Skip to Content

Can Cats Eat Fish Food?

Fish food takes the form of a tank of fish, fish food kept for feeding those tanks of fish, fresh and canned human-grade fish such as cod, sole, tilapia, tuna, plus many other brands of fish. All of these types of fish will not hurt your cat if they eat some on occasion.

Can Cats Eat Flaked Fish Food Meant for Aquarium Fish?

If your cat eats any other type of fish food listed above, these types of food will not hurt your cat if they eat it on occasion. It is best to make sure that your cat eats nothing but cat food. There are many incidents where cats have gotten into a fish aquarium to go fishing or have eaten a container of flaked fish food that you specifically feed your fish. This will not hurt your cat, and the worst it can possibly do is give your cat a temporary tummy ache. Some pet owners report no side effects after their cats eat the flaked fish food.

I have rescued cats for over thirty years, and we also had a 50-gallon fish aquarium for many years. None of our cats tried to break into the aquarium and attempted to go fishing. Sometimes they would find a small tin of flaked fish food and play with the can by rolling it across the floor, but they never got the can open to eat the fish food.

Our cats did enjoy sitting on a stool I placed in front of the aquarium so they could take turns watching the fish swim around the tank. They would sit for at least an hour watching the fish swim. The fish would swim up to the side of the aquarium and look at the cat. The cats were spellbound, which proved to be a favorite time for our cats. One of the cats’ favorite places to nap was on a blanket that we laid on the top of the fish tank. This was a cozy, warm place to lie and watch the fish simultaneously.

Can Cats Eat Cat, Fish Food Every Day?

You may think that all cats love fish cat food. However, while some cats love fish food, others do not like fish and prefer turkey, chicken, and duck cat food. Dry and moist cat food contains all the essential ingredients that cats need to remain healthy. One such ingredient is taurine. Taurine is a supplement that helps keep a cat’s heart healthy.

Moist and dry cat fish food may be what your cat prefers. While some cats only eat fish food, others may refuse to eat fish food. If fish cat food is all your cat will eat, and they turn other cat food away, such as chicken, turkey, and duck, it is OK.

We have always had at least six fur babies at one time. While half of our cats prefer a cat, fish food and will sniff chicken, turkey, or duck and walk away or try to cover the dish before walking away, it tells me they do not like any cat food except for a variety of fish food. Cats have food preferences the same as you.

I have four small dishes of dry cat food in various areas in the house. Two of these dishes have a dry cat, fish food, and two have dry chicken cat food. The cats eat dry food whenever they please. Two to three times a day, they want moist food. We know which cats eat fish and the cats who prefer chicken, turkey, or duck cat food.

There are various brands of cat, fish food. One example is the Fancy Feast Brand that offers Fish and Shrimp, Seafood Feast, Cod, Sole, Shrimp, Flaked Tuna, Tuna, and mackerel. These fish have the essential vitamins and minerals that cats need every day to keep healthy.

Can Cats Eat Fish? 

Cats can eat fish, but cats cannot eat raw fish.

When I start preparing fish for our family dinner, the cats wander into the kitchen and stare at me as I work at the kitchen counter. I season our fish before baking it. However, I may save a few small fish pieces for cats who like fish. I make sure that their pieces have no seasonings, especially salt. When we sit down for dinner, I will give each cat interested in eating some fish. I make sure it is cooked well and has no seasonings, including butter. I check the fish well to make sure there are absolutely no bones.

It is OK to give your cat commercial human-grade fish that is canned or fresh once in a while for a treat if there are no seasonings on the fish and the fish is well cooked and has absolutely no bones.

Please do not give your cat human fish food daily, because this type of fish does not contain all the essential vitamins and minerals that cats need to keep them healthy.

What Kinds of Fish Can Cats Eat?

Some cats enjoy fresh, human-grade fish on occasion. The best types of fresh fish to give your cat are water-packed tuna, salmon, sardines, or cod. Give your cat no more than a tablespoon of cooked human-grade fish. When preparing these fish, make sure the cats’ portions have no salt or seasonings.

Tuna packed in water, salmon, sardines in spring water, and cod contain higher amounts of omega-3 fatty acids, proteins, minerals, and supplements that are good for your cat. These fresh fish types are suitable for your cat once in a while and are already cooked. Give your cat no more than a tablespoonful.

Other fish types will not harm your cat if you give them to your cat. However, these different types do not contain higher omega-3 fatty acids, proteins, minerals, and supplements. You and your cat benefit if the fish you eat is never fried but grilled, broiled, or baked.

Never give your cat raw fish or meat. Raw fish increases the possibility of your cat getting food poisoning. Raw fish can also give your cat E. Coli or salmonella. Raw fish contains thiamine, which is an enzyme. This enzyme has been proven to destroy the cat’s vitamin B.

When buying canned cat food for my cats that like fish, the more stinker the fish is, the more the cats enjoy it. I found that the stinker fish food is Fancy Feast Fish and Shrimp and Tiki’s Sardine Cutlets. My cats love these brands. These brands are great if you have to mix medicine for your cat in their food. The smell overpowers the medicine.

Perhaps your cats are like my cats. They prefer to eat a pate texture over the brands with bits and pieces, so I have to cut these two brands up, and then my cats eat them. If you have not already found out, cats are notoriously finicky critters. They will not eat anything they do not like. I believe that my cats would rather starve than eat something they do not like. Throughout the years of rescuing and caring for cats, I found no reason that says feeding fish-flavored canned food is harmful to cats or kittens.

  • Your cat may enjoy some cooked shrimp that is plain and simple.
  • Some cats enjoy shrimp on rare occasions.
  • Shrimp does not contain all the essential nutrients that cats need.

Does Possible Mercury Content in Fresh Fish Harm your Cat?

Cats cannot and must not have a daily diet of fresh or canned human-grade cat food due to possible issues with mercury toxicity.

Fresh fish or canned fish may have an element of mercury, which is why you only give fresh or human-grade canned fish to your cat on occasion and only about one tablespoonful. The signs of mercury poisoning in cats are as follows.

  • Hard time walking or unsteady when walking
  • Loss of coordination
  • Seizures and shaking
  • Behavior outside of the norm
  • Involuntary eye and body movements
  • Paralysis

If your cat eats any type of fish and the fish disagrees with its stomach, they will throw it back up.