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Two important health questions

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Question number 1;

How often do cats throw up? Do they do it a couple of times a week?

Someone once told me that it is normal for a cat to throw up a couple times a week.

One of my cats Max throws up about 1-3 times a week. There is no pattern to it whatsoever. We have switched his food MANY times in the past and Science Diet (regular adult) chicken flavor is the only one that he throws up the least with. He won't eat any treats or anything but dry food chicken flavored science diet. I have even given him Science Diet in other flavors and he won't eat it.

I was just wondering if his throwing up is normal or if I should get him checked out? He is 1.5 yrs old. I figured if it was a food allergy he would throw it up more often...?

Question #2;

Also, I like to give my cats hairball treats once a week because every couple of months they get a hairball if I don't. However Max won't eat them and I can't force it down his throat or he'll just throw it up of course. So is there another alternative? What do you guys do for hairballs?

post #2 of 13
Is your cat vomiting up hairballs or FOOD???

Sometimes cats will eat too much, then gorge themselves with water, and then BLECK it all comes back up cuz their tummies cannot handle it all!

If your cat is puking up food, then there is a problem. I'd talk to your vet.

I come home to find a hairball a day it seems. (altho I have 6 cats so that's just about right)

One of my six has a MAJOR hairball problem; is your cat long-haired? Snickers is (as my neighbor Ginger calls him) "the black shag carpet". He a furry boy! Anyways, I give him Laxatone --- you can find it at PetSmart or your vet's office --- and he just LOVES it. He takes it right from the tube. Vet told me that if he didn't like it, you can just rub a glob of it INTO the top of their paw (so your cat won't shake it off all over the place).. the glob will bug him and he WILL lick it all off. Anyway the Laxatone has been working for Snickers; he still vomits up the hairballs, however, instead of debilitating him, they come up all gelled and come out easier.

Also, do you brush your cats? DAILY? I do! I have a Zoom Groom (from PetSmart) and I just bought those grooming gloves (again... PetSmart... $3) and all the cats just looooove the Zoom Groom. Removing excess fur will help to bring the hairballs under control.

I'd get Max to the Vet if I were you, if you haven't already, just to rule out any stomach infections. Zorro once almost died because he had an intestinal blockage (it was a furball that he later passed), and he was vomiting A LOT. Cats can dehydrate very quickly.
post #3 of 13
Twice a week is NOT normal. I've had my cats since last fall. I've had only two vomitting incidents. The first one was due to the cat having tapeworms. That was fixed. The next time it was due to him eating too fast. That was fixed, too.

What are you using for hairball remedy? It's my cats' very favorite treat.
post #4 of 13
sometimes i think that my kitty is throwing up but he is actually throwing up furballs, which also contain my hair
post #5 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thank you all so much for the responses.

I don't know how to tell whether or not he is throwing up a hairball. Will it be very obvious? The vomit does look like the color of his food and sometimes there is food in it.

Toby LOVES the hairball treats and will eat a whole bag a day if you let him but we've tried a few different kinds of hairball treats with Max and he won't eat any. We usually hand out the hairball treats every couple of days, about three of them at a time. I will definitly try to give him laxatone.

I guess it's going to be inevitable that he'll be going to the vet to get his tummy looked at...
post #6 of 13
A hairball should be pretty obvious. Anything else is vomit.
post #7 of 13
Originally Posted by coaster
A hairball should be pretty obvious. Anything else is vomit.
My Kandies hairballs have food and a bit of hair... I was so dumb I had to take a sample to the vet...

NO it is not normal to vomit 2-3 times a week... My kidney girl only does once every three weeks ish...My Zoey only throws up grass from outside..( only three times in a month or so)
post #8 of 13
Try feeding smaller amounts, and keep the water dish away from the food dish. In the same room, just not right by each other. Also elevate the food bowl and give your kitty some canned pumpkin (uncooked) to help move the food through her system. You say you are switching foods on her- that will make her throw up as well if you are not introducing the new food slowly and gradually. I would get her to the vet to be sure she is okay though- because vomiting that much she is losing fluids and could become dehydrated, and that is dangerous.
post #9 of 13
I use Vaseline for my hairball treatments...i put a glob on their feeties every week and they lick it off. so far so good we havent hair a hair ball in a long while.
post #10 of 13
Thread Starter 
Okay, I have now seperated the water and food (just so they aren't right beside eachother) and I elevated both. I am also giving him less amount of food.

I also haven't switched their food for over 6months and I was sure to introduce it slowly last time so I don't think that's the problem.

He doesn't eat or drink that much to begin with. I have been looking at his gums and pinching his neck a couple times a day to check for dehydration and all looks okay so far.

I just don't feel right about this whole thing so I am going to have to set up a vet appointment, at least for a peace of mind.

Who knows, maybe it is a food allergy after all...

Thank you guys for all your kindness. It's great to be able to go somewhere to give your advice and to get advice from people who are so caring.

post #11 of 13
Please let us know what you find out.
post #12 of 13
Thread Starter 

I scheduled a vet visit, I really didn't have the money for it though. I had two weeks until they could get Max in.

In the meantime I started brushing him and his brother every day. Amazingly no throwing up for a whole week! And then after two weeks (a day before the vets) since he still hadn't thrown up I decided to cancel the VET and just see if he continues to do well.

I started only brushing the cats every other day and still Max didn't throw up. I notice now that he is eating a lot better and he has actually gained weight. He seems happier.

I think that was the problem. I would still like to try some hairball treatments for him, but in the meantime I am just going to keep brushing him a lot. They love to be brushed, they get so excited that they run in circles and purr like crazy.

I have also been vaccuming every day, the carpets, their tree house and their beds. That seems to help too.

Thank you all for your help and encouragement!

post #13 of 13
Good to hear it!!
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