Why Is Your Cat Throwing Up Yellow Liquid?

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A cat throwing up yellow liquid may occur because:

  • The cats' stomach is empty
  • The cat ate something that's not processing well in its system
  • The cat has a disease

A cat throwing up yellow liquid needn't cause alarm. The yellow liquid is usually just bile, stomach acids. Odds are high that the cat simply had an empty stomach when he threw up. Unless the cat is vomiting repeatedly and not keeping any water down or you suspect the cat ate or drank a poisonous substance, simply watch the cat for a day and see if the vomiting stops.

Typically, a cat digests a meal within eight hours. If a cat vomits after eating a meal, you'll generally find undigested cat food mixed with mucus. If the cat throws up yellow liquid, the cat's stomach is obviously empty and what you're seeing is bile.

Reasons for a Cat Throwing Up

There are dozens of reasons explaining a cat throwing up. Your pet may have wolfed his meal. There may be a hairball in the esophagus or stomach. The cat may have eaten something that's not agreeing with his system. Vomiting also occurs with a number of diseases, including cancer, liver disease, thyroid problems and heartworm.

When a cat vomits bile, it's generally because the cat's stomach is empty. The acidic stomach bile irritates the stomach lining leading to vomiting. It's more common in cats with set meal times. If your cat is throwing up bile, try feeding smaller meals four or five times a day or filling your cat's food dish every morning and allowing the cat to graze throughout the day.

For some cat owners, free feeding doesn't work. Their pet sits and empties the food dish in one sitting. Those who work find it impossible to be around to feed their pet throughout the day. If this is the case, there are timed feeding dishes that release a specified amount of food, canned or dry, at preset times. Programmable pet feeders work wonders for those with busy work schedules or who are out of the home for most of the day.

Holistic Remedies for Feline Stomach Discomfort

Should the cat simply have an upset stomach, many veterinarians recommend making a cup of strong peppermint tea, allowing it to cool and giving the cat an eye dropper full. Mint soothes the stomach helping to reduce any nausea.

Meat based baby foods can help cats that are simply feeling nauseous. Make sure the food is stage one, meaning there is nothing but the pureed meat. Avoid foods with added sodium or seasonings.

When to Seek Veterinary Care for a Cat Throwing Up

If you notice blood mixed with the yellow bile, call your vet. This is a sign of an underlying problem like a blockage, ulcers or tumors.

Call your veterinarian if your cat is projectile vomiting, vomiting persists for two days, the vomit smells and looks like fecal matter or if you haven't seen your cat drink any water. Dehydration is a risk with a cat that is throwing up regularly.

Finally, if the cat is showing any other symptoms, such as:

  • Breathing problems
  • Diarrhea
  • Fever
  • Lethargy
  • Stomach bloat
  • Weight loss

When you take your cat to the veterinary office, bring a sample of the vomit so that he can run tests. It will help him diagnose if a toxin or parasite is involved.


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