Biscuit factory worker Martin Ormiston, 48, went on his first overseas holiday to Tunisia with his partner Janet Horan to celebrate her 60th birthday but fell ill after eating food from the hotel buffet.
He was diagnosed with salmonella, and after a six-week recovery, was dismissed from his job.
The Scotsman reports he is now considering taking legal action against tour company Thomas Cook.
The couple travelled to the four-star Chich Khan Hotel in Yasmine Hammamet in April for the celebration holiday.
He said the couple’s initial impressions of the hotel were good but they grew concerned when they visited the hotel buffet.
Mr Ormiston said: "I saw a cat wandering about, not going into the kitchen but near the buffet, which was a bit unhygienic. I think maybe twice I saw it in the week that we were there.
"Cats can’t be near food like that, especially when the food is uncovered. There were birds coming in and out a couple of times as well."
Mr Ormiston said he had also seen food brought out to replenish the buffet and put straight on top of food that had been sitting out for some time. On his return home, medical staff told him the most likely cause of the salmonella was scrambled egg from the buffet.