Do Cats Eat Squirrels? | All You Need To Know About Feline Predation

As an experienced wildlife observer, I have seen cats from all over the world hunt and consume squirrels. In this blog post, I will share what I’ve learnt to answer the question: do cats eat squirrels? You’ll also get all the information you need about feline predation to help you understand why cats might be tempted to catch and consume them.

Yes, cats can consume squirrels. As an instinctual predator, a cat’s diet may include small mammals such as mice, voles and squirrels. These animals are commonly consumed by domesticated and wild cats to sustain their nutritional needs. Cats can hunt these creatures in the wild or catch them if they venture too close to a home.

Do Cats Eat Squirrels?

The answer is yes: cats do eat squirrels and they will often hunt them if given the opportunity. In fact, cats have been found to consume a variety of animals, from small mammals such as mice, voles and squirrels, to birds and even fish. Cats may also eat larger prey on occasion such as rabbits or hares.

Cats possess sharp claws and teeth that help them to catch their prey. They are equipped with powerful vision and smell capabilities that can help detect potential meal options for them wherever they go – including the hungry cat’s own backyard. Cats will usually stalk their targets before pouncing, although some cats can climb trees in search of small tree-dwelling mammals such as squirrels.

Nutritional Value and Risks of Cats Eating Squirrels

What Nutrients Does a Cat Need?

Cats require certain nutrients in order to maintain optimal health and good nutrition. Protein is essential for cats, particularly meat-based proteins, as well as other vitamins and minerals. While there are certain risks associated with consuming raw or cooked animal flesh, it is still possible for cats to obtain appreciable amounts of these essential macronutrients by eating creatures like squirrels.

That being said, there are some other nutritional risks associated with consuming animals such as squirrels due to the presence of parasites or bacteria which could potentially be harmful for cats if ingested. Additionally, cats should not consume large chunks of fat from animals like squirrels; instead it should be offered up in smaller portions over time.

Are Certain Breeds Better at Catching Squirrels?

Domestic cats come in many different breeds, but larger ones will usually have the best chance of successfully hunting squirrels due to their greater size and strength. This provides a power advantage that helps them catch small prey like the fast-moving and agile squirrels.

For example, Bengal cats have strong muscular bodies combined with agility that allows them to cover large distances quickly thus increasing their chances of capturing a speedy creature like a squirrel. Similarly, Somali cats have long legs which gives them the advantage when going after fast critters that try to outrun them.

What Risks are Associated with Cats Eating Squirrels?

It is absolutely not ideal for a house cat to devour a squirrel, as there are potential risks involved. The wilderness often shelters parasites and bacteria that can fail to agree with the digestive system of your feline companion, and in extreme cases, may even put your pet‘s health in jeopardy if not treated quickly. Therefore, it’s best to dissuade cats from pursuing and dining on such creatures.

Wild squirrels may not provide the best nutrition for your pet cat due to the potential risks of consuming unknown nutrients or contaminants. Rather than relying on a wild creature as a food source, your feline friend is likely to benefit more from healthy alternatives that deliver all the necessary nutrients in a safe package.

Options for Providing Nutritious, Protein-rich Food to Your Cat

Cats get lots of joy out of chasing their prey, but don’t forget to keep them safe! Keep their tummies full of nutritious, protein-rich food to ensure they have enough energy for those thrilling feline adventures.

A diet rich in quality proteins and healthy fats, such as omega fatty acids, is a key ingredient for maintaining good health in cats. These beneficial fats can help to keep the coat shiny and the kitty full of energy. Eating a balanced diet is essential for our feline friends.

Choosing the right food for your beloved pet can be a difficult decision. Luckily, there are lots of options available to provide them with all the necessary nutrients and keep them safe at the same time. Commercial wet and dry foods offer complete nutrition, with protein sources such as fish, chicken, peas and beans providing a variety of benefits. Plus, they are also a great alternative to hunting down wild game which may pose extra risks.

Can I Stop My Cat from Eating Squirrels?

If your pet is getting too close for comfort with their squirrel-hunting ways, you can try to redirect their behavior. Start by trimming back any branches that hang near windows – this will remove their prime viewing spot and make it more difficult for them to target their prey. You might also consider installing netting around trees or shrubs, further limiting their access. Although you can’t completely tame the predator instinct in cats, these steps can help discourage their hunting habits.

Try distracting your pet when they start displaying signs they’re getting ready for their hunt; use toys, games, or treat dispensers – basically anything that takes their attention away from their target prey. You may also want to consider training solutions; teach them alternate behaviors such as targeting toy mice instead intending on live ones.


Is it possible for a squirrel to transmit rabies to a cat?

No, a squirrel cannot directly give a cat rabies. However, it is possible for both cats and humans to contract the disease from infected squirrels if their saliva, urine or feces somehow spreads to an open wound or mucous membrane.

What illnesses can be transmitted by squirrels?

Squirrels can act as a carrier for several diseases that can be hazardous to humans and domestic pets. These include: rabies, leptospirosis, Lyme disease, salmonellosis, tularemia, and coccidia. Although not all of these diseases are necessarily transmitted through direct contact with squirrels, it is advised to steer clear of them when possible in order to reduce the risk of contracting any of these illnesses.

Can cats contract illnesses from squirrels?

Squirrels can be a potential source of diseases for cats, such as leptospirosis, Lyme disease, salmonellosis, tularemia, and coccidia. It is important to ensure that cats have their vaccinations up-to-date in order to protect them from these diseases. Additionally, cats should not be allowed to come into contact with wild squirrels or the feces of squirrels in any way.


Cats are opportunistic hunters, meaning their diet is largely based on whatever they can catch and consume. So, the answer to the question ‘do cats eat squirrels?’, is an astonishing yes. Not only do cats eat squirrels but many small mammals make up part of a cat’s wild diet. While this predation behaviour may be worrying for some pet owners, it is entirely natural.

When considering how to keep pets safe from feline predators, homeowners should take preventative safety measures such as removing potential food sources from the yard and limiting pet’s access to the outdoors when unsupervised. Overall, understanding how cats will naturally prey on small animals like squirrels can help us better protect our beloved pets.

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