Cat not eatin/drinking, how long before taking him to the vet?

(this is after moving to a new place and introducing new cats as me and my gf are moving in together. I know is behavior is stress but the not drinking is dangerous, I just don't know how long we can wait? I don't want to panic too quickly as taking him up to the vet will be another stressful event.

Asked by Member 837688 on May 19th 2009 Tagged move in Health & Wellness
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Adult cats will not usually starve themselves completely. At some point, he will sneak out to eat. But try to provide him with something really tempting like some nice fishy canned food where the smell will draw him out. With canned food, he will get the water into him even if he's not drinking yet. Put the dishes someplace convenient to where he is hiding. This may not be where you intend to feed him normally but just for now, make it convenient to sneak out for a bite. Try locking him in a room by himself with his food an litter and then introduce him back to the other cats slowly after he has a chance to relax a bit. If you are in the US, then we have a holiday weekend coming up so I would give the vet a call and check their schedule for the end of the week in case this continues. You don't want to find out too late that they are closed if you do need them.

Allie answered on 5/19/09. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer


If a cat isn't eating by day 3 they can start to develop liver problems. You need to be sure the cat is getting nutrition so your vet can help you force feed. I have to disagree with Allie in that cats will and DO starve themselves. In fact over time they will actually forget to eat. Please take your cat to the vet if it's been longer than 3 days.

Hunter answered on 5/19/09. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer


when i first adopted my kitty sushi, she wasnt eating, either. i called the vet with the same problem and they suggested to first try the wet food, like mentioned above. it is like mcdonalds for kitties. but also, as mentioned above, if this goes on for more than three days, take her to the vet. i had a fat kitty we tried to put on a diet and stopped eating completely (he was a bit of a divo)...then developed fatty liver disease after he decided to be anorexic. it was not pretty. a couple thousand dollars later, we pulled him through it, but...this can be pretty serious...just keep an eye on the poor little guy! and give him some extra love during this stressful time!

♥Sushi♥ answered on 5/19/09. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer


I know that Hunter said 3 days, but we've actually had a problem with not eating before, and we've been told by our vet that any time a cat has provenly not eaten for 24 hours or more, they become at risk for liver damage.

It might also be something other than stress. We have a friend with four cats. They just adopted a human child, and their senior-most (still young by cat standards) cat stopped eating shortly after. They thought it was stress, and waited a few days to go to the vet. The vet thought it was stress, and ordered force feeding instead of running tests. They did that for a couple of weeks but she didn't get better, so they insisted to have tests run, and an x-ray revealed she had cancer. At that point, it was way past operable, but the owners wished they could have helped her to the bridge sooner, rather than making her miserable for three weeks.

Now, 90% of the time thing are not that bad, but if you're worried, you should just go to the vet to make sure he's ok.

Gracie answered on 5/20/09. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer



Chibi answered on 5/24/09. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer