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Written by: Amir Ali/ Aug 2, 2021
Key Take Aways:
- Cats can kill and eat lizards.
- Most Lizards are non-poisonous.
- Some poisonous lizards can be dangerous to your cat.
- A cat may show symptoms like shakking, giving out foam from the mouth etc on eating a poisonous lizard.
- Rush to the vet if you find your cat showing symptoms of toxicity.
OH MY GOD! My baby has just eaten a lizard! What should I do now? Is she going to die?
If your cat has eaten a lizard. It’s clear to you, that this time she has put her life at risk due to her predatory nature. All of a sudden, you find yourself surrounded by all the negative thoughts. Thoughts that hijack our peace of mind. And, you find yourself completely stumped.
Because you are too worried about what will happen next. Since this is something very strange, that has never happened in your life before.
Don’t panic! Take a deep breath and keep reading…
…Being a caring pet parent it’s pretty natural to get worried about the health of your cat. Especially, when she has consumed something that she shouldn’t. However, the situation is not as bad as you think. It can be controlled. Yes, believe me for now!
I did a great length of independent research about the situation and dug out some extremely crucial information that will help you to tackle the situation in the best possible way.
So, in this article, I’ll share with you my findings regarding your cat eating a lizard. I will also let you know the protective procedure that you must follow to ensure the well-being of your sweetheart.
Please pay attention to what I’m going to tell you in each of the upcoming sections.
Can Cats Eat Lizards?
They can but they shouldn’t. No matter how tasty the lizard may seem to your cat. THEY SHOULD NEVER BE ‘LOVIN IT’.
Teach your kitty, ‘all that glitters is not gold”. Or It’s better to say, “All that moves is not food”. LOL
Anyways, lizards found in homes like geckos are completely non-poisonous. So if your cat has consumed one of those, it’s not a danger.
However, SOME LIZARDS ARE POISONOUS! Eating them can create serious health problems for your cat, even death. So you should take every possible measure to stop your cat from eating them.
Also, the chances of her eating a lizard are not only when she is outside. Sadly, some lizards can come to your home from the outdoors and become prey to your cat.
So, it’s quite possible that your furry friend can start a lizard party anywhere, anytime without giving a damn about the location and time.
Can Persian Cats Eat Lizards?
Yes, Persian Cats can eat lizards. Although Persians are layback cats and don’t show much interest in hunting when a time comes they also act like other cats.
However, there is a minimum possibility of this happening because Persians mostly like to spend time indoors. So there is a very low probability of their encounter with lizards. Even if they do (like Gecko or other small home lizards) they are non-poisonous. Hence, there is a minimum risk of sickness.
Is Eating Lizards Dangerous to Cats?
The answer is both ‘Yes’ and ‘No’. Let me explain. As I said above, lizards that are generally found in homes are not poisonous. Eating them wouldn’t be a direct health issue for your cat. However, two major problems are linked with the act of eating a lizard. They are:
I) Poisonous lizards like blue-tailed skinks and others can cause serious health problems to your cat. Some lizards have poisonous skin and eating them can be vulnerable to your cat. She can even die. So, be very sure to keep your cat away from lizards as much as you can.
II) Some lizards act as a carrier of a parasite called a liver fluke. When cats eat such lizards the parasites through lizards enter their body. This causes liver inflammation in some weeks if left untreated or diagnosed late.
A liver fluke is life-threatening to your cat. So be a close observant and watch what your cat is eating. Especially when she goes out.
What Could Happen If Your Cat Eats a Lizard: Symptoms
Cats try to hunt everything which skitters in front of their eyes. If it is of a size they can manage to hunt they never miss the opportunity to attack. If it is big, they do the opposite and run away to save themselves. LOL
Lizards are smaller animals than cats so they kill them and eat them. After having a delicious snack (lizard) your cat may show the below-mentioned symptoms if the lizard was poisonous. Although we are considering these symptoms in context to lizards these are the common signs and symptoms that a cat may show on consuming anything poisonous.
Symptoms That Your Cat Has Eaten Something Toxic:
- Tremors or Shakiness
- Giving Out Foam From the Mouth
- Unusual Spraying and Bathroom Pattern
- Refusal from Eating Food
- Pale Yellow Gums
- Shock or Collapse
- Breathing Difficulties
Make a list of these points in your mind or on paper. Whenever you find your cat showing any/all of the following symptoms don’t delay for a second and rush to the vet. Because procrastination can kill her. I’M SERIOUS!
My cat ate a lizard. What to do?
If you have seen your cat eating a lizard and couldn’t stop her, watch her for some days.
If the lizard was poisonous then you would notice one, some, or all of the above-mentioned symptoms. In that case, you must rush to the doctor as soon as you can.
Nevertheless, if it was non-poisonous then there is a minimum risk of her catching a disease. However, I still advise you to consult a vet because there’s still a risk of parasites.
Why Do Cats Kill and Eat Lizards?
Well, the above image is enough to tell you why your cutie-sweetie eats those slimy reptiles. But, there is science behind this behaviour as well.
Look, cats are natural and opportunistic predators. Hunting is in their DNA. You can’t suppress this instinct by training or keeping her indoors. Hunting is her nature and you have to accept that as it is.
Cats are more sensitive or you can say more alert to moving objects. When they see a lizard they see it as a toy to play with or as an inviting prey.
The presence of a lizard is an opportunity for them to practice their corroded hunting skills. So, they waste no time giving a new edge to their hunting skills by catching and killing lizards and other small animals such as mice, birds, and frogs.
How Can I Stop My Cat From Killing Lizards?
“How do you stop your cat from killing animals?” Well, it’s a million-dollar question. And, even before this, you may ask, “Can I stop my cat from killing lizards?” No matter which version of the question you may ask, the answer is Yes you can stop her by following some simple steps. Do this:
Step 1. Keep Your Cat Indoors
Your mission to stop your cat from killing lizards starts with training your badass cat to stay indoors. Environment and company play a dominating role in moulding the personality of children the same is the case with cats.
When she stays outside in the company of stray cats she’ll absorb their attitude and behave like them. One of the contrasting characteristics of stray cats is killing small animals. So your cats also learn to kill small animals from them.
But, it doesn’t mean that if you keep her indoors she’ll become a herbivore, she’s still a predator and can kill animals. This brought us to the next point to protect wildlife.
Step 2. Use Bird-Safe Cat Collars
The second option you have to save innocent animals from your killer cat is using a bird-safe collar. These colours have vivid colours that are easily indexable. So, when your cat goes outside wearing these collars the other animals can easily see her and shift to a safer place.
Step 3. Try a Cat Bell
Another option to stop your cat from killing animals is using a cat bell. As you know cat bell is one of the best options to alert other animals of your cat. Tie a collar with a hanging bell around the neck of your and forget. The rest of the work will be done by the bell.
The bell would alarm animals about the presence of a cat helping them to save their lives.
As per the research of Science Direct Journal, Cat Bells are effective in reducing the rate of predation by cats. Another research published on CSIRO, Australia states that “belled collars had reduced the catching of animals by the domestic cats by as much as half in Newzealand.”
Is it Cruel to Keep Cats Indoors?
No, it’s not! it’s a topic of debate among vets and cat parents around the world though. Let’s first consider the argument of those who are supporters of keeping cats outdoors.
Why Do People Advocate Keeping Cats Outdoors?
Those who advocate keeping cats outdoors have a view that cats are natural predators. Keeping them indoors is cruel and you are interfering with her independence.
They also accuse those who keep their cats indoors are intentionally jeopardising the innocent kitty towards obesity, laziness, and stress.
Some propose that a shorter happier life outdoors is far better than a long miserable life indoors.
They are correct. You agree with them. Right?
Wrong! Most expert vets and researchers reject this opinion. Not based on staunch nature but the basis of strong evidence.
Let’s have a glance at the supportive arguments for this perspective.
Why People Advocate Keeping Cats Indoors
1. Health Benefits
If you keep your cat indoors you can save her from a lot of potential threats to her health and life such as dogs, other Bulley cats, humans, diseases such as Flea, and Ticks.
2. Community Benefits
If cats remain indoors there will be a lack of nuisance in the neighbourhood and fewer disputes.
3. Protection of Wildlife
Keeping your cats indoors can be life-saving for other small creatures which are the prey of cats such as lizards, birds, squirrels, rabbits, and rats.
4. Public Health
Cats become a transmission of many communicable diseases to humans like Toxoplasma Bondi. Thus, by keeping them indoors you are promoting public health too.
So does it mean that you should not provide your cat with the experiences she needs to satisfy her instincts and opportunities to practise her hunting skills?
No, not at all! In fact, you should try to provide your cat with the best atmosphere to enrich her experiences.
Tips to Enrich the Indoor Experiences of Your Cat
Jane Ehrlich, an animal behaviourist of the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants(IAABC), has published some guidelines that you can follow to enrich the indoor life of your cats by providing a variety of experiences.
i) Providing Opportunities for Outdoor Exercises and Hunting
You can provide your cat/cats with opportunities to climb, jump and scratch by introducing cat trees and scratch posts. Cats also like to spend a reasonable amount of time alone. Cat caves and cat houses can be a great resource to provide your cat with privacy.
ii) Taking Care of Her Play and Entertainment
There are lots of interactive toys available both online and offline that can keep your cat charged and active throughout the day. Toys can also be an excellent means of physical exercise for your cat.
iii) Teach Your Cat Hunting Skills
If your cat stays indoors it doesn’t mean that she should behave like a cow. You can still teach and develop her hunting skills. How?
Well, hide her food, and catnip kibble in the house. In this way, she will learn to earn her food through hard work. You can also rotate the location of her food. There are several places where you can hide her food such as behind the sofas, below the cushions, on the cat tree where she perches, etc.
Socialisation is crucial not only for cats but also for humans. Yes, my dear Cat Daddy, I know some cats like to be alone. But, the majority of cats like the company of other cats.
Imagine, that you are surrounded by only cats and there is no human to interact with…
…Over time, you’ll get frustrated because you the ‘Homosapian’ need an organism of the same species to spend time with.
Cats are no exception. No matter how much you take care of her they need other cats to interact with to keep themselves comfortable, entertained, and relaxed.
Why Do Cats Bring Dead Birds and Animals Home?
It happens quite often, as soon as you open the door you find a corpse of a bird or other animal at your doorstep. Or you sometimes get puzzled by seeing the feathers of a bird, dispersed all over the balcony.
No, it’s not that someone is doing black magic in your home! These are the acts of your sweet-looking princess who cruelly kills small animals and brings them home.
Cats bring dead animals home because they want to teach you some hunting skills. For them, you are their silly friend who doesn’t lack hunting skills. So, they bring those poor injured and dead animals home to teach you what it takes to be a predator.
Can Cats Get Salmonella by Eating Lizards
According to FDA, Cats and Dogs have a minimum possibility to catch Salmonella. However, they can become the source of the spread of bacteria among humans.
Cats can spread the bacteria of Salmonella via their saliva or stools. The possibility of catching the bacteria increases when you clean the litter box. What to do then?
Sometimes cats can get infected by Salmonella if they are already suffering from any other disease.
You can identify whether you have been infected by Salmonella by the following symptoms:
- Diarrhea( with blood)
- Laziness or Decrease in Activity Level
- Loss of Appetite
How Does a Lizard Protect Herself From a Cat?
Well, the poor lizards don’t have much to save themselves from cats except those who are poisonous. But, they do everything they can to survive against cats. Some of these self-defence techniques are:
- Spikes and Horns on their skin
- Venomous Bites
- Shedding of Tail
- Squirting of Blood
Q1. Do cats kill lizards?
Yes, cats can kill lizards and eat them. Not only lizards cat kills other small wildlife too such as birds, squirrel, rabbit, chicks, mice, frogs and even snakes.
Q2. Can cats get sick from eating lizards?
Cats can get sick after eating lizards. This is because of two major reasons. Firstly, some lizards are poisonous, and eating them can kill your cat. Secondly, lizards carry pathogens in their bodies that can make your cat sick. This can even lead to death so, be careful.
Q3. Why do cats love lizards?
Cat are natural hunters and they see moving things as their prey. So, when they encounter a lizard they see it as their prey trying to catch and kill them. They also catch lizards to practice their hunting skills.
Q4. What if my cat eats a baby lizard?
If your cat eats a baby lizard she can still get infected by the parasites or killed by poison if the lizard that she has eaten is poisonous. So, it’s not about the size of the lizard it’s about the poison and parasites.
Q5. Are lizards afraid of cats?
Yes, lizards are afraid of cats. Lizards also know that cats are their enemy. So, they always try to save themselves from cats. This is the very reason why the households that have cats don’t have lizards.
Q6. Do Cats Eat Cockroaches?
Yes, cats show no mercy on cockroaches and eat them. Eating one or two cockroaches is not harmful to your cat but too many of them can create health issues such as intestinal problems.
Q7. Do cats eat snakes?
Yes, cats eat snakes and snakes eat cats. Let me explain. Cats like to hunt everything that is skittering in front of them. If it is a snake they give no respect and hunt that too. However, bigger snakes such as anaconda and python eat cats and gobble them.
Q8. Why do cats play with mice before they die?
Cats are predators by nature. Once they catch their prey they try to practice their hunting skills by catching the same prey again and again till the time they like or the prey dies. This is why cats play with mice before they die.
Q9. Can a rat kill a cat?
Rats cannot kill adult cats but they can kill small kittens. So, there is a possibility of killing younglings of cats by rats. Adult cats have no life-threatening danger with rats. However, big rats can scare some cats and attack them.
Q10. Can a cat eat a bearded dragon?
No, cats don’t kill bearded dragons. In fact, some people keep both bearded dragons and cats as pets in the same household. Cats do not attack them like they do with small lizards such as geckos. This may be because of their dangerous looks or big size that cats don’t dare to attack them. Instead, they keep a friendly relationship.