Advice for vomitting cat?

Kat.

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Hi!! My cat keeps having vomitting issues and I'm not sure if I should panic, or what's the best course of action is.

The times are a bit murky for me but basically, about two weeks ago my cat threw up a hairball, and then just some liquid the next day. I didn't think too much of it and just started giving him some hairball paste everyday (I'm still doing it). Then last week I decided to switch up his dry food because he completely stopped eating his old one (not because he's sick, he just gets bored of dry food about once a year and I have to switch it up) and started slowly introducing a different one (mixing in with his old one). I'm calling it a 'new food' but he ate this food about a year ago and was totally fine with it, so I feel like it should't be the issue. He loved the food change, and kept picking it out from the mix. I took him to the vet that week for ear check up and he threw up hairball that day after coming back but I kind of wrote it down to stress. I found a hairball again on Friday and then this Saturday he threw up a few hours after breakfast (not hairball) and then again in the evening. For dinner I always give him wet food (always the same, he loves it) and about half an hour after he threw up everywhere. I freaked out and my vet was closed so I took him to an overnight one. They didn't do any bloodwork or testing but said stomach doesn't look painful, and just gave him injections for vomitting, stomach and stomach acid, and said to go back to old food for a few days. I did that and he was totally fine, back to normal and no throwing up but he also didn't eat any dry food, pretty much starved until dinner. Yesterday I started to introduce the new food again, he was happy aboyt it and then today he threw up twice. I came back home late so couldn't call the vet but ended up boiling him some chicken and rice as I kniw that's a good bland choice for upset stomach. He was in a good mood, energetic and clearly hungry but after eating he appeared clearly nauseous, and as I was typing this message he threw up once again (clear liquid with some chicken pieces), and now looks completely normal again, and is clearly looking for food in the kitchen.

I will obviously take him to the vet once again and stop giving him any of the 'new' food but what should I do in the meantime? I can't take tomorrow off work so I'll take him either in the evening or - more likely - on Friday. Should I not feed him at all until then? Also what tests should I push for? Most of the time I take cats in for vomitting, the vets are very casual about it, just give some injections, maybe a blood test and send me back home. My cat is super stressed by the vet visits - and he already had two just last week - so I want to limit them as much as possible.

Thank you for any advice! Sorry it was so long and convoluted.
 
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maggie101

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Try feeding many small meals a day. Buy a food timer for when your in bed and at work. The vet will probably give him full blood work. One problem with dry is it can make a cat eat too fast
 
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Kat.

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Thank you! I'll try but tbh he's not a fan of dry food anyway, I probably should just move to wet food. I'm just worried about feeding him anything at this point because he keeps getting sick after he eats. But he's also clearly hungry and keeps demanding food, and I'm not sure how quickly I can get him into the vet
 

maggie101

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He is throwing up too much so keep record of how many times a day,how long it's been going on, how many times a week,what time of day,,is it right after he eats ,what it looks like
 

stephanietx

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Try switching him to all wet and eliminating the dry food to see if that helps. He could be intolerant of fish or chicken.
 

daftcat75

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How old is he?

Even hairballs are not normal. They could be the early indicator of developing IBD. Blood tests aren't really helpful for vomiting or IBD. However, they are helpful for ruling out other issues. So yes, get the blood work done. But if you really want to rule out IBD, he will need an ultrasound.

Smaller meals more often is a great suggestion. You can get timed feeders to give him wet portions during the day or overnight if you're not home or awake to serve those fresh. I would get the single clamshell feeder design over a double compartment or a wheel. They are affordable. You can set them out in pairs (which I recommend in case one fails to open--a very infrequent occurrence (3 or 4 times in the hundreds of times I used them.) And you can set them to open to different times and different intervals. But the biggest drawback of a wheel design is that uneaten food is rotated back inside the machine. If you want to enforce time limits on meals, you could use a wheel feeder with food in every other compartment. This would have the effect of taking away the food at the defined interval.

Getting him off of dry food altogether is the best suggestion. You might find that once he's not eating dry food, he may be hungry more often for wet food making it easier to get him to eat enough without all the nonsense ingredients that come with kibble.

For review:

1. Plan on an ultrasound. Catching IBD earlier makes it easier to manage.
2. Reduce or eliminate his dry servings.
3. Increase the frequency of his wet meals while decreasing the size. Any food you store in the fridge can be made appealing again by putting the food into a baggie, pressing it flat as possible before sealing it, and submerging the sealed baggie in hot water for a few minutes. Alternatively, you can stir in some hot water to warm it back up. It's tempting to use the microwave for a few seconds. But this destroys nutrients, can create hot spots that can burn kitty's tongue, and it will change the texture of the food potentially making it less appealing.
4. Use timed feeders for wet meals you don't plan on being around or awake for. Use single compartment clamshell feeders because they are the most flexible in how you can schedule them and set them out. They also don't enforce time limits on meals. Helpful for nibblers. Wet food can be left out for hours. It dries out before it spoils.
 

maggie101

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Thank you! I'll try but tbh he's not a fan of dry food anyway, I probably should just move to wet food. I'm just worried about feeding him anything at this point because he keeps getting sick after he eats. But he's also clearly hungry and keeps demanding food, and I'm not sure how quickly I can get him into the vet
Being without food for so long will make him nauseous. If you live near a small pet store get some tiki tubes. Fancy feast classics ,friskies,sheba,Anything with a strong smell so if you buy canned, try heat it up for a few secs or micro a cup with water, empty it,add food
 
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Kat.

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How old is he?

Even hairballs are not normal. They could be the early indicator of developing IBD. Blood tests aren't really helpful for vomiting or IBD. However, they are helpful for ruling out other issues. So yes, get the blood work done. But if you really want to rule out IBD, he will need an ultrasound.

Smaller meals more often is a great suggestion. You can get timed feeders to give him wet portions during the day or overnight if you're not home or awake to serve those fresh. I would get the single clamshell feeder design over a double compartment or a wheel. They are affordable. You can set them out in pairs (which I recommend in case one fails to open--a very infrequent occurrence (3 or 4 times in the hundreds of times I used them.) And you can set them to open to different times and different intervals. But the biggest drawback of a wheel design is that uneaten food is rotated back inside the machine. If you want to enforce time limits on meals, you could use a wheel feeder with food in every other compartment. This would have the effect of taking away the food at the defined interval.

Getting him off of dry food altogether is the best suggestion. You might find that once he's not eating dry food, he may be hungry more often for wet food making it easier to get him to eat enough without all the nonsense ingredients that come with kibble.

For review:

1. Plan on an ultrasound. Catching IBD earlier makes it easier to manage.
2. Reduce or eliminate his dry servings.
3. Increase the frequency of his wet meals while decreasing the size. Any food you store in the fridge can be made appealing again by putting the food into a baggie, pressing it flat as possible before sealing it, and submerging the sealed baggie in hot water for a few minutes. Alternatively, you can stir in some hot water to warm it back up. It's tempting to use the microwave for a few seconds. But this destroys nutrients, can create hot spots that can burn kitty's tongue, and it will change the texture of the food potentially making it less appealing.
4. Use timed feeders for wet meals you don't plan on being around or awake for. Use single compartment clamshell feeders because they are the most flexible in how you can schedule them and set them out. They also don't enforce time limits on meals. Helpful for nibblers. Wet food can be left out for hours. It dries out before it spoils.
Thank you! That's so helpful. He'll be 4 in a few months.
 

daftcat75

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Thank you! That's so helpful. He'll be 4 in a few months.
Young for IBD. But not unheard of. You could skip the ultrasound for now, and just try the other suggestions. Consider the ultrasound if the situation doesn’t improve with an elimination of dry food and an adjustment to meal size and frequency of wet.
 
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Kat.

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Just thought I would update on what's been going on. Took him to the vet today. Bloodwork came back clear. The vet thinks he was constipated due to hairballs - she could feel there were hard fecal material. They gave him laxatives and injection for vomiting, and I also administered another dose of the laxative at home. She also agreed that moving to all wet food was a good choice for him. Vet seemed pretty optimistic that he'll be better by tomorrow and said if all is good I don't need to come back.
After coming back from the vet my cat hasn't eaten or drank anything, and is clearly feeling poorly, not really interested in anything. He finally went to the bathroom half an hour ago and his feces were very hard, and the were not much of it. But at least he went!! I made another appointment for tomorrow 3pm. I wish he would eat something, as he's already lost weight but nothing seems to be working.
 

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My last cat loved egg yolk. I used to let her lick the scrambled egg bowl after I poured the eggs into the pan. I have since learned that egg yolk can be a great hairball preventative and laxative (in larger amounts) for cats. You can give him a raw yolk if you're really ambitious (and it's packed with protein and nutrition!), or 1 tablespoon should get things moving. If he doesn't want to eat it raw or you don't want to feed it raw, you can serve him scrambled eggs.
 

maggie101

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My last cat loved egg yolk. I used to let her lick the scrambled egg bowl after I poured the eggs into the pan. I have since learned that egg yolk can be a great hairball preventative and laxative (in larger amounts) for cats. You can give him a raw yolk if you're really ambitious (and it's packed with protein and nutrition!), or 1 tablespoon should get things moving. If he doesn't want to eat it raw or you don't want to feed it raw, you can serve him scrambled eggs.
Is scrambled egg yolk considered a meal for the days my cat throws up her food. Good idea if you want to eat scrambled egg white at 4 pm
 

daftcat75

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Is scrambled egg yolk considered a meal for the days my cat throws up her food. Good idea if you want to eat scrambled egg white at 4 pm
It is protein, fat, and some vitamins and minerals. But no, it is not nearly a complete meal. Also, because it can have a laxative effect, you probably don't want to feed too much of it. A better meal for a vomit day would be boiled chicken (and skip the rice.) This is also nutrient deficient and should not be fed more than a day or two before getting her back to regular food.

You can scramble up whole eggs for her. You don't have to separate the yolk if you are going to cook it. There is some thought that there is more than enough biotin in the yolk that as long as you scramble white and yolk together, you may not need to worry about the anti-nutrient, avidin, that's in raw egg white. Avidin breaks down biotin making it unavailable to the cat. If you cook the white, you deactivate that enzyme. So another option is cooking the white and mixing it with raw yolk. Basically the only wrong way to do it is to give raw egg white by itself. Not only is it lacking the laxative ingredients (choline and lecithin), but it has the anti-nutrient, avidin.
 
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Kat.

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Thanks for the tips! I didn't attempt the egg yesterday but I might try it today.

We've had a long day but without answers yet again. I was freaked out by his condition today so I took him in earlier than my appointment. They did IV fluids, multiple X-rays, ultrasound, MRI and gastroscopy. Apparently his stomach was enlarged and full 'thick pink' liquid, which they removed. They couldn't see any obstructions though and his large intestine is empty, although they can see some thickening or something. The vet said no one could understand what was going on, and they never seen anything like this. They gave him some type of liquid that should show on X-ray tomorrow, and make sure once again if anything is obstructed. They also gave him some stuff for nausea, and an appetite stimulant.

He actually looked a bit more energetic I picked him up after anesthesia, even the vet noticed. She said I can feed him so I did give him a bit of wet food right after coming back, which he ate and looked a bit more relaxed for like half an hour, and then went back into loaf position and isn't eating or drinking anything again. I'm very nervous because I have answers yet and he doesn't look good at all.
 

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X-rays, ultrasound, MRI, gastroscopy, contrast imaging (the radioactive liquid)--this cat is getting better healthcare than many humans! I hope you have insurance helping you out. I don't really have anything else to add right now. He's clearly getting all the right tests. 🤞 Fingers crossed that you get some answers soon.
 
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Kat.

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Thank you! Hoping for answers before I lose my mind completely, lol, my anxiety is through the roof. No insurance and it's definitely very expensive but definitely not US pricing like I see on this forum sometimes!
 
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Kat.

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He's vomiting bright green liquid now. Never seen it like that, he usually vomits clear or yellow liquid (warning for a grose photo!). In pictures it doesn't look as green as in real life though

received_669489801148052.jpeg

received_200951158863685.jpeg
 

daftcat75

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That could be bile. That could be a sign of an obstruction. If he were mine, I’d take him to the ER rather than waiting it out or waiting for the regular vet.
 
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Kat.

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My vet opens in 3 hours (it's almost 6 am in my country right now). Do you think that's too long of a wait? I'm considering taking him now but not sure
 

daftcat75

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My vet opens in 3 hours (it's almost 6 am in my country right now). Do you think that's too long of a wait? I'm considering taking him now but not sure
I would. Especially because ERs can be associated with animal hospitals that may have more equipment or specialists than your regular vet. If that green vomit smelled foul like poop, that’s an obstruction. Don’t delay. Otherwise that could also be some reaction to an ingested toxin. I wouldn’t delay on that either.
 
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