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Are tomatoes OK for cats?

Can Cats Eat Tomatoes?

The short answer: It is not recommended.

The long answer: Red, plump, and naturally sweet, tomatoes are packed with nutrients such as vitamin C, vitamin K, potassium, folate, and lycopene. However, this fruit is not recommended for cats because it contains solanine and alpha-tomatine that are mildly toxic to cats. These chemical compounds are found in the tomato plant and its unripe fruits.

If you own a tomato plant, keep it away from your cat at all times. If she nibbles on the plant’s stems or leaves, she may exhibit any of the following symptoms: excessive salivation, lack of appetite, diarrhea, extreme stomach upset and vomiting, drowsiness, confusion, behavioural changes, central nervous system depression, apathy, physical weakness, slowed heart rate, and dilated pupils.

Although ripe tomatoes are not lethal for cats, feeding your cat tomato sauce or tomato soup is also not recommended. This is because of the additional ingredients used to make them such as salt, sugar, garlic, and onion. These flavourings are known to be harmful for cats.

What to do if your cat accidentally eats the tomato plant or its unripe fruit: Contact your veterinarian immediately while keeping a close eye on your cat. Also, try to find out how much of it she has consumed. If your pet cat ate a part of the plant, take a sample with you to show the vet.

In summary: From the plant to its unripe fruits, tomatoes should not be eaten by your pet cat. Eating them may result in poisoning and other uncomfortable side effects. Instead of tomatoes, discover which human food cats can safely consume in our “can cats eat” category.



Mimi Tiu

A freelance editor based in the Philippines, Mimi Tiu is a proud paw aunt to a family of Terriers and a Ragdoll-Persian cat. When she isn’t creating meaningful content for Waldo’s Friends, she finds pleasure in chronicling her ice cream discoveries and coming up with meticulously detailed plans for her next getaway. Follow her adventures on Instagram @nicetomitiu.

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Are tomatoes bad for cats?

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My ragdoll cat loves cherry tomatoes! — he goes mad crazy for the but I am cautious to let him have one as I have heard they are poisonous for cats. is this true? can my cat had the odd red cherry tomato??

Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

Are tomatoes bad for cats? Actually the answer is no! I had a similar question in regards to dogs, but the answer is the same for cats: Are tomatoes bad for dogs?.

The leaves of the tomato plant contain tomatine which can be toxic to the heart, but very large amounts would have to be eaten by a cat or a dog in order to cause toxicity. I have never heard of a cat getting ill because of eating tomatoes.

So, if your cat likes to eat tomatoes, then let her have the odd one!

—This question was asked in our Ask A Vet For Free section.—

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Disclaimer: Although Dr. Marie is a qualified veterinarian, the information found on this site is not meant to replace the advice of your own veterinarian. and Dr. Marie do not accept any responsibility for any loss, damage, injury, death, or disease which may arise from reliance on information contained on this site. Do not use information found on this site for diagnosing or treating your pet. Anything you read here is for information only.

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