If you have a cat, chances are good you’ve had to clean up cat vomit before. But have you ever wondered what’s causing your cat to vomit in the first place? If so, you’re not alone.
In the article below, we’ll explore some of the most likely causes of vomiting in cats. Some of these causes are mild, while others are serious. It’s important to take your cat to the vet right away if you suspect any of the serious causes could be true for your pet. Read on to find out more about vomiting in cats.
Causes for Vomiting Include:
Eating Too Fast
Some cats may be prone to eating too fast. If your cat is like this, then she may be vomiting because she’s stuffing herself too much too quickly. Cats who eat fast and then throw up pieces of mostly whole kibble are usually vomiting because of the speed of their eating.
You can help cut down on this problem by giving your cat her food in a slow feeder bowl. It may take her a little while to get used to it, but most cats eat well out of slow feeders with no trouble, so it is worth a try.
What you’re seeing as vomit may actually be a hairball. If this is the case, the behavior is perfectly normal in all cats other than hairless cats. As cats groom themselves, they swallow pieces of their hair. Over time, these pieces form into clumps in the stomach that must then be spit up.
When your cat coughs up a hairball, you may see the hair clump along with vomit. You likely won’t see pieces of food, unless your cat has just eaten right before the hairball. Cats usually go right back to normal immediately after coughing up a hairball.
Cats who suffer from food intolerances or food allergies may be more likely to vomit frequently than those who do not. If your cat’s vomiting seems to always occur within an hour or so of eating, then food intolerance or food allergy may be the cause.
Try switching your cat to a food with a different type of protein or better quality ingredients. If the vomiting eases up with new food, you can assume food allergy was the problem. High-quality foods with real protein sources are the best options for cats, both in kibble and in wet food.
Some types of intestinal parasites may cause vomiting in cats. If your cat’s vomiting is frequent, and if she is also having diarrhea along with the vomiting, then intestinal parasites may be the cause. Cats who have not been recently to the vet for deworming are at a greater risk, but any cat can develop intestinal parasites.
Take your cat to the vet if you think she has parasites. The vet can provide a dewormer and a worming medication for you to give your cat at home. Intestinal parasites can be easily resolved with the help of a vet and are nothing to be worried about.
Some thyroid problems can cause vomiting in cats. If your cat has an issue with her thyroid, she may vomit and have frequent diarrhea. She may also have a voracious appetite but be unable to gain weight, or may even lose weight despite eating everything she can. She may be weak and appear sick.
If you suspect thyroid issues, it’s important to work with your vet for a full diagnosis. Your vet can also help you determine whether or not treatment or management are viable solutions for your cat in the future.
Some types of cancer may lead to frequent vomiting in cats, especially cancers related to the digestive system or liver. If you think there’s a chance your cat could have cancer, you’ll need to work with your vet to get an accurate diagnosis and figure out the right treatment or management plan.
Cats with cancer will likely have many other symptoms aside from just vomiting. They may lose weight quickly, may appear very sick, and may be lethargic, weak, or in pain. If your cat is vomiting with other serious symptoms, get to the vet as soon as possible.
With the help of this information, you should be able to determine the potential causes of your cat’s vomiting and figure out when it’s time to contact the vet as well. Many of the reasons on this list do not require vet care at all, so consider the possibilities and think about whether or not your cat seems to be sick with a more serious problem.
As always, if you have any questions or concerns, or if you’re just not sure about your cat’s vomiting issue, don’t hesitate to reach out to your regular, trusted vet for more information. Call us today at (847) 428-6114.