Cats are skilled hunters, but one day my cat ate a cockroach and it made me think: What if my cat eats a cockroach that’s been exposed to insecticide?
The good news is they’ll probably be okay, but you should still watch for signs of poisoning.
Let’s take a closer look at what happens if a cat eats a cockroach and when you should or should not worry.
What Happens to a Cat When It Eats a Cockroach?
Insects are a regular part of a cat’s natural diet and a great source of protein.
However, most of us don’t feed our cats a proper diet, making their digestive tract more sensitive to sudden changes of diet.
Keep an eye on your furry friend when they munch on a bug.
If they vomit, retch, or display any other similar symptoms; it could be simple indigestion.
A roach’s exoskeleton is tougher than many other bugs, which can irritate a cat’s esophagus, resulting in them vomiting.
Of course, any experienced cat lover is used to cleaning up after a cat ate something disagreeable or coughed up a hairball.
As long as they remain hydrated, this is rarely an issue.
But if your cat continues to vomit after eating a roach, you should call your veterinarian.
See Also: Are Ladybugs Poisonous to Cats and Dogs?
Do Cats Go After Cockroaches?
Yes, cats love chasing roaches and other bugs.
Not only is it great practice with the possibility of a snack, but most cats also consider it their duty to protect their humans from pests.
Do Cats Scare Away Cockroaches?
Cats may be able to indirectly deter cockroaches by scaring them away with their presence, movement, and scent.
However, there is no guarantee a roach will be afraid of your cat.
Do Cats Attract Roaches?
Cats won’t directly attract cockroaches.
Their food bowls are another matter, as roaches are happy to munch on pet food.
Are Cats Effective as Cockroach Killers?
When you’ve got a roach infestation, you may be tempted to employ your cat as a cockroach killer.
Unfortunately, even the most efficient feline hunter can’t keep up with an infestation.
It’s better to stick with roach traps or hiring a pest control company.
What if My Cat Eats a Poisoned Roach?
In most cases, consuming a poisoned roach will lead to minor secondary poisoning.
Your feline will usually vomit up the remains, and may show no other symptoms.
Since cats prefer hunting to scavenging, they’re less likely to eat a dead roach.
However, it’s possible for them to get into cockroach traps or catch a roach that recently ingested poison.
Of the chemicals often used in traps, boric acid (and borax), Hydramethylnon, and fipronil are among the most dangerous to cats and other pets if consumed.
The good news is that a single poisoned roach will usually not have enough of these chemicals to endanger your cat.
Your Cat Ate a Roach Sprayed With Raid. What Should You Do?
While the active ingredients in Raid can be toxic to cats, don’t panic.
Keep an eye out for signs of distress and try to keep them hydrated.
If you can’t get them to accept fluids or they’re showing clear signs of poisoning, take them to the vet.
Is It Possible That Roaches Carry Harmful Parasites Could Harm Cats?
It’s no secret that cockroaches can carry a wide range of pathogens that affect both humans and pets.
Cholera, salmonella, E. coli, and dysentery are just a few of the potentially deadly diseases they can spread.
They’re also known to carry parasitic worms, which may infest your cat after eating a carrier roach.
In some cases the cat will suffer no digestive issues.
That said, if you’re seeing symptoms that last more than a day, you should call the vet.
See Also: How to Get Rid of a Stray Cat
What to Do When a Cat’s Eating Behavior Gets Weird
Our feline companions are notorious for hiding when they don’t feel well.
Sudden changes in their eating habits will often be the most obvious sign of distress.
If your cat is allowed outdoors, they may chew on grass or other plants as a remedy for gastrointestinal issues.
Parasitic worms in cats can lead to weight loss despite an increased appetite.
Meanwhile, many poisons can cause a cat to lose interest in drinking water.
When you see such changes, pay close attention.
If the behavior persists for more than a day or is accompanied by other symptoms, consult with your vet immediately.
How to Stop a Cat From Eating Cockroaches
Active cockroach infestations will likely result in a few being unavoidably eaten by your cat.
However, you can discourage roaches from entering your home by using exclusionary devices, pesticidal barriers, and keeping food (including cat food) in tightly sealed containers.
The containers not only help block roaches from getting to the food, it will protect your cat from accidentally eating a roach mixed in with their kibble.
Can Cockroach Poison Kill a Cat?
Insecticides and other poisons can be harmful or even fatal to cats.
Is Roach Bait Poisonous?
Yes, baits are poisonous, although most are designed to work slowly.
This allows roaches to carry it back to the nest where it may be spread to other roaches.
The delay also encourages other roaches to partake of the bait, whereas seeing a roach die right after eating something would discourage other roaches from eating the same meal.
What happens if a Cat Eats Roach Bait?
If you notice any signs of vomiting, diarrhea, tremors in the muscles, convulsions, or lethargy, you should take your cat to the veterinarian right away.
The vet may provide intravenous fluids or use other methods to ensure recovery, s well as keeping a close eye out for any complications.
Your Cat Ate Combat Roach Bait. What Should You Do?
Combat’s roach bait formula is a bit more serious.
Keep a close eye on your cat and don’t hesitate to rush to the vet if you see any major signs of discomfort.
Is Boric Acid Harmful to Cats?
Boric acid is considered a toxic substance if ingested and is harmful to both humans and cats.
While it may not be life-threatening, you should consult with your vet if you suspect a cat has sampled borax or boric acid.
Cat-Safe Cockroach Control Options
#1 – Diatomaceous Earth
Food-grade diatomaceous earth is an excellent natural pesticide that can be sprinkled in areas cats may not be able to access.
This seemingly fine dust is actually crushed, fossilized shells that will slash through a bug’s exoskeleton, causing them to slowly die of fluid loss.
Best of all, it’s a natural product that’s safe to use around cats and other household pets.
#2 – Sticky Traps
These types of traps are great but should be kept out of your cat’s reach unless you like kitty bath times.
The best feature of sticky traps is that they effortlessly catch all sorts of bugs.
No insecticides are used, making this a safe (but sometimes messy) remedy.