My cat won’t eat. What could be the reason?
If your cat doesn’t eat for longer than 24 hours, it could lead to serious health issues such as liver problems. There are many reasons a cat won’t eat. One of them is anxiety. Being at a new place where they have never been to before, causes anxiety for the cat and makes them unwilling to eat. There could be psychological reasons such as depression, maybe their owners left them for a while. The hardest reason to look out for is illness. It could be something as serious as cancer or as small as toothache. It could cause a cat not to want to eat and that could be dangerous.
However, there are many things you can do to make a cat want to eat food again. The most non-obtrusive way to make a cat want to eat is making the food tastier for them. Now this can be done by putting maybe a little broth, tuna or cooked egg into their food or even just heating up in the microwave for a little bit making it slightly warmer. It should not be too hot but warm. You can also change the brand of food. However this should be done carefully as this can cause more stress on the cat if they don’t like the food and they will just simply avoid it.
There are also some appetite stimulants. The easiest and most known are dried catnip and valerian root. This causes the cat to be less anxious and more willing to eat. Though, valerian root should not be given orally as it can cause liver problems. There are also some medications that make a cat want to eat. However, you should talk to a vet before giving those medicines.
There are also pain relievers. You should talk to the vet about these as well. Some cats when they have a toothache and when they’re in pain, they simply don’t want to eat. So pain relievers should be used in those cases to make the cat less in pain and more willing to eat.
Some people have a lot of luck with assisted feeding while others not so much as it can cause stress. There are many methods to assisted feeding. The simplest and least obtrusive ways to assist to feed your cat is simply to get some wet food on a finger or spoon and let the cat lick off of it. You could also get a syringe from any pet store or pharmacy and what you do is take a bit of wet food, mix it with water if you have to, put in a blender to make it in liquid consistency and then get it up into the syringe and put it in the corner of the cat’s mouth carefully. Give them a small little burst of food at a time and let them handle it. Never stick the syringe straight down the cat’s throat and force feed. This can cause more anxiety for the cat, more stress and they’ll be less willing to eat in the long run.
The cat’s food intake should always be monitored to prevent them from ever getting sick. Even a short period of time without food can make cats weight drop and lead to some liver problems or other health problems. However, a sick cat that refuses to eat is never a lost cause and there are options available to you if you need to feed a cat that is unwilling or unable. And for non terminal illnesses these options can be life-saving literally.