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What should you do if your cat is vomiting?

By: Dr. Jon Rappaport

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Our question this week was:

Dr. Jon – my cat vomited twice this morning and seems lethargic. Should I worry?

John Brown – Ithaca, NY


Answer

Hi – thanks for your email John. You wrote that your cat vomited twice and seems lethargic. You want to know when to worry.

Many cats vomit occasionally. If a cat vomits once or twice but is still acting normal, has normal stools and quickly (over a few hours) resumes eating and drinking -then I'm not too worried. In this case – I'd recommend watching your cat to ensure that it does resolve. Watch for any additional signs such as lethargy, diarrhea, weakness, or inappetence. You mentioned that your cat seems lethargic – so I'd begin to worry.

What else can you do?

Keep your cat inside (if he goes out) so that you can observe for any abnormalities. If your cat is not feeling well, he may not be able to defend himself if a problem arises while out.

Take up your cat's food for 2 hours. If there is no continued vomiting, offer a small amount of fresh food after that time. If your cat eventually eats that, you can offer more.

These are the situations in a vomiting cat that bring me concern: A cat that:

  • Continues to vomit and acts weak
  • Vomiting that goes on for more than a day without keeping food down
  • Lethargy with vomiting
  • Blood in the vomit

    If you see any of these signs, I worry that there is an underlying condition that may be significant and need evaluated by your veterinarian. Since it has only been an hour or so...you might try the above. If you are worried – take her in to your vet or local emergency clinic.

    An article that might be helpful to you is Vomiting in Cats.

    Best of luck!

    Dr. Jon




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