Why Do Cats Overeat and Throw Up? (Solved & Explained!)

Sometimes, it seems as if cats love to throw up. They tuck into an epic meal, eat a little bit too much, and before you know it, they are vomiting all over your prized rug. So, why does this happen? Can you do anything to prevent it? Let’s take a look.

Why Do Cats Overeat And Throw Up?

While some illnesses can cause cats to throw up after they have eaten, we will assume that you have ruled those out. This may mean a trip to the vet, just to ensure that there is nothing wrong with your cat.

You will probably know if your cat is overeating and they throw up. There will often be a lot of undigested food in their vomit. You will notice them taking in massive chunks of food in a single gulp. 

Truthfully, nobody knows why cats overeat and throw up. There is a chance that they don’t know that they are overeating. Perhaps their stomach isn’t sending the signal to their brain to stop, or they are eating whatever is in front of them because they don’t know where their next meal is coming from (a genetic trait from their ancestors)

Generally speaking, a cat overeating and vomiting isn’t a massive problem. If it happens all the time, your cat may not be getting all of the nutrients that they need because they are vomiting them back up. However, if it is on occasion, then we can’t imagine that your cat will run into too many issues.

The one time that you should be seriously concerned is if you have a kitten that is doing it. This is a frequent problem with kittens, and they need the energy from their food to grow big and strong.

Now, cats overeating and throwing up isn’t something that is going to warrant a trip to the vet. It is a problem that you will be able to fix yourself, but it may take a little bit of time. If the vomiting still persists then yes, you can take them to a vet. If you notice that they have a nutritional deficiency, then, yes, you can take them to a vet. However, the chances of them actually requiring this will be slim. 

Lonely cat watching over food

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How Do You Prevent a Cat Overeating and Throwing Up?

So, you know your cat is overeating. You know that their overeating is causing them to throw up. How do you deal with the problem? Well, there are a few methods that you can use. We recommend that you try out a few of them to see which suits your cat and your schedule better.

Stick To The Portion Sizes On The Cat Food

The portion sizes on your cat’s food isn’t just there to look pretty. It provides valuable information, and you will be surprised at how much people ignore that information.

If you look at the side of the cat food packet, it will tell you exactly how much cat food you need to be feeding your animal. This will be based on the sex of your cat, as well as their weight. The manufacturer will have calculated these portions. Generally speaking, if you stick to the guidelines on the side of the pack, you won’t have to worry about your cat overeating.

We suggest that you get yourself either a set of scales or some measuring equipment. Make sure that you stick with the guidelines, and we reckon that your cat will stop overeating. 

Feed Smaller, More Frequent Portions

This may be an issue if you are at work. However, if you are at home, try splitting your cat’s portions up into smaller amounts throughout the day.

Again, you should be paying attention to the guidelines on the food package. This will tell you how much you should be giving the cat throughout the day. Try to split the portion up into frequent intervals. This way, you won’t be running the risk of your cat overeating.

We recommend that you try and give your cat food at the same time every day; this way, you won’t have to worry too much about them going hungry.

Purchase a Cat Feeder

If you are not at home to give your cat equal portions throughout the day, then we suggest that you pick yourself up an automatic cat feeder.

With an automatic cat feeder, you can program it to let certain amounts of food out at certain times of the day. This way, your cat has a steady stream of food coming through, but the risk of them overeating is reduced.

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The one issue that you may run into here is that if the cat doesn’t eat at one point, their bowl may overfill, and they overeat the next time.

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smart cat feeder Scottish cat is waiting for food. pet feeder.

Purchase a New Bowl For Your Cat 

If you are still running into issues, then we recommend that you pick up a new bowl for your cat.

You will find various ‘puzzle bowls’ on the market if you hunt around. The idea of these bowls is to make your cat work for the food. Because they have to work for each bit of food, perhaps by solving a puzzle or playing with a toy, they are much less likely to overeat.

Make sure that you pay attention to your cat the first few times they use these bowls. Obviously, you want to know that your cat is intelligent enough to get the food out.

Final Word

Generally speaking, a cat overeating is rarely a major issue. You only need to worry if you notice that your cat is suffering from nutritional deficiencies.

It is unknown why cats overeat. However, it is a problem that you will probably want to work hard to solve.

Perhaps the easiest way to deal with the issue is to feed your cat the right portion amount, or give them smaller amounts of food throughout the day. If you still run into issues, then pick up a ‘puzzle bowl’ that makes your cat work for their food.