Toxic Food for Cats

Commercial food for cats contains all the needed ingredients to keep your cat healthy. However, cats are curious and sometimes crave for some unusual foods, plants or table scraps. Don’t feed your cat table scraps, as this can lead to obesity and can deprive your cat of essential nutrients. In addition, there are some toxic foods for cats that you need to be aware of, and make sure you never feed them to your cat.


Chocolate contains theobromine, which is a toxic substance for cats and dogs. Ingested in high doses, chocolate can be fatal. The fatal amount depends on the type of chocolate. Typically, cooking chocolate is the most poisonous, while white chocolate is the least toxic for cats. Cocoa is equally poisonous.

Chocolate poisoning will cause vomiting, diarrhea, fever, seizures or coma.

Onions and Garlic

Onions and garlic contain N-propyl disulphide, which is poisonous for cats. Onions or garlic in low amounts will cause Heinz anemia in felines. The condition causes a reduced red blood cell count, which leads to weakness and lethargy.

Garlic or onions are toxic when ingested raw or cooked, so make sure you feed your cat onion and garlic free foods.

Grapes or Raisins

Grapes and raisins are toxic to felines. Grapes cannot be properly digested and can cause liver problems. Stay away from cookies that contain raisins.


Coffee or tea that contains caffeine is toxic to cats. Caffeine is a substance that will stimulate the nervous system of the cat and will cause adverse reactions such as trembling, vomiting, diarrhea or irritability.


Xylitol is sweetener that is present in chewing gum. This is highly toxic for a cat. 5 or 6 tablets of chewing gum with xylitol may induce coma.


Alcohol contains ethanol, which is toxic for cats. Ethanol is present in fermented dough, so keep your cat away when you're baking bread or cakes.

Potato Family Plants

The plants from the potato family contain a poisonous substance for cats: glycoalkanoid solamine. If the plants are raw, the cat will have difficulty digesting these, and may can get poisoning and liver failure. The stems and the leaves of these plants are highly dangerous for cats. However, if the plants are ripening or cooked, they can be ingested by your pet.

Avoid raw plants from the potato family including tomatoes, paprika, potatoes, chili peppers, eggplants or petunia. In case you grow these in your garden, restrict your cat’s access to them.

In case your cat has food intolerances, these foods will also create problems and even poisoning. The number of cats with lactose intolerance is on the rise.

In case your cat has ingested a toxic substance or food, you need to induce vomiting to prevent the absorption of the poison in the cat’s system. Administer some water containing a few drops of 3% hydroxide peroxide to induce vomiting. Take your cat to the vet, ideally within 12 hours after the ingestion of the toxic food. The vet will administer activated charcoal, which will absorb the toxic substances.