A refusal to eat might not be just a sign that your cat is finicky. Your cat could have anorexia. The loss of appetite could be a gradual progression from eating less to a complete refusal to eat. If your cat is not eating, here is what you need to know.
What Causes Anorexia in Cats?
Anorexia in cats refers to the loss of appetite. In some instances, anorexia is caused by an underlying medical condition. For instance, gastrointestinal diseases, diabetes, infections, and cancer can all cause a loss of appetite.
The refusal to eat is often one of the first signs that you might notice. Other symptoms can develop, including nausea, fever, diarrhea, and lethargy. The longer the underlying medical condition is not treated, the more progressive the symptoms will be.
There are some cats who experience anorexia because of emotional problems. Stress can have a negative impact on your cat's appetite. Stressful events, such as moving to a new home or being boarded, could make it difficult for your cat to eat.
How Is It Treated?
The treatment for anorexia in cats depends largely on the cause of it. Your cat's veterinarian will start by determining the underlying cause. To do this, your cat will need a full examination and will likely have to undergo a series of tests.
Once the underlying cause is determined, the veterinarian will determine the plan for treating the condition. Depending on the overall health of your cat, the vet might recommend hospitalizing the cat for treatment.
For instance, if your cat is dehydrated, staying in the hospital allows for your cat to be monitored while being treated.
What Can You Do?
The veterinarian will give you instructions for taking care of your cat's condition at home. In addition to these steps, there are several other ways you can encourage your cat to eat.
For instance, if your cat usually eats human food, now might be the time to offer commercial cat food to your pet. You might have to heat the food to encourage eating, but it can work.
You also should try adding broth low sodium broth to your cat's food. The broth can help to enhance the flavor of the food your cat is given.
Your vet will have other suggestions on what you can do to get your cat to eat. Follow those suggestions and report any negative changes to your cat's veterinarian immediately. Contact a hospital, like Cats Only Veterinary Hospital, for more help.