Can Cats Eat Beans?

Can Cats Eat Beans
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Last Updated on May 20, 2023 by Pauline G. Carter

Yes, cats can eat beans but in moderation and only certain types of beans. Beans are a great source of protein, fiber, and vitamins for humans, but can cats eat beans as well? The answer is yes, but with some limitations.

Cats are obligate carnivores and require a diet that is high in animal-based protein. Feeding your cat too many beans can lead to an upset stomach, diarrhea, or even nutrient deficiencies. However, some beans such as green beans and peas are safe for cats to eat in moderation.

Keep in mind that it’s always best to consult with a veterinarian before introducing new foods into your cat’s diet. In this article, we’ll discuss which beans are safe for cats, the benefits and risks of feeding your cat beans and how to prepare and serve them safely.

Can Cats Eat Beans?


Types Of Beans That Cats Can Eat

Can cats eat beans? The answer is a yes, but only some types of beans are safe and nutritious for cats to consume.

  • Green beans: Rich in vitamins a, c, and k, green beans also offer fiber and iron that can aid in digestion, immunity, and blood health.
  • Chickpeas: A great source of plant-based protein, chickpeas contain essential amino acids, folate, and magnesium that can help boost a cat’s energy and muscle growth.
  • Lentils: Packed with fiber, nutrients, and antioxidants, lentils can regulate the blood sugar, improve the heart, and prevent cancer.
  • Kidney beans: Although not recommended for regular feeding, kidney beans can provide some protein, minerals, and carbohydrates to cats in moderation.

Just like any cat food, beans need to be prepared appropriately before serving them to cats.

  • Always cook the beans fresh and thoroughly to eliminate any toxins and improve digestibility.
  • Avoid adding salt, spices, oil, or sugar to the beans, as these can be harmful to cats’ health.
  • Introduce beans to cats gradually and in small portions, to allow the digestive system to adjust and prevent any adverse reactions.
  • Observe the cat’s behavior and physical response to the beans, and discontinue if there are any symptoms of allergy or discomfort.

With the right selection and preparation, beans can be a healthy and tasty addition to a cat’s diet. However, they should not replace the regular cat food that meets the specific nutritional needs of the feline. As always, consulting with a veterinarian is recommended before making any significant changes to the cat’s diet.

Types Of Beans That Cats Should Avoid

As a pet owner, it is natural to want to share your food with your adorable feline friend. However, before feeding your cat anything, it is essential to determine whether it is suitable for them to consume. When it comes to beans, it is vital to note that not all of them are safe for cats.

In this section, we will discuss different types of beans that are harmful or toxic to cats and what makes them dangerous.

  • Kidney beans

Kidney beans are a type of legume that are unsafe for cats. These beans contain a toxin called phytohaemagglutinin, which can cause vomiting and diarrhea in cats. In severe cases, ingesting kidney beans may cause dehydration, lethargy, and even death.

  • Baked beans

Another type of bean that cats should avoid is baked beans. Baked beans are typically cooked with additional ingredients that are harmful to cats, such as onion and garlic powder. Cats lack the necessary enzymes to break down these ingredients properly, leading to digestive issues and toxicity.

Potential Health Risks Associated With Consuming Harmful Beans

Feeding cats beans that are toxic or harmful can have severe consequences on their health.

  • Vomiting and diarrhea

Phytohaemagglutinin present in kidney beans can irritate a cat’s gastrointestinal tract, leading to vomiting and diarrhea. Cats may also experience abdominal discomfort and bloating.

  • Dehydration

If untreated, vomiting and diarrhea caused by ingesting harmful beans can lead to dehydration in cats. It is essential to ensure that your cat has access to clean water at all times to help with rehydration.

  • Anemia

Onion and garlic powder, present in baked beans, can cause damage to a cat’s red blood cells, leading to anemia. This condition can cause symptoms such as lethargy, weakness and pale gums.

Preventing Cats From Accidentally Ingesting Harmful Beans

Here are some tips to prevent your cat from accidentally ingesting harmful beans:

  • Keep beans out of reach

It is crucial to keep beans and any food items that may contain harmful ingredients such as onion and garlic powder out of reach from your feline friend.

  • Read ingredient labels carefully

If you are feeding your cat store-bought or canned food that may contain beans, make sure to read the ingredient label carefully to ensure it is safe for your cat to consume.

  • Consult with a veterinarian

If your cat has accidentally ingested harmful beans or is showing symptoms of toxicity, take them to a veterinarian as soon as possible. It is essential to seek medical attention immediately to avoid any long-term health complications.

While some beans are safe for cats to consume, others can be harmful and cause adverse health effects. As a responsible pet owner, it is crucial to only feed your feline friend foods that are safe for them to consume, and in case of any doubt or suspicion of ingestion of harmful bean, it’s best to contact a veterinarian immediately.

Frequently Asked Questions For Can Cats Eat Beans?

Are Beans Safe For Cats To Eat?

While beans aren’t toxic to cats, they’re hard to digest and can cause digestive issues.

Which Beans Can Cats Eat?

Green beans are the safest for cats as they are not toxic and won’t cause digestive issues.

Can Cats Eat Canned Beans?

Cats should not eat canned beans because beans in cans are often mixed with spices and preservatives.

How Much Beans Can A Cat Eat?

Cats should only eat a small amount of beans as a treat, about one or two cooked beans.

What Are The Benefits Of Feeding Cats Beans?

Beans are a source of protein, fiber, and other vitamins for cats, but there are better protein options.


Feeding your feline friend beans could be a healthy and nutritious addition to their diet, but only if done correctly. It is essential to keep in mind the type of beans, the quantity, and the cooking method. While some beans are safe for cats and provide them with numerous health benefits, others could cause discomfort and digestion issues.

Always consult with a veterinarian before introducing any new food to your cat’s diet to ensure it is safe and appropriate for their needs. Remember to introduce new foods gradually and in moderation to avoid any adverse reactions. As a cat owner, you play a crucial role in your cat’s diet and health, so make sure you make informed choices and consider your furry friend’s well-being first and foremost.

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