HOMECARE NOTES: VOMITING AND DIARRHOEA


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•  Many cases of vomiting or diarrhoea in cats are caused by a simple infection of the stomach or intestines from catching an insect or from fresh or tinned food left out too long. Other causes are from toxins (eg Lilies are VERY dangerous to cats), having a blockage (eg a toy or string), food allergies, cancers or even secondary to another problem like kidney or liver disease.

•  It is best for your cat to be assessed by a veterinarian in the first instance to ensure there aren’t more severe underlying problems (eg jaundice or dehydration) that need immediate investigations.
Home Care:

•  Fast your cat for 24 hours but ensure water is available since there is loss of fluid from the vomiting or diarrhoea. Once this initial 24 hours is over, you may introduce your cat to bland food.

•  The two best bland foods to use are:

• A prescription diet called i/d (which stands for intestinal diet) which is available as a canned or dry food. Wet food is preferable as it ensures your cat is taking in water.

• Cooked white meat of a chicken is also a good bland food to reintroduce your cat to. We find that using the meat (no skin) from barbeque chicken to work in most cases as the smell and warm meat help to stimulate your cat's appetite. Boiled chicken is also fine.
 

• If all goes well, this diet of bland food should be fed in small amounts for a week or more before gradually returning to your cat’s usual diet. Give a little more of their usual diet each day and a little less of the bland food (ie 25% normal/75% bland food the first day, 50%/50% the next etc,) until they are weaned entirely back to their normal diet. This is to prevent any further vomiting or diarrhoea that can occur when changing a cat’s diet.

• If your cat:

• Continues to vomit or the diarrhoea persists

• Refuses to eat

• Shows any other signs of being unwell (like sluggishness)

then please call us. Your cat may need to come into hospital further investigations by blood tests or radiographs and your cat may need to be admitted to hospital for IV fluids (a ‘drip’).

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