- 1 How much a cat can not eat, why fasting is dangerous
- 2 1. Psychological Issues
- 3 2. Medical Issues
- 4 What if the cat stops eating?
- 4.1 1. Don’t Let Your Cat Starve
- 4.2 2. Change the Range And Type of Food
- 4.3 3. Try to feed at different times during the day
- 4.4 4. Make Sure The Food Is In Good Condition
- 4.5 5. Make It Comfortable
- 4.6 6. Add Something Delicious On Top Of The Food
- 4.7 7. Consider the Temperature of the Food
- 4.8 8. Feed Him With Your Hands
- 4.9 10. Maintain the Limit
- 4.10 11. Remove Medicines From Food
- 4.11 12. Try Products from Different Manufacturers
- 4.12 13. Use Treats Or Supplements
- 4.13 14. Give Some Food
- 4.14 15. Massage for your cat
- 4.15 16. Cat Grooming
- 5 How to prevent loss of appetite in cats?
- 6 When your vet visit?
- 7 Things to Remember
- 8 Final Words
You were worried that the cat not eating much but acting normal, goes about daily activities without any fatigue, as if everything is in order.
Most cats could eat throughout the day if they fed continuously. Cats love to eat, and they never get tired of it. However, you may encounter a situation where your cat is no longer hungry. It usually happens with sick cats; they don’t eat when they are not in good physical shape.
I also experienced the situation with my cat. It was confusing at first, but later I figured out the reason and found ways to deal with the situation.
If you are worried about this sudden change in your cat, you’ve come to the right place. I will explain why it happens if there is any risk involved and how to get the cat to eat.
How much a cat can not eat, why fasting is dangerous
A good appetite is always considered an indicator of health, so many owners start to sound the alarm when their beloved pet eats poorly or refuses to eat at all.
But the refusal to eat is not always a sign of illness or behavior disorders. Sometimes it is a normal condition. It would help if you learned to understand why the cat is not eating to provide the cat’s right help when needed.
A healthy adult cat can starve without health problems for up to 5 days, an aging animal – no more than three days, a kitten – a maximum of a day, an animal with a chronic disease – no more than two days.
These are approximate terms, taking into account the fact that the animal drinks these days enough. Prolonged fasting or fasting while refusing to drink is life-threatening for your pet.
A kitten under the age of 6 months can die within a day after fasting, so if the kitten does not eat, it must be force-fed. In addition to the danger of death, refusing to eat can provoke the following health problems:
- severe weight loss;
- exacerbation of any chronic diseases;
When your pet cat not eating much but acting normal for 24 hours, no matter what you give, in most cases, this condition is called loss of appetite. In medical terminology, this condition is called anorexia.
Like us, cats lose their appetite from time to time. It can happen for no reason at all. What are the causes of loss of appetite? Although the condition appears to be a disease, in many cases, it is a non-medical problem.
However, there are both medical and psychological reasons why cats do not eat.
1. Psychological Issues
Problems arise with sudden changes in the daily routine, habits, and activities of the cat.
⇒ Introducing new foods
New cat food is stress in itself. Cats are very picky about their food and are sensitive to any changes in their diet. It does not mean that the cat will eat whatever you are trying to feed. When you want to change your cat eating habits to a new meal or make any regular cat food changes, it becomes evident that it’s not eating.
The pet does not understand that the new food is of better quality and cannot appreciate the owner’s efforts. The cat is used to certain foods.
If someone from birth regularly feeds a cat with dry food and suddenly wants the cat to eat wet food, this will not work. The cat is unlikely to recognize anything other than dry food. Likewise, if a kitten does not eat mice, later, it will not perceive the mouse as food when it becomes an adult.
To train your cat to a new diet, try mixing a small amount of fresh cat food with the old one. You can gradually increase the amount if the cat finds it attractive.
Monitor the condition of the animal. If the cat looks healthy and drinks enough water, then you should not worry too much.
⇒ New environment or home
Cats’ appetite also changes due to sudden changes in the environment. If your cat does not eat after you move into a new home or a new person has moved, or if someone visits you frequently, all of these changes may be why the cat is not eating.
Adding new furniture or changing interior decoration also affects cats’ appetites. Even if you make any changes to the meal schedule, your cat may lose interest in food during this new time.
Cats are not less stressed, and perhaps even more, people. Felines experience stress for several reasons. Sudden changes in daily activities, schedules, environment, sources of fear, new or bad experiences, a new pet, new baby, your absence, restricted freedom, illness, inactivity, and many other problems can cause stress in cats.
Even the arrival of guests or a quarrel between family members can affect the cat’s well-being. Stress affects cats in both ways; it can increase or decrease appetite. You will be surprised to learn that even when you, as the owner, get sick, it also affects your cat.
It happened to me several times. During stress, the cat is not active. She has an apathetic mood. She does not want to play with the owner; she eats poorly or completely refuses to eat.
In such a situation, you do not need to force the animal to eat. Refusing to eat for a couple of days is the norm. In stressful situations, increased attention to the cat from family members, affectionate treatment, new toys help. In severe cases, a consultation with a veterinarian is necessary to prescribe sedatives to the animal.
But, be careful: the beginning of the disease can be the cause of stress.
⇒ Medicine in the bowl
When it comes to deworming your cat, mixing the medication with food is the best way to feed it. After all, cats have a super-powerful sense of smell, and they always check it before eating.
If he smells the medicine in his food, your cat will refuse to eat. And, if you need to give your cat pills every day, consider giving her a treat. There are treats especially for this. Do not mix medications with your cat’s regular and main diet.
⇒ Incorrect food bowl position
The location of the bowl matters too. It happens most often if the owner has more than one kosher or other pets. The cat has to go through the places where the other cat stops and mocks the first one.
Likewise, when the first cat comes up to the bowl, the other looks at her aggressively. It makes the cat go for cat food later. When the bowl is near another pet, which the cat is afraid of, she chooses not to go near the bowl.
If you place the bowl next to objects such as a vacuum cleaner or washing machine that make scary noises, the fluffy lump will rarely get there when you eat.
Thus, there should be no sources of fear in the place where the bowl can reach, and there should also be no other cats or pets that could intimidate her. Place the bowl in a confined space or free feed in several places.
Also, make sure the bowl is not near a toilet or water. It is because pets don’t eat where they want to.
⇒ Travel and unfamiliar environment/surroundings
Cats are very familiar creatures. When you force your cat to change its daily routine, it increases stress, which ultimately leads to a loss of appetite. When you take your cat with you and travel by car or plane, the journey will make your cat sick. It is another reason your cat refuses to eat.
⇒ Unsuitable food bowl
Cats don’t like it when someone touches their whiskers. When you feed your cat in a more bottomless bowl, the whiskers feel the edges. It can also cause stress and discomfort for the cat. Use a bowl of the right size, or consider serving dishes on plates.
⇒ Another pet
It often happens with cat owners. When someone brings a second cat into the house, the older cat may lose her food appetite. In many cases, when cats are afraid of other pets, such as dogs or older cats, it also affects their eating habits. This condition puts the cat under stress; thus, he refuses to eat for a certain period.
Your newborn baby could also be the cause. When you bring a baby into the house, your cat’s mood can change too. Also, if there is a new guest in the home and the cat doesn’t like him/her, it can change her mind to eat regularly.
⇒ Cats are stubborn
Like humans, cats are very picky about their food and sometimes refuse to eat for no real reason. When you serve food, if it is not pleasant, or the cat food is too cold/old/stale, or the bowl not washed, the cat will not eat.
In simple words, the animal is hot and does not want to eat. It happens in summer in hot weather or winter in apartments with centralized heating. Your pet is lethargic, lies all the time, does not want to do anything, does not eat well, but drinks a lot.
In case of unbearable heat, the cat may not eat from days to three, and in between, eat in small portions. It’s normal because the more the cat eats, the more heat it will generate as it digests its food, and it will be more difficult for it to cope with the heat.
The owner shouldn’t be worried. The main thing is that the cat always has enough freshwater.
2. Medical Issues
Specific health problems also contribute to loss of appetite in cats. However, not all cats that do not eat for several days suffering from the disease.
√ Dental diseases
One of the most common reasons cats refuse to eat is due to dental problems. If a cat’s mouth is infected or has an inflammatory condition, the cat will feel pain when chewing food, which prevents it from getting close to the food.
Toothache, gum disease, trauma to the mouth, abscess, etc., are the most commonly associated dental diseases with loss of appetite.
√ Diseases of the gastrointestinal tract
When your cat suffers from gastrointestinal problems, she will not feel well during or after eating; this reduces the cats’ interest in food. Responsible for these problems can be:
- Foreign bodies in the stomach
- Bowel changes
Your cat will have diarrhea, vomiting, constipation, and will also lose significant weight. A proper diet cannot solve the problem. You should consult a veterinarian for further diagnosis and treatment. Only then will a balanced diet help make life easier.
√ Kidney disease
Older cats often suffer from kidney disease. As with the gastrointestinal tract, kidney problems also cause nausea in cats. They don’t eat, no treats, no desserts, or anything else you try.
If an older cat hasn’t eaten for several days, it’s probably due to the kidneys. It is a fatal condition, and the vet should start the correct treatment as soon as possible.
√ Recent vaccinations
While vaccines are a lifesaving treatment for animals, they also cause some problems. One of the common side effects of vaccination is the animal’s refusal to eat; this is due to an adverse reaction.
If your cat loses its appetite, there is no cause for concern. Your pet will be back on track in a day or two.
√ Digestive problems
When the digestive system cannot function properly or any part of it malfunctions, the cat becomes ill, which leads to a refusal to eat. Particles of foreign bodies in the stomach, inflammation, tumors, gastrointestinal tract, etc., are the most common causes of digestive problems.
√ Cleansing the immune system
Certain diseases, infections, and inflammations make the immune system common for cleansing the body. When this happens, the cat develops diarrhea and vomiting, accompanied by loss of appetite.
When we are sick, the same thing happens to us; we do not like the food, no matter what is served.
What if the cat stops eating?
If your pet cat is not eating due to some psychological problem, try a few helpful things:
1. Don’t Let Your Cat Starve
If the cat is not eating, make sure the cat is not starving. First, don’t even allow it. Cats that do not eat for more than two days have a high chance of severely damaging their internal organs. Switch to the previous menu if it doesn’t fit the newer one. Introduce fresh food gradually.
2. Change the Range And Type of Food
If you need to feed your cat one specific nutritious food, and she does not feel interested in it, consider buying a wet version of that food.
If the cat is undergoing treatment, it would be best to notice how it reacts to this food. You can easily show it to your veterinarian later. Your doctor may advise you to prepare meals at home by giving you instructions on ingredients and portions.
3. Try to feed at different times during the day
If your cat likes wet or dry food and suddenly stops eating, consider giving food at different times. Cats sometimes do not eat due to the time factor. Pay attention when your fluffy lump is eating. They usually eat at the same time, so stay on track and stick to the same regimen.
4. Make Sure The Food Is In Good Condition
Before serving food, make sure it has not expired. Some canned food builds up mold, and your cat won’t even get close to it. Also, they don’t like new diets. If you are using a container, keep it closed at all times to keep food clean.
5. Make It Comfortable
In a place where a cat regularly eats, there should be nothing that she is afraid of. Also, make sure the bowl is clean and does not come close to the litter box. When you follow these simple rules, the feline will feel comfortable, which will help it get used to food again.
6. Add Something Delicious On Top Of The Food
What food does your cat fall on each time? It can be flavored grated cheese or small pieces of meat. Add them to the menu and serve in front of the cat. You can try some tuna cat food supplements and sprinkle some on the food. The food will appear more attractive to the cat.
7. Consider the Temperature of the Food
If the cat is drinking water but not eating, the food’s temperature may be the problem. Make sure the food is warm. A cat who is used to eating friendly, wet food will not show any interest in cold food.
When food is warm and hot, the smell spreads quickly, and the cat smells even better. Cats love foods with a healthier, more pleasant scent. Thus, even if you serve something that she likes but cold, the cat will not want to eat it.
If you take canned food out of the fridge, try pouring boiling water over it, so it doesn’t smell. You can also heat a little; make sure you don’t make soup with it. For cats, food with an average body temperature is favorable.
You can avoid this temperature problem if you notice that your cat is lying around you while feeding. Also, remember to check the bowl from time to time to see if it has started eating or not.
8. Feed Him With Your Hands
If your kitten refuses to eat, then everything is in your hands. Take a tiny serving of food and provide it with your hands. In the same way, you need to do the same with adult and older cats. If your cat wants your attention and is not eating for that reason, this trick works like a charm and can help improve the relationship.
Cats are known for being stubborn and fastidious; So don’t worry if your cat stops eating. Always choose the simplest solution to the problem and avoid headaches.
9. Try To Play With The Cat
Sometimes all your cat wants is your attention. As soon as you notice that the feline isn’t eating, take some time and play with it. Once the cat reacts to this, continue to play with it.
When the cat gets tired, she leaves and goes to the food, and if not, then brings a bowl to her; if nothing changes, give him a small serving from your hand.
10. Maintain the Limit
Just like humans, the metabolism of each cat is different. You might think that the cat hasn’t eaten enough, but it has reached its limit. Just because a cat doesn’t get fluffier and larger doesn’t mean that it needs to be overheated. It would help if you defined the boundary correctly.
Some owners complain about their cats’ limited appetite. But in reality, their cats eat enough food according to their abilities and needs.
11. Remove Medicines From Food
Since cats have a strong sense of smell, they can smell the medicine you hide in food. It could be the reason that your cat is drinking a lot of water but not eating. In this case, serve food without hiding any medicine in it. Ask your vet for another medication or try different feeding methods.
12. Try Products from Different Manufacturers
If you want your cat to get used to food from other manufacturers:
- Buy a small portion first and see if the cat likes it or not.
- Give a small piece first.
- If the cat likes it, increase the amount over time.
This way, you can save money and avoid wasting food. It’s a way to approach your cat when you need to introduce various foods into its diet. If your cat stops eating wet food, consider adding dry food and vice versa.
13. Use Treats Or Supplements
Cats love treats. Some brands make treats just for this purpose. And. Regardless of whether your cat has stopped eating dry or wet food, try feeding her. You can try both dry and wet treats. Dry mostly works, but don’t try if your cat doesn’t like dry food. If the cat is acting a little finicky, she will fall in love with the treat.
In terms of supplements, you need to ask your vet what medications you intend to give. Your veterinarian may also recommend certain foods for supplementation.
These medicines will provide the body with the nutrients it needs to keep it healthy and reduce the damage from nutritional deficiencies.
14. Give Some Food
There are some foods in your diet that will always interest your cat. If so, you can try giving food or mixing it with cat food. And, if it clicks, gradually increase the amount of cat food. We must feed our cats with highly nutritious foods to keep them healthy.
15. Massage for your cat
Many people complain that “my cat is lethargic and does not eat.” Cats lose their appetite for food with lethargy. So, if you have a lazy cat, give it a massage. It will improve blood circulation and make your pet hungry.
If the cat has recently recovered from any illness and still moping most of the time, it’s a way to re-stimulate the appetite.
16. Cat Grooming
Cats that have lost their appetite do not want to groom themselves. Here, too, you can help the poor fellow. Pay attention to your cat by trimming your nail, brushing your hair, and cleaning your ears. All this stimulation will probably make him starve again.
How to prevent loss of appetite in cats?
The reasons cats stop eating are usually due to some activity or activity, as long as there are no health problems associated with it. Therefore, preventing the causes in the first place can prevent the cat from eating less.
Keep in mind that the following precautions will do little to combat loss of appetite and undoubtedly lessen the psychological problems associated with low eating. If you want to change your cat’s diet, take your time and do it gradually, mixing it with everyday foods. Such products as canned tuna or liver can be the best appetite stimulants and you can try one of them.
If medically indicated, administer drugs with food exclusion tests. As soon as you notice vomiting or loss of appetite, return to your previous/original diet as quickly as possible.
Take appropriate measures to reduce the stress level of your cat so that it feels safer. If you are moving to another location or someone needs to come home, use pheromone as it helps to some extent. Provide a safe and closed place for your cat. If you notice that your cat is eating less or not eating at all, serve food in a confined space.
It mostly happens with new kittens. If you notice that your kitten is eating little or not eating at all, it is likely that the kitten is under stress and needs some privacy. It’s the same with the new cat – the pet doesn’t eat either.
Regular check-ups can reveal any dental problems in cats, which is the most common reason a cat does not eat food. Vaccines annually to protect your pet from diseases that can cause loss of appetite.
When your vet visit?
If your cat does not eat all day but drinks water, this will not be a big problem. However, if the cat is on the 2nd day without eating anything, this is when you need to worry. If you find that your cat is vomiting white foam and is not eating, you should visit your vet as soon as possible.
As with kittens, if it’s more than one day old, you need to see your vet. If the kitten vomits and does not eat, he needs urgent help, which the veterinarian will recommend.
After two days, something is wrong with your feline health. Please don’t consider it a psychological problem anymore. Your pet may feel hungry and approach food, but for some reason, it gives up and turns away from food.
In these cases, it is necessary to undergo a clinical examination. The veterinarian will ask for your supervision at home; therefore, it would be useful to note this respect. The cat may also need to undergo blood, urine, ultrasound, and X-ray tests to determine the problem.
Things to Remember
If the cat does not eat during the day but drinks water, it will be well hydrated. He can live for several days, but you should not rely on water and mess around in this situation.
If everything is in order with your health, your fluffy lump will begin to eat as soon as time. However, cats that do not eat or drink within 24 hours are more likely to develop liver lipidosis problems that require immediate hospitalization.
When you walk with your cat, make sure that it does not consume foreign bodies such as plastics, cloth, etc .; these are foods that cats should not eat. If you are traveling, make sure you have foods familiar to your cat.
Lack of appetite can be associated with psychological or medical problems. Our beloved pet does not eat much but behaves normally, mainly due to some psychological factors.
Try the things mentioned above to get your cat to eat. Creating a friendly and fear-free environment is critical to fighting this disease.
If you have tried all of the above suggestions and the cat still shows no increased appetite, it is a health problem. See your vet when the fast is over 24 hours.
The vet will take the record and do a physical exam to identify the problem and then prescribe medications and treatments to fight the di