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Can Cats Eat Peanuts? Vet Reviewed Health Benefits & Precautions

Written by: Christian Adams

Last Updated on June 12, 2024 by Catster Editorial Team

Can Cats Eat peanuts

Can Cats Eat Peanuts? Vet Reviewed Health Benefits & Precautions


Dr. Nia Perkins Photo


Dr. Nia Perkins

Vet, DVM

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

Learn more »

Peanuts are a delicious, high-protein snack that people enjoy all over the world. They are available in snack packs with various spices and flavorings, making them ideal for on-the-go snacking that’s healthier than potato chips or candy.

As pet owners, we often want to share snacks with our cats, but can cats eat peanuts? Are they healthy for them? Cats can safely eat peanuts, but there are some exceptions.

divider-catclaw1 Peanuts for Cats

Cats can eat plain, unsalted peanuts. There’s nothing wrong with the peanut if it’s shelled and has no additional spices or flavoring. As a snack, peanuts have plenty of health benefits for humans, but those don’t extend to cats. As strict carnivores, cats need animal protein, which doesn’t apply to peanuts.

Along with the possibility of an allergic reaction, cats can develop digestive issues from peanuts or become overweight if they eat them regularly. This can lead to health problems in the future. Obese cats are at an increased risk for conditions like diabetes mellitus, heart disease, osteoarthritis, urinary bladder stones, and cancer.

can cats eat peanut butter
Image Credit: Pixabay

Precautions of Feeding Peanuts to Cats

Peanuts shouldn’t be part of your cat’s diet, but if one falls on the floor and your cat snatches it up, it’s unlikely to cause any immediate problems. Keep in mind that this applies to unsalted, shelled, roasted peanuts. Unfortunately, many peanuts have additives and spices that could be toxic to cats.

Honey-roasted, spiced, chocolate, or yogurt-coated peanuts should be avoided. Sugar isn’t healthy for cats, and chocolate is toxic to them. Another concern is the shell. The peanut shell is hard for cats to digest and could cause an obstruction or damage to their digestive tract, so it’s essential to remove and discard the shells before giving peanuts to your cat.

Health Benefits of Peanuts to Cats

So now that you know peanuts aren’t toxic to cats, you may wonder if they have any health benefits. Despite their reputation as a healthy food for humans, peanuts have no health benefits for cats. As mentioned, cats are obligate carnivores and need animal protein for optimal health. Peanuts don’t provide this type of protein.

If you choose to give your cat a peanut on occasion as a treat, it’s okay. However, there’s no benefit to giving your cat a peanut. In fact, there are risks with the spices, additives, and fat content, making a peanut a less-than-ideal treat for your cat.

divider-catclaw1 Conclusion

Peanuts aren’t toxic for cats but come with risks if your cat eats them. Cats may be allergic to peanuts, and they can become overweight or experience other health problems if they eat them frequently. If possible, it’s best to choose more appropriate snacks for your cat, such as commercial cat treats.

Featured Image Credit: Pexels, Pixabay

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