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Why Is My Cat Vomiting Clear Liquid?

Cats vomit for many different reasons. It could be brought on by stress, anxiety, depression, allergic reactions, internal obstructions, heatstroke/hyperthermia, hypothermia, pancreatitis, liver disease, parasitic infections, or poisoning.

Vomiting alone is considered to be a nonspecific symptom. However, if they vomit water or clear liquid, it can be a sign of serious illness.


Possible Causes for Your Cat Vomiting Clear Liquid

1. Hairballs: Cats naturally groom themselves throughout their day. As your cat grooms themselves, their tongue catches loose hair and then swallows it. Generally, the swallowed hair passes through the digestive tract without any issue, but sometimes the hair remains in the stomach and forms a hairball.


Cats coughing up hairballs is a very well-known trait, but it should not be frequent, painful, or difficult for your cat to pass. If you find that your cat has issues coughing up a hairball, contact your local urgent care vet or emergency vet immediately.

2. Food and Dietary Changes: When changing your cat to a new type of food, we recommend gradually switching it by slowly increasing the new food mixed with the current food over a one to two week period until all their eating is the new food. Switching to a new food too fast can cause vomiting.


Sometimes your feline friend may eat too quickly, which can cause them to vomit clear liquid, with or without food present. If your cat is known to scarf their food down, we recommend trying different types of food puzzles. They can be a great source of enrichment for your feline friend while slowing them down and preventing them from vomiting.


Another food-related reason for your feline companion to be vomiting up water with partially digested or undigested food, it could mean they have intestinal sensitivities. Call your local urgent care vet or emergency vet to make sure they rule out any other medical issues and consider trying a sensitive or special diet.

3. Indigestion: Just like us, your cat’s stomach produces various gastric juices to digest its food. If your feline friend is experiencing indigestion, they may vomit clear liquid, yellow foam, or white foam. If you notice this happening, call your local urgent care vet or emergency vet and have your pet seen. If your vet believes the cause of the vomiting is due to indigestion, they may suggest feeding small, frequent meals throughout the day to alleviate the buildup of stomach acid.

4. Gastritis: Some cats are mischievous and get into things that they shouldn’t. And unfortunately, some of those things can irritate their stomach. This irritation can cause them to vomit clear liquid as well as blood or bile. Call your local urgent care vet or emergency vet immediately. Other gastritis symptoms to watch out for are decreased appetite, dehydration, lethargy, or depression.


Unfortunately, there are other reasons that your cat may be vomiting up clear liquid. These reasons include:

  • Parasites

  • Constipation

  • An obstruction within the intestinal tract

  • Ingesting a toxin

  • Metabolic disorders such as diabetes, kidney disease, and hyperthyroidism


Some of the above-mentioned ailments are quite serious, so don’t hesitate to have your cat seen by your local urgent care vet or emergency vet if you notice them vomiting up clear liquid. It always better safe than sorry, and we want to make sure that your feline companion is always in great health.


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