Can Cats Eat Popcorn?

Popcorn is one of the most famous snacks in the world, it is widely available and easy to eat. It is basically a popped and puffed version of corn; that’s why it is also called “popcorn”. It’s has been eaten by humans for many centuries, but the modern popcorn is a product of commercialization which is done by the commercial popcorn machine invented in late 19th Century. Popcorn is amazing and you eat it all the time. Watching a movie is incomplete without popcorn. And even more incomplete when you are watching your favorite TV series on Netflix at home.

But at home when you’re watching Netflix with a bowl of popcorn your cat who is sitting in your lap also eats that popcorn with you. It’s a familiar scene for all cat owners. You toss some popcorn in your mouth but few of them fall on your lap and as you use your reflexes to take the popcorn your cat has already eaten it all. And with the crunching sound, you ask yourself, “Can Cats eat popcorn?”. And considering that on 19th January it is “National Popcorn Day” in America, it’s a good time to clear your doubts on Popcorn and Cats.

can cats eat popcorn

Can Cats Eat Popcorn?
The answer depends on what kind of cat you have. If you have a kitten, a very young kitten then you should avoid giving her popcorn as it may choke her if not eaten properly. The same goes for elderly cats, as they are old they won’t chew the popcorn and while swallowing it may stick in the throat and can be harmful. But if you are talking about the majority of cats which are adults then it’s probably ok if they eat a few. But giving them more is not recommended as some cats might get digestive problems. It also depends upon the way you cook the popcorn.

Cat’s digestive system is a little sensitive, even if you change the brand of cat food, it may be unsettling for your cat in starting. Now introducing some human food to the cat may cause some trouble for your cat. Cats are not made to eat salt at the same level as humans and popcorn contains a huge amount of salt. Not just salt but sugar or any type of spices can cause alarm to your cat’s digestive system.


Popcorn and Cat Diet

Whereas a cat’s diet mostly is from protein, as it helps them in their daily life. Protein gives cats energy to play around you and to walk for hours. Cats are also carnivorous and cat food is mixed in a perfect combo to give them protein and fat in the perfect quantity. Popcorn contains fiber which is very good for the human body but when it comes to cats it doesn’t work that way. If you will add more fiber to your cat’s diet, it won’t make any difference and won’t do any good for her. Veterinarians don’t recommend adding popcorn as fiber to your cat’s diet. If you want to add fiber to your cat’s diet than there are many other safe and digestive friendly things.

Popcorn does contain protein as it comes from corn, but the problem is not the corn, it is the additives in popcorn. Normally we bring the ready to eat popcorn which we put it in the oven and in 2 minutes we can eat hot and tasty popcorn, but that popcorn with additives are not recommended for cats. The easy and microwave friendly popcorn has many different spices and seasonings which can be dangerous for cats if eaten in a high quantity. Nowadays we bring the popcorn which is filled with salt, garlic, onions, butter and many other seasonings and these things are not suitable for a cat. Sodium levels in popcorn are also very high and sodium can increase their blood pressure. For a cat, it may be a big problem and it will disturb the balance of her body.

Can Cats eat Popcorn – Bottom Line
With all those additives and seasonings in your popcorn, your cat is not completely safe as it may hurt her digestive system and may cause some long term problems. Popcorn in general is also harmful for kittens and elderly cats as it may stick in their throat and cause a chocking problem. You always have to be careful around the cats with popcorn. But we are talking about adult young cats who can chew, popcorn well; for them it is not dangerous if made without all those additives and seasoning. A fresh bowl of yellow crispy popcorn without any added seasonings, spices and additives might not be a problem for your cat

If you are giving popcorn to your cat then you must make sure that it is without any additives and seasoning plus that you are not giving those unpopped kernels. We all know that there are many unpopped corn kernels that come in every bag full of popcorn. Don’t give your cat the popcorn which is full of salt or sugar or any type of flavor. Cat’s digestive system is sensitive and changing her diet or giving her something new may cause a little problem in her health. And it applies for every popcorn except the simple without salt or any other thing. Any type of popcorn like chocolate, coated in caramel , cheese or heavy powdered popcorn will damage your cat’s digestive system.

You should not give popcorn to your cat in bulk but if you give her just few to eat, make sure that the popcorn is fresh and perfectly popped and no salt or sugar or any other topping is being used in it. Make sure she doesn’t choke on it. And always remember that there could be side effects if given in a large quantity.



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