How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Cher Your Own Question
Cher, Feline Specialist
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 20807
Experience:  Feline Healthcare & Behavior Specialist 40+ years Experience
Type Your Cat Question Here...
Cher is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Is salmon, shrimp and tuna bad for cats

Resolved Question:

I have some very spoiled cats (9 of them) and once a day they eat salmon, once a day they eat tuna and once a day they eat shrimp. I also provide them dry and moist food (fancy feast, friskies, etc.) so they don't eat salmon, shrimp and tuna exclusively. Is this bad for a pet? I don't want to make my babies sick but they do seem to love thier seafood. Thanks!
Submitted: 9 years ago.
Category: Cat
Expert:  Cher replied 9 years ago.
Hi, and thanks for your question.

Can you tell me how much salmon, tuna and shrimp they eat each day?

Is this fresh fish/seafood that you cook for them, or canned? If it's fresh, how is it prepared?

How long have you been feeding them the seafood?

Are they eating, drinking, using the litterbox and playing/active/alert as usual?

Thanks for any additional detail.

Customer: replied 9 years ago.
Reply to Jessesmom's Post: In terms of salmon - they eat chicken of the sea canned salmon and have a tablespoon of that daily. The tuna, they don't really eat that regularly, they mainly have the tuna juice but if they do eat it the amount is probably a teaspoon and not all of the cats eat that.

The shrimp is frozen shrimp from wal-mart that I thaw out daily. Between all of them they probably eat half to 3/4 of a bag daily. I've been feeding them this for about a year and a half.

They all seem to be very healthy, they don't go outside and are playing, alert, use thier litter boxes frequently. I do have one cat that is appearing sluggish the past week but I think he has hairballs because he has been trying to cough them up. I started giving him laxatone last night (he doesn't eat the tuna or shrimp, just the salmon)

The reason I'm asking is that I see conflicting information about this on the web - some people say it is okay to give your cats these things and some don't. About 3 months ago I had to take a new addition to the household to the vet because he was running a fever for no apparent reason and I told him what I fed them and he didn't seem concerned (blue is over the infection he had) so I just wanted to make sure the only thing I was hurting was my bank balance. I love my kitties and I don't want to ever do anything to hurt them.

Expert:  Cher replied 9 years ago.
Hi again, and thanks for your additional information.

If your cats are eating a premium cat food whose primary ingredient is meat, that's fine. If these 'snacks' of fresh seafood and tuna are given daily, these are the drawbacks: if the one tablespoon of canned salmon is shared among them, they're not getting that much; if you give each cat a tablespoon of salmon a day, I'd cut it to a teaspoon for each. That amount of salmon shouldn't do any harm. Also, give them the oil from the canned salmon. The canned tuna, if they just usually get the juice, it should be tuna packed in oil, so they can reap the benefits of the Omega 3 fatty acids, to help their skin and coat (same reason to give the salmon oil). The tuna packed in water contains a lot of sodium and doesn't serve any nutritional purpose. The shrimp is of concern. Your research was correct, in that feeding a lot of seafood to cats can result in urinary or kidney problems. This is due to the minute particles of sand that may still be in the shrimp and also, shrimp is high in cholesterol and does contain iodine.

While I understand your devotion to your cats and wanting them to enjoy the best food, I would definitely cut down on the amount of shrimp, and make sure you're feeding them a premium cat food like Wellness, Felidae, Innova, or Natural Balance (just to name a few), which are usually available at most major pet supply stores. The canned Fancy Feast is alright, but Friskies dry food is not considered a 'premium' food. If the ingredients on your cats' foods contain corn, gluten, wheat, and artificial preservatives/colors/flavors, these are all common allergens for cats and it's best to feed a more natural and artificial preservative-free diet.

Keep in mind that prepared cat foods should contain meat as their first ingredient (or at lease among the first 3), because cats are obligate carnivores, and prepared cat foods also contain all the vitamins, minerals, etc., essential to your cats' nutritional needs, for example, taurine, necessary for good vision.

Most cats do love the taste and smell of seafood, but it's sort of a fallacy that cats should love and eat, only fish--when wild cats hunt, they're land animals, and they hunt for, and eat, meat. Did you ever see a cat wading in the ocean for fish? : ) So, essentially, cats need to eat meat to be healthy and this should be their primary source of protein. The canned fish and frozen shrimp you're feeding now, should only be a treat, but just try to cut down a little, gradually, on the amounts, especially of the shrimp.

Your cats sound very loved and well-cared for, and for that, you should be applauded! : )

Much good luck to you and all your furbabies! Please let me know if you ever have further questions. Thanks.

Cher, Feline Specialist
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 20807
Experience: Feline Healthcare & Behavior Specialist 40+ years Experience
Cher and 3 other Cat Specialists are ready to help you

JustAnswer in the News:

Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.

What Customers are Saying:

  • The response from the Expert literally saved my cat's life. Thank you from the bottom of my heart -- I will recommend all of my friends to you!!! Lucia Rincon, Georgia
< Previous | Next >
  • The response from the Expert literally saved my cat's life. Thank you from the bottom of my heart -- I will recommend all of my friends to you!!! Lucia Rincon, Georgia
  • I will use your service again. I was very pleased with the response and the fact that you have a low cost option so that those of us on fixed income can have questions answered. I will also recommend you to others. Karen Jackson Heights, NY
  • You helped us to come to what we believe is a better next step in Jack's treatment, and hopefully have saved us $800!! Thanks again! Jack's Mom Tuscon, AZ
  • The vet said that the information and my following it will be what made the difference. Thanks again for being so very helpful. Tracy Grayson, LA
  • My oldest male cat had a seizure this evening. This site was the first place I could think of to go after the seizure had passed. Dr. Lucy was fantastic and she was spot on! Debbie USA
  • I must tell you I found this site by accident and was amazed when I asked a question of the Veteranians online. I wish I could have found it sooner it could have made such a difference in the outcome of my pet's surgery. However, I am passing along the information to my sister-in-law (a cat-rescue person who is also a nurse), and perhaps it will help someone else who may experience the same problem. The doctor who answered my question was amazing, and while it didn't come it time to change the outcome of my situation, it is reassuring to know the caliber of Vets/Doctors that you have at JustAnswer. Thank you for being there. Alice H. Jacksonville, Fl.
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C. Freshfield, Liverpool, UK

Meet The Experts:

  • Terri


    Feline Healthcare Expert

    Satisfied Customers:

    Expert in feline health and behavior. 20 years experience with cats.
< Last | Next >
  • Terri's Avatar


    Feline Healthcare Expert

    Satisfied Customers:

    Expert in feline health and behavior. 20 years experience with cats.
  • Dr. Gary's Avatar

    Dr. Gary

    Cat Veterinarian

    Satisfied Customers:

    DVM, Emergency Veterinarian; BS (Physiology) Michigan State Univ
  • Cher's Avatar


    Feline Specialist

    Satisfied Customers:

    Feline Healthcare & Behavior Specialist 40+ years Experience
  • Lori's Avatar


    Feline Healthcare

    Satisfied Customers:

    16 yrs health care mgmt & issues relating to cats, reproductive issues and multicat environments
  • Micki's Avatar


    Expert in cat behavior and health

    Satisfied Customers:

    Expert in cat medical and behavior issues.
  • Candy R.'s Avatar

    Candy R.

    Veterinary Technician

    Satisfied Customers:

    Practicing Veterinary Technician for 26 years.Former Veterinary Practice Owner, Technician Trainer
  • Theresa's Avatar


    A Voice for your Pet

    Satisfied Customers:

    19+ years in animal medicine as a veterinary technician