Veterinarian Reviewed on June 20, 2012 by Dr. Janice Huntingford
Cats vomit for a variety of reasons ranging from severe ailments to disenchanted digestion. With all pets, an occasional episode of expulsion is not abnormal and is experienced by every cat owner.
Signs and Symptoms
A general rule for pet owners to follow is to pay attention to the frequency and afterward actions of your feline to ascertain the severity of the vomiting. For example, if your cat vomits infrequently and resumes normal activity and continues to show no signs of compromised health, it is safe to assume that your feline just ate something disagreeable.
However, in instances where your cat is persistently vomiting then it is necessary to contact a medical professional to examine your pet. The overall health of your cat, as well as additional symptoms, such as lethargy or refusal to eat, can be key indicators into the causes of the vomit. You will also be able to furnish your veterinarian with all the necessary information to guarantee a proper diagnosis.
Causes of Vomiting in Cats
Cat Hairballs are often the reason for chronic vomiting in cats. Although you would think that just the hairball would be expelled, all contents of the stomach are regurgitated as well. If your pet is throwing up more than twice a month due to hairballs, it would be wise to seek advice from your veterinarian. Adding more fiber to your cat’s diet can also help to relieve the need to vomit.
Another cause of vomiting in cats can be problems associated with eating. Cats that tend to eat too quickly, or eat too much, will often experience regurgitation. Changes in their diet, food intolerance, Cat Food Allergies, digestions of foliage, or consuming rodents or hazardous material can also all be reasons your feline is having episodes of vomiting. Parasites, such as Cat Worms, or other intestinal components may also cause your cat to feel extremely ill and vomiting. By keeping your cat on a strict regimen of yearly check-ups and proper de-wormings, you can prevent sickness or further medical issues from occurring.
Ultimately, vomiting in cats can have such an extensive list of causes that it is extremely important to consider the context of the situation. Has your cat ingested any poisons? Does it have any predisposition such as gastric/intestinal problems? Are bacterial infections present? These are vital components in piecing together the reasons why your cat may be sick and vomiting.
If you suspect that your cat could have ingested anything that is toxic or detrimental to their health, it is up to you to get them the proper care they need. However, it is also important to have the ability to differentiate between life-threatening and normal animal activity. After all, felines are curious creatures that don’t always do the smartest things. So having them vomit after eating something that is disagreeable becomes a learning experience. But, if they’ve ingested something or have a clinical problem it is especially important that they are treated promptly.
Keeping your pet out of harm’s way will ensure they live a happy and healthy life.
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Janice Huntingford, DVM, has been in veterinary practice for over 30 years and has founded two veterinary clinics since receiving her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine at the Ontario Veterinary College, University of Guelph. She has studied extensively in both conventional and holistic modalities. Ask Dr. Jan