Why has my cat stopped eating?

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Cats can be moody and hard to read but one thing is for sure they love food & their treats. So, when cats stop eating, there is clearly something wrong. Cats stop eating for various reasons. They could be in pain, they might not like the food bowl or where the food is placed.

We recommend you observe your cat’s appetite. If they stopped eating suddenly or it gradually declined over time. If your cat’s gone without eating for more than a day, it’s time to visit the vet.

Why is my cat not eating?

Health Problems

When cats are in pain or discomfort they stop eating. Respiratory diseases can cause loss of appetite as they are in pain and have trouble breathing. Their appetite may decrease when they find it hard to digest food. Digestive system issues in cats are quite common. This can include Acid reflux, intestinal bacteria, bowel diseases and other health problems.

Eating Foreign Objects

Cats love licking & biting into things they shouldn’t. My kitty loves hair ties and knows she isn’t supposed to eat it. When she finds one, she quietly goes to a corner and starts chomping on it. When we notice and walk towards her to get it out of her mouth, she chomps it even faster. Foreign objects are dangerous and can hurt your cat. They get stuck in their stomach or intestine and creates a blockage. This blockage does not allow food to pass, causing your cat to either vomit or stop eating completely.

Dental Problems

Dental problems can be difficult to spot in a cat. Your cat may not have a loss of appetite but may be suffering from dental problems which cause pain and discomfort when they eat. Painful teeth and gums are mainly caused by inflamed gums, Gingivitis, Periodontitis, tooth resorption, dental abscesses. Here are some steps to check your kitty’s dental health at home(link)

Food Problems

Cats are moody & picky eaters. Mine is very vocal about what food she likes and dislikes.

Some cats that have been eating the same food for a long time may suddenly dislike it. The reason could be unknown to us but a slight difference in their food can put them off completely.  When my friend’s cat Mr.Pirate suddenly stopped eating his favourite food, they noticed that the manufacturer had made a few changes in the ingredients. They tried a few different brands and Mr.Pirate has found his new favourite. A slight change may not be noticeable to us but can make a big difference to your fur ball.

Hepatic Lipidosis

What is hepatic lipidosis?

Hepatic Lipidosis is a liver disease developed in cats, it is also known as fatty liver disease.

Cats don’t have the ability to store or convert large amount of fats. This can cause fat to sneak into their liver. This disease affects cats that are obese and have not eaten for a few days. It can cause your cat serious damage and even death. If your cat stops eating for more than a day, it is better to get an opinion from your vet in order to get your cat eating again and to stop the disease from developing.

How long can cats go without food & water?

Cats can survive no longer than 3 days without both food and water. Add an additional day if they are drinking water.

How to get your cat to start eating food & What is the best appetite stimulant for cats?

  • Food Brand – Try a different brand or flavour. Your cat may seem to like a different flavour or may have developed a liking to a different flavour.
  • Food Temperature – Heating up food increases smell and tastes better. The smell could encourage your cat to eat.
  • Clean Bowls & location- Make sure you clean your cat’s dishes well. Try a different bowl or placing the food at a different location.
  • Different Food – Give them something they have not tried before. Try adding the water of a canned fish like tuna to their food. You can also use safe chicken broth instead of tuna.
  • Parmesan Cheese – Cheese isn’t good for your kitty but when your cat just won’t eat, you can try a small amount. Sprinkle some of it on top of the food and see if it interests your kitty.
  • Games – Use toys and games with their favourite treat in them. Make them hunt and run for it. This should help them stimulate their mind and dig in to their natural instincts – To hunt & eat.

Kitty Notes

There could be many reasons for your cat to stop eating. It is important for cat parents to pay attention to their kitty’s dietary habits. This will not only help your cat lead a quality life but can also alert you earlier if something is wrong. If all attempts fail, visit your vet & keep those paws moving.

Thanks for sharing. You're pawsome!

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