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What Can My Cat Eat on Christmas? 7 Vet-Approved Options

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By Kerry-Ann Kerr

Happy cat tabby christmas playing on pillow

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Reviewed & Fact-Checked By

Dr. Lorna Whittemore

MRCVS (Veterinarian)

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

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Christmas is a time we want to share with family, eat good food, wear bad sweaters, and fall asleep in front of the television. Our pets are family, and it makes sense that we want to do all of this with them.

Regarding food, it’s essential to know what’s suitable for our pets and what isn’t. It might seem harmless to give them a sliver of food off your plate, but that little bit of food could cause a tummy upset or be toxic to your cat. What can we share with our cats at Christmastime?

The 7 Foods Your Cat Can Eat During Christmas

1. Turkey

cat reaching for turkey
Image Credit: Scharfsinn, Shutterstock

You can offer your cat skinless, white meat from the turkey. Plain is best for your cat, as all the tasty herbs, spices, and fats cause problems with the more sensitive feline tummy. Dark meat can be too rich, and you want to avoid bones, which are not only choking hazards but are small and easily snapped. These broken shards can cause internal damage.

It’s also expected at Christmas that we’ll overeat to the point we feel we can roll away from the table but keep portions small for your cat.

2. Other Healthy Meats

If you aren’t a big turkey fan, there are other meats your cat can share with you. Lean meats like chicken, beef and lamb are safe for your cat. It’s essential to make sure the meat is thoroughly cooked through. Never give them raw meat, and be sure to remove the bones and skin before feeding your cat.

3. Fish

Cats are known to be big fish fans, and most are healthy for your cat to eat. Fish contains omega-3 fatty acids, which are good for their overall health but also benefit cats with skin disease and arthritis.

Just like meat, ensure the fish is plain, boneless, and properly cooked, and never give your cat raw fish. Avoid cooking the fish in spices or garlic or oil. Grilled, boiled, or baked fish is best.

4. Potatoes

Image Credit: Hai Nguyen, Unsplash

Mashed or boiled potatoes can accompany your cat’s usual meal, but remember to avoid salt or butter. Keep it as plain as the meat. Starch can be challenging to digest, so keep the portions small.

5. Vegetables

It’s not uncommon for your cat to hate vegetables, and a side dish might not be for every feline. When your kitty enjoys the odd veggie snack, vegetables provide fiber, vitamins, and water, and they’re a great healthy addition to their plate. A few safe veggies you can offer are carrots, steamed broccoli, cucumber, peas, and asparagus. Avoid root vegetables like leeks and onions.

6. Fruit


Dessert is also something your cat can join in on. Fruit, like vegetables, can be a hit or miss with cats, as they might not like the taste or texture. There are a few safe fruits your cat can eat if they enjoy the experience. Many are low in calories, contain fiber and potassium, and are excellent sources of vitamins C and A. Blueberries, watermelon (seedless), bananas, cantaloupe, peeled apple (no seeds), and pumpkins are all excellent tasty options.

7. Tasty Sides

Corn on the cob
Image Credit: Jana V. M., Pixabay

They aren’t traditional Christmas foods, but some sides you could offer if your cat is fussy and doesn’t like much on this list are whole grains like corn, oats, brown rice, and couscous, which contain lots of protein.

Your cat can also eat cooked eggs, which might surprise you. A small portion of boiled or scrambled egg makes a healthy treat as they’re full of protein and amino acids.

People Also Ask

What Should My Cat Not Eat at Christmas?

While there are several treats your cat can safely enjoy at Christmas, there are some foods you will need to avoid.

  • Allium family: onions, garlic, leeks, chives, shallots, and scallions
  • Alcohol and foods containing alcohol
  • Caffeine
  • Chocolate
  • Coconut milk
  • Cooked bones
  • Dairy
  • Grapes and raisins
  • Nuts
  • Raw meats and fish
  • Seeds

What Do I Do if My Cat Eats One of These Foods

It’s more common for dogs to eat foods they shouldn’t, as they’re more adventurous and undiscriminating regarding what they eat. Cats tend to be more cautious and apprehensive about trying new things. However, if you know or suspect your cat has eaten something it shouldn’t, contact your veterinarian or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center¹ as soon as possible.

a cat that feels sick and seems to vomit
Image Credit: chie hidaka, Shutterstock

Signs Your Cat Has Eaten Something It Shouldn’t

Signs to look out for when your cat consumes something it shouldn't are:
  • Abdominal tenderness or pain
  • Behavioral changes (biting or hissing when picked up)
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Lack of appetite
  • Lethargy
  • Vomiting

You don’t need to wait until your cat shows worrying symptoms to call for help. The sooner you address the problem, the better.


Christmas dinner is something your cat can enjoy with the rest of the family, although the portions will be small, and they might not help you out with all the leftovers you always end up with. Remember that they can’t eat every dish you’re having and any change in diet away from their usual can cause an upset tummy. Certain foods you’ll need to avoid in particular, and the meat, vegetables, and fruit should be kept plain.

See also: What Can Your Dog Eat on Christmas? 6 Safe Options

Featured Image Credit: dezy, Shutterstock

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