Are Temptations Cat Treats Bad?

Last Updated on September 10, 2020

There has been a lot of wonders and worry over a Facebook post that seemed to have blown way out of proportion. The cat treats from MARS known as Temptations are being considered a deadly treat to a lot of caring cat lovers out there. While the treats aren’t  “deadly” I wouldn’t consider them to be healthy either. You still need to be aware of the ingredients!”

Creating the Issue

A lot of cats out there can handle some of the worst diets there are. From over-processed canned and dry food to unhealthy snacking and treats. The issue is, while a lot of cats “CAN” eat this stuff, many will suffer health consequences from it. Just like humans, if we eat more junk and processed foods then we should, our bodies will let us know by creating what we consider to be “symptoms” of some illness or disease. These so-called symptoms are actually your body’s way of trying to correct a problem. If you work against your body’s ability to heal itself by continuing to put the same crap in it, it will continue to have more problems. A cat’s body is no different!

Read the Ingredients Label

Looking at the ingredients on any cat product, there are a few you want to either minimize or completely get rid of depending on your cat’s health. These include corn, wheat, by-products (including meat meals), saturated oils, yeast, and heavy grains. The first 5 ingredients are the most important because they are labeled from the most to the least as far as quantity in the recipe.

If we look over the Temptations ingredients (I am reading off of the Backyard Cookout flavor), we will see the 5 following ingredients listed first and in this order: Chicken By-Product, Ground Corn, Animal Fat, Dried Meat By-Products, and Brewers Rice. Noting what I had just mentioned above, these treats are not “healthy” by a long shot. If we were to compare human food to cat food, consider something like this the McDonald’s of cat treats. No cat food or treat should EVER have all 5 ingredients from the no-no list.

Cats Love Them

Part of the reason many cats love them is down to the number of preservatives and additives in the ingredients. My cats love these treats and yes, I do give them to them but I also consider them for what they are. They basically are fast-food grade cat treats that should be just that, TREATS. Would you eat McDonald’s every day and consider yourself eating a healthy diet? I would certainly hope not! I am not telling you to stop feeding these to your cats but you really need to consider the ingredients and the amount you are feeding them. Small amounts here and there will be fine but don’t consider this a daily treat for your cat. Always consider your cat’s health as well. These treats may actually cause them some harm, especially cats sensitive to grains or those of them who have corn allergies. It is in the best interest of your cat that you be sure they are on the proper diet (including treats) for their own needs. 


Since writing this post I have noticed my cat doing something many have complained about and that is pulling out his fur. He did this on a few of his legs and the bald spots were not tiny, they were very noticeable. He is an indoor cat and only goes out while on a leash under my supervision. I also do not leave any kind of cleaner or pills out where he can reach them. The only thing I had changed was buying him a different flavor of Temptations, the Catnip Mixup flavor. I have stopped giving these treats to him altogether several months ago and the fur has grown back. He no longer pulls out his fur either. He does have food sensitivities and it was likely down to an allergy. If you are wondering what I feed my cats now, it is PureBites freeze-dried treats . For many people experiencing issues like this, it is best to try another type of treat with limited ingredients. Getting your kitty tested for allergies will help to determine which food/treats are best. 

For those who have experienced sudden changes (illness or death), it is likely due to your cat getting into something poisonous. 

You really have to pay attention to what you keep in your home and if you allow your cat to go outdoors, it should be in an enclosed area or under your supervision. Many people use rat poison outside their homes. Cars also leak anti-freeze which is known to taste sweet to cats and dogs. I have done research on several treats, several cases, and other than food allergy symptoms which will get worse over time, there is nothing in these treats that will cause sudden death. So unless some poison was added to the treats by mistake, we have to assume the sudden illness and death cases are caused by something else.


Whether you choose to continue to feed your cat Temptations treats or not, that is up to you. While most cats will be fine eating treats like this, not all of them will. For my cats, it came down to allergies and I had to stop buying them. If you suspect for any reason the treats are causing issues with your cat, it is best to stop providing them and take them to a vet to get tested for food allergies. One of the most common food allergies for cats is corn. Cats can also have bad reactions to plastic bowls, perfumes, and even fleas (some cats are deathly allergic to fleas). To find healthy alternatives, please read Healthy Treats for Cats.

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205 thoughts on “Are Temptations Cat Treats Bad?”

  1. Sorry but this article is based on what?
    First of all, these treats are crap. Secondly, my cat (no fault of my own) got into the bag overnight (I left on counter) And was dead in a day. My cat ate science diet food and was healthy. These treats kill if not properly dispensed. PLEASE if you love your cat and decide to feed them crap don’t leave it out. I am Forever heartbroken.

    • I gave my 1 yr old kitty Temptaions with catnip and I’m pretty sure it killed him. He was sick immediately after eating them and died the next morning. He was in perfect health before he ate them.

  2. If I had a cat, I certainly would not feed it Temptations. Read the ingredients don’t impress me at all. I know a cat that gets Temptations and he is overweight, big time, and getting worse.
    I have a Collie dog in which we cook meat, eggs, eggshells, fruit, yogurt, garlic and good stuff and he is doing so well. He is very happy! No more dog kibble, or canned food for him!!!!!!

  3. I am very concerned now because we just took our three kittens to the vet for their boosters and they all got temptation treats. They are all throwing up and have diahhrea. The one who ate the most treats is the sickest. Commercial pet food is not regulated and most of it is horrible-especially the known brands. Putin’s is one of the worst. I am switching to raw diet only now because of what I have learned about pet food over the years. Two sites to learn are and Dr. Marty’s Natural Food. He has a wonderful video ex-Lanning why you should never feed commercial food.

    • My cats got so sick on Temptations I think it is the GMO corn. It is not normal how they act over them and they do not want to eat anything else.. I compare it to a research mouse that picks the drugs over the food every time. They throw up have dry stools and drink water like they are dying of thirst. My cat had to be taken to the vet and the first thing he said was the Temptations have to go. It is amazing now difference in both my cats. They are not treat crazed animals anymore.

  4. I am on a list serve where a neighbor stated his cat ate approx 10 treats and was dead by the morning. The reason I am writing is that the company refused responsibility for the death. I am interested in knowing if the company has statistics on deaths reported. (Probably not due to liability issues.) Realizing this is anecdotal data only, I would still stay away.

    • Just wanted to inform everyone who has a cat with cardiac issues that I learned this week (From a MARS company rep) that Temptations Treats are high in salt – each treat has 2.3 mg. Average cats (without cardiac issues) only require 21 mg of sodium per day.
      Our cat is on meds for Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy, including a diuretic. He loves Temptation treats, but decided to restrict totally for a while, and he is doing better. Did some research on the internet to determine if his treats were contributing to fluid retention and made the discovery of high salt content when I called the maker of Temptations.
      I agree that these treats may cause or contribute to serious health issues.
      Also Greenies pill pockets are high in salt. A site I accessed reported that dogs (which are usually larger animals than cats) with cardiac issues should only have the cat size pill pockets (for medication administration) due to the salt content.
      Hope this is helpful.

      • Temptations are not good for cats. I had no idea until I went to the vet. He told me to throw all of it away do not donate it I took the advice right away and as time passed I started to see improvements it was such a relief….So i thought “All is well again with the cats” until I noticed again the throw up everyday on the ground and the litter box had the most awful-smelling stools or dried stringy poops that looked like a necklace.. I also notice I cant keep the water bowls full and my cat wont get out of my bed. I knew something was wrong so I looked through the trash and I found empty Temp. bags with recent expiration dates at the time it happened. Sure enough a roommate took it upon herself to not care and buy the animals Temptations. I was hurt shock and saddened by this. Why would anyone knowingly want to make an animal sick like this. I just wanted to add my experience.

      • currntly expiriencing this right now i am horrified this is crazy im like almost afraid of my cat for first time in life . he just looks sick and feels sick and looking for a way to relieve him

  5. I have given my cats and I’ve had up to 8 cat’s at one time Temptation treats for year’s. My cat’s absolutely love them. With that said, one of my kitties just passed away at 22years old another at 16 years old one at 13 years old (who wsd HIV positive) my twin girls were 15 and 16 years old and I still have a baby girl who is 16 and eats them every day. I also have 2 more babies one is 5 and the other is 6 and they too eat them every day with NO signs of losing hair or abnormal vomiting. One of my babies that passed away at 16 years of age was always very fragile from birth and he would always vomit up anything he ate except for the temptations. That is actually what kept him alive for most of those year’s. So I’m not sure if my cat’s are just unique but I’ve never had any problems with this product.

  6. I decided to stop giving these to my cats because within a 30 minute’s of eating them, they both vomit, at least three times each.

  7. I generally do not reply to any forums, because this subject regarding Temptations cat treats is relatable to many of the negative responses I decided to share my experience. About 3months my husband & I started giving our 16yr old cat these treats. Our cat started to show signs of illness about 2wks ago, we made an emergency appt. took him to the veternarian to find out that he has kidney failure & high blood pressure. He stayed overnite to do more extensive testing. We could not figure out why all of a sudden he had issues when we never experience any issues in the pass. My husband would like me to contact consumer affairs as soon as possible.

  8. I’m curious why, after a disparaging review of Temptations, you continued to feed them to your cat, only to come back with another disparaging claim? Kinda makes me wonder at your motives??

  9. Whiskas chicken Temptations almost killed my two cats. They started losing weight and hair. I thought for sure I was going to lose them. They made a come back when I stopped the treat and gave them canned fish.

    • My friend had 2 cats. 5 years apart in age. One died of cancer. The other was under weight, loosing hair and severe vomiting. I asked him to stop giving him Temtation treats. After 6 months, his health returned. Shinny hair coat, gained weight and the vomiting stopped

      • Yep my cats were sick too until I stopped. It could be the GMO corn its hard to say why this happens to cats. I had a roommate feed my cats Temptations behind my back and they got sick again. I could not believe it. I found the empty bags in her trash. I feel so bad about it. She knew it would get them sick and did it anyway:(

  10. I’m just reading abt this, I give my 3 & a half year old cat temptation treats once every night (between 1-3AM), I’m not sure but by reading this I think my cat my be allergic to it. He’s been getting like scabs arnd his neck & like a rash. A few down his spine & near the tail area. He’s also scratching & biting himself excessively. Could this be an allergic reaction to the treats. Also he’s gotten scab under his chin. I’m going to stop giving him these treats. Oh, and he’s also loosing some of his hairs arnd his head area.

  11. Thanks for the information. I have a couple of relatives that recently started giving their cats Temptations. As far as I know, they have not had any adverse reactions so far, but the cats respond to these treats as if they are addicted. My aunt is one of those people, and she has been trying to convince me to give them to my three cats. So I searched online to find out what ingredient(s) could be making the cats go crazy over them, and I found this article. Based on what I am reading, I think I will do without the Temptations or any similar packaged treats. My cats are all healthy, and have been eating corn-free dry and wet food for years. If they want treats, I will give them a small amount of people food—real, nutritious, unprocessed food, not junk.

  12. Yes I was stupid enough to buy temptation s treats to my cats. One died when she was 4 of Kidney failure because she ate them the most the other died just two weeks ago of Kidney failure when at the age of 8. I didn’t purchase these treats for four years but the damage was done to the kidneys. Do not buy any treats unless they are 100% natural and harmless. Temptations killed my two cats. !!!!!!Kidney failure!!! I Am warning yu ou

  13. look the ingridiens of the wiskas treats all deadly hydrochoride, niacine cloride, alpa tochopherol acetate otassium chloride panthothenate thiamine mononitrate pyridoxine zinc sulfate manganese sulfate copper sulfate zinc sulfate all deadly ingridiense

  14. Omg I just read this and my cat has been pulling out his fur to. No more of those treats for them thank u for ur article and the treat suggestions

  15. My cat is 18 years old , almost 19. He doesn’t eat much any more,sleeps almost all day, has lost a lot of weight in the last few years but he does love Temptations. We mix it in with regular food. It is of my opinion, and its just an opinion , that Temptations has helped us keep him around.


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