Can Cats Eat Ketchup? Is It Toxic Or Safe?

Tomato ketchup, sauces soups, and juices aren’t toxic for us but about cats?

Can cats eat tomato ketchup?

Can Cats Eat Ketchup

In short, no! Tomato ketchup and sauces aren’t healthy for cats. It contains a lot of salt, sugar and other ingredients like garlic, paprika, onion powder and other additional seasonings to enhance the taste.

But there are more things to consider, and I have given a long in-depth answer too. 

So if you care for your feline friend, you should definitely stay to read it out! 

So are you ready?

Let’s dive in and explore the reasons behind it!

Also Read: Can Cats Eat Honey? (If Yes, How Much is Safe?)

Can Cats Eat Ketchup? No!

No, you should never feed any kind of ketchup to your feline friends.

But why not?

Well, there are several points to support the argument.

Firstly, ketchup is prepared with tomatoes and other added ingredients like salt, garlic, onions, and acidity regulators.

Loaded With Salt, Sugar and Acidity Regulators

The sugar, acidity and salt content in ketchup is extremely unhealthy for cats which mean if your cat has ingested a fair amount of ketchup, he/she is very likely to fall sick.

Sugar is not toxic, but it’s not suitable for cats as it causes several diseases in humans as well as in cats.

Some of the common issues of consuming a lot of sugar can be vomiting, discomfort in the stomach, diarrhoea, diabetes, tooth decay and obesity.

Apart from acidity and sugar, the amount of salt available in the ketchup is relatively high. I know mostly you get the sweet taste but trust me. The salt content is more than daily recommended, which is relatavely lower than us.

So, if your cat consumed a large amount of ketchup, the salt will lead your feline friend to sodium poisoning, which is relatively dangerous for the health of your cats.

Some of the sodium poisoning symptoms are:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Low appetite
  • Extreme thrust and urination
  • Fatigue

If you notice any of the above sign in your cats after he/she has consumed ketchup, you must talk with your vet to overcome some serious health issues.

Related: Can Cats Eat French Fries

It Contains Garlic And Onion

Another thing which a cat parent should concern that ketchup contains a lot of garlic and onion powder in it.

Tomato Ketchup contains garlic and onion

They both are from the same family called allium and considered toxic for animals like cats dogs as it can cause several health problems.

Garlic and onion both contain a type of compound called disulfides and thiosulphates which is highly toxic to cats. If your cat ingested garlic, it can cause hemolytic anaemia (damaging the cell of red blood).

If you presume that your cat has ingested food items with garlic and onion, then you should keep an eye on your cat for at least 24 to 48 hours as it takes about two to four days to show the symptoms of garlic or onion toxicity.

Some of the symptoms of garlic poisoning are:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Lethargy 
  • Abdominal Pain

So, if you can see the above symptoms in your cat within 24 to 48 hours, do not try to be a doctor and induce vomiting your cat at home. Instead, you should immediately call your vet to save the life of your feline friend.

You May Also Read: Can Cats Eat Popcorn?

Can Cats Lick Ketchup?

Well, cats smell and lick whatever comes in their way, which means there are possibilities that your cat will lick ketchup from your leftover burger, fries or something else.

If this is the case, you don’t have to worry as licking a small amount of ketchup won’t affect your cats much.

But you shouldn’t offer ketchup to your cats as it contains harmful ingredients which can cause several health issues to your cats such as vomiting, diarrhea and stomach ache in the short term.

Besides, it can lead your cat to serious long-term diseases like obesity, diabetes, liver and kidney problems.

Is Tomato Safe For Cats?

It depends!

For example, ripe tomatoes are considered safe for cats to eat, but the unripe green one is not.

Besides, the leaves and stems of the tomato plant are toxic to cats, and it can cause health problems, and even it can kill your cat too.

 So, if your cats enjoy eating tomatoes, you can offer it occasionally, but you must double-check it to avoid facing difficult situations.

And if you have a tomato plant in your house or backyard, you must keep an eye on your cat whenever your cat is near a tomato plant.

You must be very careful about the fact that only ripped tomatoes are safe for cats, but the plant is highly toxic, and it can even kill your cat.

But I would recommend that you avoid having a tomato plant in your house if you are a cat parent; otherwise, you may have to run to your vet someday.

Is Ketchup Toxic To Cats?

Is Ketchup Toxic To Cats

Yes, of course!

But tomato puree or tomato slice isn’t toxic for a cat then what makes tomato ketchup toxic?

Well, the other added ingredients like sugar, salt, garlic, onions and added official flavour enhancers.

Is It Ok For Cats To Eat Tomato Sauce?


Tomato sauce, ketchup, and juice are not ok for your cats to eat. They aren’t directly toxic but relatively bad for the health of your feline friend.

Alone tomato puree or juice may not be harmful to cats, but it is a different thing when it comes to tomato sauce.

Tomato sauce is prepared with added salt, sugar, artificial flavorings and stabilizer to keep it fresh for a more extended period.

Salt is poisonous to cats if consumed in high amount, and it can cause severe health issues (you can read more here).

The sauce contains a rich amount of sugar which can be extremely toxic to cats as it can lead to several health problems such as obesity, heart problems and kidney issues if your cat eats tomato sauce freely.

On the top of that, if your cat is diabetic, you should strictly monitor your cat and make sure he/she won’t get the chance to lick tomato sauce or ketchup from the leftover food.

What Happens If A Cat Eats Tomato Sauce?

Nothing! (hey wait!)

Yes, you heard it right.

If your cat just licked a few drops of tomato sauce from the leftover food, then nothing will happen to your cat but feeding it consciously can make your cat sick.

Tomato sauce is loaded with sodium, sugar, stabilizer, and added preservatives, making it more harmful for cats and even for humans.

Feeding tomato sauce can lead your cat to obesity, kidney and heart issues as its high in sugar.

Excess salt will become the reason of sodium poisoning, and your cat may experience vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite and fatigue.

Besides, some tomato sauce contains garlic and onion to enhance the sauce’s taste, and if this is the case, then even a few drops of tomato sauce can be highly toxic to your feline friend.

Repeating again, tomato sauce with ingredients like garlic and onion is extremely toxic for cats, making sure that your fluffy friend doesn’t get a chance to lick the leftover plate.

What Should I Do If My Cat Eats Ketchup

First of all, don’t panic!

Usually, pet owners get frightened whenever something goes wrong and take steps foolishly.

So, what should I actually do?

If your cat has consumed tomato ketchup from your plate, then the first step is to check the ingredient list on the backside of the packet and find if it contains garlic, onion or something like that which is toxic for cats.

If its plain tomato ketchup without harmful ingredients like garlic and onion then your pet will probably fine then you shouldn’t concern much.

Yet look an eye on your cat for at least 12 to 24 hours to make sure your cat is fine and not feeling sick.

If the ketchup has garlic and onion, you should immediately run to your vet as even a small amount of garlic and onion can cause serious health issues.

Final Thoughts

To sum up, tomato sauce isn’t toxic and sometimes ok for your cat to eat, but often it has ingredients like garlic and onion, which is highly toxic for cats.

So, I would never let my cat eat anything that can make my cat sick. But if your cat happens to lick a few drops of tomato ketchup or sauce, don’t worry as long as the sauce doesn’t have garlic or onion.

And as a cat parent, I won’t store anything openly which can harm my cat, and I advise you the same.

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