When your cat has digestive issues, no one wins. Your cat is uncomfortable, you are frustrated, and your rug is trashed. So, what can you do?
First, let’s talk about the most common sign of digestive problems in cats: vomiting. This can be caused by eating something they shouldn’t (like a houseplant), eating too quickly, and ingesting excess hair while grooming, which forms hairballs. Other signs of digestive health problems are diarrhea, constipation, weight loss and lack of appetite.
If your cat suffers from any of these digestion issues, you should first call your veterinarian, as excessive vomiting, weight loss, lethargy and so on can be signs of more serious concerns. After your veterinarian has determined that your cat is otherwise healthy, you can talk to them about a plan of action. There are ways to help alleviate their distress at home with the right nutrition and a few simple changes. For example:
- Take stock of your current cat’s diet. Have they tried a new food recently? If so, how did you transition or introduce them to the new food? Could something in their food or treats be upsetting their stomach? Look at ingredient labels. Your cat could be sensitive, or even allergic, to something on the list.
- Reduce toxic temptations. Could your cat be getting into something they shouldn’t? Keep houseplants and other enticing foreign objects away from your cat as much as possible.
- Consider a special diet. Try introducing foods designed to aid digestion. New Tiki Cat® Special™ Fussy is a silky smooth, complete and balanced meal made to support digestive health in adult cats. You can also add Tiki Cat® Tummy Topper as a delicious meal topper, or serve it separately as a treat. Read more about the three tummy-rific ingredients in these products.
- Amp up the flavor. If your cat is acting finicky toward food, try switching to a wet food that smells and tastes irresistible. Because cats are carnivores, they will be drawn to foods with high animal protein content. When formulating Tiki Cat Special™ Fussy, we chose duck liver because it’s an enticing, flavor-packed protein that’s rich in nutrients.
- Switch slowly. Introducing a new food too quickly can cause an upset stomach. When transitioning to a new food, it’s best to switch slowly. Over the course of 7-10 days, gradually give less of the old food and more of the new food each day.
- Slow down their meals. Is your cat eating too quickly and vomiting it back up? While we admire their enthusiasm for food, speed-eating is not a healthy sport. Slow them down by making the meal take longer. Try spreading the meal out on a tray. Or, place small amounts in multiple bowls around the room, and allow them to use their natural instincts to “hunt” for their food.
- Groom your cat regularly. This helps to remove the loose hair they often ingest while grooming, which can help prevent hairballs.
Fussy cats are not happy cats, and unhappy cats mean unhappy homes. We hope that with your vet’s guidance, our advice, the right nutrition, and a little time, you will have a your contented cat back, and a little more peace in your home.