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Home > Cats > Can Cats Eat Chicken Broth? Vet Approved Facts & FAQ

Can Cats Eat Chicken Broth? Vet Approved Facts & FAQ

Can Cats Eat Chicken Broth

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Reviewed & Fact-Checked By

Dr. Amanda Charles

Veterinarian, BVSc GPCert (Derm) MRCVS

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

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It can be hard to tell what ordinary kitchen ingredients are safe to introduce to your cat’s diet because human food isn’t formulated with a cat’s dietary needs in mind. For example, can cats eat chicken broth? Yes, cats can eat chicken broth, and they usually go crazy for it, as any cat owner that’s cooked chicken soup can attest. There are some ingredients you want to avoid when doing so, though, and it’s best to make your own homemade broth.

However, is it healthy for them? What’s the best way to add chicken broth to your cat’s diet safely? Read on as we answer both of those questions as well as some other valuable info about feeding cats chicken broth.

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Is Chicken Broth Healthy for Cats?

Yes, chicken broth is healthy for cats as long as it doesn’t contain a lot of other ingredients. Chicken broth contains protein, glucosamine, calcium, vitamins, and other essential nutrients. Cats love the smell and taste of chicken broth, so it’s also an excellent way to hydrate your cat when they’re feeling sick or not drinking enough water to stay healthy.

The caveat with chicken broth is that precooked or canned chicken broth designed for human consumption isn’t usually good for cats because of the other ingredients in it. For example, broth cooked with onions or garlic is automatically ruled out because Allium veggies are toxic to cats and can cause anemia.

Excessive sodium is also a concern because cats need relatively little salt in their diets, but canned broths are almost always loaded with sodium and other ingredients that aren’t cooked with cats in mind. Cats with a high sodium diet are more likely to develop problems with blood pressure and renal function, too.

broth in a pot
Image Credit: ZAHRA22, Shutterstock

Tips for Adding Chicken Broth to Your Cat’s Diet

While chicken broth can be very healthy, it’s important that you introduce it to your cat carefully, slowly, and in small amounts. To help you do so, we’ve come up with some valuable tips to help.

Tips for Adding Chicken Broth to Your Cat’s Diet:
  • Go Homemade: Make your own chicken broth by simply boiling chicken and chicken bones in water. This gives you more control over what’s in your broth.
  • Avoid Extra Ingredients or Spices: Cats don’t need spices, and other ingredients aren’t always healthy for them, so keep it as plain as possible. There’s no need to even open the spice cabinet.
  • Test Your Broth: Offer a very small amount to your cat with their food at mealtime and see if their stomach tolerates it well before offering more.
  • Don’t Make It a Regular Thing: Unless your cat is severely dehydrated or your vet recommends regularly feeding chicken broth, there’s no need to feed it to your cat every day. Once or twice per week makes a tasty treat, though.

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British shorthair cat eating
Image by: Chendongshan, Shutterstock

When to Avoid Feeding Your Cat Chicken Broth

Chicken broth may be healthy, but it’s not for every cat in every situation. There are a few major reasons you may not want to feed chicken broth to your cat. So, bear these in mind when considering if it’s a good idea for your cat.

When to Not Feed Your Cat Chicken Broth:
  • Sensitive Stomachs: While they might love it, some cats have a sensitive, easily upset stomach that can’t handle the richness of chicken broth.
  • Allergies: Surprisingly, a lot of cats out there have chicken allergies that broth can set off, so definitely avoid chicken broth for cats with chicken allergies.

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Conclusion

Cats may love chicken broth, but they should only be fed homemade chicken broth with no extra ingredients that could harm them, like salt, onion, or garlic. Cooking up your own chicken broth is really easy, and a single pot can last a long time if you’re only feeding your cat small amounts with the occasional meal.


Featured Image Credit: LisaRedfern, Pixabay

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