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Red Clover and Cats

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
Is red clover poisonous to cats? I have researched different sites and some say clover is poisonous and others say you can give it to your cat. I gave my cat some Thursday night and every since he has been vomiting every time he tries to eat. I didn't make the connection until I gave him a little more on Friday. There were a few leaves left on the floor that he was nibbling at on Saturday and as of this morning he was still vomiting. I thought maybe it was a hairball but there is no fur in the vomit. If clover is indeed poisonous to cats, what should I do for him? He doesn't appear to be in distress, only when he eats. He was playing this morning and dashing around like he usually does in the morning then he was vomiting again. Later he was playing with the laser light and now he is hiding behind a chair just sitting. He isn't at all lethargic, he responds to petting by purring loudly and he puts his head up in the air so I can rub his neck. Its only when he tries to eat that he starts vomiting again. I don't really have money to take him to the vet and I am hoping that given a few days he will be fine. He didn't ingest a large quantity just maybe 6 leaves the first time and even less the second time. This particular cat has an affinity for eating things he shouldn't (tinsel garland at Christmas time) and he seems to have a particularly sensitive tummy. That will give him diarrhea for three days before it finally comes through. Do you think maybe the clover just irritated his stomach and that is why he can't keep food down? He used the litter box this morning so he must be keeping something down and he is getting my other can't cannot possibly be making all those wet spots in the litter box The one website I read said that red clover will cause nausea and vomiting in cats, but doesn't specify anything to do for them.
post #2 of 12
One place to call for advice: the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center (888) 426-4435.

Another good place to call: the ER at the vet school in your state

Please be sure to get advice ASAP
post #3 of 12
My suggestion is call your local er clinic ... they will give you a local and Free posion control number( at least mine did) or tell you to come right in as they know what to do .... Vet schools are truly wonderful for those blessed to be near one but reality is my vet school is 3 hours away in another state
post #4 of 12
I don't have anything different to suggest. Just wondering why you gave your cat clover in the first place?
post #5 of 12
Thread Starter cat is nuts about greens. I am well aware that you can buy dishes of seeds to grow but keep forgetting to grow them. The website I checked to see if clover was poisonous said it was not, so I gave him some.

I did call an emergency 24 hour vet clinic this afternoon and they had no knowledge of whether it was poisonous or not in fact she told me the doctor checked online and he said that it is more dangerous to pregnant cats (!) . The tech told me to try taking away his food until this evening sometime and give his stomach a chance to settle before letting him try eating again. It has now been about 13 hours since he last threw up and he is acting much improved. He is no longer hiding and when I got home this evening he was there at the door to greet me as usual. He is poking around the house and making his round and was at one point sitting on his favorite chair. I offered him some food and he sniffed at it but didn't eat. I guess I will just have to trust him to know when he is ready to eat again. As for giving my cat green things to eat you can be sure I will be careful to check numerous websites from now on!
post #6 of 12
Cat grass ( which is even usually okay for wheat , barley and rye allergic cats) and catnip should be the Only greens accessable or given to kitty...
post #7 of 12
Thread Starter 
Most of the prominent lists of toxic plants do not even list any form of clover as toxic. It says it can be to livestock, but cats hardly qualify for that! I am usually extremely careful what I let my cats eat and don't know what made me give him that. I guess we have had numerous small animals over the years and they all ate clover safely. Lesson learned. Just glad it didn't kill my kitty.
post #8 of 12
Thread Starter

This is the place where it says red clover is toxic.
post #9 of 12
Originally Posted by Jmiah22 View Post
Most of the prominent lists of toxic plants do not even list any form of clover as toxic. It says it can be to livestock, but cats hardly qualify for that!
If a plant is listed as toxic to livestock it doesn't mean that it's ok for other animals to eat it. The same toxins affect most animals except for the few that evolved to eat certain plants that others can't.

Some of the confusion about red clover may be because there's three different clovers that get called red clover, and seven varies of the t. pratense itself.

This refers to livestock, since they're the animals that usually eat it, but it still counts. If the type you fed was a type of t. pratense it could very well cause vomiting and diarrhea.
Since I'm going to guess you gave a fairly significant amount to your cat, you should take your cat to the vet tomorrow as this could potentially be serious.
post #10 of 12
Thread Starter 
No he did not eat a large quantity. I picked one sprig with about three sets of three leaves. So about 9 leaves all together that he ate the first time. The second time he had even less. He appears to be pretty much back to normal, I have offered him food but he doesn't want to eat yet. I have been in contact with the vet and they told me to just with-hold food for part of a day and see if the vomiting stops, which it has. It has now been around 15 hours since he last vomited. He has been drinking and keeping that down and he has used the litter box. He is no longer hiding but out and about. I would guess he will probably try eating something by morning.
post #11 of 12
If your cat has been 15 hours and not eaten and still won't eat food when you offer it, something is seriously wrong. You are going to need help from a vet. I urge you take the cat. Ask the vet about a payment plan. Most doctors will work with you. Don't play around with the life of your cat.
post #12 of 12
Thread Starter 
No you misread what I said. It had been 15 hours since he last threw up. He is fine now he has been eating and hasn't thrown up for more than 24 hours now. The vets advice was to take away his food for part of a day and let his stomach settle.
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