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Why Is My Cat Obsessed With Apples?

If you have noticed that your cat is crazy about apples you may be wondering why, and if this is normal behavior…

Why is my cat obsessed with apples?

Cats are characters and they like what they like. It might be the shape of the apple, which makes it roll around a bit ‘off’ when batted, or your cat might like the sound that it makes when it falls to the floor. Cats also love scents, and the apple might smell nice to them or they might even like the taste.

So, now you know. But, is this normal behavior? Are there any health benefits with apples? Why do some cats like apples? Keep reading for these answers, and much more…

What exactly are apples?

Kitten looking at a red apple.

Kitten looking at a red apple.


Apples are a common round and fleshy fruit that comes from trees in various shades of green and red. While cats see in a limited range of colors, they can certainly smell apples and it’s likely that their odd shape is appealing for play. If you knock an apple over, it’s sure to roll oddly and could bounce just about anywhere…

This alone might make them amusing for cats, though some like to eat this fruit as well.

While this shouldn’t hurt them (keep the seeds away though, as they are poisonous), small amounts of the fruit are okay if your cat would like some. Just chop a little in advance so that your cat doesn’t chew on the poisonous seeds in the core.

Is it normal for cats to be obsessed with apples?

While it’s not common, cat owners around the world find themselves in possession of fruit-fancying felines, so just chalk it off to your cat being a strange character – it’s nothing to worry about.

Some cats are even afraid of apples and it is assumed in such cases that the apple shape might be similar to the head of a predator or another that your cat is familiar with. It certainly seems weird, but some cats just have a thing for apples!

Cats are strange, sometimes, and they can obsess over all kinds of things. Some cats want to steal your Cheetos, others might like carrying off one of your shoes and hiding it. Apples are certainly fragrant and colorful and so it might be that your cat simply finds them interesting and amusing.

Can cats eat apples?

Cats can certainly eat apples, although they are primarily designed for a carnivorous diet of meat and nothing more. That said, some cats do like apples and you can let them have some, just limit it to 10% of their caloric intake at most.

For a cat that weighs about 10 pounds, this means that they can have up to ¼ of an apple. Apple seeds, however, need to be avoided as they contain a chemical called amygdalin which can convert into hydrogen cyanide!

As long as you chop the apple so that no seeds are part of its content, however, then your cat can certainly have some apple if they would like it.  

Are there better alternatives to apples for cats?

Cats can and do enjoy a number of healthy fruits and veggies, with celery and zucchini being two examples that a lot of cats enjoy.

Peas are popular as well, although your cat is just as likely to bat them around as they are to eat them – so feed your cat peas with caution as you’ll probably have to retrieve a few from under the refrigerator and other places your cat might bat them into.

The best snacks, however, are going to be meat-based ones that you make at home or purchase commercially from your local pet store, as these will be specifically formulated for carnivores and not only healthier for your cat, but much easier for them to digest.

Are there any health benefits of apples?

Hand holding an apple.

Hand holding an apple.

Yes! Apples have a lot of phytonutrients as well as vitamins and minerals which may be beneficial for your cat. They have a lot of calcium, for one thing, and they also contain vitamins K and C and a bit of pectin as well.

Just be sure to leave out the stems and the seeds if you feed some apples to your cat, as these are the dangerous and unhealthy parts, and keep the amount of apples that you feed your cat limited to small amounts.

Too much apple, even while it is healthy, can give your kitty a tummy ache or even diarrhea, as their bodies are simply not designed to eat fruits and veggies.

Why does my cat lick apples?

It is likely that your cat simply enjoys the taste and the texture of the apples. If you brought them home in a plastic bag (click here if your cat is scared of these), cats also love breaking them open, and this might be the primary drive for ‘freeing’ the apples in the first place.

Cats sometimes lick odd things, such as dust, fruits, or even your hand from time to time and it is generally harmless unless it starts bordering on the compulsive (i.e. your cat licks EVERYTHING). In cases where it is compulsive, then you should check your vet to make sure that your cat is not suffering from Pica.

Pica is a condition where animals or people obsessively consume non-food items and so if your cats licking and nibbling isn’t limited to just the apples, a vet checkup might be a good idea to ensure that this is not a behavioral issue.

Can cats eat apple slices?

Yes! Sliced apples are fine in small amounts, just don’t give your kitty too much or they might get a little sick to their stomach. Apples are high in vitamin C and K and they also can give your kitty a calcium boost, so they are certainly a healthy food – as long as you remember to limit it to ‘treats’.

Your cat is a carnivore and not really equipped to properly digest a lot of fruits and veggies, so if your cat shows any signs of an upset stomach, especially vomiting or diarrhea, then you might want to consider taking apples ‘off the table’ or at the very least minimizing their intake of foods such as this.

Can I feed stray cats apples?

Apples are not a good idea for strays. Many stray cats might eat them, but it is more likely to be simply because they are very hungry and there is nothing else. Dry cat food is going to be a much better choice, as this is going to give the strays proper nutrition and better equip them to survive on their own.

If a stray has already eaten some dry cat food and still wants a piece of apple, that is certainly okay – just make sure that they are getting some proper food first because apples are definitely not a natural part of a cat’s diet.

Can cats eat apple skin?  

Yes! If your cat likes chewing on apple skins, that is fine for them to have, as only the stems and seeds are going to be toxic to your kitty. Some cats like playing with apple skins and chewing on them and this is perfectly fine, with a worst-case scenario being that your kitty might get a little indigestion from eating too much apple skin.

You can also chop up a bit of the apple for your cat and leave the skin on if you like, just limit servings to 10% of your cat’s caloric intake and then it should be just fine as an occasional treat.

Lindsey Browlingdon