Are Hard-Boiled Eggs Dangerous for Cats?

by Sarah Dray, Demand Media
    She needs lots of meat protein, but eggs are not off the table.

    She needs lots of meat protein, but eggs are not off the table.

    The list of foods that are poisonous to cats is long. Fortunately, eggs are not a part of it. That doesn't mean you can feed hard-boiled eggs to your kitty every day, though. As with many other foods, moderation is key.

    It's All in the Numbers

    According to veterinarian Jill Bowen, an egg contains about 100 calories. Because the average adult cat should be eating only 400 calories a day, feeding your cat an egg could push him over the edge, caloriewise. If the cat's getting chubby, you might want to ease off on hard-boiled eggs.

    A Real Danger

    While cooked eggs are not a problem for your cat, make sure you chop the hard-boiled egg into small pieces before you feed it. You don't want an overexcited cat to swallow a big piece without chewing it and choke in the process.

    Balancing Things Out

    Hard-boiled eggs are a great source of protein, which cats thrive on. In fact, cats are carnivorous who need good quality protein from animal sources to stay healthy and strong. However, eggs don't provide all necessary nutrition for the cat to stay healthy. Ideally, you should be feeding the cat a premium cat food that contains a good balance of nutrients. If your cat's over 7 years of age, he should be eating a food made specially for senior cats. Hard-boiled eggs can be a great treat or an add-on for extra nutrition, but they should never be the main staple of Kitty's diet.

    One Word of Caution

    When feeding Kitty hard-boiled eggs, make sure they're well-cooked. That means no runny yolk or soft eggs. Raw eggs can contain salmonella and E.coli bacteria, which can be fatal to cats -- just as they are to humans. Also, the protein contained in raw egg whites actually prevents Kitty's body from absorbing certain B vitamins. Once you boil an egg, the protein can be digested properly and it's no longer a risk.

    About the Author

    Sarah Dray has been writing since 1996. She specializes in health, wellness and travel topics and has credits in various publications including "Woman's Day," "Marie Claire," "Adirondack Life" and "Self." She is also a seasoned independent traveler and a certified personal trainer and nutrition consultant. Dray is pursuing a criminal justice degree at Penn Foster College.

    Photo Credits

    • Comstock/Comstock/Getty Images