As we all know, cats can be the fussiest of eaters. What might be their favorite food one day can find them turning their nose up the next. While the switch between wet and dry, jelly and gravy, and different kinds of treats is a dance that all cat owners know well, it is of great importance to realize when your cat is suffering from something worse than increased airs and graces.
If you’ve noticed extra vomiting, or other symptoms like diarrhea, your cat may be suffering from a sensitive stomach. This article will help you understand how to recognise this, what you can do to avoid worsening their digestive problems, what kinds of food to avoid, and what the best food for cats with sensitive stomachs is.
In this article:
- What causes a sensitive stomach for a cat
- Worst food for cats with sensitive stomachs
- Best food for cats with sensitive stomachs
What Causes a Sensitive Stomach for a cat
Sensitive stomachs might come from a medical condition that you already know about, such as an allergy, or they may be symptomatic of a new ailment that they are suffering from. In the worst case scenarios, they can be indicative of a disease in the gallbladder, pancreas, or similar organ, but they can also be brought on by heartworm. They may even be caused by parasites or other nasty things.
Cats can suffer from sensitive stomachs due to normal circumstances like problems passing a hairball. In this case, a vet may recommend an oily formula to help them eject it before a serious blockage is caused. A sudden onset of vomiting or diarrhea may be brought on by something they’ve eaten in the outside world, and in which case (as long as they don’t continue eating it) are not a cause for long-term concern.
In younger cats, especially kittens, sensitive stomachs can even be brought on by a change in diet, so the best thing in this case is to maintain some dietary consistency. In any case, cat owners are lucky enough these days to have a plethora of options; thanks to a series of carefully scientifically-balanced, nutritious, vet-approved foods for sensitive felines. But before you get to know what the best food for cats with sensitive stomachs is, let’s go over the worst things you can feed them – advice, more often than not, true for every circumstance.
Worst Food for Cats with Sensitive Stomachs
While some cats suffer an increased intolerance to specific items of food, there is a prevailing wisdom that applies to all cats – no matter how healthy, of things you’d be best to avoid. Top of the list is pasteurized cow’s milk and other dairy, like cream. While suitable for humans, cats cannot always digest the sugary lactose. The only milk cats can drink without any risk is their mothers while they are nursing, or else they could potentially suffer from diarrhea.
Most store-bought cat foods are carefully balanced for a cat’s diet, but they can still be too rich and contain too many additives for those of a more sensitive disposition. If you’re looking for a temporary solution involving more natural, straightforward ingredients, you should avoid the standard go-to of tuna. While pungent, and typically a good, high-protein treat for you cat, this tinned fish is high in saturated fats, and as an apex predator contains a high level of mercury (which even you should avoid eating in large quantities!). Cats require more balanced diets, especially if they are sensitive to such things.
Best Food For Cats With Sensitive Stomach
If your cat starts exhibiting signs of a sensitive stomach, and it develops into a more serious condition, you may need to buy specially balanced foods to counteract this. Until then, there are a few simpler, stopgap solutions which can adequately meet their delicate needs.
Typically chicken, duck or turkey, plain and mixed with a little bit of rice are a safer bet than tuna, or even beef and grain (which have also been known to cause digestive problems).
Specially Formulated Cat Foods for Cats With Sensitive Stomachs
However, the best food for cats with sensitive stomachs has always been the specially formulated pet food, available from most good stores.
For instance, Blue Buffalo Light Protection Dry Adult Cat Food is a great dry option, made from a chicken and brown rice blend. It’s a high-protein, low-grain alternative to regular cat food that is made for (adult) cats with sensitive stomachs. Rather than most store-bought, ‘premium’ cat foods this one is intentionally low on wheat, a major cause of stomach problems – leading to fur-loss, vomiting etc, in some cats.
Purina One Sensitive Systems is another, similarly formulated dry cat food. While mainly consisting of real turkey, this crucially also contains a healthy amount of fatty acids, vitamins and a large dose of protein. Rather than prescription food, Purina One is a more affordable, commercial alternative.
In the end, the best food for cats with sensitive stomachs will be simple, with no additives. It will be suitable for regular meals, and it will contain actual meat products, with low (if any) traces of grains and wheats.
Best food for cats with sensitive stomachs: final thoughts
No one likes to see their precious kitty in discomfort. A vomiting cat, or one with diarrhea can be distressing, especially if it has been going on for some time. Aside from checking their full-body health, and making sure the cats environment has been checked for hazards that could cause the sensitivity, there are many options for dietary changes that can really affect your cat’s digestion for the better.
If you’ve chosen to invest in the best food for cats with sensitive stomachs, you should always follow these guidelines or your cat’s situation may not change: don’t switch around food too often, make sure you control the portions, and help them not to eat too quickly (as this may cause them to vomit too!).