Can cats eat onions? If you do any sort of cooking at home, you’ll know that onions are a key ingredient in a wide range of dishes. But is it the same when it comes to cats and their food? If humans can eat onions, can cats safely eat onions, too?
The short answer is no, cats can’t safely eat onions. While the tiniest amount might not cause any noticeable illness, onions are dangerous to cats in most cases, not least because of the fact that they can cause anemia.
You should always ask your vet when it comes to sharing human foods with cats. Here’s what you need to know about onions and cats.
Why Are Onions Bad For Cats?
Basically, onions are one food that you should always keep away from your cat. Beyond the lack of nutritional value they would provide for an obligate carnivore like a cat, onions can become dangerous to felines.
Digestive problems are common when cats eat onions. They’re very likely to upset the gastrointestinal process. If your cat were to go overboard eating onions, they could also bring on a case of onion poisoning!
But the most common danger with cats eating onions is that they can result in feline anemia. This happens because onions, in sufficient quantities, can hamper a cat’s red blood cells.
Anemia is equally as likely to become an issue whether a cat eats fresh, dried or cooked onions; although, cooked onions are marginally safer for cats than raw ones.
Also, note that many commercially produced baby foods may contain a small amount of dried onion powder, so study the ingredients closely if you’re considering feeding some to your feline and, as always, consult your regular vet before feeding any human food to a cat.
What Should I Do If My Cat Eats Onions?
If you notice your cat has managed to eat some onions, whether cooked, raw or in dried powder form, call your vet immediately. They will help you figure out how serious the issue is and whether you’ll need to bring the cat straight in to the emergency facility.
If your vet finds that it is an emergency situation, they may induce vomiting in your cat. Although, take note that this is definitely not a procedure you should ever attempt to carry out yourself at home without veterinary advice.
In severe cases, vets may even consider blood transfusions.
Finally, the effects of a cat eating onions can often take a few days to manifest. So if you do see your cat scarfing down some alliums, be vigilant and keep a close watch on their behavior for the rest of the week.
Has your cat ever accidentally eaten onions? How did you deal with it? Tell us all about it in the comments section below!