Cats can be hard to read. They keep a lot of their feelings secret and caring for a cat that is not feeling 100% can be hard on an owner. If your cat is throwing up, you might not be sure if they are not feeling good or if they have a hairball they are trying to remove.
For cat owners, there are a few signs that something is not right with their cat that deserves a visit to the vet. Vomiting is one of the signs that your cat might need medical attention. Cats who are experiencing severe or continuous vomiting will need immediate vet care.
If you want to know more about whether or not you should be concerned about your cat’s vomiting, you need to read on!
How Much Vomiting Should I be Concerned About?
The key thing to remember with cat vomiting is that cats can get dehydrated very rapidly. Cat kidneys need to have enough support to function correctly, and when your cat is not keeping food down, they are also probably not drinking enough. Extended periods of vomiting can lead to very serious complications in cats almost right away as compared to other animals like dogs.
If your cat has only thrown up once, that is a very different situation than a cat that is throwing up continuously. Make sure that you pay attention to the frequency of the vomiting and take your cat to the veterinarian right away if they have thrown up more than three times in the past couple of hours.
What To Do If Your Cat Has Thrown Up Just Once
Cats can have sensitive stomachs, or they might not have been drinking enough water for some reason. Cats can also vomit due to hairballs. If your cat has only thrown up one time, there is a simple protocol that you can follow to track their behavior and see if they will feel better on their own.
Remove Food and Offer Water
Take away your cat’s food and wait for about twelve hours to give them more. Make sure that you are tracking their water intake as well. Even if they are not vomiting, cats that are not drinking can get very sick very quickly. You can provide your cat with ice cubes of water if this makes them more motivated to drink.
Offer Small Amount of Food
When you bring food back into the picture, offer a small amount of bland food. You might want to consider wet food if you think your cat is not going to be able to handle dry food for its first meal. Watch your cat carefully after you feed them following their fast. If you need to feed them a little early before you head to work so you can see what happens, that is a good idea.
What Are Some Signs That Vomiting in a Cat is Serious?
Besides the frequency of vomiting, there are some other signs that your cat’s vomiting is a concern. These are the most common signs that something serious might be going on related to your cat’s vomiting.
- Blood in the vomit
- Not drinking water
- Pain or distress of any kind
- Blood in stool
- Painful and crampy appearance
- Yowling or meowing incessantly
What Can Frequent Throwing Up be a Sign Of?
If your cat has had to be taken to the vet for this issue, you might be worried about what this might mean for their health. There are some common reasons that cats might experience chronic or unrelieved vomiting.
Eating or Chewing Something Toxic
The most common reason for intense vomiting is eating something toxic or chewing on plants in the home that are not cat safe.
Disease, Foreign Body or Allergies
Another common reason for frequent vomiting is kidney failure or kidney disease. Hyperthyroidism, inflammatory bowel disease, a foreign body that has been swallowed, food allergies, and metabolic diseases can all be linked to vomiting as well.
For owners who are not sure if their cat is going to be diagnosed with a serious condition, you can be assured that your vet will help you to navigate treatment and management of any condition like this. There are many medication options for most of these conditions, and you might be able to keep your cat comfortable or alleviate their symptoms altogether. The ultimate treatment plan will depend on the severity of your cat’s health condition upon arrival at the vet.
Do not feel bad if your cat did not indicate that it felt this badly before the vomiting began. Cats are very good at keeping secrets like this, and it can be very hard to tell that your cat is sick until a major symptom shows up. Many cat owners feel terrible about not knowing their cat was very sick, but this is not fair to expect of yourself. Cats are hard to care for in some cases because they keep a lot of their discomforts to themselves.
Vomiting is Almost Always Very Serious in Cats
The frequency of the vomiting behavior that your cat is displaying is key to determining if their condition is serious. You will need to start paying attention to your cat’s behavior as soon as they vomit the first time and make sure that they are not hiding somewhere and getting sick. Tracking the water intake of a cat that has been vomiting is essential as well.
At the end of the day, if you think that your cat is not acting right, it is never a bad idea to take them to the vet. Because cats are so hard to read in some cases, it can be tough to be totally sure if they feel very sick or not. Your vet can do tests to see if your cat is just a little under the weather or very sick and in need of hospital-level care.
Vomiting in cats can be linked to serious health conditions, so you should always take this as a warning sign of a possible serious issue.