Do Cats Eat Birds?

Cats love birds. If your favorite feline comes home hungry after spending the day outside, it may be desperate.

Some birds, such as the sparrow, are targeted by your feline and might bite and consume it.

So, do cats eat birds? Cats are well known as hunters and scavengers.

This is evident from their behavior towards other animals such as mice and birds. Cats have been observed eating birds and small animals such as mice.

Some cats will consume birds without killing them. Cats have sharp teeth and strong jaws that enable them to rip and eat their prey alive.

Cat owners should monitor their cats and watch for signs of them eating or killing small birds or mice. If your cat is eating such animals, it might be a sign that it needs more exercise or food.

Do Cats Eat Birds?

Cats love to hunt and can easily hunt down small birds or rodents that enter your house.

They sometimes feed on prey that is no longer moving and may even kill small animals and birds before eating them.

However not all cats kill their prey before consuming it.

Some cats eat other small animals such as worms and insects without killing or eating them alive.

These animals are ingested without chewing or preparing them for cooking.

Many cats will hunt and kill small birds and animals such as mice and moles for their survival needs.

Even if they don’t need to eat meat to survive, cats are naturally carnivorous and will eat smaller birds and animals in order to survive in the wild.

Is It Safe For Cats To Eat Birds?

Yes, eating a bird is quite safe for a domesticated cat.

Additionally, if birds consume them, it will not have an adverse health effect on the bird or other small animals.

Cats must never eat whole birds raw as they may suffer from food poisoning and diarrhea after eating them raw.

Birds and other small animals such as rats and mice that your cat kills can also be ingested without preparing them for cooking or seasoning them first.

However, as cats often eat other animals alive and without killing them, some cats may be aggressive and attack other small animals, such as birds and mice.

If your cat is finicky about eating any animal, it is better to kill and prepare them for cooking to ensure their health and safety.

You can try feeding them smaller portions of animal meat as they are mild and easy to digest and will make your pet happier and healthier in the long run.


The cat might suffer from severe food poisoning and diarrhea if birds and other small animals they eat are not first cooked or seasoned first because birds and other small animals may contain.

Birds may transmit internal and external parasites to your cat when they eat insects that are in the raw meat of your pet.

Food Poisoning

It may be difficult for cats to ingest and digest their food overnight due to digestive complications and vomiting frequently.

For example, a cat that is accustomed to eating raw meat or fish that is rich in Omega 3 fatty acids might develop an eye infection, as fish are rich sources of Vitamin A.

Other cats may struggle to digest their meat and fish and develop gas or loose stools, as outlined in this article on PetMD.

Their bodies may sense something is wrong and reject whole chunks of meat or fish that they attempt to swallow.

Stomach Upsets

Some cats are picky eaters that refuse to eat mice, rats and birds that they find in their cat food.

Birds may offer a health concern to your cat since they can carry parasites or diseases that can harm your feline pet.

A whole chicken may be tough to ingest and digest for a cat that is used to eating dry food with a pat of butter added for flavor.

If your cat is vomiting, diarrhoea, restless, drooling, or gagging regardless of what they eat, consult a veterinarian to determine if their stomach problems are food related or associated with an underlying health condition.

Is It Normal For Cats To Kill And Eat Birds?

Our cats are known to bring home small birds and mice that they find outside, and we have seen them tear the prey apart before eating it.

However, not all cats are attracted to birds and other animals and there are some that will happily eat the IAMS cat food that we bought for them.

If your cat is aggressive and anxious and is killing and eating small animals, it might be a sign that they are not getting enough exercise or food in their IAMS cat food.

Natural predators, cats hunt as their main source of food for survival.

Our domesticated cats have kept their hunting instincts, and they will often kill and eat birds when they find them.

Cats naturally prey on birds and other animals for food.

A cat’s digestive tract can handle animal prey such as birds, mice and field mice, so there is no need for it to be trained to start eating these food items just.

If your cat’s body need some of those nutrients that are found in birds or mice and your cat is hungry enough to hunt down an animal for food, it will kill and eat birds.

Can Cats Get Sick From Catching A Bird?

If your cat catches and eats a poisoned bird, it could get sick and possibly die from the mercury poisoning.

Birds, like other animals, might carry parasites such as roundworms that can infect and kill cats if ingested.

Songbird Fever, sometimes known as salmonellosis, is a disease that can kill cats if left untreated or not treated in time.

It is a salmonella bacterium that can lead to serious illness if a cat swallows anything from an infected bird.

Also See: Can Cats Eat Bird Seed?

How to Stop Your Cat From Eating Birds

Minimize the excursions your cat makes outside your home and try to eliminate the possibility of your cat catching a bird inside the house, but most likely you will not be able to stop your cat from killing and eating birds.

‘Spaying’ and ‘neutering’ is the method used to get rid of sexual hormones and urges that are placed inside cats during breeding.

Done properly it will reduce the chances of your cat roaming and catching a bird and it will reduce unwanted pregnancies.

Roaming cats, especially outdoor cats, are more likely to catch birds as some of them are nocturnal hunters.

If you let your cat outdoors, you might also be exposing it to rabies and other diseases that birds can carry.


Roaming outdoors, cats will eat anything, including birds and rodents that they find.

But eating these food items won’t make them sick and abating their urge to hunt will not hurt your cat’s health or personality in the long run.

Your cat will still be the same cat that loved to catch and kill small birds and mice.

Your cat will still be aggressive and preys on small animals and birds for survival. No amount of training will subdue your cat’s urge to hunt and feeding him only trough a high-quality cat food will not deter him from catching and eating birds either.

The likelihood of illness and parasites is greater when cats are indoor animals and will compromise their health with hunting and feeding wild birds.