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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 15664
Experience:  Small animal veterinarian with a special interest in cats, happy to discuss any questions you have.
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My cat has not been eating as she would normally. she seems

Customer Question

My cat has not been eating as she would normally. she seems to be liking her lips a lot!! what could this be???
Submitted: 4 months ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 4 months ago.

Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you with your wee one today.

How long has she had these signs?

Any retching, gagging, vomiting, or diarrhea?

Can she drink water normally?

Are her gums pink or pale/white? Moist or sticky?

If you press on her belly, does she have any discomfort, tenderness, or tensing?

Could she have eaten something she should not have (ie bones, toys, plants, chemicals, etc)?

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Seriously!!!! I want an answer!!!
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 4 months ago.

Hi again,

I have asked you a number of questions about Cinderella and have been awaiting a reply so that I can help you. Since you have not been able to answer the above questions, I will give you my thoughts based on the brief history you gave thus far.

Now as appetite loss and lip licking are signs of nausea in cats, we do have a few concerns. Common causes we need to consider include bacterial or viral gastroenteritis, pancreatitis, parasites/protozoa infections, general dietary indiscretions, and ingestion of harmful items (ie toxins, plants, non-edible items). As well, at her age organ disease, cancer, and metabolic issues would also be a concern.

With this all in mind, as long as she can keep water down, we can try some home supportive care to see if we can settle her stomach. To start, if she hasn’t just vomited (since otherwise we’d need to rest her stomach for a few hours first), then you can consider treating her with an antacid. Common pet safe OTC ones we can use include Pepcid (More Info/Dose @, or Tagamet (More Info/Dose Here @ Whichever you choose, we’d give this 20 minutes before offering food to allow absorption. Of course, do check with her vet before use if she has any known health issues or is on any medications you didn’t mention. As well, if you try this and find her nausea too severe to keep it down, then that is usually a red flag that we need her vet to bypass her mouth with injectable anti-vomiting medication.

Once that has had time to absorb and she is steadier on her stomach, you can consider starting her on a light/easily digestible diet. Start with a small volume (a spoonful). Examples you can use are cooked white rice with boiled chicken, boiled white fish, scrambled eggs, or meat baby food (as long as its garlic/onion free). When you offer that spoonful, give her 30 minutes to settle. If she keeps the food down, you can give a bit more and so on. As her stomach stabilizes, you can offer more. The aim of these diets is that they will be better tolerated/absorbed by the compromised gut. Therefore, it should get more nutrients in and result in less GI upset. As long as improvement is being seen, I usually advise that the diet be continued until her signs are settled, and that they are then slowly weaned back to their normal diet.

Overall, a wide range of agents could trigger the GI upset we are seeing. Therefore, in her case, we’d want to start supportive care to settle her stomach. If she cannot keep that or water down, appears dehydrated already, or doesn’t respond to the above within 12-24 hours; then we'd want to get her vet involved. They can assess her hydration, check a blood sample to rule out those age related issues, make sure there is nothing in her stomach that shouldn't be there or any sinister viruses present. Depending on their findings, her vet can treat her with injectable anti-vomiting medication, appetite stimulants, fluids, +/- antibiotics to settle her stomach, and get her back feeling like herself.

Please take care,

Dr. B.


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Expert:  Dr. B. replied 3 months ago.

Hello again,

How is everything going with your wee one?

Dr. B