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Home > Cats > 7 Great Foods That Cats Can Eat on Christmas

7 Great Foods That Cats Can Eat on Christmas

cat on lap during holiday with christmas food

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Dr. Paola Cuevas

Veterinarian, MVZ

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

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Christmas is right around the corner, and everyone’s thoughts are turning to presents, spending time with family and friends, and the delicious food everyone gathers for over the holiday season. Whether it’s turkey, yams, pecan pie, or a chocolate dessert, there’s nothing like food on Christmas.

However, what about your cat? Can you feed your cat any of the food humans eat on Christmas? If so, how do you know which foods are okay and which will hurt your feline pal? Never fear; in this guide, we’ll give you seven foods your cat can eat and a few more they can’t eat in another section.


The 7 Top Foods for Cats at Christmas

1. Turkey

Image by By: Larry White, Pixabay

Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without a golden turkey ready to be carved by Uncle Jim on the table. Is it okay to feed your cat some of that delicious turkey meat? Yes, but it’s best for the cat to have only the skinless white portion of the turkey. Dark meat can be too fatty and rich for a cat’s sensitive stomach.

Never feed your cat the turkey with the bones in it, as they can easily get choked or injured on the brittle bones. Cooked bones are not safe for pets. It’s also best not to provide turkey with gravy or sauces on it because it can cause an upset stomach or even intoxication if they contain onion or garlic.

2. Salmon

piece of steamed salmon filet
Image Credit: MaraZe, Shutterstock

Salmon is another treat your cat will love from the Christmas dinner table. Salmon is a healthy treat for your cat, but not all of the time. Salmon is a source of omega-3 fatty acids, protein, and vitamins, which are all things your cat needs to be healthy for many Christmases to come.

As with the turkey, remove the bones and leave off the sauces and any seasonings to keep your cat from having an upset stomach on Christmas Day.

3. Ham

Man slicing a ham for christmas
Image by: vivienviv0, Pixabay

Giving your cat a sliver of ham is also okay, but not too much because of the high fat and calorie content. It’s also better to feed the cat ham with all the fat removed. Most hams, especially ones made for Christmas, tend to have a lot of fat on them; some are coated with seasoning or glaze. A plain piece of unseasoned ham is ideal for your cat but offer it as a treat instead of a meal.

4. Prawns and Shrimp

Image Credit: Rob Owen-Wahl, Pixabay

What cat doesn’t love seafood? If your cat is meowing, rubbing against your legs, and generally being a nuisance because he wants the prawns and shrimp you just made, you can serve a small portion. Make sure that they are not cooked in garlic or onion, and take the tails, head, and shell off the prawns and shrimp before giving them to your feline.

5. Some Veggies

Green brocolli on a wood cutting board
Image by: ImageParty, Pixabay

Some vegetables are safe to give your cat for Christmas dinner, but try to serve ones that haven’t been cooked with garlic or onion. The veggies that you can feed your feline pal include carrots, Brussel sprouts, parsnip, pumpkin, broccoli, corn, peas, and beans.

6. Potatoes

person slicing a potato on the chopping board
Image Credit: artfotoxyz, Shutterstock

Potatoes in moderation will also make your cat happy over Christmas. Mashed potatoes are the best choice. However, you don’t want to add onion, chives, or garlic to your cat’s potatoes, as they can cause adverse side effects. Mashed potatoes have a lower fat content than other potato dishes, which is why they are better for cats. While potatoes are “safe,” they do not provide your cat with the protein or fat that a carnivore requires, so keep them as a last choice.

7. Cranberry Sauce

Cranberry sauce on a wooden background
Image Credit: Pixel-Shot, Shutterstock

Believe it or not, cranberry sauce isn’t necessarily bad for your feline pal, either. It is a staple on many dinner tables during Christmas, and your cat will probably want some. While the sugar isn’t great for them, cranberries are safe for them to eat, so if you can get a little bit and prepare them without added sugars, by all means, go for it.

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Christmas Foods to Avoid Feeding Your Cat

While there are quite a few foods that you can feed your cat at Christmas, there are even more that you’ll need to avoid. While some of these foods will make your cat moderately sick, others are toxic and could end in your cat’s death if you’re not careful.

  • Chocolate: Toxic
  • Currants, raisins, and grapes: Toxic
  • Stuffing: Contains garlic and onions, causes Heinz body anemia
  • Cooked bones: Can cause choking and a blockage
  • Gravy: Potentially toxic
  • Dairy products: Gastrointestinal Upset

If you suspect your cat has gotten into any of the above foods, it’s best to get the cat to an emergency vet immediately. The vet can help to treat your cat before something happens that can’t be undone.

Even if you didn’t see your cat eat chocolate or one of the other toxic items on this list, if you suspect it did, it’s best to take the cat in.



Christmas is about sharing food with family, friends, and pets. However, while there are a few foods you can give your cat, make sure to avoid the ones that could make your cat sick or worse.

Remember to follow our tips for feeding your cat food allowed on Christmas for the best results. The last thing you want is to spend Christmas at the vet when you could be curled up on the couch, with your cat in your lap, watching Christmas movies instead.

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Featured Image Credit: Dikushin Dmitry, Shutterstock

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