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Cher, Feline Specialist
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 21261
Experience:  Feline Healthcare & Behavior Specialist 40+ years Experience
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One or possibly two of our cats ate some onions from a

Customer Question

One or possibly two of our cats ate some onions from a pizza. Is there anything we can give them to coat the stomach or induce vomiting?
Submitted: 8 months ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  CalCatDoc replied 8 months ago.

Hi! I'm CalCatDoc and I can help with your question.

Expert:  CalCatDoc replied 8 months ago.

While it's true that cats (and dogs) should not be fed garlic or onions,a one-time ingestion is unlikely to cause any problems.

Can you give me an idea of how much onion went missing? How many tablespoons?

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
I am trying to have you call me but the website is being a pain. It says update payment but it is taking me in a loop! There were sliced oniond in some cheese... Maybe 4 or 5 strips at most.
Customer: replied 8 months ago.
I keep clicking on the phone call option and the update payment option but NOTHING HAPPOENS!!!Are you there? Because I am going to move to another site
Expert:  CalCatDoc replied 8 months ago.

I really would not worry about that.

We don't like to see people make a habit of feeding garlic or onions to them because the sulfur compounds cause damage to the red blood cells, making them live shorter lives.

So we no longer see people giving garlic and brewers yeast tablets to control fleas (didn't work anyway). Ans pet food manufacturers no longer put garlic or onion powder in pet foods as flavor enhancers.

Expert:  CalCatDoc replied 8 months ago.

I will refer you to customer service about the payment problem but I can answer your question without the call.

Expert:  CalCatDoc replied 8 months ago.

So there is no need to induce vomiting or give your cats anything. Just don't let them make a habit of it.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
are you saying there is nothing to be concerned about? Everything online said horrifying things about red blood cells bursting.
Expert:  CalCatDoc replied 8 months ago.

I really would not worry with this one time event. People used to give their cats garlic all the time "for fleas" and all I ever saw from it was Heinz bodies in the red blood cells, which means they don't live their normal life span (the RBCs).

It's an issue with long-term or repeated exposure.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Well it was onions so never mind.
Expert:  CalCatDoc replied 8 months ago.

For decades nobody cared about it except me and I used to rant about pet foods with garlic/onions in them. Finally they got smart and stopped.

Now it's gone the other way and there is some unnecessary panic-mongering on the internet.

Expert:  CalCatDoc replied 8 months ago.

Garlic and onions are interchangeable with respect to this problem - they are closely related and have the same sulfur-containing compounds which is where the problem arises.

Expert:  CalCatDoc replied 8 months ago.


I just wanted to make sure you understood that the problem is the same for garlic AND onions.

Expert:  CalCatDoc replied 8 months ago.

I am going to opt out so that you can interact with someone else.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Expert:  Cher replied 8 months ago.

Hello, and welcome.

My name is ***** ***** I can help with your question.

The previous expert is correct, in that the amount of onion that was ingested should not cause a problem for your cats. However, the fact that the ingestion of onions in cats can cause anemia, it would be a good idea for you to have the cats seen in person by their vet, tomorrow, first thing, and ask if they should have a routine blood test, just to be sure. However, it might be too early to see any change in red blood cells at this time.

Inducing vomiting is not necessary, but you might expect to see an upset stomach, diarrhea, vomiting, since this is not something they have ever eaten before.

I would monitor them carefully tonight and if you see any unusual symptoms, bring them to the nearest ER vet center to be checked out. If they seem fine and are eating, drinking, eliminating, playing, etc., bring them to the vet tomorrow, just to be on the safe side.

I hope all will be well with both your cats!

Please be so kind as to rate my answer with positive feedback, as that is the only way I receive recognition from the website for my assistance. Thank you very much!

Providing a positive rating will not end our conversation, should you need me for any follow-up. Simply click 'Reply to Expert' for clarification or additional information, if needed.

Warmest regards,


Expert:  Cher replied 7 months ago.

Hi again,

This is Cher.

Just sending a quick follow-up to see how everything is going with your kitties. Did you find my answer helpful?