Vomiting is the involuntary and forceful expulsion of some or all of the stomach contents by reversal of peristalsis, the normal muscular contractions of the stomach.
Cats can vomit for a variety reasons. Sometimes your cat will have simply eaten something that disagreed with him, other times vomiting will be a sign of a greater problem. If your cat vomits only once chances are he ate something, overate something, was stressed, or has some other simple and one-time problem. However if your cat is vomiting chronically and/or has other symptoms (lethargy, diarrhea, not eating) then the vomiting could be a sign of a larger problem. Don’t wait until your cat has been throwing up for an extended period of time before consulting your vet. If your cat does have a more serious illness causing the vomiting this may waste precious treatment time. Also when a cat doesn’t take in enough food or keep down enough food to sustain itself the body must use its fat stores for energy. Cat’s bodies are not very efficient at processing fat stores and thus fat can accumulate in the liver. This can lead to hepatic lipidosis. Thus anytime your cat is vomiting for more than a day or two consult your vet.
Some things that could cause vomiting include:
- Food poisoning
- Eating bacteria infested food
- Worm infestation
- Viral disorders
- Infectious diseases
- Kidney or liver problems
If your cat is vomiting frequently or chronically take him to the vet at once. Your vet will do a thorough examination to isolate the cause of the vomiting. If your cat simply has a sick stomach from eating something that didn’t agree with him or from overeating you may want to limit food for 24 to 36 hours, or feed him smaller meals for a few days and see if the problem persists. However if your vet does find an underlying problem your vet will determine the proper course of treatment based on the diagnosis.
Keep your cat on a simple, healthy diet. Limit overeating and eating too much table food and treats. Cats, like humans, need roughage. So you may want to grow some kitty grass for your cat to eat. This will keep your cat’s digestive tract in check. Keep your cat in a low stress environment. And keep your cat well groomed and brushed. This will limit hairballs, a common cause of vomiting.