why is my cat vomiting?
What is Vomiting?
• Cats vomit just like people!
• They often look sick and may lick their lips and drool.
• Then they will retch.
• Finally they will vomit which may be liquid, food or frothy looking.
Differentials (what could be causing my cat to vomit?)
Vomiting can be a sign for many different diseases in cats.
Below are a few of the more common reasons cats can vomit:
• Gastritis – this literally means an irritation in the tummy - so a tummy upset – sometimes we never find the cause of this if it is just a one off upset.
• Foreign body – this means having eaten something they shouldn't have and it getting stuck! (like a toy or string!)
• Toxin ingestion – eating something poisonous
• Inflammatory bowel disease – just like people cats can get IBD and sometimes this can cause them to vomit.
• Pancreatitis – a disease of their pancreas that can also cause a very painful tummy.
• Kidney disease
• Thyroid disease
• Cancer – although less common we have to consider cancers, especially in older cats that vomit a lot.
Diagnosis of vomiting
• It is essential that your cat has a full check over at the vets if they are vomiting.
• The vet will take a thorough history – this means they will ask a lot of questions to find out as much as possible about what could be causing the vomiting.
• Tests that we may choose to perform include:
• Blood tests
• Tummy x-rays
• Tummy ultrasound
• Biopsies (taking a little portion of the stomach or intestines for the laboratory to see if there are any abnormal cells present)
Treatment of vomiting
• Obviously the treatment given depends on what the cause is!
• We may give drugs to stop them feeling sick.
• We may also give medication to settle their tummy (similar to antacids in humans).
• Staying hydrated is vital! So we may recommend a stay in our hospital and a drip.
Prognosis for vomiting (how likely is a cat to do it afterwards)?
• Vomiting cats often recover fully with quick and appropriate treatment.
• Obviously some of the conditions are more serious and may require long term medication.