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Home > General > Can Cats Eat Peanut Butter? Facts & FAQ

Can Cats Eat Peanut Butter? Facts & FAQ

creamy and smooth peanut butter in jar on wood table

In this article, we will answer the question can cats eat peanut butter?

Many people love peanut butter, and it seems to be a tradition to let your kids lick the spoon once they’ve finished making the famous PB&J sandwich.

Can your cats have peanut butter too?

Technically they can, but there are several questions to consider before diving in.

Consider the following: does peanut butter have any added nutrients that your cat could benefit from? Can cats eat peanut butter at least sometimes?

As far as risks are concerned, are there any toxins in peanut butter? You can find the answers to these questions by being aware of what a healthy diet consists of for felines and purchasing all-natural peanut butter.

Can Cats Eat Peanut Butter?

peanut butter on spoon
Image Credit: deborahmiller56, Pixabay

Is peanut butter good for cats? It’s not poisonous, but it’s not good for them either. It can cause a variety of health problems that can easily get avoided. Beware of the following issues with feeding a cat peanut butter, especially regularly.

No Extra Nutrients

Cats are carnivorous, meaning their diets should consist of meat and fish to get their daily nutrients. People add healthy additions like brown rice, oatmeal, peas, and carrots to give it that extra boost, all of which are great for your cat’s health.

Peanut butter, on the other hand, not so much. If there’s not a lot of sugar in the peanut butter, it has xylitol, which is toxic. Also, there can be a lot of salt in processed peanut butter and other harmful additives. Essentially, there’s nothing in peanut butter that your cat needs.


Peanut butter is very sticky and thick, no bueno if it gets stuck in your cat’s throat. Small amounts of the substance can cause your cat to choke. If you let them have one or two licks of a spoon, make sure it’s infrequent and that you’re watching them with water close by.

Allergic Reactions

While it’s not the likeliest scenario, your cat can also have peanut allergies. They could develop these with time, or they could be born with it.

Peanut allergies are usually pretty severe, and pet moms and dads have to be aware of the signs of a severe allergic reaction.

Common symptoms of cats allergic to peanut butter:

  • Lack of appetite
  • Hair loss
  • Diarrhea
  • Itching
  • Skin rashes and irritation
  • Ear infection
  • Weight loss
  • Vomiting

Call the vet immediately if you think your cat is having an allergic reaction. It may seem like something as simple as itchy skin, or it could be an emergency situation.

Toxic Fats

Because peanut butter is formulated in such a way to maximize shelf life, this process creates a toxin known as trans fatty acids. It will behoove you and your precious cats to stay away from these fats at all costs.

Calorie Dense

Low calories are not a way to describe peanut butter whatsoever. For this reason, if your feline is overweight, giving peanut butter as a snack is something that you’d want to avoid. An overweight kitty can cause a whole host of other health issues such as heart conditions and diabetes.

Gastrointestinal Distress

Peanut butter might cause gastrointestinal distress in cats, just like it does in humans sometimes. You might notice vomiting, gas, diarrhea, and even stomach pains. Although your cat could like how peanut butter tastes, it’s not worth it to feed it to them when you consider the risk.

Read More: Can cats eat butter?

What to Do if Your Cat Ate Peanut Butter

Never leave your cat alone around an open jar of peanut butter. If you let them have a taste, make sure they always have a bowl of clean, fresh water nearby. This can help with getting the sticky nut butter to go down easier.

If your cat happens to get a hold of peanut butter outside of your supervision, and you believe that they’ve consumed too much, monitor them closely. Contact your veterinarian immediately to ask for the best course of action. Your cat will likely experience some form of gastrointestinal distress, so get prepared.

When can cats have peanut butter?

You should try not to feed your cats peanut butter if there’s no clear-cut reason to do so. Some cat parents like to hide a pill or medication underneath a layer, but outside of that, it really shouldn’t be a regular treat. It’s riskier than it’s worth when it comes to health benefits.

Always make sure the peanut butter that you buy is 100 percent organic with no xylitol.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Below are the answers to the most commonly asked questions concerning cats and peanut butter:

What Kind of Peanut Butter is Safe to Buy for a Cat?

Make sure you buy peanut butter that is organic. It shouldn’t have any added sugars, no xylitol, not chunky, and no salt. The smooth and creamy version won’t have peanut bits in it, which could also cause choking. If you can find an easy recipe to make your own peanut butter, even better.

How Much Peanut Butter Should I Let My Cat Taste?

Portion sizes are much smaller when compared to that of a human. That being said, a tablespoon of peanut butter exceeds your cat’s daily caloric intake. So a simple lick or two will get the job done for your cat.

Do Cats Like Peanut Butter?

Peanut butter can be very nutritious, providing a great combination of protein and fat. Dogs seem to be attracted to its nutty aroma, but cats generally approach peanut butter with more of a disinterested demeanor.

Can Kittens Eat Peanut Butter?

Kittens have more sensitive stomachs than adult cats. It’s not a good idea to let them taste peanut butter, especially before they’re one year of age. The peanut butter is more of a choking risk for them, and their systems may not be robust enough to handle the ingredients in peanut butter just yet.

What Happens if My Cat Eats Too Much Peanut Butter?

Peanut butter is not toxic to cats. However, experts of nutrition agree that peanut butter isn’t a treat that people with cats should give to their felines. Although peanut butter is not toxic to cats, it should be avoided for health reasons.

One thing to consider as a pet owner whose cat spends time outside is what happens when your cat goes out alone. If you get them used to eating peanut butter and they find it when alone, they might overeat.

Featured Image Credit: inewsfoto, Shutterstock

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