Can Maine Coons Eat Salmon? Raw Vs Cooked

Are you a pet parent wondering, can Maine Coons eat raw salmon?

Keep reading to find out about the effects of raw salmon on Maine Coons and how this type of fish can be safely served.

Maine Coons should not eat raw salmon due to the risks of bacterial infections or parasites, but they can occasionally eat small amounts of cooked salmon. Cooked salmon is even beneficial to Maine Coons, thanks to its protein, taurine, and omega-3 fatty acid content. Salmon should not replace a Maine Coon’s normal feline diet.

In this article, you will learn everything you need to know about Maine Coons and raw salmon, how much they can it, how to prepare it, and more!

Keep reading to learn the dos and don’ts of enhancing your Maine Coon’s snack time with this food.

Can Maine Coons Eat Salmon?

Maine Coons have an impressive background as skilled hunters, surviving in the harsh climate of Maine before their breed became domesticated.

In the wild, their prey included:

  • Small Rodents
  • Birds
  • Insects
  • Lizards

Considering their past as wild hunters, can Maine Coon cats eat raw salmon?

Salmon is a cat-safe food, but it is advisable to only feed Maine Coons cooked salmon, not raw salmon.

Do Cats Like Salmon?

Cats, including Maine Coons, generally love the taste of salmon and are drawn to salmon’s smell.

They usually like the flavor and the fat content.

Maine Coons have olfactory sensors much stronger than a human’s, so the distinct, strong smell of salmon will always heighten their interest.

Similar to humans, every Maine Coon has a unique preference when it comes to food choices.

Thus, some Maine Coons might turn up their noses at the smell and sight of salmon. If they do, never force your cat to eat salmon if they do not like it.

Some Maine Coons might only like salmon that is prepared a certain way.

For example, your cat may like it to be warm and flaky as opposed to cold and chunky.

Also, Maine Coons who are already familiar with the smell and taste of salmon from a commercial cat food product might be more keen to try it.

Is Salmon Good For Cats?

There are numerous health benefits of salmon for cats, including Maine Coons, making this fish a healthy occasional snack.

Below are the main benefits:

High-Quality Protein Source

One of the main benefits of salmon for cats is the high amounts of protein it offers.

Maine Coons, like all cats, are obligate carnivores, so they need animal protein to support essential bodily functions, and salmon fits the bill.

Heart And Coat Health

Just one ounce of salmon has about 300 to 800 milligrams of omega-3, an essential nutrient for Maine Coons.

Thanks to the omega-3 fatty acids, salmon supports cats’ heart health and keeps their fur healthy.

Bone Support

The vitamin D content in salmon helps keep a Maine Coon’s bones healthy by managing the body’s calcium levels.

Metabolism And Energy Support

Vitamin B from salmon helps support a Maine Coon’s metabolism.

Specifically, vitamin B helps cats metabolize carbs, protein, and fats.

Healthier Heart And Vision

Maine Coons require taurine, an amino acid from animals, and salmon contains taurine.

Since Maine Coons cannot produce taurine on their own, they require it from their diets. This amino acid supports healthy heart and vision functions.

Reduced Inflammation

The omega-3 fatty acids in salmon help reduce inflammation in Maine Coons, which helps cats suffering from arthritis.

Supports Brain Activity

Salmon’s omega-3 content helps support healthy cognitive and neurological functions.

Helps Digestion

The small amount of fiber in salmon helps support healthy stools and may aid the digestive system.

Supports Immune System

Your Maine Coon’s immune system will benefit from the variety of vitamins and minerals in salmon.

A stronger immune system will help protect Maine Coons from various diseases or illnesses.

Promotes Healthy Skin

Thanks to the omega-3 fatty acids in salmon, Maine Coons receive benefits to their skin.

Healthier skin also supports shinier, healthier coats.

Aids In Hydration

Cooking salmon in water is an effective way to help your Maine Coon stay hydrated.

Eating tasty, fresh, and hydrating salmon is perfect for cats struggling to drink enough water.

Promotes Healthy Weight

This lean protein source is relatively low in calories compared to other meats, so it is an ideal snack for Maine Coons who need to watch their weight.

Eye Health

Older cats at risk of eye-related health problems will benefit from the vision support offered by the omega-3 fatty acids in salmon.

Omega-3 fatty acids lower the risk of high eye pressure, a problem that could lead to glaucoma.

Versatile Treat

Cooked salmon can be offered to Maine Coons in various ways or in combination with their current meal regimen and other cat-safe snacks, making it a convenient treat.

Is It Safe To Feed Cats Raw Salmon?

If you are wondering, can I feed raw salmon to my cat, then read the next pieces of information very carefully?

Some Maine Coon owners consider raw food diets, but there are several risks involved with serving raw salmon that generally make it unwise.

Such risks to your Maine Coon cat, include:

Parasite Risk

There is a chance that raw salmon has tapeworms or flukes.

These parasites cause numerous health issues like digestive problems and diseases.

Bacterial Infections

Bacteria like Salmonella and Listeria can grow in raw salmon, and if your Maine Coon cat ingests these harmful bacteria, it will cause gastrointestinal problems.

Thiamine Deficiency

Thiaminase is an enzyme in raw salmon.

This enzyme breaks down an essential B vitamin called thiamine, which may eventually cause a thiamine deficiency.

Maine Coons need thiamine, so without it, they may actually have neurological issues.


If you are asking, is it safe to feed cats raw salmon, you may not immediately think of the bones in this fish, but some fillets are not boneless.

So, it is something to watch out for.

If you give your Maine Coon raw salmon with bones, those tiny, sharp bones could be a choking hazard or even cause internal damage.

Unbalanced Diet

Raw salmon should not make up a large part of your Maine Coon’s diet because too much of it will throw her nutritional profile off-balance.

Maine Coons do not get all the nutrients they need from salmon.


Excessive amounts of salmon could lead to anemia due to the high levels of omega-3 fatty acids.


Some Maine Coons develop allergies to salmon or other types of fish.

Look out for signs of allergic reactions like:

  • Swelling
  • Redness
  • Hives

Allergies can also cause stomach issues or difficulty breathing.

Risk Of Pancreatitis

High-fat foods might trigger pancreatitis in Maine Coon cats.

In this condition, the pancreas becomes inflamed, leading to other serious health issues.

How Much Salmon Can A Cat Eat?

Salmon should be considered a treat, and treats should only ever make up about 10% of a Maine Coon’s diet, which may be about a tablespoon’s worth of salmon.

If you want to treat your Maine Coon to salmon, only offer a fraction of a salmon fillet.

Do not feed Maine Coons entire fillets of salmon, as it could cause stomach problems.

Also, a whole or even half fillet would be too much food for a Maine Coon to eat in a day on top of their normal cat food.

If it is your Maine Coon’s first time ever eating salmon, offer a bite-sized piece. Then, monitor them for one or two days to ensure there are no negative side effects.

If there are no side effects, you can feed them a slightly bigger portion next time.

Can Cats Eat Salmon Every Day?

Cats, including Maine Coons, should not eat salmon every day since it may disrupt their nutritional profile.

Salmon does not have all the necessary nutrients a Maine Coon needs. So, if salmon replaced a Maine Coons usual balanced feline diet, it’ll create nutritional deficiencies.

If Maine Coons eat salmon on top of their usual diet, then the additional daily calories will eventually result in weight gain.

Even if weight gain comes from a cat-friendly treat like salmon, it can lead to other health issues like diabetes.

How To Cook Salmon For Cats

If you are trying to figure out how to prepare salmon for cats, recipe options are out there to ensure that you give your Maine Coon a safe, healthy dish.

Check out the guide below on how to prepare and cook salmon for cats:

1. Select The Right Salmon

Start by getting fresh salmon; do not use canned or smoked salmon because of their preservative and salt content.

Frozen salmon fillets are acceptable. Just be sure the salmon does not come with seasoning or additives.

2. Preheat The Oven

Salmon should cook at 350 degrees Fahrenheit, so set your oven on preheat to that temperature.

3. Get The Salmon Ready

The most important part of this step is to leave the salmon plain.

Do not add oil, butter, salt, or other seasonings. All of those ingredients could cause stomach problems.

Lay the plain salmon on an oven-safe dish or baking tray.

4. Bake

Set a timer for 20 minutes and put the salmon in the oven. Keep an eye on it, and after 20 minutes, take it out.

Check to see if it flakes easily with a fork.

5. Let It Cool Down

Do not serve the salmon immediately after it is out of the oven, as it will be too hot.

Separate a small portion of the fillet for your Maine Coon and let it cool completely.

6. Check For Bones

Examine the salmon and make sure there are no small bones that could cause a choking hazard or become tough to digest.

7. Ready To Serve

Flake the salmon into small pieces with a fork so they are bite-sized for your Maine Coon, and add the pieces to your cat’s favorite food bowl to serve.

Check out the serving options below to make the salmon snack even more delicious and nutritious for your Maine Coon.

Serving Options

Salmon And Pumpkin Puree

One way to serve cooked salmon to your Maine Coon is to pair it with pumpkin puree.

Cooked pumpkin is cat-safe, high in fiber, and aids in digestion. You can sprinkle bits of salmon on top of pumpkin puree or mix the two together.

Salmon With Carrots And Peas

Two cat-safe veggie options are carrots and peas, and they go well with salmon.

If your Maine Coon enjoys these veggies, bake them in the same dish as the salmon or cook them using another method.

Mix salmon pieces together with chopped carrots and peas (no seasoning).

Salmon And Quinoa

Maine Coons do not need grains in their diets, but they are safe to eat and non-toxic.

A small amount of quinoa with salmon is a yummy dish for your Maine Coon and may aid digestion.

Limit the amount of quinoa in this dish due to the lack of nutritional value.

Salmon Cat Treats

Homemade cat treats for your Maine Coon are a great way to spoil your cat without being unhealthy.

Bake your own salmon-based Maine Coon treats by mixing cooked salmon, peas, whisked egg, and cat-friendly flour (whole wheat flour is good).

Form them into tiny, bite-sized pieces and bake them at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 20 minutes.

What Should I Do If My Cat Ate Raw Salmon?

If your Maine Coon just ate raw salmon, there is a risk that she could get a bacterial infection or parasites, but raw salmon is not directly toxic to cats.

An immediate visit to the emergency vet is not necessary, but you must monitor your Maine Coon and watch for signs of food poisoning from bacteria over the next few days.

If your cat has symptoms like vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, or loss of appetite, then visit the vet.

If the raw salmon that your Maine Coon ate contained a toxic substance like onion or garlic, that would warrant an emergency vet visit.

Call the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at (888) 426-4435 to start diagnosing the issue and get the best next steps according to the toxin your Maine Coon might have eaten with the raw salmon.

Can Cats Eat Salmon In Olive Oil?

Small amounts of olive oil with cooked salmon are safe for cats, but oil should only be fed to them occasionally.

Maine Coons are at risk of getting an upset stomach or diarrhea if they eat too much oil, and over time, the caloric content will lead to weight gain.

Be careful with olive oil because some come pre-seasoned.

Check to make sure that the olive oil is not flavored with garlic or another toxic substance.

Only use a small amount of pure olive oil if you decide to add some.

Can Cats Eat Salmon In A Can?

No, Maine Coons and other cats should not eat canned salmon due to the preservatives and sodium content.

Too much sodium can cause excessive thirst and, in severe cases, sodium ion poisoning.

Some types of canned salmon have added seasonings, some of which may be toxic to cats (like onion and garlic).

The can might also have BPA, which could lead to numerous health issues down the line.

Can Cats Eat Salmon Skin?

Yes, salmon skin is fine for Maine Coons to eat.

It is best if the salmon skin is cooked through to avoid the risks of harmful bacteria or parasites.

Feed salmon skin to your Maine Coon in small portions and not every day.

Salmon skin simmering in oil or seasonings like salt is not healthy for Maine Coons.

Just like with salmon meat, leave it plain and free of other ingredients.

Is Salmon Cat Food Good For Cats?

High-quality, nutritionally balanced salmon cat food is healthy for Maine Coons and other cats as part of a varied diet.

The protein, taurine, omega 3, and even the taste of salmon cat foods are all advantages.

Many popular cat food brands incorporate salmon into their wet food or dry food products.

The strong scent and flavor of salmon in cat food might entice some picky eaters to eat more.

Be sure the salmon is real salmon, and do not use it to replace all of your Maine Coon’s meals.

If you decide to find a salmon cat food for your Maine Coon, be sure that it is nutritionally balanced.

Consult with your vet for a long-term food plan that incorporates salmon-based cat food if you have any hesitations.


When you consider all the benefits and risks, can cats eat salmon?

Salmon is safe for cats to eat in small portions and can be a stimulating treat for your cat.

For cat owners wondering, can Maine Coons eat raw salmon, the answer is that it is not ideal to feed your Maine Coon any raw salmon to avoid bacterial infections or parasite issues.

Stay safe with your Maine Coon by cooking salmon thoroughly, serving it in small amounts, and supervising during and after the meal.

Related Questions

Can Maine Coons Eat Tuna?

Maine Coons can occasionally eat small portions of freshly cooked tuna without much risk of health issues. They should not eat canned or raw tuna.

Can Cats Eat Raw Salmon Sushi?

Maine Coons should not eat raw salmon sushi because it may cause stomach problems and put Maine Coons at risk of getting bacterial infections.

Maine Coon Central

Hello! My name is Katrina Stewardson, and I’m a CRAZY CAT LADY! I've been in love with the Maine Coon cat breed ever since we welcomed an adorable male Maine Coon kitten into our home 10 years ago. We called him 'Pippin', but he also goes by the name ‘Pipsteroo’! Our enormous, kind-hearted cat genuinely thinks he's a dog and has convinced me that cats are Man's True Best Friend! UPDATE: We recently adopted two 4-year-old male Maine Coon cats. They are named Mika and Bali.

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