Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Why Do Cats Throw Up Their Food

Don't Miss

A Word Of Warning When It Comes To Cat Vomiting

Why Do Cats Throw Up?

Cat vomiting can also be caused by poisoning or by very serious diseases. If you suspect your cat has eaten something toxic, call your vet right away for first-aid instructions. If your cats vomit is bloody or black like coffee grounds, get to the vet immediately. If your cat is vomiting every day, refusing to eat or drink, acting weird or isnt grooming properly, call the vet and get him in for an appointment as soon as possible.

Tell us: Do you have a cat who frequently vomits? How do you handle cat vomiting? Please share your experiences in the comments!

Thumbnail: Photography by Valery Kudryavtsev/Thinkstock.

This piece was originally published in 2013.

Should I Call The Vet If My Cat Throws Up

You should call your veterinarian right away if:

  • Your cat vomits more than two to three times in a row.

  • Your cat has other symptoms, such as not eating and diarrhea. If your cat is also having diarrhea, it will be difficult to keep them hydrated without seeing your veterinarian.

  • Your cat does not eat or drink for 12 hours and has vomited several times in a row.

  • Your cat has already been diagnosed with an illnesses . This is an emergency, and your cat should be seen immediately, as this could mean that their disease is progressing. Early medical intervention is necessary in these patients, as they can become dehydrated very quickly.

  • Your cat has vomited a worm. You need to deworm your cat and any other animals in the household as soon as possible. It is also important to keep the environment clean and scoop the litter boxes several times a day to ensure that your pets do not get reinfected.

Why Is My Cat Vomiting The Top 6 Reasons

After I graduated from college, I borrowed one of my familys cats to keep me company in my new apartment. One morning after she had breakfast, she vomited. After supper, she did it again. The next day, the cat vomiting happened again. I freaked out. I called a vet clinic, explained in a shaking voice what was happening I was sure she was dying! and got an appointment the next morning. A quick consultation later, the vet sent me home with a tube of Petromalt, and after the first dose she ejected the biggest hairball Id ever seen. Actually, most cat vomiting is caused by fairly innocuous things, and here are the top culprits.

Don’t Miss: How To Pass Emissions Without Cats

Should I Feed My Cat After He Throws Up

If your cat is sick once or twice but appears otherwise well, remove their food for a few hours, then feed small amounts of a highly digestible food such as chicken, or a prescription diet from your vet. Allow them constant access to a small amount of water. After 24 hours go back to your usual routine.

What Can I Do If My Cat Is Being Sick

Why Do Cats Throw Up Food

If your cat has been sick once or twice but otherwise appears well:

  • Remove food for two hours, but continue to provide water
  • After this time, try offering a teaspoon of their usual food or bland low-fat cooked food such as chicken or white fish
  • If they keep this down, offer small amounts every few hours for thenext 24 hours
  • Then go back to your usual routine

If this does not resolve the sickness and you are concerned about your cat vomiting repeatedly, call your vet or, out of hours, your nearest Vet Now emergency clinic or 24/7 hospital immediately.

You should also contact your vet if:

  • Your cat cannot keep water down
  • Has blood or unusual material in her vomit
  • Has pale or cold gums
  • Is displaying signs of listlessness, diarrhoea, fever, or another illness

Don’t Miss: Blue Buffalo Wilderness Kitten Food

Your Cat Has A Hairball

To say cats are dedicated to cleaning would be an understatement. They have a reputation for meticulously grooming themselves, and as a result, hairballs can ensue. This occurs because the cat has hook-like structures all over their tongue.

While these are small, theyâre powerful your catâs tongue can catch dead or loose hair. Then, they swallow it. While most hair will successfully pass through the animalâs digestive tract, sometimes it gets trapped in their stomach. Thatâs how a hairball comes about.

Therefore, hairballs may contribute to a cat vomiting undigested food. Theyâre normal, but if youâre noticing that your cat has difficulty passing them or itâs frequently happening, and your cat is experiencing pain, it might be time to intervene.

There are actually over-the-counter supplements available that you can give your cat. These come in chew or gel format. In addition, you can develop a brushing schedule for your pet to help mitigate the hairball risk.

Cat Vomiting Undigested Food Right After Eating: Gastrointestinal Emptying Disorders In Cats

Gastrointestinal disease in cats can cause your cat to vomit undigested food long after eating. In some cases, cats suffering from this syndrome will only vomit gastric juice. This is because the cats stomach is not able to function at its normal pace. In addition, the cats stomach is not able to empty remains correctly, which explains why your cat will vomit after eating.

Gastric retention syndrome in cats can occur due to an injury or a primary or secondary motor disorder. The presence of hairballs can also trigger this syndrome. In addition to finding and treating the cause, you should make sure your vomiting cat is fed a diet rich in fiber, as it facilitates digestion. In more serious cases, surgical intervention may be required. Read over our article about natural remedies for gastroenteritis in cats for more!

Recommended Reading: Is Blue Buffalo Good Cat Food

Should I Feed My Cat Again After Vomiting

If your cat is sick once or twice but appears otherwise well, remove their food for a few hours, then feed small amounts of a highly digestible food such as chicken, or a prescription diet from your vet. Allow them constant access to a small amount of water. After 24 hours go back to your usual routine.

Why Is My Cat Throwing Up Food But Acting Normal

Reasons Cats Throw Up and Ways to Treat a Vomiting Cat

May 25, 2021

Seeing your cat vomit is never a pleasant sight. Its not only that youll have to clean up the mess, but also that youll also be worried sick. However, vomiting is not always a symptom that should cause concern, especially if there arent any other pointers.

If your cat is throwing up food but acting normal, then the chances are that everything is fine. Perhaps they simply had a hairball or ate their dinner too quickly! But, since youre the most devoted cat parent in the world, you still want to explore the reasons why a feline has an upset stomach and how you can help.

Although you shouldnt be alarmed after a single throw-up, its essential to be educated about what and how it causes a cat to vomit. Keep on reading to learn more about the reasons and how to prevent your cat from being sick.

Also Check: Is Blue Buffalo Good Cat Food

How You Can Help A Vomiting Cat

While your cat is vomiting, stay out of her way but be sure shes in a safe location. Re-hydration is important after vomiting, but most vets recommend waiting around two hours after an episode of vomiting to offer your cat any water or bland food.

Dont let your cat eat her expelled vomit, even if she tries. If youre unsure what caused the vomiting, consider keeping a sample of the vomit to give to your vet for testing.

If your cats vomiting is severe or frequent, youll want to talk to your vet. She may recommend fluid therapy or anti-emetic medication until your cat feels better. She might also want to test or evaluate your cat for any underlying causes like disease or infection.

When in doubt about your cats vomiting, talk to your vet!

Cat Vomiting: Gastritis In Cats

Gastritis incats, characterized by an inflammation of the gastric mucosa, can occur in cats of all ages. A cat suffering from this disease will cause your cat to vomit after eating, although vomiting due to gastritis in cats is not always related to the time of ingestion. A cat suffering from gastritis may even vomit digested food. There are numerous causes behind gastritis in cats. A diagnosis by a veterinarian is required in order to treat the specific case correctly. We recommend reading our article where we discuss all you need to know about gastritis in cats.Gastritis in cats can occur both acutely or chronically. Once a c at begins to recover, veterinarians suggest feeding the cat smaller portions, which are easier to digest.

You May Like: Blue True Solutions Cat Food

Should I Take My Cat To The Vet For Vomiting

Vomiting should not be confused with gagging or retching, as vomiting involves the stomach muscles contracting in order to bring up matter. Check your pets vomit to make sure it is free from blood. Blood in the vomit is a sign that your pet is seriously unwell, and they should be taken to a vet immediately.

Home Remedies For Cat Vomiting

Why Does My Cat Throw Up Dry Food References  Cats Story

Its best not to try to treat your cats vomiting at home without consulting your veterinarian first. Many causes of cat vomiting, such as a foreign body or obstruction, can cause severe damage or even death if not appropriately treated right away.

If your cats vomiting is simply due to hairballs, your veterinarian may recommend giving an over-the-counter hairball treatment daily to help the hair pass through your cats digestive tract.

Never give your cat any medicationseither prescription or over-the-counter products unless directed to do so by your veterinarian.

You May Like: How Many Calories Should Cats Eat

Is It Normal For My Cat To Walk Away From My Food

Change How Much You Feed Your Cat and When Cats need small, frequent portion-controlled meals each day, and they need to interact with their prey, she said. It is normal cat behavior to take one to three bites equaling about 30 calories and walking away. It is a misconception that this is being finicky.

Causes Of Vomiting In Cats

The causes of acute or chronic vomiting can be the same, but there are exceptions. Toxins are generally not a cause of chronic vomiting . Ingesting a foreign body is not normally a cause of chronic vomiting, although if the foreign object remains in the stomach, it can be a cause of chronic vomiting.

Unfortunately, vomiting is a very vague symptom, and the causes are extremely varied. In fact, almost any feline illness can result in vomiting. In general, the causes of vomiting can be placed in one of these categories: toxins, drugs, diet , gastric , intestinal, organ dysfunction, endocrine, neurologic , infectious and cancer. In each of these categories are dozens of specific diseases and syndromes. Some of the more common causes are listed below:

  • Toxins: Lilies, antifreeze
  • Diet: Dietary intolerance to something in food, sudden change in diet, eating a dead thing
  • Gastric: Foreign bodies, ulcers, inflammation of the stomach
  • Intestinal: Foreign bodies, acute inflammation, inflammatory bowel disease , cancer, constipation
  • Organ dysfunction: Liver disease, kidney disease, pancreatitis
  • Endocrine: Hyperthyroidism , elevated calcium, diabetes ketoacidosis
  • Neurologic: Vestibular disease , encephalitis , cancers
  • Infectious: Feline infectious peritonitis, feline panleukopenia, heartworm
  • Cancer: Can be a direct cause, such as intestinal cancer, or an indirect cause, such as mast cell tumors in the skin

Recommended Reading: Is Blue Buffalo Good Cat Food

Treating Acute Vomiting In Cats

The first step in properly treating your cat for vomiting is identifying the underlying cause. First, your veterinarian will do noninvasive diagnostics. This includes:

  • A chemistry and CBC to screen for diseases such as kidney disease and diabetes.

  • A fecal exam to rule out parasites.

  • Abdominal radiographs to rule out larger tumors or foreign bodies that might be causing an obstruction.

If these tests are normal, and your cat is acutely vomiting, your veterinarian will likely recommend supportive treatments with anti-nausea medications.

Cats that vomit from hairballs can be placed on a special high-fiber diet along with a medication to help ease the passage of hairballs.

If It Is Normal Then How Serious Can Vomiting Be

How To Help Prevent Your Cat From Throwing Up Its Food – Or Vomiting

It depends on the cause of vomiting. Most cases of acute vomiting, when vomiting has been present for less than two to three days, resolve quickly with simple treatment, without the underlying cause being diagnosed. Severe or chronic vomiting is more serious. It can lead to secondary problems, particularly dehydration and disturbances in the levels of electrolytes such as sodium.

Vomiting can be caused by minor intestinal upset, such as from eating plants, spoiled food, or foul-tasting things such as certain insects. However, vomiting can also be a sign of a more serious illness, such as bacterial or viral infection, intestinal obstruction from foreign bodies , urinary tract obstruction, liver disease, thyroid disease, inflammatory bowel disease, or cancer. Left untreated, these illnesses can lead to serious complications, including death.

Read Also: Blue Wilderness Cat Food Chicken

Cat Vomiting: Possible Causes And When To Seek Help

Most cat owners can relate. You wake up in the morning or get home from work only to find that your favorite rug or pair of shoes has received a gift from your cat. How do you know if this is normal or if its a sign of some sort of medical condition?

Cats can vomit for a lot of different reasons, some of which are serious and some are not. Its a pretty common cat problem. So what exactly causes a cat to vomit?

How Often Do Cats Vomit

We used to think that some cats were just pukers but we now know that chronic vomiting is a sign of an underlying problem. Its normal for cats to have the occasional hairball due to their fastidious grooming behaviors, but vomiting thats not related to hairballs is a sign of a medical issue.

If your cat vomits multiple times in a day or if you notice an increase in the frequency of vomiting, its best to discuss the problem with your veterinarian.

Read Also: Do Male Cats Have Tits

What Could Be The Reason For The Vomiting

Occasional vomiting may be caused by:


Cats often ingest hair while grooming. If it forms into clumps it may irritate the stomach, eventually being vomited up. If your cat vomits hairballs frequently your vet may suggest treatments or diets to reduce hair build-up and grooming your cat regularly to reduce the volume of hair ingested.

Eating too rapidly

Cats that gobble food too quickly may regurgitate. If youve got multiple cats make sure you have separate feeding bowls in separate locations to reduce competition. Try serving dry food in a used egg carton, or putting kibble in plastic bottles with holes that dispense the food as it rolls. These puzzle feeders slow eating, create mental challenge, combat boredom and increase exercise which combats weight gain.

Eating too much at once

Cats naturally eat small amounts and often. While not always practical, specialists suggest 5 small meals a day. Dry kibble absorbs fluid in the stomach and swells which may cause vomiting, especially in older cats.

Eating spoilt food or hunting

Like us, they can be susceptible to the bacteria or spoiled food or something theyve caught. This may result in irritation of the stomach.

Why Is My Cat Throwing Up

Why Is My Cat Vomiting and What Should I Do?

Your veterinarian will ask a variety of questions to determine why your cat is vomiting. These include:

  • Have you switched your cats diet recently?

  • Have you started any prescribed or over-the-counter medications?

  • What diet, including all treats, is your cat on?

  • Do you have other cats in the house, and if so, are they also vomiting?

  • Is your cat indoor and/or outdoor?

  • How often is your cat vomiting, and what does the vomit look like?

  • Is your cat still eating?

  • Is your cat having other symptoms, such as diarrhea and/or weight loss?

  • How long has your cat been vomiting?

There are several possible causes of cat vomiting, and these questions will help guide your veterinarian in the right direction. Possible reasons why cats throw up can be broken into two categoriesgastrointestinal causes and non-gastrointestinal causes.

Read Also: Blue Car Food

How Pet Health Insurance Can Help

If your feline friend throws up regularly, you and your veterinarian will need to investigate. Your pal could require blood work, fecal analysis, X-rays, ultrasounds, and even biopsies.

Depending on the diagnosis, your kitty could be facing anything from antibiotics to surgery. Help yourself focus on care and not cost during this process by getting a quote for cat health insurance today.


*Pre-existing conditions are not covered. Waiting periods, annual deductible, co-insurance, benefit limits and exclusions may apply. For all terms and conditions visit www.aspcapetinsurance.com/terms. Preventive and Wellness Care reimbursements are based on a schedule. Complete Coverage reimbursements are based on the invoice. Levels 1-4 reimbursements are based on usual and customary eligible costs. Products, schedules, and rates may vary and are subject to change. Discounts may vary and are subject to change. More information available at checkout.

Introduce A Great Diet

You should also educate yourself on what a balanced cat diet is and the percentage of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates recommended. Some of the foods youre giving to your cats might be causing them stomach problems and make them throw up. If you suspect that your feline is sensitive to some types of proteins or foods, consult a vet and get advice on what kind of food best suits them.

Vets will also be able to advise on a diet plan for cats with food allergies. You have to visit the vet to find out whats causing the allergy, but once you do, youll know what kind of foods you should never give your pet. When the vet cant figure out whats food is causing sensitivity, they suggest an exclusion diet to work out the root of the problem.

Recommended Reading: Can I Bathe My Cat With Dish Soap

More articles

Popular Articles

Brands Of Wet Cat Food

40 Lb Bag Of Cat Food