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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 27336
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 44 years of experience.
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I have a spay female cat, 5 years, who vomits all the time.

Customer Question

I have a spay female cat, 5 years, who vomits all the time. She is healthy otherwise, no fever, no weight loss, no lethargy, just a puker. I have tried gluten free, grain free, but no change. She had vestibular syndrome about 8 months ago, but I see no sequela from that. Help.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 1 year ago.

Chronic vomiters are most often diagnosed with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) +/- chronic pancreatitis. It's reasonable to see how a hypoallergenic diet affects her but you're likely to need either a glucocorticosteroid such as prednisolone or the antiinflammatory antibiotic metronidazole for best control of IBD. If there's a food intolerance/allergy present it's best addressed with prescription hypoallergenic diets. These special foods contain just one novel (rabbit, duck, e.g.) animal protein or proteins that have been chemically altered (hydrolyzed) to the point that her immune system doesn't "see" anything to be allergic to. The over the counter hypoallergenic foods too often contain proteins not listed on the label - soy is a common one - and these proteins would confound our evaluation of the efficacy of the hypoallergenic diet. The prescription foods are available from her vet. There are many novel protein foods and a prototypical hydrolyzed protein food is Hill’s Prescription Diet z/d ultra (a hydrolyzed protein diet is my preference). A positive response is usually seen within a few weeks if we’ve eliminated the offending food allergen. Food intolerance can arise at any age and even after our patient has been eating the same food for quite some time. Please note that a gluten/grain free diet isn't necessarily hypoallergenic for her. The most common of the offending food allergens are beef, chicken, corn, wheat, eggs, rice, and soy.

Her vet will want to take a look at her and perform diagnostics in the form of blood and urine tests. The specFPL blood test - the most sensitive for detecting the presence of pancreatitis - should be included in her testing. Scoping and biopsy of her GI tract should be confirmatory if IBD were present but most of us will presumptively treat for IBD initially and reserve scoping and biopsy for patients who don't respond to such treatment.

Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Okay. Thanks for the info. I appreciate it.
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 1 year ago.

It's my pleasure. I can't set a follow-up in this venue so please return to our conversation - even after rating - with an update at your convenience.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you.
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 1 year ago.

You're welcome. No need to reply at this time.