My cat eats flies and other insects: is it serious?

My Cat Eats Flies And Other Insects: Is It Serious?

Your cat has just benefited from a small 100% natural protein intake by swallowing a fly in front of your eyes or devouring a grasshopper. Is it serious if your feline companion eats insects, or on the contrary is it good for him?

We answer your questions, between disgust, curiosity and concern…

Why Does My Cat Eat Insects?

A cat can naturally hunt flies and other insects, especially if they are on territory, by simple hunting instinct. It then responds to its primitive functioning. It stalks, chases, chatters its teeth, flattens itself on the ground, then suddenly starts to leap to catch the unwanted animal.

Most of the time, they stun their prey, then play with it when it wakes up. This behavior allows them to prolong the hunting activity, which is very interesting for them, but also to stun the insect to limit the dangers. Be aware that some cats will eat their prey, others will not (especially if they are well fed by their human master).

Are There Any Insects Poisonous To Cats?

Rest assured, most of the insects your cat hunts and eats are not poisonous to them. Tell yourself that if you could eat them (with a grimace), so could he. It is at most the means to bring a little variety in one’s diet, to discover new textures and new flavors.

Nevertheless, some insects can be dangerous if ingested, in rare cases however. So, it is better to know them to be able to monitor your cat after this meal, which is original to say the least.

The Special Case Of Flies

If we speak more readily of flies when we are worried about our cat, it is above all because it is an insect present in large numbers and reproducing at high speed as soon as temperatures approach 20 degrees.

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So, whether you live in town or in the country, whether your cat has access to the outdoors or not, you can be sure that sooner or later he will come across a few flies. A godsend for an apartment cat who sees very few insects!

And flies get bad press, because they are a real reservoir of pathogens, and can lay thousands of eggs despite a relatively short life cycle, rarely exceeding thirty days.

Also, the flies may have ingested a good dose of insecticide before being swallowed by your cat. But there is little chance that he will devour a dead fly, which is of very little interest to him and does not awaken his hunting instinct.

Ultimately, ingesting a few flies here and there does not present any real danger to your hairball. Provided the following precautions are taken:

  • Ban insecticides and favor self-adhesive fly strips, even if they are not very glamorous in your home, they are extremely effective,
  • Deworm your cat regularly, as flies can transmit parasites and intestinal worms to them, but this should be done under all circumstances.

Insects Edible Without Risk By Your Cat

Most of the insects living in our latitudes and which can be the prey of our cats do not represent more danger than the fly. Thus, your cat can eat them quietly, provided you avoid insecticides and regularly administer antiparasitic treatment.

Instead, see all the insects that your cat can hunt and / or eat serenely:

  • Beetles: these are beetles and ladybugs, it’s hard, it gets into a ball, it’s fun, but your cat will play with them without daring to eat them because of their shell,
  • Dermaptera: these are the earwigs, understand the earwigs or earwigs, they are funny and harmless, but rarely tasted by your feline, and that’s good, because they are precious allies for gardeners,
  • Diptera: these are flies, but also mosquitoes and cousins, they are lively and very attractive, with lots of legs,
  • Homoptera: these are aphids, which will not interest the cat because they are too small, but also cicadas, which are much sought after for their delicate taste,
  • Lepidoptera: these are caterpillars, butterflies and moths, alluring textures and maximum protein,
  • Mantoptera: it looks like Orthoptera, but it is not, there are praying mantises there, try to keep your cat away, especially if you live in Île de France, because it is a protected species,
  • Odonates: these are dragonflies, damselflies and their larvae, it’s fast, it flies, it’s really an amusing prey full of surprises,
  • Orthoptera: these are locusts, crickets and grasshoppers, they make noise, they jump, they’re packed with protein and they say they taste very good!
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We hope that this small list, far from being exhaustive, will have reassured you about the harmlessness of these insects for your cat. Maybe you will even be tempted to share a meal with him, who knows?

Insects That Are Dangerous For Your Cat If Ingested

In the wild, your cat doesn’t just have nice encounters, he sometimes comes face to face with an unappetizing insect, even dangerous if he comes to play with it or swallow it without further ado. It will therefore be necessary to monitor your cat and take it to the veterinarian if it shows signs of poisoning, inflammation, irritation following this adventure. However, accidents are rare, the cat instinctively avoiding danger.

However, here are some animals you should be wary of, they should ideally never be on your cat’s menu:

  • Blattoptera: these are cockroaches, cockroaches and cockroaches, they are providers of many parasites, deworm your cat without delay,
  • Heteroptera: these are bugs and gendarmes, not only do these insects stink if you bite them, but they can also emit toxic and irritating substances to defend themselves,
  • Hymenoptera: these are wasps, bees, bumblebees, it is better for Grisou to stay away from them because their sting is painful, even dangerous, and these are also ants, if he can eat the black ones, it is better to avoid the red ones,
  • Processionary caterpillars: like all stinging caterpillars, they are far from harmless in the Lepidoptera family, and cause inflammation, oedema, hives, respiratory problems, you must consult your veterinarian urgently,
  • Glowworms: an exception in the beetle family, which should not be confused with the firefly, as it emits a poisonous and paralyzing substance if it feels threatened.
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Ultimately, nature is, just like your cat, absolutely fascinating. Be vigilant, but don’t worry too much if he eats a fly! Drive toxic insecticides out of your home, deworm your cat regularly for its well-being, and consult your veterinarian in case of emergency.

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