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Can Cats Eat Rice? Is it safe?

Updated on May 10, 2023 by Daulton Dougan
Many may say that Rice is a staple food of Asians, but a few of you might know that Rice is consumed in considerable amounts in the United States, too. Surprisingly, In the 2021/2022 fiscal year, the US consumed around 4.6 million metric tons of Rice. Well, that’s a lot of Rice! But who can doubt that? We adore Rice. Indeed, Rice is Guilty Carbs, yet, it makes everything tasty just by being there. Curries, Burritos, Grilled vegetables, or in any dish your chief instincts can steam it up with! Rice not only completes a meal but also makes it nutritious and fulfilling. Is this the case with your Kitties too? Can cats eat Rice?
Can Cats Eat Rice?

Can Cats Have Rice?

As long as you are mindful of the quantity, your Cat can eat Rice. Of course, Rice is not poisonous to your Cat. So, you can add it to its meals every once in a while. Just don’t give it to them regularly and don’t serve it as a significant part of their diet. If given carefully, your Cat can benefit from the nutritional value of the Rice. Otherwise, being too filling, they can stack your Cat’s tummy, stopping it from consuming other essential food items that are also important for its health.

Is Rice good for cats?

Rice is made up of Starch. The Cat’s body has enough of the “amylase” enzyme and can easily break down the starch components “amylose and amylopectin,” found in Rice. Therefore, such Rice is not bad for Cats, and they can metabolize Rice.

However, piling up the amount of Rice in a Cat’s diet can cause various issues. Cats can digest Rice, but not in excess. Cats are omnivores and require meat sources as a significant part of their diet.

Another thing to keep in mind is that Rice is full of carbohydrates. Excess carbs in a Cat’s diet can cause weight gain, diabetes, and other health problems. Make sure to give Rice an appropriate amount so that the Carbs in Rice won’t be an issue for carbs surplus.

Even a minor quantity of Rice can be harmful to Cats in the following situations:

Raw or not correctly cooked Rice: Raw Rice is nearly impossible for a Cat to digest. Similar is the case with undercooked Rice. The lectin in the raw Rice can cause gut issues like vomiting and diarrhea in Cats.

Kitten: Kittens have a sensitive stomach and need just very easily digestible nourishment options. Just the mother’s milk is most suitable for the first few weeks. Therefore, Rice isn’t even an option for kitties.

Eating white Rice for the First time: If your Cat has never consumed Rice before, it’s most probable that it might face some issues like indigestion, vomiting, etc.

Flavors and Additives: Every food option has its own effect on Cats. If you feed Rice that contains certain spices, sauces, seasonings, and veggies like onion, garlic, etc., these can harm your Cat.

Can Cats Eat White Rice? What About the Brown Rice?

Before this, first and foremost, understand the fundamental difference between White Rice Vs. Brown Rice. Brown Rice is a Whole Grain of Rice that contains all the parts: Nutrient Filled-Germ, Fiber Packed-Bran, and Carbohydrate-rich- Endosperm. White Rice is the highly processed version of Brown Rice in which the Germ and Bran are removed. Therefore the Rice grain is left with just a Carbohydrate part-Endosperm. It is pretty apparent that Brown Rice is more nutritious and fiber-riched, but White Rice is easier to cook and digest. As long as both Brown and White Rice are adequately cooked, they are fine in limited amounts for Cats. Keeping this in mind, many companies also add Rice to cat food. You can give brown Rice to your Cat with diarrhea or even constipation due to the presence of fiber. Still, we won’t recommend giving any type of Rice in any illness without Vet’s suggestion.

What Are the Safer Rice Substitutes For Cats?

Our inquisitiveness to feed human foods to our felines can be a little risky. They cannot eat everything we can. When choosing a Food item for your Cat, Firstly, stick to a simple rule, pick options with no spices, sugar, onions, excessive salt, sauces, additives, or flavorings, and packaged foods that aren’t highly processed. These are just a few; more food items can be toxic for your Feline. Sometimes, your Feline can also be allergic to food items that are fine to give to other Cats.

So, food is a little sensitive Issue for a Cat’s health. However, you can focus on giving lean meat options like liver, lamb, Chicken, etc., as well as tuna and Cooked Eggs to your Cat.
Coming to Veggies, Broccoli, Pumpkin, and Carrots are good in limited amounts. Fruits like Berries, and watermelons are also healthy for Cats.

Rice is not a must to add to your Kitties diet. If you are confused about what you should give to your Cat to keep it healthy, you can ask your Cat’s Vet. Just ensure to keep its hydration in check and give supplements and medications, if necessary.

Posted in: Food

About the Author

Daulton Dougan
Daulton Dougan
Daulton Dougan is a behavioral expert and accomplished writer associated with Fast ESA Letter. With a deep understanding of human behavior and mental health, Daulton leverages his expertise to offer personalized support and guidance. Through his insightful writing, he educates and informs individuals about emotional support animal (ESA) benefits. Daulton's compassionate approach and extensive knowledge empower individuals to navigate emotional challenges effectively. With a commitment to improving mental well-being and advocating for ESA accessibility, Daulton's work and writing contribute significantly to the field of behavioral analysis and mental health support.


  1. Ardellew Ubnig

    Is plain rice good for cats?

    • Tracy Deslaurier

      Yes, plain rice is fine to serve cats in limited amounts. Even some vets suggest it for diarrhea issues in cats to provide firmness to the stools and manage dehydration.

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