Can Cats Eat Oatmeal? Benefits and Precautions of Feeding Oats to Cats

This post contains affiliate links, meaning Purrfect Cat Lovers earns a commission if you make a purchase through these links, at no extra cost to you.

You’re wondering if it’s cool to dish out some oatmeal to your kitty, right? The short and sweet of it is that cats can eat oatmeal, but it shouldn’t be their main chow. Think of it as them raiding your snack drawer and finding a bag of chips – not the healthiest pick, but not downright wrong either. Just remember to give it to them in small amounts, like an occasional treat.

Here’s a thought: rolled oats and instant oatmeal make a pretty decent cat nosh. Rolled oats are first zapped with steam and then flattened out. This makes them soft and easy on your cat’s fragile digestive system. Give them a nibble on some rolled oats and it’s like you handed them gourmet cookies with an unexpected crunch.

Instant oats are just rolled oats that went through culinary school; they’re pre-cooked, dried, and rolled out thin like a dime. They turn into goopy soup when cooked, and this may be something your cat finds pretty tasty and easy to lap up.

Understanding Cats and Oatmeal: An Overview

First things first: cats are carnivores, and that means they’re meat-heads for sure. Giving them oatmeal isn’t like handing them a steak, far from it. However, oatmeal can certainly be part of their diet; you can use it as an occasional snack.

If you ever wondered about off-the-stand cat foods, you may be surprised to find oatmeal on the ingredient list. In other words, it’s a common component in commercial cat food diets.

Can Cats Eat Oatmeal?

Cats can safely munch on a little oatmeal. While giving your cat oatmeal, think more along the lines of an occasional snack rather than a diet makeover. Unfortunately, some cats are actually lactose intolerant. So, mix the oatmeal with water, not milk. Also, don’t appoint oatmeal as their new food king. Remember that the key is moderation in every food you feed your cat.

Is Oatmeal Good For Cats?

The question now is whether oatmeal is good for cats, not just whether or not they can eat it. Oats contain some of the good stuff like proteins and fats, but your cat needs more from its food — like animal-based proteins.

However, oatmeal can be a decent side dish to your cat’s carnivorous platter. Just ensure their oatmeal is prepared sans sugar, honey, fruits, or spices. Keep it as plain as vanilla ice cream. Because of possible lactose intolerance, use water to mix the oatmeal instead of milk. Many cats lack the enzymes to properly digest cow juice.

Also, no matter how well cats can eat oatmeal, remember to dish it out in teeny bits. Otherwise, you’ll throw their dietary balance out of whack and cause more harm than good.

Can Cats Eat Oatmeal

The Benefits and Risks of Feeding Oatmeal to Cats

Here’s the deal: oatmeal isn’t entirely without its health benefits. It packs a decent amount of protein, fiber, and some vitamins too. However, your cat is a furry little bird of prey, not a bunny. In simple terms, animal-based foods, not plant-based, are their primary meal.

The fiber content can help your cat’s digestive health, as long as you don’t overdo it. Oatmeal can cause digestive problems if overfed. Overeating in general can make cats pile on the fluff (read: weight gain), which can be as problematic for them as it is for us.

Nutritional Value of Oats for Cats

Let’s break down what oats bring to your cat’s bowl. We’re talking about a fair amount of protein, some fiber, and traces of vitamins and minerals. Rolled oats and instant oatmeal, in particular, have a soft spot among the cat community. Ever wondered why?

The trick is in their preparation. Rolled oats are given the steam treatment and then flattened out, making them softer and easier for your cat to ingest. Tasty and gentle on their digestion, rolled oats can be considered an excellent ingredient in treats for your feline friend.

Next up, instant oats. They’re pre-cooked, dried, rolled, and pressed slightly thinner than rolled oats. Mostly, they get served as a sludgy mix after cooking slightly over 5-10 minutes. The good thing for your cat is that instant oats are soft, appetizing, and gut-friendly. It’s like wrapping nutrients in a delicious, easy-to-eat package for your kitty.

Potential Risks and Precautions When Cats Eat Oats

No need to ring the alarm or dial your vet on speed dial if your cat decides to taste-test your oatmeal while you’re not looking. Most cats cruise through eating a bit of oatmeal without any fuss.

The problem usually lies in eating too much of it. Don’t let your cat loaf around on a full stomach of oats. Overeating can weigh them down with too much fiber intake, leaving them with digestive issues that will make your clean-up duties quite messy.

If your adventurous tabby gets its paws on a chunk of oats, there’s no need to lose your marbles. However, if it has eaten too much of it, get the cat quickly to the vet to prevent health issues.

Oatmeal should be sparingly introduced into your cat’s dietary catalog, and not as a possible replacement for a balanced diet for cats. Too much oatmeal, and you’re looking at cutting down on your feline’s daily food intake; the cat’s nutritional balance could take a hit.

Milk and Oatmeal Combination for Cats

Got a hankering to feed your feline friend some oatmeal? You’re not alone because we all want our cats to enjoy meals as much as we do. However, before you warm up a bowl of your best Quaker’s Oat, let’s consider the milk. There’s a funny thing about cats: many of them are lactose intolerant. Even our feline buddies who enjoy lapping up leftover milk are typically short on the enzymes needed to digest it properly. So, if oatmeal is on the wild card menu, best to make it with water, not milk.

Think of oatmeal as more of an occasional thing, like tickets to a baseball game rather than a regular gym membership.

Sugar and Oats – A Risky Combo for Cats

Cats and sugar go together like fish and bicycles. Unnecessary sugar in a cat’s diet can lead to health issues like obesity and dental work they definitely won’t enjoy.

Choose plain oatmeal instead of the sugary, flavored kind. Whole rolled oats are an even better choice if you’re going the artisan route; they’re easily digestible and give fun crunchiness cats enjoy. Consider oats as a special topping, like croutons on a salad, rather than the main part of a feline meal.

Can Cats Eat Oatmeal

How to Feed Oatmeal to a Cat

Let’s talk about oatmeal recipes. Crafting the perfect pot of oatmeal is a bit like fine-tuning a vintage car. It requires a gentle touch, consideration, and above all, appreciation for the subject matter: in this case, our beloved furry friends.

How Much Oatmeal Can a Cat Eat?

If you’re considering a cat-sized portion of oatmeal, think about what your little buddy can handle. A tablespoon, give or take, is a safe bet. We’re doling out treats here, not supplanting their regular food.

Oatmeal is like dynamite, great in small doses but potentially catastrophic in surplus. Overfeeding is definitely a no-go land. We don’t want oatmeal to turn from a delightful indulgence into something that could be poisonous to cats.

How Often Should a Cat Eat Oatmeal?

So, how often is it cool to introduce oatmeal into the feline diet? Occasionally is the keyword here. This is mainly to avoid an imbalanced diet and potential digestive issues that may accompany frequent oat indulgence.

Commercial cat food is still the best meal ticket for your cat. Oats and other cat treats are like backstage passes — nice once in a while but not something to depend on.

How to Prepare Oatmeal for Cats

Preparing oatmeal for your cat is simpler than it sounds. Start with whole oats instead of quick oats, and cook them till they’re soft. Avoid milk (remember our lactose-intolerant buddies) and keep additives like sugar or fruit to a minimum, if at all. Cooking oatmeal for your cat is like cooking a steak; you want to let the main ingredient speak for itself.

Keep the serving size under control, a tablespoon or two max will do. Once ready, cool it down to room temperature before presenting the gourmet dish to your beloved pet. They’ll appreciate the culinary effort.

Oatmeal Inclusion in Commercial Cat Foods

Look closely enough, and you’ll find oatmeal in many commercial cat foods. Oats offer a good source of carbohydrates and fiber, alongside some nifty health benefits like vitamin b6. All are served in careful proportions to keep the nutritious balance just right.

Is Oatmeal Used in Commercial Cat Food?

Ever wonder what’s really in that colorful little bag of kitty chow you pick up from the corner market? You may be surprised to find that oatmeal is one of those “secret” ingredients used in some commercial cat foods. You’re not gonna find it as a headliner, like salmon or chicken, rather it plays more of a background role.

Oatmeal serves as a source of carbohydrates, sneaking in some much-needed fiber for your feline buddy. It also brings in other goodies, like essential vitamin B6 and a gaggle of antioxidants and amino acids.

Human Foods Safe for Cats: Alternative to Oatmeal

To begin with, buttery oatmeal cookies are a no-go unless you fancy cleaning up after a feline sugar rush. Just as you wouldn’t toss raw or undercooked chicken on a plate, you must cook that oatmeal properly before letting the kitty at it.

What Other Human Foods Can Cats Eat?

There’s a slew of other human foods that can hit the spot for your fuzzy buddy. Take a step into the wild here: think of a rabbit or a hunk of tuna. Or maybe even a treat dispenser of freeze-dried duck nibs or tiny minnows.

How about a fine filet of salmon? That’s the VIP choice, filled to the brim with those rich in nutrients and healthy fats. Or a luscious lick of canned pumpkin? Some cats think it’s purr-worthy. Then there’s poultry, like chicken, a classic pick for most cats. The bottom line is that cats are obligate carnivores.

You must be careful how you cook these meats and other food pickings, especially with those seasonings.


1. What kind of oatmeal can cats eat?

Cats can do the “Plain Jane” oatmeal shuffle, as long as it’s cooked in water and not milk. Also, keep your eyes peeled for the extras like raisins. They go down like a lead balloon with cats. Baby oatmeal also works, but the same rules apply.

2. Do cats like the taste of oatmeal?

Most cats seem to like oatmeal, and this may have something to do with the texture of the food or the smell. Since oatmeal for cats is usually bland and unappetizing, it may be more out of curiosity than anything else. However, don’t feed your cat all the oatmeal it wants; keep it small and simple.

Cats can do the “Plain Jane” oatmeal shuffle, as long as it’s cooked in water and not milk. Also, keep your eyes peeled for the extras like raisins. They go down like a lead balloon with cats. Baby oatmeal also works, but the same rules apply.

Most cats seem to like oatmeal, and this may have something to do with the texture of the food or the smell. Since oatmeal for cats is usually bland and unappetizing, it may be more out of curiosity than anything else. However, don’t feed your cat all the oatmeal it wants; keep it small and simple.

Summing Up: Oatmeal and Cat Nutrition

The bottom line is to cook that oatmeal right and proper. Make sure it’s water-sauced and without toppings like sugar or cinnamon. We aim for bland, as our feline friends prefer it simple if not a little on the boring side.

Keep in mind that oatmeal is more the occasional visitor than a permanent guest on the feline menu. The occasional serving can add a dash of vitamin E, among other things, especially in wet food. If curiosity is nipping at you, there’s a long list of foods your cat can eat.

Oatmeal is rich in fiber, but keep the cat’s intake as little as possible per time. In other words, a sprinkle here, a dabble there and you’re golden. So, as a responsible cat owner, ensure that your fancy feline isn’t scarfing down oatmeal every day. Once or twice a week, in one or two tablespoonfuls each time, is enough.

Leave a Comment