With cats being such a commonly kept pet, we often see a wide range of different questions being asked about keeping pet cats.
These questions really do cover a wide range of different subjects but over the last month or two, there have been a number of people reaching out and asking if their cat can throw up poop or not.
This is a common mistake that many people new to keeping cats can make and it is easy to understand why this mistake is made so we have decided to publish our own article going over the most common causes of why a cat may throw up poop.
We hope that this article will be able to help our readers better understand what is actually happening and in the vast majority of cases, your cat will be totally fine.
Still, there are two less common causes that can potentially be very serious issues that may need you to take your cat to a vet for a check up but we will go over this in more detail later in the article.
Is It Normal For Cats To Throw Up Poop?
It is not normal for cats to throw up poop and it is technically impossible for a cat to throw up poop.
Actual poop is formed in the lower intestine that is on the opposite side of your cat’s digestive system to where vomit comes from.
Still, there are three situations that may occur in a cat that can give the impression that your cat is throwing up poop.
Even though this is not actually poop, it can look and smell like poop so it is easy to see why so many people have been asking if cats can throw up poop recently.
Can Cats Throw Up Poop?
As we covered earlier in the article, cats can’t throw up poor in the strictest sense due to how the cat’s digestive system works and where poop is actually formed in your cat.
We will not be taking a look at the three main reasons that it may look like your pet cat is throwing up poop but in most cases, it will be much better for you to take your cat to a veterinarian for a check up to get a professional opinion.
The most common reason that it will look as though your pet cat is throwing up poop is due to hair balls.
We know that this may sound basic as most cat owners have seen their cat throw up hair balls but in some situations, hair balls can look and smell like poop.
This is due to a build up of hair over an extended period of time forming and becoming tightly wound giving it the appearance of poop.
In some cases, food can then end up getting stuck in these larger than usual hair balls causing the hairball to smell foul and have a texture similar to poop.
The easiest way to tell if this is the cause of the problem is to leave the substance that your cat threw up to dry.
Once dry, a hair ball becomes obvious as the hair fibers look like hair fibers once the moisture has dried off them.
You should still usually take steps to prevent your cat from building up large hair balls in the future though.
There are a few things you can do to help prevent your cat from developing hair balls in the first place:-
- Make sure your cat is groomed regularly, especially around the neck and chest where hair tends to accumulate.
- Feed your cat wet food rather than dry food, as this will help keep the hairball issue under control.
- Try to limit the amount of carpeting and other materials that can trap hair in your home.
- Give your cat supplements designed to help with the hairball issue such as Laxatone or Petromalt.
If you find that your cat is throwing up large hair balls on a regular basis, you should take them to see a veterinarian as this may be indicative of an underlying health issue.
The second most common reason that a cat may throw up what looks like poop is due to an intestinal blockage.
This can be caused by a number of different things such as eating something they shouldn’t have, hair balls, or even just because they are constipated.
The easiest way to tell if this is the case is if your cat is also showing other symptoms such as not defecating, being lethargic, or having a loss of appetite.
Intestinal blockages can cause your cat to vomit some digested food back up that may look and smell like poop as it is essentially the early stages of poop.
This is rare though as the blockage needs to be in the later stages of your cat’s intestine and blockages in this area are rare in most healthy cats.
If you have a senior cat or a cat with other health issues then this issue can become more common though.
If you think that your cat may have an intestinal blockage, it is important to take them to see a veterinarian as this can be a serious issue and may require surgery to fix.
The third and final reason that your cat may throw up what looks like poop is due to them vomiting excessively.
This can be caused by a wide range of reasons and in some cases, it may just be a 24 hour bug or something stuck in your cat’s throat or belly but in other cases it may be due to a serious infection.
Due to this, we would usually recommend that you do your best to get your cat to a vet for a check up if your cat has been vomiting excessively for more than a day.
This causes cats to vomit what looks like poop as the heaving can force food out of your cat’s small intestine back into its stomach that can then be vomited out.
Just like with intestinal blockages, this is food that is started to be digested and is not technically poop yet but it will look and smell like poop in some cases.
Thankfully, this is rare and even if it does occur in your pet cat, it is usually easy to fix in most cases but a trip to the vets will usually be needed in many cases.