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Can Cats Eat Mussels? What You Need to Know!

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By Nicole Cosgrove

mussels close up

Can cats eat mussels? The answer to this question is a resounding yes, but of course, that’s not all you should feed your feline pal. Mussels are full of the minerals and vitamins your cat needs to be healthy, strong, and live a good long life. The mussels also contain essential amino acids, but it’s important to only feed your cat plain cooked mussels.

In this blog, we’ll talk a bit about why mussels are good for cats, what the health benefits are, and a few of the other foods you might want to feed your furry friend as well.

What Are Mussels?

Mussels are fresh or saltwater bivalves that people have been eating for a very long time. Since they’re basically a sort of seafood and meat, they’re a good source of protein for your cat. So, the next time you’re fixing a batch of mussels for your dinner, make sure to cook some unseasoned ones for your pet.

mussels in a bowl
Image credit: Pixabay

Are Mussels Healthy for Cats?

Mussels can be healthy for your cat, as long as that’s not the only thing you feed them. Though they are a great source of protein, vitamins, and minerals, they aren’t the only food your cat needs to be healthy. It is essential to note here that you should never feed your cat raw mussels. They contain parasites and could contain dangerous pathogens that could make your cat sick or worse.

If your cat has gotten into raw mussels and eaten them, it’s best to contact your vet for an emergency visit, just to make sure your cat is going to be fine.

Keep the mussels you cook for your pet free of sauces and other seasonings, as though they might love the taste; those things have no nutritional value for your cat at all.

ragdoll cat in a park looking off to the side
Image Credit: Aaron Zimmermann, Shutterstock

Health Benefits of Feeding Mussels to Your Cat

As previously stated, there are a few health benefits to feeding your cat muscles. We’ll break them down for you in our next section.

Benefits of Feeding Mussels to Your Cat:
  • Protein: Mussels contain protein, and since cats are mostly carnivores, they need quite a bit of protein to survive. Mussels are close to 65% protein, which is great for your cat. It’s also easy for felines to absorb mussels, which helps them build body tissues. You can add hydration to the mussels for your cat by adding freshwater mussels to their diet.
  • Vitamins and Minerals: Mussels also provide your pet with essential vitamins and minerals. For example, one six-ounce portion of mussels provides your cat with more calcium and iron than the same six-ounce portion in steak or chicken, so that’s another reason to treat your cat to a mussel dinner.
  • A Low-Calorie Choice: Some cats tend to become overweight as they age, especially if they’re indoor cats who never go outside and get very little exercise. Mussels are the perfect low-calorie choice of treats for a cat who is overweight. Most mussels average around eight calories per treat, so they are an excellent option for cats everywhere.
bengal cat near cat bowl
Image Credit: golubovystock, Shutterstock

What Type of Seafood can Cat’s Eat?

Now that you know cats can eat mussels, you might be wondering what other types of seafood cats can eat. We’ll talk a little about the different kinds in our next section.

Lobsters

Cats can eat lobsters, but only in moderation, and never with seasoning or with the lobster dripping butter. Also, make sure the lobster is cooked because raw lobsters can contain parasites that will make your pet sick.

lobster
Image Credit: sintec, Pixabay

Squid

Yes, your furry friend can eat squid, but again only in moderation. Again, only go for plain cooked squid, with no seasonings for the best results. You don’t want to upset your cat’s stomach with greasy or over seasoned food. Squid also shouldn’t be served raw, and since it gets a bit rubbery during cooking, cut the squid into bite-sized pieces to avoid it becoming a choking hazard for your cat.

Oysters

While cats can eat oysters on occasion, they don’t have any nutritional value for them, so only give them to your feline every now and then. Never feed a raw oyster to your cat, and feed them to your feline unseasoned, as with other seafood. Avoid oysters that have additives in them as well for the best results.

Scallops

As with the seafood above, cats can eat scallops on occasion if they are cooked plain and not fed to them raw.

Scallops
Image Credit: MonicaVolpin, Pixabay

Possible Risks of Seafood

It is essential to note here that some cats do have seafood allergies, just as some humans do. If your cat seems to have developed an allergy to any seafood you’ve given him, get him to an emergency vet for treatment right away.

It’s also essential to note that raw seafood can contain parasites and pathogens that you want to watch out for, so always cook the food well.

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Final Thoughts

This answers our question of whether cats can eat mussels with a resounding yes. It’s okay to feed them mussels and other forms of seafood as well, as long as you do so occasionally and don’t make it a part of their everyday diet. Make sure that you watch for allergies, and always, always cook the seafood to the correct temperature before feeding it to your feline. Your cat will love his seafood treats and will show you his gratitude with lots and lots of love and affection.


Featured Image Credit: Mr.Samarn Plubkilang, Shutterstock

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