Is your cat throwing up but seems fine? Cats are instinctively inclined to hide any weaknesses. This can make it difficult for us as pet owners to determine when there is a health issue at play. Sometimes cats throw up but don’t seem to have any other symptoms of illness. Does this mean they are fine? Your friends at OVRS have created this guide to help you determine when a cat throwing up is nothing to worry about.

Nothing to See Hair 

One of the most common causes of vomiting in cats is hairballs. Your cat’s scratchy tongue might make a great grooming tool, but it often collects plenty of cat hair. A cat will swallow much of this hair. Unfortunately, the feline GI tract is unable to digest this grooming byproduct. In many cases, the hair just makes its way through and ends up in the litter box. Sometimes, though, the hair forms clumps inside your cat, and the only way for her to expel them is to throw them up. If you see your cat hacking (or making a strange whale-like noise) before throwing up a cylinder surrounded by liquid, it is most likely a hairball. 

Help your cat avoid these by regularly using a brush to groom her.

If I Sees It, I Eats It

Another common cause of vomiting in cats is eating too fast. Some cats cannot control themselves around a bowl of food. Unlike humans, they have a horizontal esophagus. If your cat is prone to inhaling his food, it might hit the back of the esophagus and trigger him to throw it up. If your cat regularly throws up after eating, you should schedule a vet visit to make sure there isn’t a larger health issue at play. Once you get the all-clear from your vet, you might want to serve your cat’s food in smaller portions and not all at once. You can also invest in a slow feeder that forces your feline to take their time.

Food/Stomach Miscommunication 

Sometimes food without enough nutrients or with too many nutrients can cause an upset tummy. If you’ve suddenly changed your cat’s food or have introduced something very rich, this could cause your cat to throw up. Milk, food allergies, and human food could also trigger this reaction. Talk to your veterinarian about your cat’s diet so they can determine if any changes need to be made.

Foreign Object Objections 

Cats like to explore, and sometimes this means chewing something they’ve encountered in the house or outside. They might throw up foreign objects they cannot easily digest. 

This can include:

  • Pieces of plastic
  • String
  • Fabric
  • Toilet paper
  • Twigs
  • PIeces of cat toys

Cat Throwing Up: When to Worry

In most cases, your cat throwing up once is enough to remove an irritant. If your cat regularly vomits or if you notice other alarming symptoms, you should definitely schedule an appointment with the vet.

These symptoms include:

  • Diarrhea 
  • Rapid weight loss
  • Blood in the vomit
  • Excessive thirst
  • Changes in behavior or food intake
  • Difficulty breathing

OVRS wants you and your pet to have the best life together. From helpful resources to a selection of specialty services, we are always here for you. To learn more, please call (248) 334-6877.