Can cats eat lemon?

Do you often think, “Can cats eat lemon?”. In this article, we will also discuss some other things regarding why cats cannot eat lemon, the signs of lemon poisoning in your cat, whether cats can die of lemon poisoning and many more.

Can cats eat lemon?

No, cats can’t eat a lemon. The answer will always be a NO when feeding cats citrus fruits. It can cause severe harm to your feline as they have toxic substances in them. And not only kittens, but it is also poisoning most pets.

Not only the lemon has dangerous substances, but its plant contains that toxic chemical. So the cat parents with lemons in their garden should keep a keen eye on their furry. Anything that has lemon in it is hazardous to your pet.

Why can’t cats eat lemon?

Here are some of the toxic substances present in lemon that can hurt your cat:

  • Limonene- a substance that is present in lemon and is responsible for the odour of lemon. It is used in animal soap and shampoo products but is toxic for cats.
  • Linalols are an insecticide that is equally dangerous for cats and pests. 
  • Psoralens- it causes skin irritation and can cause severe dermatitis issues in them. This substance is known for its activity in making skin sensitive to the sun and can cause skin burns in felines. 

Fortunately, cats are not attracted to lemon or any virus fruits due to their smell, so unless your kitty has developed a taste for bad things, they will not attempt to eat citrus fruits.

If you are cleaning your house with lemon-containing products, your cat might suffer from some symptoms of lemon poisoning. 

What are the signs of lemon poisoning in your cat?

If your pet has only done some licks on lemon or the lemon plant, it won’t harm your pet. Most of the time, if a cat has kicked a lemon, it will be repelled by the taste and won’t do it again.

But suppose your cat has ingested a slice of lemon or picked up some lemon oil. In that case, you should go to your vet as soon as possible, as a veterinarian should handle the situation to provide medical attention to your cat.

Here are some of the synonyms that your cat might experience after eating a few slices of lemon:

  • Diarrhoea 
  • Vomiting
  • Rash
  • Skin irritation
  • Sunburns 
  • Depression
  • Photosensitivity
  • Cold limbs 
  • Tremors
  • Lethargy
  • Drooling 
  • Low blood pressure

We can’t monitor the movement of our cat, so if you suspect that your cat has eaten a lemon, these symptoms are enough to tell you that you need to pay a visit to the veterinarian.

Can cats die of lemon poisoning?

Lemon poisoning is remarkably rare in the case of felines because they are choosy, and most of the time, when they try to eat lemon, they get repelled by its sour smell and taste. But cases have appeared where the cats consume lemon and face lemon poisoning. 

The cat’s condition depends on how much lemon it has consumed and how much time has passed. If the cat is left untreated after the appearance of lemon toxicity symptoms, it might die due to the lack of medical treatment. We suggest you take your cat to the vet as soon as possible if you have seen it eat a slice of lemon.

How is lemon poisoning treated in cats?

You can’t treat your cat at home. Because it can be risky, and you can’t provide medical attention to your cat in a way a vet will be. The vet will examine how much the cat is ill. The main target will be to reduce gastrointestinal stress. The vet will perform gastric lavage to eliminate the toxins from the gut. 

Activated charcoal is also used to bind the poison with it, preventing the toxin’s entrance into the blood system. Topical ointments will be prescribed in case of skin burns in your cat. Intravenous fluids are given to maintain the electrolyte balance and to rehydrate the cat.  In sporadic and severe lemon poisoning, the cat is kept on a ventilator to ensure the proper circulation of oxygen in the body.

If I have a cat, can I grow a lemon tree in my garden?

Lemon trees are refreshing and satisfying; you can have a lemon whenever you are craving lemonade. But the question is can you keep a lemon plant if you have a cat at home as it can potentially cause lemon poisoning in felines? 

You can grow a lemon plant in your garden as cats don’t like lemons, and they try to keep away from them but still, you need to observe your cat from time to time keenly. You can also use some fences to keep your cat away from the lemon tree.


In this article, we answered your concern regarding your cat eating a lemon. We also discussed “Can cats eat lemon?”. This article also covered some other things regarding why cats cannot eat lemon, the signs of lemon poisoning in your cat; cats can die of lemon poisoning and many more.


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