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Can Cats Eat Shrimp? The Truth Revealed


ats are huge fans of seafood, especially salmon, but can cats eat shrimp? This is a big question that most, if not all, cat owners have asked at least once. It’s important to know what we can and can’t give our cats where human foods are concerned.

As a cat owner, you’re wondering whether or not cat cats eat shrimp, which is why you’re here, so read on and we’ll give you the answers you’re looking for.

Can Cats Eat Shrimp?

do cat can eat shrimp

Not all seafood are safe for cats to eat, such as a regular tuna-only diet, for example, but shrimp is safe. Although, shrimp is safe for cats to consume, but there are some rules of thumb in this case that you’re going to want to follow.

Cooked vs Raw Shrimp


Cats should not have access to raw fish and meat in general, which does include having shrimp that is given to them raw. Raw fish, meat, eggs, etc., can contain bacteria that will lead to food poisoning, for one.

Thiamine, an essential B vitamin that cats need in their regular diet, does not exist in raw shrimp. In fact, it doesn’t exist in any raw fish or seafood, which is why giving a cat any form of raw seafood is dangerous to their health.

In addition to this, cats who have a lack of thiamine, no matter how minor or extensive the lack of may be, can experience a loss of appetite, seizures, neurological problems, convulsions, comas, and even death.

Fresh vs Frozen Shrimp

do cat eat shrimp

Finding freshly caught shrimp can be difficult depending on where you live, but feeding your cat fresh shrimp is much healthier than feeding them frozen, packaged shrimp.

A lot of the frozen, packaged shrimp that are bought at grocery stores, generally the ones that humans consume, have salt water put on the shrimp. This is typically done by soaking or wetting the shrimp before they are packaged so they don’t freeze together.

If you are unable to purchase and give your cat freshly caught shrimp for whatever reason and must buy them frozen and packaged from the grocery store, ensure that you are preparing them properly before your cat is served.

Make sure that you rinse the shrimp thoroughly, that they are fully defrosted and that you cook them well. The package probably won’t tell you if they were soaked in salt water, so assume that they were and rinse them thoroughly.

Doing so, however, heightens their sodium count, which, as you are about to discover, is dangerous for cats to consume. This is where the importance of feeding a cat shrimp in moderation comes in.

The Link Between Weight Gain
and Shrimp

cat can eat shrimp

Cats who are both overweight and consume shrimp, whether it’s cooked or served raw, have been to found to contain a very serious link between the two. Shrimp is actually very high in salt, which isn’t good for cats.

A cat who has a diet high in sodium faces multiple health issues, including Hypernatremia, which puts cats at a very high risk. Hypernatremia occurs when a cat has a level of sodium that is abnormally high.

Cats who have a diet high in sodium are at the risk of having issues with blood pressure, maintaining a proper acid-base, complications with blood volume, and much more.

Symptoms of Hypernatremia include an increased thirst, overly consuming water, disorientation, confusion, slight tremors, seizures, and even comas. If any of these symptoms occur with your cat, or they are acting abnormal, bring them to their veterinarian’s office as soon as possible.

If your cat has specific health issues that contribute to their weight, such as diabetes, for example, shrimp is not a good idea. However, if your cat is underweight and needs to gain weight, shrimp can help in this case, but only when fed in moderation.

Moderation is Key

Health issues aside, moderation when feeding your cat human food, including shrimp, is important because of how finicky cats can be. If they are fed too much of one thing, and absolutely love it, they will become addicted.

This must be avoided at all costs because, once a cat has their sights set on something other than their regular food, they will be prone to reject anything you give them other than what they want.

cat shrimp

Like with human diets, moderation really is key, especially in the case of answering “can cats eat shrimp” and researching the final answer, positives, negatives, etc.

shrimp eated cat

Can Cats Eat Shrimp?

The answer to “can cats eat shrimp” is yes, but be sure to follow the moderation rule. Shrimp should not play a major role in their diet and never on a regular basis.

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