Is the verb 食【た】べる used for animals that are eating?

Is animal food called 食事【しょくじ】?

I was having a conversation about a cat. I wanted to know what the cat was eating and the conversation came off track. I think that the person I was chatting with thought that I meant that I was eating her cat!

I said


Thank you.

  • Btw, 食事 does not mean "food", even for humans. It means meal, i.e. the act of eating itself. Food is 食べ物.
    – jarmanso7
    Oct 9, 2019 at 19:35
  • but not for animals :)
    – Jack Bosma
    Oct 9, 2019 at 19:57
  • 1
    Normally one would ask what a person feeds their pet, not what their pet eats. Otherwise it might be dead birds, snails, grass, etc... It has been recommended to you to use ALC and other resources, which would have helped you out this time: eow.alc.co.jp/search?q=feed+a+dog eow.alc.co.jp/search?q=feed+a+cat .
    – BJCUAI
    Oct 10, 2019 at 5:22

1 Answer 1


I think you could use [餌]{えさ}.


or more simply...



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