Can Cats Eat Beef Jerky? What You Need To Know

I’ve always found myself asking questions about what is safe and appropriate for my feline companion’s diet. With their mysterious and sometimes finicky preferences, it’s only natural to wonder if certain human treats can be shared with our beloved furballs. One such treat that often raises curiosity among cat owners is beef jerky. As we unravel the secrets of the feline palate, let’s dive into the question on every cat lover’s mind: Can cats eat beef jerky?

What Is beef jerky?

beef jerky
beef jerky

Beef jerky is a dried meat product that comes from cattle or other animals such as sheep or pigs. It may be seasoned with spices and then smoked or cured. Beef jerky is not ground into a powder like canned food; it’s actually shredded into small pieces similar to beef steak strips. The main difference between beef jerky and beef steak strips is that the beef steak strips are more expensive because they have already been prepared for human consumption by being cut into pieces before being packaged for sale.

Can Cats Eat beef jerky?

Beef jerky is not safe for cats to consume. Beef jerky contains high levels of sodium, which can be dangerous for cats. Cats are prone to developing kidney disease and electrolyte imbalances when they consume too much sodium. So, it’s important to keep your cat’s diet balanced with a healthy amount of potassium and phosphorus.

Why can’t cats eat beef jerky?

Sodium Poisoning

Beef jerky is often made with salt, which can cause sodium poisoning in cats. Salt is toxic to cats and should not be consumed by them. It is important to keep this in mind when you are feeding your cat beef jerky or any other type of Snack that contains salt.


Preservatives in beef jerky are harmful to your cat because they contain chemicals that can cause health problems.

Cats need to eat a wide variety of foods, including raw meat and fish, so they can get the nutrients they need from their diet. Beef jerky also contains sugar, which is not good for cats’ teeth and gums. This sugar can lead to dental problems like gum disease or cavities. If your cat eats too much beef jerky, you may notice that their breath smells funny or tastes bad!

If you have any questions about what’s in your cat’s food or treats (including beef jerky), ask your vet! They’ll be able to tell you whether or not these ingredients are safe for your pet.

Choking Hazard

Beef jerky is a choking hazard to cats. The small bones in beef jerky can get lodged in the oesophagus, causing blockages and possible perforations.

Symptoms of this condition include difficulty breathing, coughing, vomiting and dry heaving. If you think your cat has a beef jerky-related obstruction, take them immediately to the veterinarian for assessment.

What happens if cats eat beef jerky?

If your cat has eaten some beef jerky, you should be on the lookout for any of the following:

  • Diarrhea or vomiting
  • Increased thirst and urination
  • Drooling and increased appetite
  • Lethargy or listlessness (cats may have trouble getting up)

What To Do If My Cat Ate Beef Jerky?

If your cat has eaten beef jerky, you may be wondering what to do. You don’t want to see your cat suffer from an upset stomach, and you also don’t want to risk them getting sick. Here are a few things you can try:

  • Have your cat vomit it up within 30 minutes of eating it
  • Give your cat a dose of Tums or Pepto Bismol immediately after they’ve eaten the beef jerky
  • Make sure that there’s nothing left in their stomachs (and check for any signs of distress)
  • Call a vet if you think something else is wrong with your cat

Best Treats Alternative to Beef Jerky For Cats

Treats for cats are a great way to keep your cat’s tummy happy. They’re also a great way to give them a little extra love.

Here are some of our favorite treats for cats:

  1. Cats love catnip, and they’re easy to find at your local pet store. You can also use it in your cat’s litter box if you want them to have some extra high-fives.
  2. If you’re looking for something more natural, try feeding your cat fruits and vegetables such as cabbage leaves or cucumbers.
  3. If you want something that’s going to be easier on your pocketbook, we recommend feeding your cat freeze-dried food like KMR or Nutro Max. These are both very affordable brands and come in a variety of flavors!

What Snack Should I Not Feed My Cat?

Cats love to eat, and they’re not fussy about what they eat—they’ll even eat dog food. But there is one food that you should never give your cat: chocolate.

Chocolate contains a chemical called theobromine, which is toxic to cats’ kidneys. In fact, it can be lethal if cats ingest even a small amount of chocolate regularly. If you have a cat that you suspect might be eating chocolate, it’s best to take them to the vet immediately.


I know how frustrating it feels to take our pets to the vet one day and be told that they must no longer be fed a specific brand of food because of a chance it might be harmful to them. Meat-based treats are often avoided because they contain various ingredients that are not safe for cats.

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