Can Cats Eat Raw Chicken?

Can cats eat raw chicken

A lot of people are unclear about whether or not it is okay to give raw meat to cats. Most everyone knows that raw chicken is not good for humans, but what about felines? 

If you are thinking about giving this food to your cat, you’ll need to get the facts first.

Is Raw Chicken Safe for Cats to Eat?

Cats have sensitive stomachs, so they are definitely vulnerable to the parasites and bacteria often found in raw chicken. If your cat were to ingest E. coli or salmonella, they could die. This is by far the biggest risk that is associated with giving your feline friend raw meat of any kind.

Some of the symptoms of a bacterial infection contracted from raw chicken include:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Lethargic behavior
  • Lack of appetite

If you notice your cat exhibiting any of these symptoms, you’ll need to keep a close eye on them. If they continue to get worse, you’ll need to get them to the vet right away.

That being said, a cat’s natural diet consists of nothing but meat. In the wild, these animals hunt and eat a variety of animals. Their prey tends to contain high amounts of protein, a decent amount of fat, and tons of carbohydrates. 

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Commercial Food with Raw Chicken

There are lots of commercial cat foods that feature chicken as the main ingredient, but it’s not raw per se. The chicken that is included in these foods is usually prepared with either a flash freezing or pasteurization process. This neutralizes the threat of any potentially harmful parasites or bacteria.

cat eats row chicken meat

Health Benefits of Raw Chicken for Cats

You’ll quickly find that there are a lot of nutritional benefits associated with giving your cat raw chicken, including:

  • Protein: Chicken contains lots of protein, which cats definitely need on a daily basis to remain healthy.
  • Vitamins: Raw chicken also contains B vitamins that are essential for good health. The vitamin D in this food helps with maintaining their vision and developing their muscles.
  • Taurine: cat food and raw chicken are both high in taurine. This organic compound is also essential to your pet’s overall health.

Which Parts of Raw Chicken are Suitable for Cats?

There are certain parts of raw chicken that are suitable for cats. It is important that you get this information before giving your cat any of this food.

1. Lean Muscle

The lean muscle is by far the best part of any raw chicken for your cat. It is packed with amino acids, vitamins and minerals that will benefit your kitty’s health in a number of ways. This will give them a big nutritional boost, and it’s a great way to supplement their diet.

2. Ground up Bones

You can give your cat raw chicken bones, but you’ll want to grind them up until they basically turn to dust. Giving these animals intact bones poses too much of a choking hazard. There is also a chance that a bone shard could cut the lining of your cat’s stomach. The calcium that your cat will get from the ground up bones will help keep their own bones strong.

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3. Giblets

Raw chicken organs will provide your cat with tons of nutrients that can improve their overall health. While not all cats are a big fan of how these organs taste, it is worth a try.

cat and chick

Tips for Giving Your Cat Raw Chicken

You’ll need to keep these tips in mind when it comes time to give your cat raw chicken for the first time.

1. Avoid Minced Meat

You should never give your cat any minced meat, as there is a big risk of bacterial infection associated with it. There is a very good chance that this meat contains bacteria that could be lethal to your pet.

2. Serve It Plain

When you give your cat raw chicken to eat, do not put anything on it. This includes salt, pepper, or other seasonings. The meat should be served completely plain. This will ensure that the meat’s nutritional is not undermined.

3. Buy Raw Chicken for Cats

You’ll also want to buy raw chicken that is specifically meant for cats. You should be able to find this meat at a butcher shop in your area. It might take a little bit of looking around, but it is well worth the effort.

The fact is that the raw chicken you find in most grocery stores is not fit for feline consumption, as it contains too much bacteria. You simply do not want to risk your pet’s health by feeding them this meat.

4. Don’t Give Them Too Much

It can be difficult to know how much raw chicken you should give your cat. A good rule to follow is to give your cat just two percent of their total body weight in a given day.

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While giving your cat raw chicken to eat can benefit their health, you don’t want to give them too much. This can lead to excess weight gain. If you allow your cat to become obese, they are likely to develop all sorts of serious health issues.


  • Cats are naturally carnivores, which means that they only eat meat in the wild.
  • Giving your cat raw chicken can be dangerous, as it comes with at least some risk of bacterial infection.
  • Commercial cat foods that feature raw chicken as an ingredient has been pasteurized or flash frozen to eliminate bacteria.
  • The lean muscle of raw chicken is the best and most nutritious part for your cat.
  • You can give your cat giblets, but never minced meat. The latter contains too much bacteria.
  • If you want to give your cat the bones from raw chicken, you’ll need to grind them up into dust.
  • Make sure that you only give your kitty raw chicken that is meant for cats.
  • Always serve the chicken plain without any seasonings.
  • You can give your cat raw chicken every day, but you don’t want to overdo it. Giving them too much can lead to obesity.