How To Stimulate Your Cat's Appetite
Have you ever had a cat that just wouldn’t eat, no matter what kind of food you’re feeding? You certainly wouldn’t be alone.
While there are many potential reasons (see below) for a cat to be refusing food, here are some simple “tricks” you can try to tempt their appetite:
- Add some canned/wet food (the stinkier the better - go for seafood varieties)
- Add some water from a can of tuna or anchovies
- Gently warm the food in the microwave or with warm water (don’t make it too hot!)
- Sprinkle some grated parmesan cheese on their food (Kraft in the green tube is often used in the ICU)
- Sprinkle some Purina FortiFlora probiotic on their food, mix a little bit in and then sprinkle a bit to stay on top (often works great as an appetite stimulant for cats)
- If these tricks fail, or if your cat refuses more than 2 meals, it’s time to go to the vet for evaluation and care.
Here are some potential causes why your cat might be a picky eater
- Dental/tooth pain: broken tooth, abscessed tooth root, oral tumor
- Pancreatitis (inflamed pancreas)
- Urinary obstruction
- Digestive obstruction
- Upper respiratory infection (“kitty cold”)
- And many others
The tricks above are truly a short-term fix. If they start eating after using one of the tricks then you can possibly chalk it up to an upset stomach that will pass, a change in the weather or something non-threatening. However, if your cat is refusing food for a significant period of time, anything over 1 day (even less if they have certain pre-existing conditions - such as Diabetes or obesity), then it’s imperative that you seek out hands-on veterinary evaluation. After all, something very serious could be causing your cat’s hunger strike and delay can make matters significantly worse.
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