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Can Ducks Eat Cat Food? (Answered)

by Alex Kountry
Updated on

If you keep ducks as pets and also have cats at home, it must have crossed your mind on whether you can feed ducks your cat food.

I know I have as most times I really want to know what it is I can feed my ducks that will not have any effect on them.

Can ducks eat cat food? Ducks can eat cat food but at a very small quantity. Cat food contains a high amount of protein which is very good for ducks. A short term protein boost will help with molting and also production of healthy eggs.

What are the health benefits of cat food?

While we know that cat food is very good for ducks, let us look at some of the health benefits of cat food.

Ducks require a balanced diet to stay healthy and boost normal body functions and cat food is one source that you can use to maintain that balanced diet and feed them required nutrients and minerals.

Most ducks will require anywhere between 45% to 50% depending on their age and health especially when they are molting or during their egg laying phase.

In such cases it is ideal to mix cat food to their normal feeding routine to help boost the protein requirements.

ASupports vision, healthy skin and a healthy immune system
DHelps build bones and teeth
E+CHelps protect cells and supports a healthy immune system
Omega 3Promotes healthy skin and a shiny coat
CalciumSupports healthy, strong bones and teeth; helps blood clot and muscles work
PhosphorusSupports healthy, strong bones and teeth; helps cells and muscles function
SodiumMaintains body fluid levels and helps muscle movement
ProteinsHelps build strong cells
CarbohydratesProvides an easily absorbed, quick source of energy
FatsHelps your cat store energy for later

Is cat food safe for ducks?

Can Ducks Eat Cat Food

As mentioned above, you can feed your ducks cat food but in very small quantities.

What you want to do is to feed it to them as treats and mix it into their feeding routine so it is a balanced diet and not just feeding them only cat food.

Cat food contains a high amount of protein which is ideal for birds and helps keep them healthy.

Why do ducks need extra protein?

Ducks need extra protein as the grow up because of their egg shells and also to aid their growth.

As they grow older, there is always going to be the production of feathers, production of eggs, nails and all the normal body functions that is happening.

As such, they need proteins as this is the basic building block that makes all these possible.

How much protein do ducks need?

Ducks need different levels of protein at different stages of their life.

They need that extra protein to ensure that they bodies are growing and developing well during the early stages of their lives.

During the early stage of their life, ducks will need about 50% of their food to be proteins.

So you want to ensure you feed them with as much food as possible that contains protein.

Here is a comprehensive and detailed guide on everything ducks can eat

Can I give my ducks too much protein?

As with all things, you can have an overdose of protein and this might cause problems with your birds.

Too much proteins can lead to overweight in ducks and also a case of malnutrition in extreme cases.

This can lead to starvation where by they are not getting enough of the complex array of minerals, vitamins and carbohydrates that they require to maintain their bodies.

So yes you can actually feed your ducks too much protein and this can affect them negatively.

Remember that they key is a balanced diet with the right minerals ad vitamins in the right proportions.

Can I feed my ducks dry cat food?

Ducks will generally eat both wet and dry cat food as both of them are rich in proteins and also other minerals that are good for their health.

But in my opinion, you should stick towards dry cat food as it contains a higher level of protein when compared with wet ones.

So yeah, you can feed your ducks dry cat food as they will eat without any issues.

What other foods can I feed ducks?

One good thing about keeping ducks is that they can basically eat a lot of things that we as humans eat.

So you can always feed them off the scraps from your table and kitchen.

Here are some other foods that you can feed your ducks.

  • Corn (canned, frozen or fresh)
  • Duck pellets (sold online and at pet stores)
  • Lettuce, other greens (torn into small pieces)
  • Frozen peas (defrosted)
  • Oats (rolled or instant)
  • Seeds (including birdseed or other varieties)

Grains – Chickens love grains, they’re great for them, and it gives them something to scratch around for. So, wheat, oats, rice, quinoa, etc.

Cooked Foods – Next time you’re cooking some pasta, rice, lentils, meat, etc. you can give some to your flock.


It is absolutely safe to feed your ducks with cat food.

It contains a high amount of protein which helps with the growth of your birds and their normal body functions.

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About the author

Alex Kountry

Alex Kountry is the founder of HayFarmGuy and has been a backyard farmer for over 10 years. Since then he has decided to write helpful articles that will help you become a better backyard farmer and know what to do. He also loves to play tennis and read books


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