A cat and olives


Can cats eat olives? What You Should Know

When it comes to our furry feline companions, we’re often curious about what they can and can’t eat. One question that may have crossed your mind is, “Can cats eat olives?” Even though it may seem strange, there’s always room for surprises in the world of cats. In this blog post, we explore why cats find olives intriguing and whether it’s safe to let them indulge.

Why Do Cats Love Olives?

Cats, like humans, have individual preferences when it comes to food. While some of our furry friends may like fish or cheese, others are drawn to olives, especially green ones. These small fruits are loved by some cats because they have a nice texture and contain isoprenoids.

Isoprenoids are compounds found in green olives that resemble nepetalactone, the active compound in catnip. Nepetalactone triggers a euphoric reaction in cats, causing playful and excited behaviors. The similarity between isoprenoids and nepetalactone explains why some cats like so much the olives.

Additionally, cats like the olive texture. The soft, chewy flesh of olives brings a satisfying sensory experience to our feline friends.

Can Cats Eat Olives Safely?

While olives aren’t inherently toxic to cats, they are not considered a part of their natural diet.


Feeding your cat a few pieces of olive in moderation is generally safe, as long as the olives are plain and free from any seasonings or additives.

However, keep in mind that not all cats will be interested in olives, and some may even show disinterest. Each cat is unique, and their individual taste preferences may vary.

It’s important to note that while olives themselves may be safe, the pit presents a choking hazard. It should always be removed before offering olives to your cat. If your cat shows any signs of an adverse reaction after consuming olives, such as vomiting or diarrhea, discontinue feeding olives immediately and consult your veterinarian.

Can Cats Eat Black & Green Olives?

When it comes to the color of olives, both black and green varieties share similar nutritional properties. The primary difference lies in their maturity levels. Green olives are unripe, while black olives are fully ripe.


Cats can technically consume both black and green olives in small quantities, as long as they are plain and pitted. However, some cats may prefer one over the other.

It’s always a good idea to start with a small portion and observe your cat’s reaction before incorporating olives into their diet more regularly.

Can Cats Have Olive Oil?

In addition to being safe and non-toxic, olive oil is a great supplement for cats. Adding a teaspoon of olive oil to your cat’s regular food twice or three times a week is usually recommended. Let’s explore some of the benefits of olive oil for our feline friends:

  • Improves the immune system. Olive oil contains antioxidants that can boost your cat’s immune system, making them more resistant to various illnesses and diseases.
  • Natural remedy for constipation. If your cat is experiencing occasional constipation, a small amount of olive oil can act as a gentle and natural laxative. It lubricates the digestive system and facilitates smoother bowel movements.
  • Promotes healthy skin and fur. Olive oil’s healthy fats can contribute to a lustrous and shiny coat for your cat. In addition it reduces dryness, itching, and flakiness.
  • Helps cats pass furballs. Cats are meticulous groomers, so they may develop furballs in their digestive tract. Olive oil can aid in the passage of these hairballs through the digestive system, reducing the risk of discomfort or blockages.

Cats can benefit from olive oil, but moderation is key. Too much oil in their diet, as with any other type of fat, can lead to gastrointestinal issues like diarrhea or vomiting. It’s always wise to consult with your veterinarian before introducing any new supplements or dietary changes to ensure they are suitable for your individual cat’s needs.

Safety Concerns About Olives

It’s generally safe for cats to eat olives in moderation, but there are a few safety concerns. Apart from the choking hazard presented by the pit, there are other factors to consider before feeding your feline friend olives.

One potential issue is the high sodium content of olives, particularly in brined or pickled varieties. You shouldn’t give your cat olives if it has heart or kidney disease. Therefore, it’s important to ensure that the olives you offer to your cat are low in sodium or even better, opt for olives without added salt.

Another concern is the use of seasonings and additives often found in commercially available olives. Cats have delicate digestive systems. Certain spices, herbs, or preservatives commonly used in olives may not sit well with them.


It’s best to avoid olives with added flavors or seasonings to prevent any adverse reactions or gastrointestinal distress in your cat.

Final Thoughts

Olives themselves are generally safe for cats. But it is important to offer them in moderation, plain, pitted, and without added seasonings or high sodium content is crucial.

Always prioritize your cat’s health and well-being. Observe their reactions and consult with your veterinarian if you have any concerns.

If your cat doesn’t seem interested in olives or if you’re worried about potential risks, there are plenty of other cat-friendly human foods, that your whiskered friend can eat as treats.

Remember, every cat is unique, and their preferences may differ.

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