Can Cats Eat Smoked Salmon? 7 Possible Risks You Must Know

3/11/2023 - 2 Comments

Smoked salmon is a favorite food all over the world. Everyone wants it on their dinner plate, even your cats.

It is not surprising that cats enjoy smoked salmon. However, can cats eat smoked salmon?

Let's delve more into this subject to help you decide whether to include smoked salmon in your cat's diet.

Can Cats Eat Smoked Salmon?

Smoked salmon

Can cats have smoked salmon? Yes, they can. Due to its many nutritional advantages, smoked salmon is a healthy diet. However, eating too much smoked salmon may lead to potential hazards for cats.

Salmon that has been smoked is an excellent omega-3 and protein source. It could be a reasonable approach to give your cat's food some taste while boosting his calcium and minerals.

Being carnivores, cats require proteins derived from meat to be healthy. Taurine is also necessary for them to avoid heart disease.

Also, it's a great source of omega 3, which supports the healthy operation of your cat's immune system. Moreover, salmon provides vitamin D, B-6, and B-12, all of which are excellent sources of nutrition.

However, use it sparingly. The smoked salmon's high salt content and possibly heavy metals might harm your cat if fed significantly. In addition, salmon can make a cat's excrement exceedingly odorless, which is a more urgent issue.

It shouldn't be a regular part of your cat's diet. For your cat, fresh salmon could be a better option.

Salmon is an ingredient that you can find in various cat products. You can use cat treats with the salmon nutrients without the dangers of smoked salmon.

There are other ways for your cat to consume the nutrients mentioned above. Meat products may provide your cat with all the required nutrients.

Is Smoked Salmon Good For Cats To Eat?

Cat eating from a bowl

Some cat owners are too afraid to feed their cats smoked salmon because it contains a lot of salt, high fat, and heavy metals.

Another problem is that many manufacturers treat the fish with herbs in addition to salt to give it the tastes they're going for. When buying smoked salmon, you should inspect these herbs because they may be hazardous to cats.

However, don't say no if your cat begs you to give her some smoked salmon when she notices you have put some on your plate. It will gratify her small heart, and she won't suffer from the odd treat.

You can always talk to your vet to feed your cat some smoked salmon. Lesser servings of smoked salmon won't hurt your beloved pet and may satisfy her curiosity for a time.

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Why Shouldn't You Feed Your Cat Smoked Salmon?

The following are some potential issues that might arise if you feed your cats smoked salmon as a treat:

Salt Toxicosis

There is much salt in smoked salmon

Before smoking, salmon is often salted and sometimes coated with spices and herbs. Your cat's kidneys cannot tolerate the significant levels of salt it contains.

Cats who consume too much salt may develop hypernatremia. This condition puts your cat in a coma or even causes death depending on how it progresses.

Consider salt poisoning seriously since it can cause symptoms including diarrhea, vomiting, dehydration, and a reduced appetite. Extreme situations include seizures, irreversible organ damage, coma, tremors, and even death.

If you're worried about feeding your cat too much salt but still want to offer them smoked salmon, you could buy a brand that manufactures it with less sodium or create your own. As each cat has unique health requirements, first discuss with your veterinarian how much sodium is OK.


Cats often lose water more quickly than people do. Thus feeding your cat wet food is the ideal approach to increase their water consumption.   Sadly, smoked salmon is deficient in moisture. The smoking process removes more moisture.


Big fat cat

It's vital to note that smoked salmon includes unsaturated fats, which offer several health advantages for cats. They can lower inflammation, raise blood cholesterol levels, and protect against certain inflammatory disorders.

Indoor cats, on the other hand, only need 20 calories per pound per day to stay at their current weight. Since smoked salmon has 20 calories per cubic inch, offering your cat a limited amount in one sitting should be safe.

Smoked salmon has a relatively high-fat content. Obesity can result from feeding your cat smoked salmon that is heavy in fat and salt.

Obesity in cats can cause significant health problems, including heart disease and diabetes. A cat's health and lifespan are adversely impacted by obesity.

Think about that the next time you give your cat some smoked salmon! If you are concerned about your cat's weight, talk to your veterinarian about feeding it smoked salmon.

Taurine Deficiency

One of the critical amino acids for felines is taurine. They require it to keep their heart muscles, immune and digestive systems operating correctly.

Your cat's immune system, digestive system, pregnancy, and fetal development need taurine to function correctly. Cats can get enough taurine from salmon but not from smoked salmon.

Taurine in salmon in minute amounts is largely eliminated during smoking. Regularly giving your cat smoked salmon can cause taurine deficiency, resulting in serious health problems like blindness, tooth decay, digestive issues, etc.

Another typical sign of taurine insufficiency is heart disease. Because cats' hearts are no longer functioning correctly, cats with heart disease may have problems breathing.

Make smoked salmon a rare treat rather than their primary source of nutrition. Talk to your pet's veterinarian about ensuring he consumes enough calories daily.

Metal Poisoning

Your body is protected from inflammation by histamines. Yet, histamine levels that are too high might cause allergic responses in cats.

Most of the wild salmon's life is spent in contaminated waterways, where it consumes parasites, poisons, and germs. Moreover, salmon can have significant concentrations of hazardous metals like mercury.

Cats' tiny kidneys and livers acquire these metals more quickly than humans, leading to neurological consequences.


Smoked salmon is a favorite food of cats. But, it has bones that might harm your cat by choking them and causing intestinal blockage.

Your cat pal might be in danger of dying in one of these scenarios. Hence, before providing your cat with salmon, make sure to remove all of the bones.

Salmon Allergy

A sick cat

When a cat's immune system encounters salmon protein, salmon allergy results, and the immune system is activated to fight it off.

Salmon allergy symptoms include sneezing, coughing, vomiting, diarrhea, and trouble breathing. Lips, throat, and tongue swelling can occur rarely.

If you notice any of these after giving salmon to your cat, see a veterinarian for help. Handling them as quickly as possible is preferable to prevent any potential accidents.

You can think of serving it as a treat now and then if it doesn't exhibit any adverse symptoms. Every time your cat consumes salmon, watch how they respond because allergic responses may take time to develop.

How To Give Your Cat Salmon Safely?

Cooked salmon

The best method to serve cooked salmon to your cats. Consider cooking the fish by grilling, roasting, or poaching after removing the head, fins, and bones.

Several recipes require additional ingredients. Salmon may lose certain nutrients with more profound cooking techniques, but it is still safe.

Cats can benefit from cooked salmon, but you must include it in a balanced diet. Keep the number of calories from treats in your pet's diet to 10% or less, advise veterinarians. Watch the following video to know how to bake salmon for cats:


Can cats eat smoked salmon? Yes, your cat benefits significantly from smoked salmon as a protein and good fats source when consumed in moderation.

Giving your cat too much-smoked salmon is not advised. To discover if they may benefit from adding smoked salmon to their diet, evaluate their current diet and state of health.

You can feed your cat smoked salmon by smoking it yourself without adding salt or other seasonings. If you provide your cat smoked salmon, please remove any residual bones that might be a choking danger.

Talking to your veterinarian is the recommended course of action. They will know what is best for your cat's health.

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About Billy Nguyen
I'm Billy Nguyen, currently CEO/Founder Cat Images, with over 3 years of experience in cat care and training. I hope the knowledge I share brings useful value to promote your pet care effectively.

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