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Can Cats Have Beans? (Facts, & FAQ)

David Fields
Last Updated on
by David Fields

Cats like to eat what we eat, but can they eat everything we eat? Are beans bad for cats? The answer is no, but they shouldn’t have too many.

While it’s okay for cats to eat beans occasionally, their bodies were not meant to digest legumes often, and it could cause pain eventually.

Can Cats Eat Beans?

Cat eat beans
A bowl of Beans

Beans are non-toxic for cats. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean cats should eat them. While they hold all the same nutrients (after all, the bean itself doesn’t change), beans are simply much less helpful for cats than they are for people.

A cat’s digestive system is much different than ours. Proportionally, it is much shorter than a human’s because it is made to only process meat. Meat of any kind is one of the most accessible foods to digest because of the high levels of proteins and low carbohydrates.

Cats don’t need the balanced diets humans do because their bodies provide them with the vitamins, nutrients, and fiber that we get from vegetables, carbohydrates, and legumes. While a cat might enjoy beans from time to time, they will not get much nutrition from having a bean as a snack.

Beans don’t provide nutrition or protein to a cat-like they do to a human. However, a cat can still enjoy a bean as an occasional snack, as long as it’s prepared correctly. If you don’t have a kitten, a senior cat, or a cat with special dietary needs, you can experiment with your cat and see if they enjoy beans!

If you decide to try giving your cat a bean, make sure to cook the beans in water and nothing else. Seasonings are bad for cats and cause stomach problems. Once your beans are thoroughly cooked, you can give them to your cat. Watch for signs of pain or indigestion, and if none appear, you might have found your cat’s new occasional treat!

What Do I Do If My Cat Ate Too Much Beans?

If your cat got into the bean supply, don’t worry. Beans aren’t toxic, and your cat won’t get very sick. It might be a little uncomfortable for a day or two, depending on how many beans were eaten, but once it’s all out of the system, your kitty will be back to normal.

Beans might take a while to digest, but they shouldn’t cause lasting damage. However, if a cat regularly eats beans, it could cause long-term stress on the pancreas and digestive system. See a veterinarian if you have reason to think your cat has had a steady diet of unprocessed beans recently.

Of course, if your cat has special dietary needs, chronic illness, or is a kitten or a senior cat, beans could seriously disrupt their digestive system. Don’t hesitate to call a medical professional if your special cat has gotten into beans and messed up their diet. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.

Frequently Asked Questions

If you are still undecided, take a look at these questions and see if they help you. After all, it’s best to be well informed when it comes to the health and happiness of our precious pets!

Here are some of the frequently asked questions about cats and beans:

Can cats eat black beans?

Black beans are fine for cats to eat. As long as they are properly cooked with no extra seasonings and not fed to the cat too often, black beans can be a delicious snack for cats. As with all beans, you have to watch for signs of indigestion and stop giving your cat beans if they begin to look sick.

Will beans make my cats flatulent?

Beans make humans pass gas because they are difficult to digest. They are even worse for a cat who already struggles to digest anything other than meat. Any bean (and honestly, any vegetable) will make your cat more flatulent than before. Be warned if you still want to feed your cat beans.

If you have a cat who already has gas issues, it’s essential to know that you should just stay away from the beans! It’s not just for your nose. Your cat’s comfort is also at stake.

Remember that excessive gas is a sign of gastrointestinal distress. If you don’t want your cat feeling that, don’t feed them any beans!

Can cats have green beans?

Like black beans and other kinds of beans, green beans are acceptable for cats to have as long as they are adequately cooked. Because green beans are more similar to vegetables than other beans, they are stringier and harder to digest. Make sure you cook your green beans thoroughly before giving them to your cat.

Can cats have uncooked beans?

Cooked beans are the primary way that cats should eat beans. You shouldn’t feed raw beans to cats because they are much more difficult to digest and could cause pancreas and digestive issues later on in life.

When cooking beans for cats, make sure that you are not seasoning the beans at all. Even salt and pepper are dangerous. However, seasonings such as onion and garlic are incredibly toxic to cats and should be avoided. For this reason, don’t give cats leftover beans from family meals.

Can cats have canned beans?

While cats should have more processed beans than raw beans, canned beans are an exception to this. The chemicals used to preserve the beans in cans can mess with the cat’s stomach lining and cause pain and acid reflux. If you have no other choice, rinse off the extra fluid from the can before giving it to your cat.

Cats shouldn’t have canned food in general unless it’s canned cat food. Try to feed your cat what it should eat to keep it as healthy as possible. Again, a cat’s digestive system was made for a different type of food than a human. It’s vital to keep that in mind as you feed your furry friend.

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About David Fields
David Fields
David Fields is a long-time animal lover and has been blessed to share his life with many companions. A short list includes ragdoll cats, siberian husky and greyhound dogs, an African Grey parrot, many fish of all sorts, and a pandemonium of parakeet. He writes most of the articles on iPetCompanion and is regularly featured on other popular websites on the Internet.
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