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Can Cats Eat Fries – Why You Should Avoid It!

Can Cats Eat Fries – Why You Should Avoid It!

Your cat probably wants to share your french fries. And why wouldn’t they? Crispy, delicious, salty…what’s not to love? On a night when you’re enjoying fries with your dinner, it seems perfectly natural to slip one to your cat. We all deserve a little treat, right? For a cat, it may not be a wise idea. So, can cats eat fries? 

Cats should not eat fries. Fries cannot be easily digested by your cat. While not toxic, fries introduce too much sodium, carbohydrate, and fat to your cat’s stomach. Similarly, other types of potatoes come with caveats in preparation, making the potato a complicated human food to give to a cat. 

Cats are often curious about human food, and we want to make our kitties happy! Feeding them those fries, while tempting, is a bad idea from a nutritional standpoint, especially when there are so many other good treats and even human food to choose from. In this article, we’ll look at basic cat nutrition, the problem with fries and their partnership with ketchup, types of potatoes to stay far away from, and ways you can safely give your kitty some potatoes if you wish. 

Can Fries Fit Into A Cat’s Diet

Cats are obligate carnivores. This means that they must eat animal flesh to survive. When they do this, they absorb high levels of protein and healthy fats to fortify their hunting, pouncing, and jumping skills. These needs have been passed down to them from their big cat ancestors. Cat foods also tend to be infused with various vitamins and minerals to support your cat’s eyes, kidneys, coat, heart, bones, and more. These can be enhanced by pet-safe supplements or small amounts of certain cooked vegetables.

A cat’s stomach is a shorter organ than a human’s. This means its ability to process and excrete certain foods is limited. Raw vegetables and other plant matter, for example, often can’t pass through your cat’s system easily. They need to be steamed and softened to be digestible. 

Primarily, cats’ bodies are built to process protein. Other items in any excess can confuse the balance. Keeping your kitty in good health relies upon making sure they get a hefty dose of protein and animal fat each day, plus a tiny amount of carbohydrates. Adding anything else, including french fries or other human foods, comes with risk. 

Why Are Fries Bad For Cats 

Humans often crave crispy, salty, greasy fries. But the very things that make us adore french fries are the things that make them dangerous for our cats: 


Humans are told to watch our sodium intake, as the chemical can cause high blood pressure. The same is valid for cats. Given that cats are much smaller than we are, heavily salted foods can have about ten times the effect on your curious little feline! A lethal dose of salt for cats is only about 4 grams. Considering the saltiness of a french fry, particularly if you add additional salt yourself, it’s best to keep them away. 


Cats have room for a minimal amount of carbohydrates in their diets. Veterinarians recommend they make up only one to two percent of a cat’s diet. This doesn’t leave much room for snacking on starches. Excess of anything with carbohydrates can be harmful to your pet, and, given that french fries are pure starch, they’re hugely problematic.

Fat and oil

 Cats need fat in their diets, but that fat should come from Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids, fish oil, or other ingredients found in their cat food. The type of oil your fries are cooked in depends on where you get them from, but at least some of the oil will contain saturated fat, which has the same effect on cats as it does on humans: Weight gain. Just a tiny bit of saturated fat for a feline can do significant damage to their weight, which leads to heart problems, joint problems, and more. 


The skin on deep-fried foods is often a human’s favorite part! But don’t share that enjoyment with your feline. Loaded with sodium, the deep-fried outside of the french fry can be difficult for your cat’s body to process, and can even be a choking hazard. 


 French fries’ standard companion, ketchup, is one of the most toxic human foods for cats. Most ketchup contains onion powder. Onions, whether raw, cooked, or dried, are potentially lethal for your kitty. Add in the high sodium and acidic content of this condiment, and you have a perfect storm of potential hazards to your cat’s health. 

Can Cats Eat Any Type Of Potatoes

If you’re not going the French route but are still plan to enjoy some potatoes with dinner, you may be able to share with your curious kitty. Boiled, baked, or mashed potatoes in small amounts can stimulate your cat’s diet with vitamins B and C, potassium, and fiber. 

However, it’s essential to make sure the potatoes you share are plain, without salt, butter, herbs, or anything else you might plan to include for yourself. While potatoes with no additions might seem bland to us, cats are likely to find them delicious, responding positively to the texture. Portions should remain quite small since cats do not need the extra carbs. So if you’re making potatoes and want to share with your feline companion, set aside a tablespoon or so for them before you add your seasonings. 

Are Potatoes Toxic To Cats 

Raw potatoes can be lethal to cats. They contain glycoalkaloid solanine, a harmful chemical that cats should never ingest. The same goes for potato peels. Sweet potatoes seem to be a bit controversial; some say they are toxic while others say they can be given a special treat. But a cat has a chance of not being able to digest them at all, which could be very dangerous. 

Potato chips are another form of potato that a cat should never have. Similar to french fries, chips contain high levels of salt. They can also be a potential choking hazard if a cat eats too large of a piece or tries to eat one whole. However, the most significant danger of potato chips is the herbs used to add flavor to many different varieties. As mentioned earlier, onion leads to poisoning in cats. Chives can be equally poisonous. The scariest herb for cats is garlic, which is five times more toxic than onions. These herbs are found in many types of chips. Because of all of these things, it’s best to keep your chips far away from your cat

No French Fried Food For Your Feline

Potatoes are a tasty, flexible food for humans. But for cats, they come with many problems. 

If your cat gets a small piece of french fry, you don’t have to worry. If they get some with ketchup, you’ll want to call your local poison control just to be safe, depending on how much they ingested. The same goes for any potato or potato byproduct with herbs like onions, garlic, or chives. 

While it’s fun to share our favorite things with our furry friends, giving away our fries is not a good idea. But if you want to dress your cat up in a beret and call them “mon beau chat (my beautiful cat”), we promise not to tell!