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Can Cats Eat Cornstarch? What You Need to Know!

Rachel Giordano

By Rachel Giordano

corn starch spilled from a teaspoon

Cornstarch is a popular ingredient that humans use in many foods. It helps thicken soups, sauces, desserts, and more. It’s an ingredient that most of us have in our kitchens. It’s an ingredient that most of us have in our kitchens. However, it’s high in calories, refined carbs, and doesn’t hold many health benefits, but luckily, you don’t need much cornstarch when you use it for cooking.1

If you’re a cat owner, have you ever wondered if you can feed cornstarch to your beloved feline friend? The short answer is: yes, but only in moderation. Cornstarch is not something you want to give your cat every day, particularly because it does not provide any needed nutrients to your kitty. In this article, we’ll explore further how much and how often you can get away with sharing cornstarch with your cat.

Can cats eat cornstarch?

Cats are obligate carnivores, meaning they need meat in their diet to be healthy. Cornstarch is plant-derived, so giving it to your cat could cause unwanted side effects, such as an upset tummy. While cornstarch is non-toxic to your cat, you still want to be careful how much you give your feline friend, if any at all.

If you do decide to put a little cornstarch in their food, it’s imperative to monitor your cat afterward for any signs of digestive discomforts, such as vomiting or diarrhea. If your cat develops these symptoms, stop giving cornstarch immediately and consult your veterinarian.

cornstarch
Image Credit: Halil ibrahim mescioglu, Shutterstock

Is there starch in cat food?

Corn is not an allergy trigger in most dogs and cats, and cats are capable of digesting starch by 40% to 100%. When you hear that cat food has corn, most people immediately think of it as non-nutritional filler. Apparently, corn does hold some nutritional value, and given that cats can digest it, cornstarch is safe to give them, but again, in moderation.

Conflicting information about cornstarch in cat food can make it hard to decide what to feed your cat. Some experts say that grains of any form should be avoided because cats are obligate carnivores, but others say it’s safe. In the end, feeding your cat a well-balanced cat food that concentrates on its carnivorous nature is best.

Can cats eat corn flour?

Corn flour is non-toxic to your cat, but it really doesn’t hold any nutritional value to give to them. Of course, corn flour comes from corn, and as we’ve established, corn is not an allergy trigger for cats.

Corn flour is made from finely grounded whole kernel corn, and it contains protein, fiber, and vitamins. However, cats do not need corn flour in their diets. The bottom line is this: if your cat licks corn flour from the countertop, there’s no need for concern, but it’s better to keep it away from your cat, so it doesn’t eat a ton of it.

Can you use cornstarch on a cat’s fur?

a beautiful male bicolor Ragdoll cat on a gray background
Image Credit: madeinitaly4k, Shutterstock

Some cats’ hair can get tangled, especially if you have a longhaired cat, such as a Ragdoll or Persian cat. Surprisingly, cornstarch comes in handy to get rid of mats and tangles. Simply sprinkle a little on the matted area (not too much) and brush the tangle out with a slicker brush. You’d be amazed at how well it works.

You can use coconut oil for this purpose, too; however, coconut oil will leave behind a mess, which will require you to bathe your kitty. Unless you have a cat that loves water, bathing a cat can be a real pain! It’s best to make it as simple as possible for both you and your kitty.

Final Thoughts

Some cats are very picky eaters, and while you may be curious if your cat will eat cornstarch, it’s safe to try it, but in minimal amounts and moderation. Honestly, there’s no real reason to give your cat cornstarch because it holds no nutritional value, rendering the idea useless.

As we’ve stated, cats don’t need such things added to their food for nutritional value. In the end, it’s best to stick to nutritional cat food formulated specifically for the carnivorous cat. Since cornstarch is made from corn, controversy surrounds the topic, as some experts believe it’s safe for cats to digest, and others claim that a cat’s digestive system is not equipped to digest such things.

We’d also like to point out that if you’re ever in doubt about what not to feed your cat, your veterinarian would be a good resource to obtain such information. When in doubt, run a new food past your vet before feeding anything other than your cat’s normal diet.


Featured Image Credit: Michelle Lee Photography, Shutterstock

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