Food Allergies in Cats
Food allergies in cats can cause digestive issues with symptoms of diarrhea, flatulence, bloating and vomiting, poor hair coat and skin sensitivities. These symptoms do not necessarily mean your cat is intolerant to food, and it’s not that uncommon for cats to vomit, yet that being said, vomiting can also be signs of allergic reaction.
If your cat suffers from chronic vomiting – throwing up regularly – or suddenly starts this or other digestive reactions, it’s time to take her/him to the vet for a diagnostic workup. Causes for vomiting in cats include toxins, ulcers, foreign bodies and constipation, endocrine dysfunction (diabetes and hyperthyroidism for example) and infectious disorders like parasites. With an exam and diagnostic testing, your veterinarian will be able to diagnose and target the cause of these symptoms. When food allergies are determined to be the offender, your veterinarian will prescribe a diet that works toward the recuperation and health of your pet.
Recently, a cat was presented for frequent bouts of strong-smelling diarrhea. The 4-year-old cat was overdue for deworming and had been fed a poor-quality diet. The prescribed treatment was a) Deworming and b) Dietary management with a gastrointestinal food. After 1 week the cat had improved to having normal, well-formed stools but has started to vomit twice per week. There are many diagnostic approaches to this problem but the one chosen was to start a hypoallergenic diet trial with the suspicion that he had a sensitivity to one of the ingredients in the new food. If the hypoallergenic diet is not helpful, more diagnostic testing will be required. The most important message here is that vomiting once per month or more leads to intestinal cancer. By addressing this problem early, we can help prevent a cat from developing intestinal cancer.