why is my cat throwing up her food
After I graduated from college, I borrowed one of my family s 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 same thing happened. 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 I d ever seen. Actually, most cat vomiting is caused by fairly innocuous things, and here are the top culprits. 1. Hairballs
When your cat grooms himself, loose hairs get stuck on the little comblike barbs on his tongue. Because he can t spit that fur out, he swallows it, and if too much of it clumps in his stomach, it doesn t leave a lot of room for food. You can help to prevent hairballs by grooming your cat regularly. Even short-haired cats benefit from regular brushing. 2. Eating too fast My cat Bella is a puker, and the fact that she vacuums up her food as if she s never going to eat again is the main reason. In order to get her to slow down, I squish her canned food down into the bottom of her bowl so she has to lap it up rather than scarf it down in huge chunks. Another trick is to use a food bowl with a lump in the center, which will force your cat to slow down. 3. New food If you switch cat food brands, something in the new product could irritate your cat s stomach. Switching from a dry-food-only diet to canned food can also cause vomiting, because canned food is quite rich compared to dry. Try switching back to the old food to see if the vomiting stops. 4. Eating grass or plants If you have plants in your house, your cat may get the urge to chew on the leaves.
Be sure that the plants in your home are. Consider planting a cat grass garden so your feline friend will leave your houseplants alone. 5. Parasites Heavy worm infestations can cause vomiting. If you see evidence of worms in your cat s vomit or feces, get to your vet and get some deworming medicine. You may pay more up front for the stuff your vet provides, but in the long run you ll save because you won t be buying dose after dose of ineffective over-the-counter remedies. 6. Stomach obstructions Some cats eat plastic, paper, cat toys, rubber bands, clothes, or whatever they can get their mouths on. If you suspect that your cat has eaten a foreign object, call your vet right away, because this can be a life-threatening situation. A word of warning : 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 cat s 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, behaving oddly, or isn t grooming properly, call the vet and get him in for an appointment as soon as possible. Do you have a cat who frequently vomits? How do you handle cat vomiting? Please share your experiences in the comments! by Jennifer Coate, DVM Why does my cat vomit after eating? I hear this question all the time from my clients. Often vomiting cats are sick. However, sometimes the cat is healthy, but the owner still frequently finds piles of vomited food around the house. These are the cats that I am discussing today. Whenever a cat is vomiting, they should always be.
Your vet will take a thorough history and do a to look for abnormalities such as weight loss, dehydration, fever, or changes in how the organs feel in your cats belly. There are many serious illnesses that can cause a cat to vomit, so they will likely run tests to look for these diseases and may suggest different foods. So what about the cat that checks out completely normal, but still chronically vomits undigested kibble soon after eating? I affectionately refer to these cats that binge and then purge as Scarf Barf kitties. I find that many of these cats are simply eating faster than their body can handle. They will gobble the food, often barely chewing. (Cat owners often notice that the vomited kibble looks not only undigested, but unchewed) Then within a few minutes, they will vomit or regurgitate most of that meal. You may see the pile of kibble laying on the flooror worse, step in it during the middle of the night. Yuck! Now that you have determined that your cat is not ill, how do you fix them? I find that the best way to stop the annoying vomit is to slow down how fast they eat. How do you do this you ask? Well thats where you have to get creative. When trying any of these ideas, be sure that your cat is still eating wellcats can be very finicky and I have seen cats starve themselves when the owner has switched up the feeding arrangements. Option #1 is to feed the kitty very small frequent meals. Most of us enjoy the convenience of simply plopping food into the dish twice a day and going on our merry way. If you have the time, try feeding the normal amount of food for the day divided into several small meals. Option # 2 is to give them obstacles to eat around.
You can do this by putting a large rock or golf ball into the food dish. Having said that, NEVER add obstacles to the bowl if there is a dog in the house that steals the cat foodyou will simply have a dog with golf ball in its stomach that now needs surgery. And make sure that the rock is so big that the cat cant swallow ittry golf ball sized or larger. Also, some cats are sly enough to simply swat the golf ball out of the dish proceed to binge as usual. Thankfully, the pet supply marketing gurus have caught wind of the Scarf and Barf epidemic and they now sell food dishes with raised areas to acts as permanent obstacles. That would probably be your safest bet. Option # 3 is to spread out the food so that the kitty cannot take big mouthfuls and must eat only a few pieces of kibble at a time. Ditch the bowl and spread the food out onto a plate or, even better, a cake pan (the raised sides will keep the cat from pushing the food off the sides and onto your floor). If your cat eats canned food, smash the food into the plate in several areas. Option #4 is to really make the cat work for the food by feeding through food dispensing toys. There are all types of these on the market these days everything from balls that drop one kibble at a time as your cat bats it around to food dishes shaped like a maze. These typically work best for young active playful kitties. Be sure that your kitty is eventually eating all of the meal lots of kitties are just too lazy to work for their meal or simply dont figure out how to use the toy and we dont want them to get ill from starvation. If these things arent helping, it is always a good idea to. Good luck! Hopefully your carpet will thank me.
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