Cat looking at a plate of peas

Key takeaway

Peas are a healthy snack for cats, providing them with essential nutrients, including protein. Unfortunately, not all peas are good for your cat. Cats should only eat plain peas in moderation to prevent weight gain or complications with other illnesses.

Cats are carnivores, but that doesn't mean they won't enjoy eating vegetables from time to time. Cats can eat peas, which is considered a safe and healthy treat for cats. Peas are some of the safest human foods to share with your pet, and many cats enjoy them. As a pet parent, you must watch your cat's diet and nutrition closely, so you might wonder whether some foods are safe before feeding them to your pet.

If you're asking yourself," can cats eat peas?" the answer is yes. However, there are many different types of peas, and some are not safe for cats. For example, can cats eat black-eyed peas? Actually, no; black-eyed peas are difficult for cats to digest, so while they're non-toxic, they could cause GI problems. Because the type of peas you feed your cat matters, it can get confusing knowing what you can and can't give them. We're here to help. Keep reading to learn more about feeding your cat peas.

Cats can eat peas that are frozen, fresh, or cooked without seasonings or oils

Are Peas Beneficial To A Cat's Diet?

Peas are some of the most nutrient-rich vegetables to share with cats. However, their diet must be balanced and full of meat protein to ensure optimal health. Peas are a healthy source of protein and carbohydrates your cat needs, but they're only a treat and should never make up more than 10% of your cat's diet. However, since they're low in calories, they make a great treat for most cats, including those that need to monitor and manage their weight.

Peas contain many beneficial vitamins for cats, including:

  • Vitamin B
  • Vitamin K
  • Vitamin C
  • Iron
  • Copper
  • Potassium1

Even though peas have tons of nutrients, cats typically don't need human foods in their diet because they get all of their essential vitamins and minerals from their cat food. Ultimately, cats should get all the protein they need from their kibble or wet food, which contains meat. However, peas can make a healthy treat, and there's no harm in sharing a pea or two with your cat if you're making some for yourself.

Vitamins and minerals found in peas

Types of Peas Cats Can Eat

Additionally, there are some types of peas you should never feed your cat.

  • Can cats eat green peas? Green peas, also known as garden peas, are safe for cats, and they're the most common type of peas people eat with dinner.
  • Can cats eat snap peas? Snap peas, also known as sugar snap peas, are similar to green peas, but the whole pod is eaten instead of just the peas. So if you've ever wondered,"Can cats eat sugar snap peas?" you now know they're completely safe for pets, including cats.
  • Can cats eat black-eyed peas? Cats should not consume black-eyed peas because they can lead to GI problems. Additionally, these peas contain high amounts of sodium, which can be bad for cats.

Frozen, fresh, and cooked peas are all healthy ways to feed your cat the types of peas that they can eat. Cats should not eat canned peas because they may contain added salt or sugar and preservatives that may harm your cat's digestive system.

When cooking peas, never use butter, oil, or any seasonings like salt or garlic because they're not necessary and can be poisonous to your pet.

How To Safely Feed Your Cat Peas

Feeding your cat peas is safe, and they make a great alternative to unhealthy treats. However, feeding your cat, any type of human food comes with risks. It's important to talk to your vet before adding something new to your pet's diet, especially if they have a health condition.

Additionally, you should watch for signs of food intolerance or allergies, such as vomiting and diarrhea. If your cat has symptoms after eating any amount of peas, stop feeding them peas immediately and monitor them to ensure their symptoms aren't getting worse. If your cat's symptoms are caused by the peas, they should subside in a few hours to a few days once the peas leave their system.

It's best to start by feeding your cat a small amount first and monitor them for signs of illness to ensure your cat isn't allergic or doesn't have an intolerance to peas. If your cat does tolerate peas, make sure you don't overfeed them because overfeeding your cat peas can lead to similar GI issues.

It's always best to feed your cat peas in moderation. Not only does overfeeding your pet cause discomfort and lead to diarrhea or even vomiting, but it can also lead to weight gain and obesity. While peas are low in calories, treats like peas should not make up more than 10% of their diets.

When feeding your cat peas, always feed them plain peas only. Never put any seasoning on them or cook them in butter or oil. While you may enjoy your peas a certain way, your cat should never eat peas with seasonings or cooking oils. Not only can seasonings like garlic be lethal to pets,2 but cooking oils can lead to weight gain and GI issues.

What Other Vegetables Can Cats Eat?

While peas are one of the healthiest foods to share with your pet because they're a good source of protein and low in calories, there are other vegetables you can use for treats, including carrots, cucumber, and broccoli.3

Of course, it's always best to consult your vet before feeding your cat anything new that can exacerbate health conditions or lead to serious outcomes. For example, while many vegetables are safe for cats, feeding your cat peas or any other vegetables might not be a good idea if they have diabetes or kidney disease.

Additionally, vegetables have little nutritional value for cats, even though peas are considered one of the healthiest options. Your cat needs a healthy diet that's packed with protein, and peas don't contain enough protein to sustain a healthy diet. However, they can make a good alternative to unhealthy cat treats.

Can Cats Eat Peas?: FAQs

Are peas poisonous to cats?

Garden peas and snap peas are safe for cats, but other types of peas are not. When feeding your cat peas, they can eat them fresh, frozen, or cooked. However, you shouldn't feed your cat peas from a can that contains added sodium. If you decide to cook peas for your cat, never use butter, oil, or any seasonings. However, you can steam the peas plain to help your cat chew them and reduce the risk of choking.

Why do cats love peas?

Cats love all types of human foods, so it's no wonder they love a delicious yet nutritious snack like peas. Peas are high in protein and fiber, which can make your cat crave them when you're eating them. They're a low-calorie snack that can be a healthy alternative to other types of unhealthy cat treats.

How many peas can a cat eat?

It's always best to feed your cat peas in moderation, so a few peas should be enough to share a healthy snack with them. However, never feed them a human-sized portion of peas because it can result in GI problems. Additionally, you might not want to feed your cat too much food outside of their regular diet, especially if it makes them feel full and can prevent them from eating their cat food, which is loaded with all the essential nutrients they need to stay healthy and strong.

Cat paw reaching for plate of peas

Final Notes

Being a pet parent means being completely responsible for your cat's health and wellness, including their diet and knowing which foods are safe and which aren't. Feeding your cat peas could be a great treat alternative, especially if your cat loves peas. However, it's important to only feed your cat peas in moderation and not on a daily basis. Instead, you can only feed them plain peas when you're making them yourself. But remember, never feed your cat peas with seasoning or those that have been cooked in oils.

Knowing exactly how to feed your cat can be difficult for pet parents, especially if their cats have health problems. Talking to a vet about your cat's diet and nutrition can ensure they're getting all the nutrients they need to stay healthy. Dutch can help you determine which foods are right for your cat. By trying telemedicine for pets, you'll have access to a Dutch licensed veterinarian from the comfort of your own home to ensure your cat is eating a healthy, well-balanced diet.

References

  1. "Peas, Raw, Green." Peas, Raw, Green Nutrition Facts and Analysis., https://www.nutritionvalue.org/Peas%2C_raw%2C_green_nutritional_value.html.

  2. "What Should I Feed My Cat." RSPCA Knowledgebase, 9 Nov. 2018, https://kb.rspca.org.au/knowledge-base/what-should-i-feed-my-cat/.

  3. "People Foods Your Cat Can Eat: Pictures." WebMD, WebMD, https://pets.webmd.com/cats/ss/slideshow-people-foods-cats-can-eat.