What food causes cats to choke

Cat vomits - possible causes and help

Every cat owner has already experienced it: the cat vomits. It looks bad, and it sounds bad - the cat bends over, chokes and gasps. As a holder, you are already very worried. Vomiting is a completely normal process in house tigers - and even necessary at certain intervals!

In most cases the vomiting is harmless and the worries are completely unfounded. A visit to the vet is only necessary if the cat vomits disproportionately often and other symptoms of the disease may appear.

This article will tell you what the most common causes of vomiting are, how you can help your pet yourself, and when to see the vet.

Harmless reasons

A cat has to vomit from time to time in order to choke up foreign matter from the stomach.

Fur hair

In many cases this is your own hair. When a cat is cleaning itself, it will inevitably lick loose hair with its tongue and swallow it. This hair then forms clumps in the animal's stomach that have to be gagged up and vomited at regular intervals. If this did not happen, the cat would run the risk of the lumps of hair clogging the stomach outlet, and this could possibly even endanger the life of the house tiger!
Outdoor cats have the advantage that they can get rid of their superfluous hair by wiping it off on bushes or grasses, while indoor cats swallow much more of this hair.
Vomiting because of fur is completely normal and not a cause for concern. As a rule, the hair in the vomit is also easy to see. Nevertheless, here are a few tips on how you can make it easier for your velvet paw:

Cat grass

If your cat lives exclusively in the apartment, you should regularly provide her with cat grass. Grass triggers the gag reflex in cats, which makes them throw up more easily. Outdoor cats naturally eat grass in nature, but indoor cats depend on cat grass. This is available in pet shops, but also in numerous drug stores and supermarkets.

Comb

Combing your indoor cat regularly will remove a lot of hair that it would otherwise swallow and later vomit.

Use what is known as a furminator for combing! This is a special comb that picks up a lot more hair with each brush stroke than normal brushes or combs.

You can also find this in relevant stores or online. Since I've been combing my two house tigers regularly with this miracle brush, they vomit much less often. This has the further advantage that clothing and furniture are significantly less affected by cat hair.

Malt paste

Malt paste is very rich in fiber and helps the cat that hair is digested better and can thus be excreted through the intestines. Give your animal some malt paste once a week.

Parts of prey

Cats are hunters, and even if a well-filled bowl is waiting for them at home, they will - if they are outdoors - kill a mouse or a bird from time to time. These prey animals are devoured "in one piece", which means that indigestible parts such as bones or fur have to be choked up again. This is completely normal and nothing to worry about.

Toxins

It is also inevitable that an outdoor cat will occasionally nibble on something incompatible or even poisonous on its forays out into the fields. She usually gets rid of these things by vomiting as well. If this is a one-off, then there is nothing to worry about.

If the cat vomits more often after being outdoors and there is a suspicion of poisoning, a visit to the vet is of course advisable! Symptoms of this are frequent vomiting as well as tiredness and listlessness.

It should go without saying that your household is "catproof" - that there are no poisonous plants and that poisonous cleaning products are out of reach of the animal.

Eating too fast and too much

Many cat owners can tell you a thing or two about it: Despite regular feeding, the cat behaves at mealtimes as if it is threatened with imminent starvation. This is particularly the case when several cats live in one household. The more dominant animal pushes forward, gulps the food down in record time and always tries to steal something from the other. The less dominant animal, on the other hand, will try to eat as quickly as possible for fear that it will otherwise not get its full portion or will even end up completely empty.
One sign of vomiting from overeating is if the cat vomits within an hour of eating and the vomit consists of undigested food. Quick removal is particularly important here - because quite a few cats eat their vomit again, and even the most passionate cat lover would not necessarily want to see this.

How can you prevent the cat from devouring its food too quickly? One possibility is not to place the bowl on the floor, but rather to raise it slightly. If the bowl is just below the height of the animal's snout, it has to eat in a position that makes it impossible for it to gobble too greedily. Consequence: The cat eats more slowly and digests better.
It is better to feed several small portions than a few large ones. In this way, the cat cannot overeat and is therefore less likely to vomit. Chop up the cat food with a fork - this is another way of making it easier for your pet to eat.

If you have more than one cat who may be rivaling each other, feed the animals in separate rooms with the doors closed. After a while, all cats in the household will understand that they can take their time while eating, as they can neither steal nor be taken advantage of.

A great invention is a so-called anti-swirl bowl. Due to its special design, the cat has to make an effort to get to its food and thus inevitably take time to eat.

Vomiting as a symptom of the disease

Your cat vomits several times, over a long period of time, or for no apparent reason? And maybe you also suffer from diarrhea? Then it may well be that the animal has contracted a gastrointestinal infection. But that doesn't necessarily have to be a reason to see a veterinarian immediately. You can also get the problem under control yourself with an appropriate diet.

And this is how it works: Do not give the cat food for 24 hours so that the damaged stomach lining can recover. Stay tough! Because of course the velvet paw will pull out all the stops to sneak a treat or two. But don't worry - no cat has starved to death because of a 24-hour diet! Make sure you have enough water available during this time to prevent dehydration.

After the food-free day, you should not give the animal normal cat food again. Instead, cook some turkey or chicken breast or steam some white fish such as cod, halibut or pikeperch. Feed this carefully chopped up to the cat, taking care to remove any bones from the fish. After 2 to 3 days you can switch back to normal cat food, provided the animal no longer vomits and no longer has diarrhea. If not - going to the vet cannot be avoided.

The 24-hour zero diet is not recommended for very young and very old cats! Both of them do not have enough body reserves to survive this without problems. Here you have to go to a veterinarian immediately!

When is going to the vet inevitable?

If the vomiting does not stop after 2 to 3 days and the 24-hour zero diet and the following bland diet do not bring any improvement, you should definitely consult a veterinarian. The following symptoms, along with vomiting, indicate that the cat is seriously ill:

  • Fatigue and apathy
  • Cat does not eat or drink.
  • Fever - The signs are often glassy eyes. Measure the temperature in the cat's anus. Normal body temperature is 38 to 39.2 degrees. If the temperature is higher, the animal has a fever.
  • Weight loss - this is often a sign of worm infestation.
  • Vomit foam - this is also a sign of worm infestation.
  • Dehydration

How to tell if your cat is dehydrated: Squeeze a fold of skin on your house tiger for about 30 seconds. Then let go. If the wrinkle does not recede immediately but remains, this is a sign of dehydration.

Take a sample of the vomit with you to the vet. He will make the correct diagnosis and act accordingly.
Vomiting can indicate numerous diseases - from harmless gastrointestinal inflammation to colon cancer or an intestinal obstruction.

An allergy to a certain feed can also trigger persistent vomiting.

Possible causes are also diabetes, kidney disease, or a malfunction of the thyroid gland.

And - don't forget: our four-legged roommates also have a soul. Frequent vomiting is not uncommon for psychological reasons, such as the death of "his" person or the cat's friend. Even a move, a new partner of a master or mistress and many other reasons can hit these sensitive animals in the truest sense of the word on the stomach.

Summary

Occasional vomiting is a part of every cat's life. Mostly it has harmless causes and is used to choke up swallowed hair or foreign bodies. However, it can be caused by a serious medical condition such as worm infestation or even colon cancer. If vomiting persists for no apparent reason, a veterinarian should always be consulted!

Article image: © pterwort / Bigstock.com

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The most common questions / FAQ

🐈‍⬛ Why does a cat throw up?

Vomiting is a completely normal process in our house tigers - and even necessary at certain intervals! A cat has to vomit from time to time in order to choke up foreign matter from the stomach. This can be, for example, a hairball in the stomach or indigestible parts of eaten prey.

🩺 When to the vet if the cat vomits?

In most cases the vomiting is harmless and the worries are completely unfounded. A visit to the vet is only necessary if the cat vomits disproportionately and there may be other symptoms of the disease.

🔎 How can cats be prevented from vomiting?

Combing your cat regularly will remove a lot of hair that the cat would otherwise swallow and later vomit. Cat grass triggers the gag reflex in cats, which makes them throw up more easily. Malt paste is also very rich in fiber and helps the cat that hair is digested better and can thus be excreted through the intestines.

🤔 What to do if a cat eats too quickly?

One possibility is not to place the bowl on the floor, but rather to raise it slightly. It is still better to feed several small portions than a few large ones. Chop up the cat food with a fork - this is another way of making it easier for your pet to eat.
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