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Help! Why won't my cat eat?

Help! Why won't my cat eat?

Our Johns Creek team of vets knows that cats can be notoriously picky eaters. So, if your cat is refusing to eat, it may be hard to figure out the reason. Here are a few different possible causes for why your cat isn't eating and when your should bring your feline friend to your vet.

Cat Not Eating

There are a number of reasons why cats refuse to eat ranging from disliking their new food to pain or discomfort. Figuring out your cat's reason for not eating can be challenging and upsetting.

If your cat skips one or two meals but then returns to eating as before, there probably isn't anything worth worrying about. On the other hand, if your kitten or cat stops eating for more than a day, there may be an underlying health issue that is causing your cat some discomfort. 

Less Concerning Reasons Why Your Cat May Not be Eating

The following causes of a lack of appetite in your cat are some of the less serious possible reasons for this change in their behavior.

  • New food
  • Recent vaccinations
  • Motion sickness following travel
  • Change in regular routine
  • Stranger in the house

If any of these conditions seem like they may apply to your cat's situation, you'll likely find that your feline friend will begin eating again within 24 hours and should return to their normal routine and appetite after that. If your cat continues to refuse food, it may be wise to book an appointment with your vet. When it comes to the health and well-being of your pet, it's always better to err on the side of caution. 

More Serious Reasons Why Your Cat May Not be Eating

Dental Health Issues

Like people, cats can suffer from tooth decay and various mouth infections. Your cat may be refusing to eat due to pain caused by advanced tooth decay, inflamed gums, broken or loose teeth, a dental abscess, or an injury to the inside of their mouth caused by a foreign object.

If you believe that your cat is suffering from mouth pain, it's time for you to call your vet. Our Johns Creek vets will be able to clean your cat's teeth and conduct a thorough exam of their mouth to check for any sources of discomfort or oral health issues.

GI Trouble

Common gastrointestinal (GI) problems in cats include: parasites, foreign objects trapped in the intestinal tract, gastroenteritis, pancreatitis, urinary obstruction, colitis, cancer or changes in gut intestinal bacteria.

GI issues can cause cats to feel nauseous and experience a lack of appetite. If your cat is suffering from a gastrointestinal issue they may show other symptoms such as weight loss, vomiting, constipation, or diarrhea. 

If your cat is showing signs of a GI issue, it's time to see your vet. Gastrointestinal problems such as those listed above are serious and may require emergency care, early diagnosis and treatment are key.

Kidney Disease

In the same way that gastrointestinal issues can cause nausea, so too can kidney issues, making your cat refuse to eat. If your cat is suffering from kidney disease, you may notice other symptoms like drinking large amounts of water and frequent urination. Kidney disease is relatively common in cats over seven years of age. 

Kidney disease can only be diagnosed and treated by your vet. If your cat has stopped eating and is showing other symptoms of kidney disease contact your vet to book an appointment.  

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

Are you worries about your cat's refusal to eat? Contact our the team at Johns Creek Veterinary Clinic today. We will book an exmaination and create a treatment plan for your feline friend. 

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