Although cats descended from wild felines that survived by consuming small mammals, fish, and reptiles, they have sensitive stomachs that do not always agree with them. Occasional vomiting is not a cause for concern, but excessive vomiting requires veterinary attention. Vomiting has several causes, and some are accompanied by other troubling signs. It’s vital to report any additional problems when speaking to the doctor. If your cat throws up clear liquid, you can read on for the possible causes and treatments.
The 10 Reasons Why Cats Throw Up Clear Liquid
1. Diet Changes
Some felines take longer than others to adapt to a new brand of cat food. An abrupt change can cause the animal to vomit clear fluid or liquid with pieces of digested food. Also, cats that eat too fast may throw up the unsightly liquid. Luckily, you can help your pet with either problem when the cause is not medical-related.
Cats are meticulous groomers, and their barbed tongues help grab loose hair from their coats. Most hair passes through the intestinal tract and is expelled in the feces. When the hair collects in the cat’s stomach, it’s usually vomited out. Hairballs look like gray cylindrical tubes, and they’re often vomited with clear fluid. Cats with longer hair and those that groom frequently are more vulnerable to hairballs.
3. Drinking Too Much Water
If your cat drinks too much water on an empty stomach, it can vomit clear fluid. Cats that drink too much water every day may be suffering from a medical condition. Most cats are not heavy drinkers, and some pet parents struggle to convince their pets to drink from water bowls. Frequent drinking and vomiting are signs that your cat should visit the veterinary clinic. Kidney disease and diabetes mellitus are two issues that can cause excessive water drinking.
Like us, cats sometimes experience indigestion. When cats do not follow a routine feeding schedule or skip meals, the hydrochloric acid in their stomach can irritate them and cause vomiting. The liquid may be clear or yellow.
5. Bilious Vomiting Syndrome
Vomiting clear liquid could be a sign of bilious vomiting syndrome. However, the vomit may include mucus with an orange or brown color. It typically occurs when the cat’s stomach is empty, and most cases occur in the morning when the cat has waited longer to eat the next meal.
6. Toxin Ingestion
Curious cats are notorious for playing with and chewing on items that fascinate them, but some substances such as garden chemicals, cleaners, and automotive materials are toxic and even deadly to cats. Poisoning can cause vomiting, diarrhea, excessive thirst, hyperactivity, drooling, muscle tremors, coma, and seizures.
Gastritis occurs when the stomach’s lining becomes inflamed, and the condition can be acute or chronic. Acute infections are not always diagnosed because some cases subside after 24 hours. However, chronic gastritis lasts longer and can be caused by several problems, including food allergies, parasites and chronic disease.
8. Kidney Disease
Possible signs of acute kidney disease and chronic kidney disease include vomiting, and sometimes, the vomit can be transparent with traces of blood. Acute kidney disease is possibly reversible, but there is no cure for the chronic illness. However, treatments for chronic kidney failure can allow the cat to live several years.
Chronic renal failure is a progressive illness that can take years before signs appear.
9. Intestinal Parasites
Intestinal parasites can be passed to kittens from their mothers, but any feline can become infected with them by consuming carrion and encountering infected animals or feces. Common signs are diarrhea and vomiting, but they can worsen if the cat is not examined by a doctor.
Felines are less likely to get cancer than dogs, but lymphoma is the most common type seen in cats. Gastrointestinal lymphoma can cause diarrhea and vomiting, and it’s often connected with the feline leukemia virus (FeLV). FeLV vaccinations can reduce the chances of developing lymphoma.
Caring for a cat is usually a rewarding experience, but a sick cat can worry you like any member of your family. Vomiting clear liquid can be a temporary event caused by something simple like indigestion or drinking too fast. If your pet vomits repeatedly, you should take it to the veterinary clinic. Determining the cause is critical to the treatment and recovery, and some vet offices will see patients the same day when the issue is urgent.
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Featured Image Credit: Nils Jacobi, Shutterstock