Can Cats Eat Pistachios?

When it comes to safe foods for cats to eat, there are a lot of rumors floating around online. One that keeps coming up is whether cats can eat pistachios.

Abby loved by Lisa Cats with tongues sticking out
Abby loved by Lisa Klepacz – from the post, Pictures of Cats with their Tongues Out

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So, can cats eat pistachios, or are they harmful?

a cat licking in blue background and photo of pistachio side by side
Photo credit: Deposit Photos.

Pistachio nuts aren’t particularly harmful to cats. They aren’t toxic, but it’s probably not wise to have them eat it. As a reader wrote on our Facebook page, “My cat ingested one, and it got stuck in her intestines and had to have surgery.” Most cats are probably attracted to the salt on the pistachio itself.

Pistachios aren’t recommended as part of a regular diet for a number of reasons.

  1. Firstly, they contain high-fat levels, too much of which can cause pancreatitis in cats. They also contain significant levels of dietary fiber, which, while an integral part of a healthy cat’s diet, can, in excess, lead to stomach upset and diarrhea.
  2. Pistachios are also sometimes coated in additives that are not part of a healthy cat’s diet, salt being the most common. Too much salt can cause gastrointestinal issues or even more serious health problems.
  3. Finally, the shells of pistachios can also act as a choking hazard or cause intestinal obstruction if swallowed.

As an aside, it’s also not a good idea to let your cat eat pistachio-flavored ice cream, as the sugar and additives are bad for cats.

Collage of cats outside

What nuts are poisonous to cats?

While many nuts are not particularly toxic to cats, they generally should be avoided for the same reason pistachios should be. The high salt, fiber, and fat content can cause discomfort and health issues. Macadamia nuts, however, are known to be seriously toxic to dogs. While no significant evidence exists to suggest that the same is true for cats, it’s probably best to be safe and avoid letting your cat eat any.

To sum up, pistachios may not be poisonous, but they are not part of a healthy cat’s diet and, in excess, can be seriously harmful.

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Hi, I’m Jenny Dean, creator of Floppycats! Ever since my Aunt got the first Ragdoll cat in our family, I have loved the breed. Inspired by my childhood Ragdoll cat, Rags, I created Floppycats to connect, share and inspire other Ragdoll cat lovers around the world,

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One Comment

  1. WOW! Fascinating! I had no idea about any of this! TYSVM for this SUPER PAWESOME & FABULOUS post, Jenny honey! 🙂 <3

    Big hugs & lots of love & purrs!

    Patti & Miss Pink Sugarbelle 🙂 <3 <3 <3

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