20 May 2023

Can cats eat tomato?

By Killian

Can cats eat tomato?

The tomato is the fruit of the tomato plant, a plant of the Solanaceae family. Although its cultivation began in Peru, currently the tomato is one of the most widely distributed vegetables in the world, as it is part of the gastronomy of almost all countries.

But what about our cats? Is it true that they can eat tomato? If you want to find out, don’t miss the following AnimalWised article, in which we will explain whether cats can eat tomato or not.

Are tomatoes bad for cats?

The tomato plant is a plant of the Solanaceae family. Like the rest of the species in this family, it is a poisonous plant. Stems and leaves contain toxic compounds such as solanine, tomatine and some glycoproteins. In cats, these compounds cause a picture of intoxication characterized by the appearance of hypersalivation, loss of appetite, gastrointestinal discomfort, weakness, mydriasis (dilated pupils) and bradycardia (decreased heart rate).

The immature fruits of the tomato plant, that is, green tomatoesalso contain these toxic compounds. However, as they mature, they lose them, so that when the fruits are ripe they have a negligible amount of these toxins.

Taking into account the above and taking into account the large number of nutritional benefits that tomatoes can provide, we must conclude that, indeed, tomatoes are on the list of foods suitable for cats, as long as they are ripe. In fact, it is a vegetable that is often used as an ingredient in cat food. Therefore, green tomatoes are toxic, but red ones are good for cats.

Can cats eat fried tomato?

No, cats should not eat fried tomato because this is a cooking method not recommended for them due to the amount of calories it provides. In the section intended to explain how to give a cat tomato, we will talk about the best ways to introduce this fruit into its diet.

Can cats eat tomato?  - Are tomatoes bad for cats?

Benefits of tomato for cats

The tomato is a vegetable that can provide various nutritional benefits when it is introduced into the diet of cats correctly. Below, we point out the most relevant:

  • It is a low-calorie food, since it only provides 22 kcal per 100 grams of product. This makes it possible to include tomatoes in the diet of cats without implying a significant increase in the energy value of their ration, which can be especially recommended in cats with a tendency to be overweight.
  • It has a high proportion of water. In fact, water is the most abundant component of tomato (93%). Its consumption helps keep the body hydrated, which is especially beneficial in cats, since they are animals that tend to drink little water. If this is your case, in this article we explain how to make your cat drink water.
  • It is a source of vitamins and minerals. Among the vitamins, its content in vitamin A (mainly in the form of provitamin A carotenoids) and vitamin C stands out. Among the minerals, iron and selenium stand out.
  • It has great antioxidant power. Vitamins A, C and selenium contribute to this effect, but what really makes the difference in terms of its antioxidant power is the presence of lycopene, a carotene or plant pigment which, in addition to being responsible for the red color of the tomato, also has great antioxidant power, protecting cells from oxidative stress.

How to give tomato to my cat?

Now that you know that red tomatoes are good for cats, if after reading the benefits that this food can provide you decide to include it in your cat’s diet, you should know that you can do it in two ways:

  • In case your cat usually consumes a commercial ration (either dry feed or wet food), you can introduce the tomato as a prizeas long as your cat likes its taste and texture.
  • In the event that your cat is fed a homemade diet, you can include tomatoes as one more ingredient in your ration. For example, if you wonder if cats can eat sardines with tomato, the answer is yes as long as it is a completely homemade dish, without added salt or spices. In this other post we talk about the Fish that cats can eat.

Regardless of whether you use the tomato as a reward or in your cat’s usual ration, you must take into account a series of considerations before contributing it:

  1. You must select tomatoes that are well ripe (that is, red), since we have already mentioned that green tomatoes are toxic to cats.
  2. Must be remove the stem and petiole (tomato stem), since they also contain toxic substances for cats.
  3. Before preparing them, the tomatoes should be washed with plenty of water to remove traces of dirt, pollutants or pesticides that may be attached to your skin.
  4. Once washed, they can be offer raw or cooked, as both presentations are suitable for cats. It is advisable to cut them into small cubes, so that they are easier to consume.

Regarding the cooking methods, those that keep their properties as intact as possible and that, in addition, do not add calories, are recommended. Therefore, we recommend cooking them boiled, scalded, grilled, microwaved or baked, always without spices or salt.

Can cats eat tomato?  - How to give tomato to my cat?

Quantity of tomato for cats

If you have decided to include tomatoes in your cat’s diet as a reward, you can offer 4-5 small cubes, once or twice a week.

If, on the other hand, you have decided to introduce tomatoes into your kitten’s daily ration, you should calculate the amount of tomato you should add based on nutritional needs of your cat, which will vary depending on its weight, its age, its physiological state and its level of activity. If you usually feed your cat a homemade ration, we recommend that you ask for advice from a professional specialized in animal nutrition, because only in this way can you guarantee that your pet’s diet is balanced and meets its nutritional needs. In this other article you will find information about what cats eat.

Contraindications of tomato for cats

Although, as we have seen, cats can eat red tomatoes, there are certain situations in which their contribution can be counterproductive:

Side effects of tomato for cats

As we have mentioned, green tomatoesas well as theThe stems and leaves of the tomato plantcontain a series of toxic substances (solanine, tomatine and some glycoproteins) that can cause a picture of intoxication in cats. Symptoms associated with this poisoning include:

  • hypersalivation
  • loss of appetite
  • Gastrointestinal upset.
  • Weakness.
  • Mydriasis (dilated pupils).
  • Bradycardia (decreased heart rate).

For this reason, it is important to keep green tomatoes and tomato plants out of the reach of cats. In case your cat has eaten green tomatoes or the toxic parts of them and shows symptoms associated with poisoning, go quickly to the veterinary center.

If you want to read more articles similar to Can cats eat tomato?we recommend that you enter our Home Diets section.


  • American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. Tomato Plant. Lycopersicon spp. Available at: https://www.aspca.org/pet-care/animal-poison-control/toxic-and-non-toxic-plants/tomato-plant
  • Spanish Federation of Nutrition. Tomato. Lycopersicom esculentum mill. Available at: fen.org.es/MercadoAlimentosFEN/pdfs/tomate.pdf