What Should I Do If My Cat Is Throwing Up And Has Diarrhea
Sometimes clear vomit is combined with diarrhea; in this case, remove all food for around 12 hours to allow Kittys body to purge everything causing it trauma.
Once everything settles, you can start incorporating small bits of bland food like specialized cat food, chicken, or rice, for example.
However, keep in mind that this unpleasant combination could easily lead to dehydration. Check your cat for symptoms of dehydration, including dry/pale gums and skin tenting. To check for skin tenting, gently pull up the skin between her shoulder blades; a well-hydrated cats skin should spring back in place. If shes dehydrated, however, her skin will go back into place much more slowly.
Contact your vet; you may need to bring your thirsty feline in for a dose of vital hydration.
Swallowing Foreign Objects Can Lead To Cat Throwing Up Clear Liquid
Unlike puppies, cats arent usually prone to eating the remote or swallowing rocks, but their penchant for string or yarn can get them into big trouble.
Swallowing thread might seem like just an annoying habit, but it can also be a deadly one if the thread becomes tangled around intestinal loops. One of those wire bread ties can quickly perforate tender innards, causing severe infections or even death.
Ingesting toysthat are not digestible can often block intestines or create other serious problems which require surgical intervention. Your first clue may be the cat throwing up clear liquid.
A cat throwing up clear liquid might well have swallowed something that she cannot pass through her digestive system and, as in the hairball scenario, her body is attempting to eject it. Pet parents are wise to keep a very close eye on the toys that kitty plays with. Something as innocuous as a wire ornament hanger from the family Christmas tree can become a deadly diversion.
In order to protect Kitty from her own habit of hiding symptoms of illness from the world we must be ever watchful for changes in our felines behavior. Pet parents must be be very good detectives. We do this by being good observers of our cats behavior in happy times so that we can spot a problem quickly if something goes wrong.
How To Know If Your Cat Is Throwing Up
Your cat can get nauseous before they throw up. They can be restless, salivating, or repeatedly swallowing. Vomiting starts with intense contractions in your cats abdominal muscles. They then expel whats in their stomach or throat.
Coughing in cats can look similar to throwing up. When a cat coughs, theyll crouch down on all four legs and stretch their neck out. They then cough up froth or foam, which they might swallow again immediately.
Theres also a difference between regurgitation and vomiting. Regurgitation takes your cat less effort and usually doesnt involve abdominal contractions. Regurgitation often happens right after eating or drinking and may be a sign of a problem in the cats esophagus.
Showing your vet a video of your cat vomiting can help them differentiate between vomiting, coughing, and regurgitating.
Prolonged Fasting: The Main Cause Of Vomiting Bile
When a cat fasts for long periods of time, bile and other digestive fluids begin to accumulate in its stomach. As there is no food in the stomach there is nothing to be digested and these fluids then accumulate. This cluster of accumulation can be extremely aggressive to the gastric mucous membranes, since it generates a highly corrosive effect, which irritates and inflames the stomach walls.
The defense mechanism of the digestive tract “activates” anti-peristaltic movements that cause vomiting. This takes places as a way to eliminate bile and relieve discomfort stomach. Usually, when a cat vomits bile after long hours without eating, we should only notice yellow or sometimes, green liquid. It should not be accompanied by blood or mucus.
This nausea can be easily reversed through adoption of healthier eating habits. However, do not hesitate to go to the veterinarian to make sure that your animal is healthy. In a clinic a professional can perform appropriate tests to check the health status of your cat and establish an effective treatment and to guide you on how much and how often your cat should eat.
The Most Common Reason: Hairball
If the cats vomit is clear and she seems otherwise happy, the most likely cause is a hairball.
Hairballs happen when during the grooming process, hair gets stuck on her rough tongue and then makes its way to her stomach where it accumulates. Eventually the mass of hair just has to be ejected. When this happens, your cat will often vomit clear liquid first, followed a short time later by the offending hairball. If the vomiting continues without the appearance of the hairball, please take Kitty to her veterinarian. It may be nothing serious, but why take that chance?
My Cat Keeps Throwing Up Are Fur Balls To Blame
Cats often vomit up hairballs. They develop these in their stomach through fastidious grooming. The fur they swallow cant be digested and often ends up forming into a congealed lump. These lumps of hair can be dangerous as they can lead to blockages and irritations. Owners can do their bit to prevent hairballs both being thrown up and being stuck in the digestive tract by introducing a strict brushing regime to remove loose fur.
How Foam Is Different From Vomit
Cats vomit foam when the stomach and upper intestines are empty. A combination of bile and mucous give the vomit a foamy appearance.
When you think about normal cat vomit, you probably envision something that looks more or less like undigested food. This can make it surprising or concerning when your cat vomits frothy white foam or other clear liquid.
A cat will vomit foam when the stomach and upper intestines are empty. This foam is a combination of bile and mucous, which gives it a characteristic foamy appearance. The presence of foam in your cats vomit, instead of digested food, suggests that your cat probably did not eat in the hours immediately prior to vomiting.
What To Do If Cat Keeps Throwing Up
If your cat keeps throwing up, there are some things you can try before contacting your vet. She may have merely eaten something foreign and needs some time to get it out.
- Remove all food, but keep her water available.
- After two hours, offer her a teaspoon of her food or something bland like chicken or white .
- If she keeps it down, you can continue giving her small bits of food every few hours for 24 hours.
If this doesnt work, take her to the emergency vet there may be something very wrong with your cat that needs to be addressed as soon as possible.
Final Thoughts: Cat Throwing Up Clear Liquid
You will probably always be concerned when your pet throws up. It signals something, but kitty almost never tells us what that something is. Like human babies, kittens dont come with instruction manuals. Hopefully, these tips will give you a bit of comfort now that you know the many things that a cat throwing up clear liquid can mean.
Eaten Something Thats Toxic
If your cat has vomited white liquid several times in quick succession, theres a chance that its eaten something toxic. Similarly, if it is gasping and heaving, but only a small amount of mucus is coming out, it might have ingested something harmful.
Many owners dont realize how many hazards there are in and around the home. Cats can usually sense what is edible and what is not, but thats not always the case. The following household products can be toxic for cats:
- Caffeine We tend to leave bits of coffee or tea at the bottom of our cups. If you leave these cups lying around and dont provide your cat with fresh water, it may start drinking your leftovers.
- Garlic and Onion Most cats find it hard to process these vegetables. The consumption of spice is toxic to cats.
- Alcoholic Drinks Cats may drink an alcoholic beverage if its the only fluid available.
- Plants Daffodils, foxgloves, and eucalyptus are common examples.
If your cat has ingested something toxic, you may observe additional symptoms such as hyperactivity, disorientation, yowling, or diarrhea.
How To Prevent Cat Vomiting
Many causes of cat vomiting can be prevented. Try these measures to keep your cats digestive system healthy:
Consider your cats diet. Make sure your cat is eating a high-quality and balanced diet, such as recipes, and do not feed too many treats or table scraps.
Watch for non-food items. Do not allow your cat to ingest any non-food items such as pieces of toys, string, or house plants.
Ask your vet about special diets. If your cat has been diagnosed with a condition such as food allergies or inflammatory bowel disease, feeding a special diet as prescribed by your veterinarian may prevent vomiting.
Consider an OTC hairball remedy. Finally, for long-haired cats or those that have frequent hairballs, ask your veterinarian about over-the-counter products to help prevent vomiting due to hairballs.
Illnesses Indicated By Clear Cat Vomit
Cat vomit may be a sign that the cat is ill. The vomit maycontain gastric juice mixed with food particles, hairballs, blood,yellow bile, parasites or clear liquid. When the vomit is clear, thecauses may be various including the need to throw up a hairball,thyroid problems, poisoning, cancer or the ingestion of a foreignobject. If the vomiting episodes last for several days, a vet must beconsulted to prevent severe dehydration.
What Causes A Cat To Throw Up Yellow Liquid
Is your cat throwing up nothing but yellow or green liquids? The colors of this viscous liquid are due to the presence of bile. Bile is produced in the liver, then stored in the gallbladder for use in the small intestine. In the gallbladder, bile is concentrated and prepared for deployment. The green and yellow tinting is due to the presence of bilirubin in bile. Even if you are unfamiliar with the term, you are certainly aware of the effects of bilirubin when it is excreted, it gives feces and urine the brown and yellow colors we associate with them.
In the normal course of things, food passes from the stomach into the duodenum, the first part of the small intestine. Here, bile enters the picture and begins the work of separating nutrients from waste, and moving them along, a muscular action called motility. Should there be an issue with the operations of these muscles, bile can go backwards into the stomach. Bile irritates and inflames the stomach, and the natural impulse of the cat is to expel it by vomiting.
Treating A Cat That Keeps Throwing Up
If your cat continues to vomit or has a history of chronic vomiting, further testing would be indicated as described below:
Gastrointestinal panel: This will test the pancreas enzymes to rule out pancreatitis. It will also look at cobalamin and folate to determine if there is evidence of malabsorption in the small intestines.
Abdominal ultrasound: This imaging modality is very sensitive at identifying smaller foreign objects that x-rays cannot. This looks at the pancreas and helps measure the wall of the gastrointestinal tract. It will also help rule out any enlarged lymph nodes that can sometimes be seen with cancer.
Chest x-rays: These may be recommended if it is not clear whether your cat is vomiting, regurgitating, or coughing. Chest x-rays are also recommended in older cats to rule out evidence of cancer.
In some cases, the diagnostics come back normal or do not provide a definitive diagnosis. This can be seen if the disease is at the cellular level of the small intestines.
In this instance, the next step would be obtaining biopsies of your cats gastrointestinal tract to differentiate between inflammatory bowel disease, food hypersensitivity, and gastrointestinal lymphoma. Your veterinarian may try a new diet prior to obtaining biopsies in the event that this is related to a food allergy.
Featured image: iStock.com/krblokhin
Why Is My Cat Throwing Up Foam
Cats may vomit foam for a wide variety of reasons, so if your cat is doing it regularly, you may want to talk to a veterinarian.
Your cat may vomit foam for a variety of reasons, including both gastrointestinal conditions and conditions occurring outside of the intestinal tract.
Common causes of vomiting in cats include:
In order to determine the cause of your cats vomiting, your veterinarian will need to perform a thorough physical examination and diagnostic workup. During the physical exam, your veterinarian will palpate your cats abdomen, feeling for evidence of intestinal masses or intestinal thickening.
Your veterinarian will also look for signs of systemic illness that may explain your cats vomiting. Next, your veterinarian will recommend diagnostic testing. Depending on your cats age, history, and physical exam abnormalities, recommended tests may include bloodwork, a urinalysis, testing for feline leukemia and feline immunodeficiency virus, thyroid level testing , abdominal radiographs , and/or abdominal ultrasound. Additional testing may also be recommended, depending on the results of these initial tests.
What Will The Veterinarian Look For
Vomiting in cats that is excessive requires a veterinarian visit. When you get there, the first thing they will do is a full physical exam which may include temperature checks, weight checks and external abdomen exams to check for blockages or hardening.
If they see issues of concern they may order additional tests like blood work to check organ function, an abdominal ultrasound or possibly an X-ray. These tests will let the vet know if there is any kind of disease or foreign object that can be causing the excess cat vomiting.
Cats Throw Up Clear Liquid When They Have Indigestion
When cats get very hungry, such as when they miss a meal, there may be a build-up of gastric juices in their stomach, which irritate the stomach lining and can cause indigestion.
Indigestion can lead to vomiting up of clear liquid. This vomit might also be a mixture of clear fluid and white foam.
To avoid indigestion, make sure that your cat gets fed at regular times. You can also try putting out a bowl of kibble at night, so they can snack when they are up and active at dusk and dawn.
If your cat seems to be battling with indigestion frequently, and this is unrelated to missed meals, take your cat to see a vet. They may have a chronic acid condition that requires medical treatment.
Poison Or Foreign Elements
Cats are inquisitive creatures which can sometimes get them in trouble. Whether they accidently ingest a poison or some kind of toxic plant, these types of things can lead to them ultimately throwing up some clear liquid.
If you notice ongoing issues with them throwing up and know they ingested something they should not have, then a veterinarian trip is recommended. If they have a ingested a foreign object that is blocking their intestinal tract, surgery may be required to remove it. If they have poison in their system some kind of medical intervention may be needed to remove it entirely.If a cat somehow ingests a toy especially those string toys, it can also cause the intestine to be blocked which may required surgery to remove. Any kind of foreign material can lead to the vomiting, so be sure to keep an eye on your kitty and keep them safe from any foreign bodies entering their systems.
Cat Throwing Up Undigested Food
There is a difference between vomiting and regurgitation. Regurgitation is when cats throw up undigested food, often with little or no effort.
This undigested food may be covered in mucus and shaped like a tube. Regurgitation is often brought on by coughing, difficulty breathing, oesophageal problems or foreign bodies.
If your cat is vomiting foam, its likely to be bile. This is usually yellow or greenish in colour. Blie is an acidic liquid created in the liver and stored in the gallbladder until food has been ingested, when its released into the intestine. Bile helps cats break down food. It can, however, leak into the stomach and cause vomiting. If your cat vomits bile persistently or their sickness is accompanied by other health issues such as diarrhoea, loss of appetite or lethargy, seek urgent advice from your vet.
What Can Be Done To Diagnose The Problem
Often, testing is required to establish how serious the problem is. Additional signs, such as weight loss or diarrhea are very important to note, so be sure to provide your veterinarian a complete history, even if it doesnt seem to be totally relevant to the problem at hand.
Your veterinarian will perform a thorough exampalpating the intestinal tract, thyroid gland and kidneysall of which could be involved in vomiting.
Blood pressure, weight checks and a fecal examination are also an important part of this initial screening.
If there are additional symptoms, the vomiting is severe or persistent, or your veterinarian finds additional concerns on physical examination, additional testing such as x-rays and bloodwork will likely also be recommended.
This spreads the examination out to include organ functioning as well as the endocrine system .
For more severe cases, or those not answered through routine screening, your veterinarian will likely recommend specific gastrointestinal function tests to look at digestive absorption and pancreatic levels. In addition to these specialized tests, and abdominal ultrasound can be immensely useful to actually visualize the organ systems and to help pinpoint the underlying problem.
Once a diagnosis is reached, it is much more straightforward to tailor a treatment plan customized for the patient at hand.
My Cat Keeps Throwing Up Clear Liquid
Chronic small intestinal disease in cats.Clear liquid vomit is a sign that the cat is bringing up fluid from the digestive tract, which is often stomach juice.Fecal matter in the digestive tract;Feline lower urinary tract diseases can cause cat throwing up.
He also stopped eating, drinking and pooing.He became very lethargic and rapidly went down hill, just wanting to sit hunched up under a chair.He improved after being given fluids, but then went down hill again.Honey or karo syrup on the gums helps with a blast of sugar or an energy boost .
Ideally, it should be a canned food with less than 7% carbohydrates.If any part of the gi tract becomes inflamed or infected, your cat may throw up a foamy white substance.If you notice that your cat has vomited bile, whether accompanied by clear liquid, green liquid, a foamy white or brown substance, we recommend going to vet to rule out any pathology.If your cat has normal energy levels, is a healthy weight, and doesnt appear ill but throws up from time to time, you may want to look into whether they have developed a food allergy.
Kibble will usually be brown in color.My cat is throwing up light brown liquid.My four year old cat started vomiting a lot, mainly clear fluid.Never ignore a cat vomiting brown fluid as it could signify any of the following health concerns:
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.
About Dr Cathy Barnette Dvm
Dr. Barnette is a veterinarian and freelance writer based in Florida. Her 14 years of experience in small animal clinical practice have allowed her to witness firsthand the communication gaps that often exist between pet owners and members of the veterinary team. Her goal is to create engaging content that educates owners, empowering them to make the best possible decisions for their pets. Dr. Barnette has two cats of her own, in addition to a dog and a pet dove.
When Should I Worry About My Cat Vomiting
We start to worry about cats being sick when theyve vomited frequently in a single day or a couple of times over a few days. Its also a cause for concern when they stop eating altogether or will try and eat but bring the food and water back up. This can be considered an emergency because your cat isnt able to keep anything down and can quickly become dehydrated and lead to an issue with sugar. If your cats vomiting is accompanied by any other symptoms such as lethargy, diarrhoea or pale gums, if theres blood in their vomit or theyre showing signs of pain, dont delay in contacting your vet.
- Allergic reaction to a food
- Heat stroke
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.
What Does Yellow Vomit Mean
When a cat vomits yellow, it means that they are vomiting bile, a secretion produced by the liver that can sometimes also appear as green or brown.
Bile is a digestive fluid that is stored in the gallbladder. Its action is essential for proper digestion, as it contains certain enzymes that allow for the emulsifying of fats ingested through food. During the digestive process bile is expelled from the vesicle towards the small intestine, where its action is essential for the correct assimilation of fat molecules.
Monitor Your Cats Digestive Habits
What causes a cat to throw up? The potential causes for cat vomiting are nearly limitless: anything from stress to a new food, or from eating too quickly to going too long between meals. In many scenarios, the digestive upset is a temporary issue. Vomiting related to travel, for instance, should subside once the cat reorients herself. If the cat has ingested a bit of string or has hairballs caused by excessive grooming, the symptoms will disappear once the offending element has been expelled.
A cat vomiting is not unusual. A cat vomiting daily or several times a day, on the other hand, is a cause for concern. Likewise, if vomiting is accompanied by a constellation of symptoms diarrhea, weight loss, or increased appetite chances are that throwing up is only part of a larger problem. The best way to minimize risks to your cats digestive health is to pay regular attention to her digestive and excretory habits. It may sound odd or slightly bizarre, but if you can pinpoint a day or time when regular digestion gave way to vomiting, or vomiting accompanied by diarrhea, you can give your veterinarian information that may be critical to reaching a diagnosis and determining a course of treatment.
Hairballs: A Common Cause Of Cat Vomiting
Even as a seasoned cat parent, it is important to understand the reasons behind cat vomiting. As cats age, their bodies change, and their vomit may be a way to tell you if those changes are normal or abnormal.
Although cat vomiting might be due to eating a part of a houseplant or ingesting a piece of a toy, your cat can get an upset stomach from over grooming. This most often resurfaces as a hairball.
Although a cat vomiting up a hairball every so often is normal, there are times when you may need to be concerned. shouldn’t be painful, frequent or difficult for your cat to pass. Untreated hairballs can also go the other way and cause painful intestinal blockages in extreme cases, according to The Nest, so keep track of your cat’s normal routine and watch out for signs of constipation, lethargy, and anorexia if she has not passed a hairball in a while. If your cat has a consistent hairball problem, you might want to look into a cat food that is formulated for hairballs.