It’s tempting to give your cat a taste of your food when they’re staring at you and meowing for a bite. If you’re eating fast food and want to toss your cat a treat, you might wonder, “can cats eat french fries?” The answer is yes and no.
Fries aren’t harmful to cats to eat, but they aren’t healthy, either. It’s best to let your cat stick with their own food. Cats eat meat, so you might think they’d like to have some potatoes, too, but their digestive tract is more intricate than you might think.
Can Cats Eat French Fries?
Anyone who loves giving their cats human food as a treat has wanted to know, “can cats have french fries?” Having a general understanding of your cat’s diet helps answer this question. You might feed them a bowl of dry kibble every day without knowing what the food contains.
Cats need to eat diets high in protein and fats while staying low in carbohydrates. Potatoes have a high amount of carbohydrates. While potatoes also have vitamins and fiber, your cat needs more meat than potatoes.
French fries are often salted, which isn’t healthy for cats. They shouldn’t have more than 21 milligrams of sodium a day. To put it in perspective, a serving of McDonald’s French fries has over 130 milligrams of salt. Even if your cat wouldn’t eat a whole serving themselves, it’s still a lot of salt to consume as a treat.
Many french fry dips have high acid contents, so letting your cat try a fry dipped in ketchup is a bad idea. It’ll irritate their digestive tract and might even make them sick. Ketchup contains onion powder, which is deadly for cats.
French fries are high in calories, so they aren’t ideal for cats who are already overweight. Even if your cat typically eats a balanced diet and maintains a healthy weight, fries aren’t a great snack for them. You can make tasty cat treats for them instead.
It can feel challenging to resist your cat when they’re sniffing your food and wanting to try a taste, but it’s always better to be safe than sorry. Give them a treat of their own to ensure they don’t get sick from eating french fries.
What to Do if Your Cat Ate Fries
If your cat ate cooked french fries, you don’t need to worry. The fries won’t harm them, but it’s not a healthy food choice for cats. Make sure you don’t let your cat eat fries too often; this should be a rare treat.
Frozen french fries aren’t as harmful as raw potatoes. Most manufacturers pre-cook their fries and then freeze them. When you cook them at home, you’re just warming them back up. Even though they’re cold, they’re not raw so that they won’t hurt your cat.
If you’re cooking your fries out of raw potatoes, you should keep your cat away. Potatoes have alkaloids that are toxic to your cat. You’ll find these poisons in the green parts of potatoes, but it’s still best to keep raw potatoes away from your pet.
Keep an eye on your cat if you’re using raw potatoes in the kitchen or grow your own in the garden. If you spot them eating the green sprouts or skin on the potatoes, you need to immediately take them to the vet. Quick action can prevent devastating effects from hurting your cat.
The extreme temperature of the oil when you fry potatoes decrease the level of solanine they contain. Solanine is a compound found in nightshades that works as a natural pesticide, protecting the plants. Therefore, when animals eat it, it’s toxic to them.
If your cat eats other human foods or substances, you can check the Animal Poison Control Center app for more information.
Frequently Asked Questions
Ketchup does excellent with French fries, but it isn’t healthy for cats to eat. This dip is too acidic for cats’ sensitive stomachs. One ingredient of ketchup is onion powder, and onions are deadly to cats, so stay away from this sauce.
Cats need more meat in their diets than anything else. Some vegetables are okay for cats to eat, like:
2. Green beans
However, vegetables shouldn’t make up too much of a cat’s daily food intake.
If you want to feed your cat human food, it’s best to give them cooked meat, so they get plenty of protein. Raw meat will make them sick, so the general rule is that if you wouldn’t eat it, you shouldn’t give it to your pet.
Cats can eat fruits like bananas, berries, and melon as long as they’re cut into small pieces. Remove any seeds from the fruit before you serve it, and don’t give your cat too much since fruit contains sugar.
Many human foods are toxic for cats. You should never give your pet:
3. Dairy products
4. Raw eggs
While some fruits are okay for cats to eat, grapes and raisins cause kidney failure. Some vegetables that are toxic to cats include:
These foods make them sick, damage their intestines, and can even harm their blood cells. Besides not feeding your cat these foods in a pure form, make sure you’re not giving them any food that contains these ingredients.
Yes, cats can get food poisoning. Depending on how the food affects them, they might vomit or have diarrhea. These symptoms can last anywhere from a few days to a week or more. Instead of waiting it out, take your cat to the vet for treatment.