Follow TV Tropes


Carnivore Confusion / Western Animation

Go To
"Here's your steak." "Uh, sorry."

  • Adventure Time:
    • The inhabitants of the Candy Kingdom in the Land of Ooo are sentient candy. Every building and the streets are made out of candy too. This is addressed in the first Susan Strong episode — after Finn shows her that she can eat the sidewalk, she tries to eat a passing resident. Finn stops her, explaining that she can't eat a Candy Person. Unfortunately, she assumes that she can eat everyone except that person and brings her tribe to attack the city.
    • More specifically referenced in the episode 'Hitman' where Finn and Jake are making sandwiches with slices of meat. Later in the same episode, after a bad dream, Jake resolves to "stop eating Meat Man".
      Finn: What kind of meat is that?
      Jake: That's Meat Man's meat.
      Finn: Do you think it hurts Meat Man when he gives us his meat?
  • Alfred J. Kwak:
    • The King of Great Waterland is a lion, who in one of the early episodes is shown hunting in the forest. With a rifle. In a land full of talking animals. His servants are later shown taking dead pheasants with them.
    • Advertisement:
    • Even the fish talk, and at one point ask Alfred for help because they are afraid that they'll be hunted to extinction by a new high-tech fishing boat.
    • The character Krabnagel is a dangerous criminal and known to eat others (including little children). He is never charged for this, when he ends up in prison it's for other crimes.
    • K. Rokodil is happily married to a bird that a real crocodile would have probably eaten.
  • Aqua Teen Hunger Force Dr. Weird takes this trope to it's (il)logical conclusion.
  • In Alvin and the Chipmunks Meet the Wolfman, Theodore is stated to be vegetarian while his brothers aren't. They're all chipmunks, obviously, and are usually depicted as normal chipmunks who have picked up more humanoid tendencies (despite their abnormal size).
  • The Amazing World of Gumball:
    • The Sheriff of Elmore is a doughnut who loves eating doughnuts.
    • In "The Meddler", Gumball tries to pass off his telling Penny "I love you" as "I love peanuts". Penny gets offended because she is herself a peanut, and says that would be like her telling Gumball she liked to eat cats.
    • "The World" shows that while some of the food is anthropomorphic enough to live like a human would, all of the food (and everything else) is sentient, and some of it isn't too happy about being eaten. Though the hot dog and soda seem alright with it.
    • A poster in the back of Elmore Middle School listing rules includes a rule against eating other students. In "The Coach" it turns out Jamie has done exactly that: cue a flash cut of Sarah's head (ice cream) with an unpeeled Banana Joe on top, each having a noticeable bite taken out of them.
    • In "The Flower", Leslie (a flower) tries to get Penny to give up plant-eating because she's herself a plant and shouldn't be eating her own kind.
    • In "The Bumpkin", Idaho (a potato) ask Richard what the french fries he's eating are. Richard then throws them out the window.
    • In "The Job", Gumball and Darwin deliver a pizza to two anthropomorphic pizzas, though the pizzas talk about it as though they're going to raise him as a child rather than eat him. Then Gumball accidentally drops it.
    • In "The Name", Gumball takes a bite out of an apple on the table in front of Banana Joe. This causes him to remark "Hey! That's my cousin!" and we then see said apple had a face and begins to cry.
    • In "The Hug", one of the things Gumball does to break off his "friendship" with Hot Dog Guy is to treat him to a hot dog lunch. In his internal monologue, he's spitting and screaming in disgust, but goes along with it.
    • "The Potato" has Darwin giving up eating potatoes due to thinking it is offending Idaho. It turns out Idaho didn't mind because apparently potato-people are not the same as edible potatoes.
  • The Animals of Farthing Wood: Overcome by the Oath of Mutual Protection, where the animals promise not to attack, bully or eat each other during their journey to White Deer Park. However, what happened before and what will happen after they get there is depicted as a brutal fact of life; in the cartoon series when we first meet the leader of the group, Fox, he's asked a question by a group including a rabbit and has to put down a dead rabbit he is carrying in his mouth before he can answer. When they get to White Deer Park, whilst the Farthing Wood animals continue to uphold the Oath amongst one another, the other animals of White Deer Park are not bound by the Oath and as such many of the smaller Farthing Wood animals are killed and eaten during the series. And, as Adder is quick to point out, the Oath doesn't require them not to eat the animals of White Deer Park either.
  • Arthur: While the characters are anthropomorphic to an extreme, it's still rather odd to realize that Sue Ellen, a cat, is taught by Ratburn, a rat. But they seem to get along just fine. Sue Ellen even becomes vegetarian several seasons in.
  • Back at the Barnyard: The fact that some of the cast of barn animals include a dog and a ferret, tends not to bother the others at all. However, Freddy the ferret does very frequently fantasize eating his best friend, Peck (who happens to be a chicken), but tries to maintain a vegetarian diet (the producers seem to disregard the fact that ferrets are obligate carnivores and completely lack the ability to derive nutrition from plant matter). In one scene, Otis the cow is seen eating a salami sandwich, but later turns out it's just veggie salami.
    • There's even an episode where Freddy, who can't remember the night before, is put on trial and banished for allegedly eating Peck. He didn't. Peck was just laying in an aloe patch because he had molted and needed lotion.
  • Rather horrific deconstruction in BoJack Horseman, which takes place in a world populated by humans and Funny Animals. One episode shows a chicken farmer who is himself a chicken, and his livestock are just as anthropomorphic as himself, but as he explains they are injected with hormones at birth that make them no more intelligent than real, non-anthropomorphic chickens. In a previous episode, a cow waitress was shown angrily serving steak to a human customer.
  • Brandy & Mr. Whiskers handles this in a surprisingly brutal way for a Disney Channel series. While predators are usually handled as villains, not all of them are entirely bad. Some are just annoying or indeed just doing what they were born to do. Even more startling is that some of them actually succeed. In a particular unexpected example, a rodent family is eaten by a crocodile in a slightly anvilicious aesop — but it's still played for laughs.
  • CatDog:
    • Deconstructed in one episode; Dog tries to answer the question of where meat comes from. He explains how there's a guy who plants meat plants — meanwhile, Cat just explains slaughter. Dog goes crazy at the idea of eating sapient beings, who he thinks are friends, and turns vegan. Then, Dog starts to become delusional as he imagines that vegetables are his friends. After all that, Dog then tries to eat Cat, because he's not his friend but his brother. Fortunately, the guy who plants meat plants appears and solves the problem. To make things more horrifying, Cat and Dog share bodies. So if Dog eats Cat, he eats his own body. Although they only feel pain in their half, so they have their own bodies, but they meet in the middle. So Dog would have only eaten Cat, which just leaves Dog and his half of the body...
    • Another episode involved Cat succumbing to his feline instincts and trying to eat Winslow, an anthropomorphic mouse.
    • Both CatDog and Rocko's Modern Life had Thanksgiving episodes featuring the main characters hiding turkeys at their houses. Turkeys meant to be eaten by the mostly-animal people of Nearburg/O-Town.
  • A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving: The ending has Snoopy and Woodstock, the latter of whom is a bird, sitting down to have a turkey dinner. The bonus feature on the special's new DVD release has Bill Melendez admitting even he thought that scene was rather morbid. It really doesn't help that on several occasions in the comic, Woodstock and the other birds spent Thanksgiving hiding at Snoopy's place because they were terrified of becoming Thanksgiving dinners themselves.
  • The Christmas Special Christopher The Christmas Tree uses the Predators Are Mean model. A group of Woodland Creatures take up residence in the eponymous tree, specifically seeking shelter from foxes and weasels. The only time said fox and weasel show up, however, all the other animals are out looking for food, so they simply taunt Christopher and leave.
  • Courage the Cowardly Dog: One episode has Courage and Eustace attending a burger joint owned by two pigs. Another episode shows one of the aforementioned pigs owning a meat shop at a local market.
  • Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood is of the type that completely ignores the issue. Daniel Tiger and his friends O the Owl and Katerina Kittycat all go to school together. If Katerina was really a cat and Daniel was really a tiger, O would be a meal to the former and a light snack to the latter.
  • Dinosaur Train seems to go out of the way to talk about the differences between herbivores and carnivores. The dinosaurs that are carnivores, however, do seem to have come to an unspoken agreement to not eat fellow dinosaurs.
    • While they're alive, anyway. Buddy, on discovering he's a Tyrannosaurus, also discovers that he likes carrion, and in another episode, Annie explains that the T. rex family migrates to follow the herbivores, because "they eat plants, and we eat them".
    • Actually, the carnivores do mention that they hunt and eat other dinosaurs. Some episodes even discuss predator-prey relationships.
  • Dinotrux plays this a little weird, given that all animals are animal/vehicle hybrids. Almost all of them simply feed on ore, with the T-Trux being feared mostly because they are usually powerful territorial jerks. The show also features scavengers that like to collect scrap metal (so, the flesh of other Dinotrux), but seemingly just to build their nests out of as they are never seen eating it. So that getting replacement parts does not have to involve our heroes killing other dinotrux for their parts, an acceptable target is given to them in the form of bitbugs; literally just replacement parts with insect wings that certain kinds of reptools can harvest by eating them and spitting them back out sans wings.
  • This is a primary theme of Don't Eat the Neighbors. A family of rabbits live near a family of wolves, and a fox and a bear are also present. Fox and the father wolf wants to hunt and eat the father rabbit. Meanwhile, the kids in the wolf and rabbit families don't try to eat each other and get along fine. And Bear doesn't seem to want to eat anybody.
  • The Fairly OddParents' "Crash Nebula" episode has the hero, Sprig Speevak, tell his alien classmates a story about the time he rescued an alien princess, which included a part where his kid sister Sprout calls him in for dinner, which is turkey, and it makes the alien turkey mad, so Sprig revised that part to Sprout telling him that their mom made the turkey a sweater.
  • Father of the Pride plays with this. The main character is a lion whose best friend is a gopher whose name is Snack. At one point, Snack's girlfriend (also aptly named Candy) dumps him, and to protect his feelings, tells Snack that he ate his girlfriend instead.
  • The Flintstones has a weird case with their animal appliances. The animals talk and are apparently sentient. There's also non-intelligent animals as well, though, such as Dino. In "The Snorkasaurus Hunter", Fred and Barney hunt a Snorkasaurus who turns out to be intelligent and able to speak. Wilma and Betty befriend the creature, who becomes the Flintstones' servant. Wilma refers to the Snorkasaurus as "Dino". Previous episodes had already established the Flintstones pet, Dino, who looks very similar tonote  the talking Snorkasaurus Dino that most viewers are familiar with.
  • Franklin: The cute turtle and goose and rabbit are bestest buddies with the equally cute bear and fox.
  • Futurama:
    • "The Problem With Popplers" addresses this several times:
      • First, when a bunch of hippies attempt to convince the Planet Express crew to go vegetarian, Leela points out eating meat is a part of nature, and the hippies point to a lion they taught to eat tofu. It's sickly, emaciated and looks like it'll fall over dead at any second.
      • The main characters casually bring up a few animals they eat in the future that are not usually thought of as food here in the present, such as parrots.
      • The real meat of the episode, however, focuses on popplers, which resemble popcorn chicken and are portrayed as absolutely delicious. Everybody happily devours the things until one hatches, and they realize that popplers are the eggs of the Omicronian people. "When my species grows up, we eat our moms!"
    • Fishy Joe claims that the only reason humans aren't cannibals is because humans taste terrible. (And before anyone asks how they found out, one episode reveals that they had to resort to it during an economic depression several decades ago.) This doesn't stop Soylent from being a popular foodstuff, since it contains human material but is also highly process, homogeneous, and tofu-like.
  • George of the Jungle:
    • Addressed in a rather interesting manner in one episode: George proclaims himself to protect the animals of the forest, which frequently results in the "Predators Are Mean" approach, with them being beaten up by George. However, in one episode he rescues a bird from a snake that was strangling it, causing the bird's family to reward George by carving his face on the mountainside. However, near the end of the episode, we hear the snake's side of the story, and it turns out that the bird was going to steal and eat the snake's eggs, and the snake's actions were thoroughly justified. The bird family promptly reverses the carving and flees once their facade of innocence is ruined.
    • On another occasion, George helped the carnivores give up meat, turning them into hippies. By an unfortunate coincidence, Ursula and Magnolia were teaching the herbivores to stand up for themselves, turning them into a vicious gang. Luckily, when it's pointed out that there won't be enough vegetables for everyone, the carnivores snap and the food chain is restored.
  • Diego in Go, Diego, Go! often has to help a prey animal evade a predator (the reasons aren't specified) though he's also helped predators to live. In one episode, he helps a llama outrun a puma until he realizes that he personally knows the puma, and it's a "nice" puma who only wanted to borrow a book. The prey animals are always described as being "afraid of" their predators, but the idea of animals actually eating each other never comes up (unless it's fish).
  • The Goode Family subverts the vegan carnivore subtrope. Rearing the family dog on a soy-bean diet has made it so starved for meat that he takes to eating all of the neighborhood pets.
  • Kaeloo: Mr. Cat has threatened to eat Stumpy and Quack Quack at times, since he is a cat and they are a squirrel and duck respectively.
  • Krypto The Super Dog: In one episode, Krypto and his cat friend Streaky (who also has the same powers) are exposed to red kryptonite and turn into fish versions of themselves. Not only are the sharks portrayed as being mean bastards preying on innocent fish, there's actually a dolphin who is appalled that Streaky eats fish, and has the nerve to call him (along with a bunch of other fish who find out the truth) a "fish eater". Both Carnivore Confusion and Artistic License – Biology since both dolphins and whales are treated as if they are related to fish. It's even worse when you consider that Dolphins feed primarily on fish.
  • The Lion King largely avoided this trope until The Lion Guard. The cartoon is about Simba's son (a lion cub) and his friends (several who are carnivores or omnivores) protecting the Pridelands. More than once this involves "saving" prey from predators (or rather, unsympathetic predators). Despite this, the main characters eating other animals is acknowledged. One episode even revolves around the fact Fuli (a cheetah) hunts alone, though we never actually see her catching her prey. The Lion Guard frequently interact with prey animals however they don't seem scared of them. To add to the confusion, sometimes they speak, other times they only make animal noises.
  • Little Bear, is a bear, but is friends with a cat, a hen and a duck, all of which can be prey animals to a bear. The only meat he is seen eating is fish, and this is mostly because No Cartoon Fish is in appliance. There are also Cat and Owl. They are said to hunt at night and when Little Bear meets a mouse, he knows that he has to hide it from them.
  • Looney Tunes:
    • The excellent short "Birds Anonymous" may be the earliest example of the "predators can just quit eating animals" trope. Sylvester joined the titular group, then suffered hard while going cold turkey due to lack of bird flesh. In the end, the president of Birds Anonymous ends up chasing Tweety as well.
    • Sylvester decides to stop eating birds in at least one other cartoon, but only birds go off his list. Considering how much trouble Tweety hands him, it's hard to fault his decision.
    • Even though Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck are sapient, humanoid animals, a massive chunk of their cartoons involves people trying to murder and/or eat them. They don't usually succeed, but it's still disturbing when one thinks about it, and it makes one wonder why this aspect of the Looney Tunes mythos hasn't been deconstructed yet. In Daffy's debut, "Porky's Duck Hunt", Daffy is closer to a Talking Animal as opposed to Porky being a Funny Animal. Daffy went through an Anthropomorphic Shift later on, but WB directors still did cartoons where Porky was out to hunt Daffy for food in spite of them both being Funny Animals.
  • The Looney Tunes Show: In "Sunday Night Slice", Bugs and friends go to a BBQ restaurant after their favorite pizzeria closes. Daffy orders pork ribs and pulled pork sandwiches, which offends Porky, but he doesn't catch on when Daffy points out that Porky himself eats pepperoni. Later in the episode, Porky actually finds out the truth about pepperoni and is horrified... but still has a hard time ordering plain pizza.
  • Spoofed in a MAD sketch where Mickey Mouse uses his inside knowledge of rodent behavior to run a mouse exterminating service, where he attacks and captures smaller but still anthropomorphic mice, including characters from An American Tail. Mickey then calls out how everybody is fine with a pig advertising BBQ, but somehow a mouse making a living by getting rid of mice is too far.
    Mickey: I need to make a living too, ya know! We didn't even know what residuals were back then! Ask The Brady Bunch!
  • Madagascar franchise plays with this trope big time:
    • Averted, then reconstructed in the original movie which is a major plot point. Alex the Lion, after escaping the zoo where he was fed steaks, eventually gets hungry and starts wishing to eat his herbivore companions. They ultimately succeed in finding another source of food for him - sushi.
    • Drives the whole plot of The Penguins of Madagascar episode "The Falcon and the Snow Job". Kitka the falcon crash-lands in the zoo and instantly catches Skipper's eye; however, everyone else is uncomfortable due to her diet. To allay their concerns, Kitka swears not to eat any of the zoo's residents, but still ends up accused of snatching Julien. In the end, Skipper successfully Clears Her Name, and she insists she only ate one squirrel outside the zoo...then coughs up Fred. Cue Skipper's "I think we should see other people..."
    • A similar situation happens in another episode where Private befriends a leopard seal (They eat penguins) and after finally bringing her back to her village in the Antartica; the rest of penguins are captured by the leopard seals when they try to "save" Private from his friend. Because he had saved his daughter, the chief of the village makes a feast in his honor. Problem is, the food is Skipper, Kowalski and Rico.
  • In the 3D animated series Maya the Bee almost exclusively Thekla is bug and predator.
    • One mole cricket is vegetarian and does not eat rain-worms, but her sister apparently does. (Although it is not main point of the plot. When the sister appears, she eats truffle and causes an oak to die.)
    • Birds, frogs and lizards talk and sometimes decide not to eat a bug.
    • See also German-Japanese Adventures of Maya the Honeybee in Anime & Manga.
  • In Miss Spider's Sunny Patch Friends, Spiderus is the only spider that is known to have eaten other bugs. He seems to have dropped the practice after getting married to Spindella. Additionally, the kids encounter a frog named Felix who refuses to eat bugs and enjoys eating berries. Though Felix's parents, particularly his father, are not happy about this ("Bugs are food!"), they eventually settle things with the community of Sunny Patch, the father even agreeing that he might try some of those berries.
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic:
    • Fluttershy has to gather food for all the animals under her care, including fish for a group of otters. In an earlier episode she's seen waving to a bunch of smiling fish, indicating the fish have some variant of sentience. One wonders how she manages that kind of dissonance. The IDW comics show she holds the "meat-eating is a fact of life" mindset and she doesn't really seem to mind seeing two packs of animals fight to the death in order to see which gets to eat the mane six. "She Talks to Angel" muddles the issue further when, during a meeting between predators and prey animals in her sanctuary, she decides to put the carnivorous animals (including obligate carnivores like a wolf and a python) on a vegan diet — despite, as said, having been shown to be entirely willing to feed meat to other animals in the past.
    • The ponies supposedly eat hot dogs, although these were eventually replaced by carrot dogs. Applejack's farm raises pigs, which according to Lauren Faust work for the ponies because apparently ponies like truffles. This is fine and good, but it doesn't explain how, in "A Bird in the Hoof", you clearly see a sandwich with a pink slice of something. One hopes it's a soy product or any number of vegetables that could approximate the colour. Ponies are also seen eating eggs on a regular basis, although they aren't technically meat unless they're fertilized.
    • A frequently referred-to problem is what gelatin is sometimes made from, by people who've never heard of the many plant-derived gum alternatives that you'd now expect to be developed first.
    • The buffalo are based on Southwest Native American tribes. Which made their tipis out of buffalo hide. More a slightly creepy irony than the trope, though.
  • For the most part, this trope is skipped over in Phineas and Ferb, despite one episode showing other species had some type of Animal Talk, and that certain ones are (secretly) hyper-competent secret agents. However, there is one recurring joke about how Agent T the Turkey disappeared around Thanksgiving that spikes off a lot of Fridge Horror.
  • One of Cinar's The Real Story of... cartoons features a city inhabited by sheep, wolves and dogs. One of the sheep approaches a dog police detective's (yes, the detective is The Hero) lunch, and the detective shouts at him to leave his shepherd pie alone. The sheep, meanwhile, is positively sick from smelling it.
  • Rocko's Modern Life:
    • Heffer has been seen eating beef products. This gets lampshaded in "Heff in a Handbasket":
      Peaches: This meat product, when ground, becomes the all-American hamburger.
      Heffer: Ham!
      Peaches: Are you serious..? I'm sorry, the answer we're looking for is BEEF!
      Heffer: Beef?! I never knew that!
    • In the show, Anthropomorphic animals seem to exist alongside regular animals and some episodes made a point of that quite clearly.
    • However, in another episode Heffer ends up living on a farm and gets put on a truck with a bunch of other cattle being sent to market. He things this means they're picking up groceries; one of his compatriots explains that no, they're going to become groceries. Heffer freaks out, while the rest of the herd think he's being weird about it. The farmer ends up changing his mind and brings the herd back to the ranch, now a resort.
    • Heffer's family are all wolves (he's adopted). They originally intended to eat him, but his mother protested because he was so cute. His adoptive grandfather, on the other hand, doesn't care and still wants to but can't due to having lost all of his teeth.
    • One episode begins with a chicken applying for a job at Chokey Chicken and coming out as frozen chicken meat.
  • In Shaun the Sheep, Shaun and the other members of the flock regularly steal and eat human food like pizza (sometimes it only has cheese, mushrooms, and vegetables on it, but on a few occasions it had pepperoni), hamburgers, and roasted chicken. The implication that they're eating chickens, cows, or pigs, all of which are also present on the farm, is never brought up.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog: In both his SatAM and Sonic the Hedgehog (Archie Comics) incarnations, Sonic has a prominent fondness for chili dogs. As non-sapient animals beyond some rats, birds, and fish — and the terrapods, which are intelligent but not sapient — are rarely portrayed in the series, where the meat comes from is a bit of a mystery.
    • The guy running the chilidog stand is a pig, in both of the episodes featuring chilidog stands.
    • Assuming it even is meat... the lack of livestock in the village and the presence of a chili dog machine that produces edible chili dogs 10 year after the city was abandoned, combined with the food replicator from Sonic & Sally all tend to point to the idea that the chili dogs are either Star Trek food constructed atom-by-atom, or are vegan hotdogs and vegan chili.
  • ''64 Zoo Lane has had several different approaches to the issue, ranging from ignoring it entirely to finding workarounds, but generally tries to avoid predator/prey dynamics among the central cast:
    • Reginald the Lion is depicted being friends with various animals that could be potential prey in real life, including an antelope, an elephant, and a giraffe. The most hostility that ever comes between them is Reginald getting angry at them for interrupting his nap.
    • Victor the Crocodile has some shades of Predators Are Mean as he is often depicted as a bully, but he is never actually shown eating anything. The most he ever uses his teeth for is "snapping" at insects, which is more of a taunt than an actual attempt at eating.
    • One notable exception is the unnamed spider from "Henrietta the Hairy Hippo" who is actually shown using his web to catch prey for eating (though he is also depicted being cruel to said prey, and he is never actually seen eating anything). The weird part is that he somehow managed to catch a hippopotamus.
    • The show is a bit more lenient towards showing animals that eat insects. In these instances, the insects are usually depicted as being non-sentient.
    • Snowbert the polar bear is best friends with a seal, despite the fact that in real life seals are a big part of polar bears' diets. Interestingly this discrepancy actually gets talked about, but they get around the issue by claiming Snowbert only eats fish (which, like the bugs, are depicted as non-sentient). Some of the dialogue also implies that Snowbert is unusual for this reason, and other polar bears would behave more realistically.
  • Teen Titans:
    • Beast Boy is a strict vegetarian, as he spends too much time in animal shapes to be conformable with eating those same creatures.
      "I've been most of those animals!"
      • Which is a little bit of Fridge Logic as he also routinely turns into carnivores.
      • ...And then later he threatens to eat some talking tofu. Because he's a vegetarian.
    • There's also Aqualad, who gets sick anytime someone eats fish next to him.
  • In Thundercats 2011, Third Earth's World of Funny Animals depicts Thundera's Cats not as obligate carnivores, but omnivores like humans. They eat meat, presumably non-sentient species, but the Fishmen sailors from "Ramlak Rising" have no qualms about eating other the Cats. Indeed, the ship's cook has designs on stuffing the Thunderkittens, and when the Fishman Captain Tunar says he would have let the Cats eat his own first mate had he known they were such competent fighters, he's not entirely joking. In a subsequent episode, the Cats leave nonanthropomorphic fish-skeletons as food scraps, while an enemy Lizard Folk muses on the idea of eating the Cats roasted.
  • Tiny Toon Adventures:
    • Subverted very nastily in one episode: the gang spends the episode hung up on the moral quandary of eating hamburgers and other foods made of meat (all the major characters are animals). In the end, they resolve to simply become vegetarians. This works out fine until Buster sits down to eat a carrot. The carrot suddenly sprouts a face and limbs and begs not to be eaten. Buster, realizing there's no way to win here, just sighs and eats the carrot anyway.
    • Another episode (or the same one) had Plucky show what Thanksgiving is like at his home. The whole family, who are ducks, is shown about to have turkey.
  • Tom and Jerry:
    • Despite the constant cat and mouse chase, only a handful of instances depict Tom with any interest in eating Jerry. One short further confuses the matter by having a dog trying to eat Tom.
    • Tom and Jerry Tales: One episode has Tom enthusiastically meeting a group of lions during an African safari. Unfortunately for him, the lions think their "cousin" might make a good meal.
  • A stunning aversion in a one-off gag on T.U.F.F. Puppy. When looking into Kitty's past, they see her sixteenth birthday where her mother hired a very sentient (yet normal sized) mouse magician, Kitty ate him without even a second thought, understandably squicking out the partygoers.
  • One of Uncle Grandpa's friends is named Pizza Steve, and yes, he is a living slice of pizza wearing shades. Despite this, he still eats pizza.
  • VeggieTales has a world populated by talking vegetables and fruits, in which there are pies and popcorn balls as food, and apparently "apple choppers". It was confirmed in the commentary for Duke and the Great Pie War (and demonstrated in Jonah) that there are non-sentient fruits and vegetables in their world as well. In their version of Daniel and the Lion's Den, a cucumber is tossed to lions.
  • Vuk the Little Fox averted this: many animal characters, even those who have spoken lines, or even names, are killed and eaten by the main character, a fox.
  • The Wild Thornberrys has an episode where Eliza is trying to convince a stoat not to eat an Arctic hare, to no avail; the episode eventually ends with the pair running away to continue their war. Eliza discusses this with her father, who notes that they are animals, after all—stoats eat meat, and you can't convince them not to.
    • Despite talking to animals who are all sentient, Eliza herself is apparently not a vegetarian, if the meals her family are shown preparing are anything to go by. That said, she regularly talks to carnivores and presumably understands the importance of predation in nature.
  • Wonder Pets! tends to go out of its way to avoid this issue entirely. No matter what animal the Pets save, they are given a gift of celery, which makes sense given that the Pets are a duck, a guinea pig, and a turtle, all of which are herbivores. But then there's the circus episode, which in addition to its other issues, showed a lion eating celery.
  • In SpongeBob SquarePants, one of Pearl's friends, Sheila, is an anthropomorphic squid, which sperm whales like her are known to eat.


How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


Media sources: