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 RobtheVet Your Own Question
RobtheVet, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 84
Experience:  Veterinarian for 12 years. Small animal, emergency and shelter medicine.
Type Your Cat Question Here...
RobtheVet is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My vet said it was OK for cats to ingest tomatoes/sauce.

Resolved Question:

My vet said it was OK for cats to ingest tomatoes/sauce. Two days ago he had some Goya sardines packed in tomato sauce, and while he didn''t lick most of the sauce, he gobbled the sardines. Doing a search, it seems tomatoes are toxic to cats, and I fear he might have solanine poisoning as he seems to be exhibiting the symptoms I have been able find. I cannot reach the vet (we are rural, few vets, and they spend most of their time at farms). Is there anything I can do. I am not sure of his age, but guestimate he is anywhere from 15-17 years old. Please help.
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Cat
Expert:  RobtheVet replied 8 years ago.

To be honest with you I had to look this one up myself. I didn't think tomatoes were necessarily a problem. I found a posting on a veterinary website from a member of the animal poison control regarding the subject:

xxxxx xxxxx on 09/28/2004 12:14:06 pm ET

Can tomatoes be toxic to dogs or cats?


Go to First Message Go to Previous Message Go to Next Message Go to Last Message

Charlotte Means on 09/28/2004 2:49:49 pm ET

Tomatoes are a member of the nightshade family, and IF the dog or cat ate enough of the foliage, stems, etc toxicity is definitely possible, although mild GI upset is the most likely scenario.

Tomatoes contain alpha-tomatine. The concentration from highest to lowest is flowers> small stems > leaves > calyces > small immature fruits. Very little tomatine is in ripe fruit (which is a really good thing considering how much I love tomatoes).

The estimated toxic dose, assuming 5% tomatine in the leaves, is 1 kg leaves/ 100 kg bw. So pretty much true toxicity is a large animal thing.

Charlotte Means, DVM, MLIS
Veterinary Poison Information Specialist
ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center

Reding this I would not think that the tomatoes were necessarily a problem unless they were unripe and there were a good amount of them. I found another posting which seemed to confirm this as well.

I hope this helped to answer your question. let me know if you need more info or if you have more info for me reguarding your cat's signs.
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Symptoms: Vomiting, seriously sloppy poop, seems to be trembling, won't eat/refusing food (drank a couple of laps of tuna juice), lower abdomin 'pulsating" (for want of a better word), lethargic, lower lids are up, doing that funny purr he does when he's not feeling well.    See as one of many sites that talk about this condition.
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Hello? Anyone there? Is there anything I can do to ease his discomfort until I can get him to his vet? (Emergency vet 30 miles away and outrageously expensive and we are seriously poor). Pepto Bismol maybe, or will that maybe exacerbate the condition? If not the tomatoes, what could cause such symptoms? I'm sorry....I'm frantic -- he's my baby.
Expert:  RobtheVet replied 8 years ago.
I'm sorry to hear that.

It certaily could be that your kitty is having problems with the sardines rather than the tomato sauce. At the minimum I think that your kitty probably needs some fluids under her skin, some drugs to stop the vomiting and some medication to treat her colitis. At this point she definately needs some care. She will become progressively more dehydrated without. Since she is vomiting as well she really needs injectables as orals will simply come back up.

Let me know if you need any more info. I truly hope your little boy does ok.
RobtheVet and other Cat Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Thanks for your time. I'll do what I can until I can get him to the vet tomorrow afternoon.