10 Most Toxic Foods For Cats

Denise Lessard
Authored by Denyse Lessard
Denyse is an in Chinese medicine, homeopathy, and naturopathy, and the formulator behind most of Zumalka's natural health products for pets.

what can't cats eat

You love your cat and he is part of your family. He gets the “royal treatment” whenever you can give it to him. However, you better watch your plate and not intend on treating him with any human food because many of these “people foods” can be dangerous for his health. Here is a list of the most common toxic and poisonous foods for cats that you should never give:

1. Onions and Garlic

Can cats eat onions or garlic?

Cats should not eat raw onions and garlic. But not only these! Cats better stay away from all forms of onions and garlic: cooked, dehydrated and powdered. Why is that? Garlic and onions contain sulfoxides and disulphides which can poison your cat by breaking down his red blood cells, which can lead to anemia, lethargy, weight loss and gastrointestinal problems.


2. Raw Eggs

Can cats eat raw eggs?

Feeding your cat raw eggs is not a good idea. For the same reasons we humans don’t eat raw eggs, your cat shouldn’t eat them as well. Eating raw eggs can lead to salmonella. The symptoms of salmonella poisoning include diarrhea, vomiting and lethargy. But that’s not the only reason why you shouldn’t feed your cat raw eggs. Uncooked eggs contain an enzyme called avidin. This enzyme can decrease the absorption of a B vitamin called biotin. This can cause some hair coat and skin problems to your cat.



3. Alcohol

Can cats drink alcohol?

Giving your cat alcoholic beverages can be extremely dangerous. It can cause intoxication, coma and death. A small amount of alcohol can damage your cat’s liver and brain. For example, if your five pound cat ingests a small quantity of whisky as little as two teaspoons, it can cause coma. More than that, it can lead to death. Alcohol is very toxic for cats because it is absorbed very quickly by the body. So it’s important that you don’t hesitate to contact a veterinarian if you suspect your cat has been poisoned by alcohol.


4. Yeast Dough

Can cats eat yeast dough?

Cats can't eat yeast dough and here is why: if you’ve ever made your own bread or pizza dough, you know that the dough needs to rise. If your cat eats the dough, it will rise in his stomach. This is really not a good thing. It will expand in his stomach which will cause him pain, stretch his stomach and could even result in the rupture of the stomach and intestines. Not only will the dough stretch in your cat’s stomach, but when it is fermenting, the yeast releases alcohol. Like you read in the previous point, alcohol is also very dangerous for cats. It is very important to call your vet as soon as possible when you see your cat has ingested yeast dough.


5. Raw Fish

Can cats eat raw fish?

Many cats love fish, but it is unsafe to feed your cat raw fish. It can cause gastrointestinal upset in cats or even poisoning because of the bacteria that raw fish carries. It can also destroy a vitamin that’s essential to cats: thiamine. When this vitamin is missing, it can cause neurological problems in your cat. It can also lead to loss of appetite, seizures and death.


6. Green Tomatoes or Potatoes

Can cats eat green tomatoes of potatoes?

Green tomatoes and potatoes contain poisonous alkaloid called Glycoalkaloid Solanine. It is very toxic and it can lead to lower gastrointestinal problems. Some pet foods contain tomatoes, but they are in very small quantity and are ripe, so they don’t represent a problem.


7. Chocolate

Can cats eat chocolate?

Cats should never eat chocolate. This is a more common people’s food you maybe know shouldn’t be given to pets. But why can’t you give this sweet food to your cat ? There is a toxic substance in chocolate called theobromine in chocolate. Chocolate toxicity can lead to tremors, irregular heart rhythm, seizures and death. All types of chocolate are dangerous for your cat. Even white chocolate. But the worst type is baking chocolate. After that, dark chocolate. Then milk chocolate, and the less dangerous one is white chocolate.


8. Milk Products

Can cats drink milk?

Surprisingly cats can't drink milk. Cats and a saucer of milk go hand in hand, right? Not exactly. For kittens, it can be ok to give them milk, but for adult cats, it’s not a good idea. Adult cats are lactose intolerant. They have a difficult time processing dairy products since they don’t have a sufficient amount of the lactase enzyme which breaks down the lactose in milk. This can result in an upset stomach and diarrhea. If you really want to give milk to your cat, you can buy at your local pet store lactose-free milk. This way, your kitty can have his milk without the downsides.


9. Caffeine

Can cats drink coffee or tea?

Caffeine found in coffee, tea, chocolate, colas and even cold medicines can be very dangerous for your feline friend. Cats should never drink coffee or tea. A small dose of caffeine can cause restlessness, rapid breathing, tremors and heart palpitations. A large amount of caffeine can be fatal and lead to death.


10. Xylitol

Can cats eat gum?

Gums contain Xylitol that can be found in many other products: candy, toothpaste, diet foods and baked foods. If your cat ingests xylitol, it can lead to liver failure. Your cat can't eat gum our other product containing Xylitol. It will increase your cat’s insulin levels which will lower his sugar levels. The first signs of xylitol intoxication are vomiting, loss of coordination and lethargy. The symptoms can increase to a seizure and eventually resulting liver failure.

These are only some “people foods” to watch out for. Make sure you inform yourself carefully before giving anything to your cat. Remember that nutritious cat foods have been made to really meet all of your cat’s nutritional needs. Feeding your cat something off your plate once in a while may not cause any harm, but it’s better to be safe than sorry.

If you’d like more info on how to detox your pet naturally, (it is highly recommended especially if your cat ate one of these toxic food), feel free to contact zumalka.com for more information. If you think your cat has been poisoned, don’t hesitate to contact your veterinarian or the ASPCA National Poison Control Center at 1-888-426-4435.

Are there any other human foods you can think of that may be toxic for your cat?



About the author

Denise Lessard
Denise Lessard


Denyse Lessard is deemed as the “mother” of Zumalka, which was established more than ten years ago to provide easily accessible natural products for pet wellness worldwide.

Besides being a trained alternative medicine therapist, Denyse also has expertise in homeopathy, naturopathy and iridology, reflexology, as well as Chinese medicine. She is a long-standing member of the Professional Union of Homeopaths of Quebec, as well as the Association of Naturopaths and Naturotherapists of Quebec.

Denyse’s philosophy as regards pet wellness is not just about only dealing with disease and illness when they get in the picture, but keeping animals in ideal health each and every day.

Find out more about Denyse when you click HERE.


  • HOMEOANIMAL April 26, 2021 at 10:18 am

    Hi Jan, Reishi is an excellent medicinal mushroom, so it can be excellent added to the food to protect the liver and also has great anti-tumor properties!!

  • jan April 26, 2021 at 10:14 am

    How about powdered Reiki in broth?

  • Denise March 15, 2021 at 2:20 pm

    My 3 month old kitten eats potato chips, and loves to nibble on my plate. I am Sicilian and cook everything with olive oil, garlic, onion and scallion and still she loves my food. She is 3 lbs and so very healthy. No diarrhea and no problems. I think that in small amounts it’s okay.

  • HOMEOANIMAL July 13, 2020 at 1:16 pm

    Hi Theresa,

    Thank you for your comment and we are very sorry to hear about your cat’s food allergy!! We are sure we can help with that!!

    We have sent you a private email to help you and your cat more!


  • Theresa Sadule July 13, 2020 at 1:16 pm

    All cat food gives my cat an extreme running nose

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Seeking a Natural Solution for Your Pet's Health?

We are here to listen and guide you. We're dedicated to supporting your pet's well-being naturally. Contact us to explore how we can help together!