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Ask Dr. Heindel, D.V.M Your Own Question
Dr. Heindel, D.V.M
Dr. Heindel, D.V.M, Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 330
Experience:  13 yrs experience as small animal veterinarian, including 2 yrs at a cat-only clinic.
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Cat Veterinary

My cat is vomiting and it smells like poop. ( In fact we thought

is was diarea until I... Show More
is was diarea until I actually saw him vomit!) Usually it smells like the food he eats. He is not eating much and is losing a bit of weight.
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
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replied 6 years ago.

Dr. Heindel, D.V.M :

Hi, I'm Dr. Heindel. I'm going to try to assist you with your issue.

Dr. Heindel, D.V.M :

How long has the vomiting been going on? And did you recently change his food?

Dr. Heindel, D.V.M :

Is he drinking any water?

Dr. Heindel, D.V.M :

It's not uncommon for vomit to look and appear like fecal matter/diarrhea. Really, once food is digesting - it's "ingesta" and just a step away from becoming feces.

Dr. Heindel, D.V.M :

Is he keeping ANY food down? Is he urinating and defecating?

Customer :

He has been vomiting for a couple of months. Lots of hair in it as well. We have 4 cats and he kicks his sisters fur. So I originally thought that was the problem. Changing the food has not made any difference.

Customer :

But I have never smelled anything like this. My other cats have spit up and it isn't the same

Customer :

Eating a little bit and he his using the litter box.

Dr. Heindel, D.V.M :

Okay, the first, simplest step is to start him on a hairball remedy. Cat Lax, Laxatone, doesn't matter. It's essentially flavored vaseline. I'd give him a nickle size portion every day. It's possible that he's got a dynamic obstruction of hair. The hairball remedy can help.

Dr. Heindel, D.V.M :

Do the laxatone EVERY DAY for a week, then see if that doesn't help. If he won't eat it, you will need to smear it on the roof of his mouth.

Dr. Heindel, D.V.M :

I need to stress that normal, healthy cats vomit. So do sick cats. If your cat is acting sick in any other way, it's best to get a senior wellness exam - blood work, physical exam, etc.

Customer :

So that sounds good but I am still concerned about the smell. I actually thought his colon has ruptured and is leaking into his stomach! And that is why it smells!

Dr. Heindel, D.V.M :

Don't switch foods. Put him back on the food he seemed to do best on.

Dr. Heindel, D.V.M :

The smell would just suggest it's coming up from the duodenum - the proximal part of the small intestine. That's not TOO unusual.

Dr. Heindel, D.V.M :

Esp. if the hairball is in the small intestine!

Customer :

Ok I will try it. Thanks for your help!

Dr. Heindel, D.V.M :

If his colon had ruptured, it would leak into his abdomen. It would NOT come out his mouth with vomiting.

Dr. Heindel, D.V.M :

Reverse peristalsis occurs with enemas - we see that when we give a cat an enema. It doesn't apply here, but I know what you are talking about.

Dr. Heindel, D.V.M :

If you don't have Laxatone (tuna is best!) - use vaseline until you can get it. I'd start right away. Continue to monitor appetite, BM and urination.

Dr. Heindel, D.V.M :

Have I answered your question? Any further question for me?

Dr. Heindel, D.V.M :

If you are satisfied, please hit ACCEPT to close out the question. I want to stress that should you have further questions about this issue, you can still ask me, no additional fee, and I'll be happy to answer!!

Dr. Heindel, D.V.M :

Good luck with Gus!