Cat

Possible Causes of Vomiting in Cats and their Prevention

While cats occasionally vomit for a variety of non-alarming reasons—like spitting out a hairball, other instances of your feline throwing up can be the result or cause of a condition that warrants a trip to the vet.

Vomiting is a natural way for the body to rid itself of toxins and other substances that shouldn’t be in the body or as a sign that the organism is not functioning properly.

If your cat’s vomit is mixed with blood, bile (greenish-yellowish fluid), or other fluids, this is a serious cause for concern.

The presence of blood means there’s an internal bleeding, while the presence of bile, which helps with digestion, means the fluid doesn’t enter the stomach.

There is a ton of reasons why either of these things might be happening—gastritis, ulcers, other inflammation, IBS, cancer, etc.

If your cat is throwing up clear liquid, it might be because the stomach is empty, meaning there’s a higher chance of getting dehydrated which is a serious problem.

Presence of blood, bile, or other unidentifiable liquids warrant an urgent trip to the vet to check for any underlying causes.

Another thing to pay attention to is the frequency of your cat’s vomits.

Your cat getting sick a couple of times a month might be because of hairballs or overeating, any case of a cat getting sick means you need to take measures to avoid further episodes.

Vomiting can lead to dehydration and irritate the stomach and esophagus, causing a lack of appetite and a low thirst drive.

Cats, in general, have a low thirst drive, but they are prone to dehydration which can quickly lead to life-threatening conditions.

So, what are the signs that a cat is about to get sick?

Nausea, unusually underactive feline, and lack of appetite and thirst are common signs that something health-related is bothering your cat.

Then, immediately before vomiting, a cat might start to drool, choke, gag, and wheeze.

Some cats, after they throw up, meow excessively and lead their owners to the spot where it happened.

Causes

Because of their grooming habits, cats, especially long-haired breeds, are prone to forming hairballs in their stomach.

Felines ingest fur daily, which accumulates, forms a ball, and blocks the passageway where food travels.

Naturally, this fur must come out, hence why some cats vomit hairballs.

Another vomit-inducing problem in cats is eating too fast and too much.

Sensitivity to some ingredients (eg.: grains, milk, artificial colorants, and preservatives) can also cause vomiting, and so can a sudden diet change.

Toxic substances are another culprit—especially if your cat has ingested or inhaled them.

This is easy for cats to do, as most homes are abundant in stuff that’s toxic to cats—household cleaners, fragrances, even some foods. Hence, keep out of pet’s reach all substances that are hazardous to them.

Small lose parts of toys, or other objects that are easily inhaled or swallowed due to your cat’s natural curiosity can also cause vomiting as well as internal trauma.

Keep those out of reach and only buy high-quality toys without feathers, bells, and other small stuff that might come loose.

Also, cheap, low-quality pet toys, bowls, beds, and other accessories might be colored with toxic dyes which can also cause vomiting.

As of illnesses, there’s a ton of them that can exhibit vomiting as one of the symptoms—gastritis, ulcers, inflammation, liver problems, parasites, tumors, and trauma are only some of them.

They all usually come with other symptoms, however, diagnosis and treatment is a job for a vet.

Prevention

Here are some things you can do to minimize the chances that your cat develops a vomit-inducing problem.

  • Avoid stressing your cat.
  • Watch out for unusual behavior.
  • Provide your pet with fresh water 24/7.
  • Feed on a schedule and the right amount.
  • Regularly bring your pet to the vet for a check-up
  • Feed a high-quality diet free of grains and artificial ingredients.
  • Don’t overdo on the treats and only feed food appropriate for cats.
  • If you have a long-haired cat, ask your vet for digestion supplements.

What are your thoughts?