7 Human Foods That Are Toxic to Cats

Cats need a high-protein diet, and they can’t eat the same foods that humans do. Any food that is not especially designed to meet the dietary needs of cats can affect their gentle digestive systems and, in turn, cause vomiting, diarrhea, or loss of appetite. A few food items that cats can’t eat include:


Chocolate contains methylxanthines, which are toxic to cats. The darker the chocolate, the more its concentration of these chemicals. White chocolate doesn’t contain them at all. Cats who eat chocolate develop vomiting and diarrhea with blood in their stools, as well as high temperatures and heart rates. They may also have seizures and die if they ingest enough chocolate.

Onions and Garlic

These are members of the Allium genus of plants (like leeks, shallots, chives, and scallions). These vegetables contain a substance called thiosulphate, which is toxic to cats when eaten raw or cooked improperly.

Grapes and Raisins

Grapes and raisins, while delicious, are known to cause kidney failure in dogs, but they also cause acute renal failure in cats. They contain an unknown toxin that causes red blood cells to rupture prematurely. If you suspect that your cat has eaten grapes or raisins, contact your vet immediately.

Raw Meat and Fish

Raw meat contains several harmful bacteria such as E. coli, salmonella, and listeria, which can make cats very sick or even kill them if they ingest enough of it. Raw fish has been known to cause pancreatitis in cats who eat too much of it. The high concentration of mercury found in many types of seafood can also cause neurological damage in cats if they eat it in excess.


Xylitol is a no-no for your furry friend. It can be found in gum, candy, and baked goods, and it can be very harmful to your kitty! Xylitol is not toxic to us humans, but it can cause cats to vomit, get very lethargic, and have a loss of coordination and seizures.


Alcohol is poisonous to cats because they lack the enzyme needed to break down ethanol into acetic acid (or vinegar). Ingestion of alcohol causes central nervous system depression leading to coma.

Eggs and Milk

Cats don’t have enough of the enzyme needed to break down milk sugar (lactose), so they can develop diarrhea when they drink milk or eat dairy products. Eggs are also high in fat and can cause digestive problems in cats.