you may observe that they do not enjoy it as much as they enjoy meat.

Can Peanut Butter Kill Cats?

FAQ Icon

Peanut butter is not toxic for cats; however, it can cause some health issues. It is not lethal, but it is not healthy either. Peanut butter does have its disadvantages and some harmful side effects.

Are Cats Attracted To Peanut Butter?

FAQ Icon

No, cats are not attracted to peanut butter. It is not something that cats can’t live without. They are carnivores and love to eat meat over anything else.

Can Cats Eat Peanuts?

FAQ Icon

Just like peanut butter, peanuts are not toxic for cats, but vets do not recommend them for cats. Even peanuts are high in protein; they are not a good option for your feline.

Can Cats Eat Other Nuts?

FAQ Icon

Peanuts are not toxic for cats, but there are some nuts that your cat should never eat.

  • Heavily salted nuts
  • Macadamia nuts
Harper Jefcoat

WRITTEN BY

Harper Jefcoat

Harper Jefcoat is a dedicated pet enthusiast and expert author at the RealESALetter.com. With a deep-seated passion for animals, Harper brings a wealth of knowledge and personal experience to his writings. Specializing in canine behavior and wellness, he aims to help pet owners understand and care for their furry friends better.

legally complaint

DO YOU NEED A LEGALLY COMPLIANT ESA LETTER IN HAND WITHIN 24 HOURS?

Apply Now

Share this Article