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    Gastroenteritis In Cats

    Gastroenteritis In Cats

    by Health / 3 min read


    Published: May 19, 2023

    Summary: Cat gastroenteritis is a condition in cats that causes the gastrointestinal tract to become inflamed. In this blog, we’ll learn about gastroenteritis in cats, the causes, treatment, and recovery time... 


    Cat Gastroenteritis  

    Gastroenteritis is when the gastrointestinal tract (the intestines and stomach) becomes irritated and inflamed.  

    Signs of gastroenteritis in cats can include: 

    • Vomiting (which may be bile-like and foamy) 
    • Large volumes of loose stools 
    • Dry heaving 
    • Gagging 
    • Tender abdomen 
    • Lethargy 
    • Lack of interest in food 
    • Raised temperature 

    If vomiting continues for over 24 hours, there is also a higher risk of dehydration. If you spot these signs in your cat, they should be taken to see their vet.  

    a predominantly white cat with a tabby head, snoozes with their right arm reached out on a brown cushion on the back of a creamy beige couch


    What Causes Gastroenteritis in Cats? 

    Causes of cat gastroenteritis can include, but aren’t limited to: 

    • Food sensitivities 
    • Bacterial, fungal, or viral infections 
    • Parasitic infection (e.g., worms) 
    • Swallowing something they shouldn’t (like string!) 
    • Hyperthyroidism  
    • Intestinal blockages (e.g., growths) 
    • Diabetes 
    • Ingesting toxins 
    • Sensitivity to certain medicines 
    • Other underlying conditions 

    Treatment will depend on the cause of the gastroenteritis, which can be determined by your vet. If it’s a virus, rehydration will help your cat feel better but you will unfortunately just have to wait for the virus to work its course. Your vet can also administer anti-sickness shots to help stop your cat from vomiting.  

    Recovery Time 

    Most cats will recover from viral gastroenteritis within 48 hours after being administered anti-sickness shots and being rehydrated. However, if symptoms persist, they should be re-evaluated by the vet.  

    If the underlying cause is a blockage, growth, parasitic infection, or other underlying cause it may take a longer time to recover depending on what medical support they need to remove the underlying cause.  

    While your cat recovers, your vet may recommend feeding your cat only very small, bland meals of cooked chicken and boiled white rice - which may be more comfortable for their gastrointestinal tract – for a few days. 


    Author Hunter, Tammy DVM, and Ward, Ernest DVM “Gastroenteritis in Cats” VCA Hospitals  

    “Gastroenteritis in Cats” Wag!  

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    The information contained within this site is not intended as a substitute for professional medical or veterinary advice. PetLab Co. is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. If your pet has, or you suspect your pet has any medical condition, you are urged to consult your veterinarian. Medical conditions can only be diagnosed by a licensed veterinarian. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Results May Vary. Not intended for human consumption. Please consult your veterinarian regarding any change in treatment or supplementation.
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