Can cats eat catfish?

In this brief discussion, we’ll answer the question, “Can cats eat catfish?” We will also talk about if catfish can be harmful to cats, how to safely cook catfish for your cat and how often you should give catfish to your cat.

Can cats eat catfish?

Yes, cats can eat catfish but in limited amounts. Before feeding catfish to your cat, make sure it is thoroughly cooked. Raw catfish can contain certain bacteria that can harm your cat’s health.

Catfish is good for cats as long as it is given in moderation. It contains many essential nutrients such as omega-3, 6 and taurine which can benefit cats in many ways. These nutrients are an important part of cat diets because they cannot be synthesised in their bodies. 

Can cats eat raw catfish?

No, cats cannot eat raw catfish. Raw catfish may contain certain bacteria or parasites that can make your cat seriously ill if ingested. These pathogens get killed on cooking which makes cooked catfish much safer for cat consumption.

Cats can get salmonellosis which can also be transferred to their owners. Moreover, your cat is more at risk if it has a compromised or weakened immune system. Therefore, it is better to cook catfish thoroughly before feeding it to your cat.

Can catfish be harmful to cats?

Yes, catfish can be harmful to cats. Catfish is safe for cat consumption as long as it is properly cooked and given moderation. Undercooked catfish or excessive feeding can negatively affect your cat’s health.

Undercooked fish carries the risk of bacterial infection. Ingesting contaminated fish can create many health issues for cats. Therefore, it is advised to feed cooked catfish to cats.

Catfish contain the enzyme thiaminase which plays an essential role in breaking down thiamine. Regular consumption of catfish and intake of a diet that is low in thiamine can cause thiamine deficiency in cats because cats are not able to synthesise thiamine themselves.

Catfish that is cooked with seasonings can also pose certain threats to your cat’s health. Such seasonings are unsuitable for cats and can highly upset their stomach leading to diarrhoea and vomiting. Therefore, you should make sure to give plain cooked catfish to your cat.

How can I safely cook catfish for my cat?

If you plan on cooking catfish for your cat, you should take care f the following things:

  • Boiling, grilling or baking is the healthiest way to cook catfish for your cat.
  • Make sure not to add any seasoning while cooking catfish for your cat. Seasonings can upset your cat’s stomach so it is best to stay away.
  • Ensure that the catfish is thoroughly cooked because raw fish can be contaminated with harmful bacteria that can cause serious illness in cats.
  • Opt for frozen or freshly sourced catfish instead of canned ones because canned catfish contains seasonings and extra salt that is not healthy for your cat.

Can I fry catfish for my cat?

No, you cannot fry catfish for your cat. Frying the catfish adds extra fat to your cat’s diet which can be very unhealthy. Consumption of excessive fats can cause digestive difficulties in cats and increase their chances of developing pancreatitis. 

Therefore, boiling, grilling or baking catfish are the preferred ways to cook catfish food for your cat.

How often can I give catfish to my cat?

You should only feed a small amount of catfish to your cat once a week or every other week. Frequent consumption of catfish can cause thiamine deficiency in cats. As a result, cats can suffer from anorexia and abnormal neurological changes such as impaired vision, ataxia, seizures and tremors.

Also, make sure that the amount of catfish you feed your cat does not exceed more than 10% of your cat’s entire diet. More than this amount can potentially upset your cat’s stomach which can lead to uncomfortable symptoms. While feeding catfish to your cat, keep in mind that moderation is key.


We answered the question, “Can cats eat catfish?” We also talked about if catfish can be harmful to cats, how to safely cook catfish for your cat and how often you should give catfish to your cat.