How to Stop Your Cat from Vomiting and Throwing Up Cat Food after Eating

Why is my cat regularly barfing up it's food after eating?
by Updated July 12, 2021

Prevent Your Cat from Vomiting Regularly


So I'm just going to 'throw' this out at the start... If your cat is routinely throwing up or regurgitating its food, it's your fault, not your cat's fault. Stop blaming your cat. It's not normal for a cat to throw up regularly, no matter what you may think. Your cat could have a serious health issue (so it's best to check with a Vet first and get blood work for your cat to find out what is going on), but there's a good chance the reason your cat is puking constantly, there's a chance the cat food you are feeding your cat is not great for your cat and giving your cat a food allergy. Thus if your cat is barfing up its food regularly, it's time to do something about it and change the cat food that you are feeding your cat and find some cat foods that won't make your cat regurgitate it's food. Don't blame your cat for puking, when you're the one feeding your cat crappy cat food.

For years and years my cat would routinely throw up and I just thought that it was somewhat normal. It would typically occur every few days, usually at some point after my cat had finished eating (either right away or a little while later, and sometimes in the middle of the night). If my cat went a week or more without puking up food, I felt like it was practically a miracle. This meant that I was constantly cleaning up cat throw up all the time and went through tons of cans of Resolve Carpet Cleaner over the years and even bought a carpet cleaner.

Unfortunately, I could have saved my cat a lot discomfort if I had just attributed his vomiting to constipation and the cat food he was eating. NOTE: Vomiting is a sign of Constipation in cats, see the end of this article for solutions. When I first got my cat, I just thought he was throwing up a lot due to hairballs, so I would comb him out regularly with a cat brush and a deshedding comb, but that didn't solve the barfing problem.

Over the years, I did try different cat foods, but it's typically been Purina cat food or Science Diet (which my cat doesn't like). Here are just some of the dry cat foods that made my cat throw up regularly and would NOT recommend: Purina Cat Chow Naturals Indoor, Purina Cat Chow Gentle Adult Dry Cat Food, Purina ONE Indoor Advantage Adult Dry Cat Food, Meow Mix Original Choice Dry Cat Food.

After this experience and what I've learned since, it's much better to spend more on Premium cat food (dry and wet), to prevent your cat from routinely throwing up. Premium foods contain higher quality ingredients and will provide your cat with better overall nutrients that will make for a healthier cat. So it goes without saying, if your cat is regularly throwing up after feeding, it's time to change your cat's cat food, as more than likely your cat is allergic to the food or may not be getting enough wet cat food. Too much dry cat food, may be the number one factor as to why you cat is puking all the time. If that's the case, then find wet cat food that your cat likes, and feed wet cat food to him everyday (multiple times per day).

So currently, I've been feeding my cat the following Sensitive Skin & Stomach Dry and Wet cat food.

  1. Purina Pro Plan FOCUS Adult Sensitive Skin & Stomach Herring & Rice Formula Dry Cat Food
  2. Purina Pro Plan Adult Beef & Chicken Entree in Gravy Adult Wet Food
  3. Hill's Science Diet Adult Sensitive Stomach & Skin Wet Cat Food (FYI: my cat doesn't like Hill's cat food)

His favorite dry cat food that doesn't make him vomit is the Purina Pro Plan FOCUS Adult Sensitive Skin & Stomach. The Blue Buffalo Sensitive stomach dry food isn't his favorite, but it doesn't make him throw up. So far these are the two Sensitive Stomach dry cat foods that haven't made my cat throw up. I always have dry cat food in his food dishes, so he can graze throughout the day, instead of gorging himself twice a day, which can also lead to your cat throwing up.

His favorite wet cat food is the Purina Pro Plan Adult Beef & Chicken Entree in Gravy Adult Wet Food and will chow it down. Even though it's not a Sensitive stomach wet cat food he hasn't puked it up. I've been mixing it together with the Hill's Science Diet wet cat food because he typically won't eat much of the Hill's Science Diet wet food on its own.

While I did give my cat wet food on occasion in the past, he typically was just eating dry cat food, and it wasn't until recently that I started feeding him wet cat food twice a day, in addition to better sensitive stomach dry cat food. Giving wet cat food twice a day, has helped prevent my 14+ year old cat from getting constipated and pooping outside the litter box as well. The switch to the Sensitive Skin & Stomach dry cat food has been a big difference in stopping my cat from vomitting regularly. However, it was a complete mistake on my part to not feed my cat wet cat food everyday.  Feeding wet cat food may help to prevent your cat from getting chronic kidney disease.

I also will give him the following treats occasionally, but do think too many treats can lead to a cat puking more often:

  1. TEMPTATIONS Mixup Treats for Cats 16 ounces
  2. Greenies FELINE Dental Cat Treats - Chicken

In addition, I also have some cat nip in a bowl that he always has access to eating if he wants.

To help fend off any hair balls and major constipation issues as of late, every few days I'll give him a dab of Laxatone Catnip for Hairball Relief and will also occassionally give him Libbys 100% Pure Pumpkin to eat as well, which also helps with constipation problems.

After making these cat food changes, I can now say that my cat who routinely threw up for 10+ years, has not puked up cat food in probably two months. It did take him about a month or so to adjust to the new cat food changes, but since that adjustment period my carpets and floors have remained pretty much clear of cat puke and cat poop.  That being said, since making this cat food change, my cat has lost a good amount of weight (going from around 12lbs to probably 9 or 10lbs, and while I suspect it's mainly due to the change in cat food, he's also getting up there in age.

In conclusion, if you suspect your cat is throwing up food due to a food allergy, then do something about it and change your cats dry and/or wet food to a Sensitive Stomach cat food.  While I've had recent luck with Purina "Pro Plan" food, I do know there are pet lovers who aren't fans of the Purina brand, which doesn't come as a surprise since I've seen first hand the ramifications of feeding my cat cheaper Purina cat food. No matter what cat food brand you go with, it may be better to spend a little more on premium quality cat food, than spending time and money on cleaning supplies to clean up cat puke all the time. I really wish I had made the change years ago for the sake of my cats skin health, teeth and my carpets. Either way, it's always a good idea to consult with your veterinarian, in case your cat has a more serious health problem. If a Sensitive Stomach cat food change doesn't work, it's always possible that your vet may want to prescribe pills for your cat that can stop it from throwing up. But if you can avoid expensive Vet bills, with a simple food change, I'd recommend you try that first.

UPDATE 9-1-2018 WARNING: It's possible that feeding a cat (mostly/only) dry cat food can cause a cat to develop Kidney problems. It's also possible that my cat's diet of mostly dry food consumption in the past, along with a high phosphorus, high protein cat food diet has brought on or sped up Kidney Disease (Chronic Renal Failure) in my cat, as my cat has started to show all the signs of the disease recently. Due to this, I'm going to be taking him to the vet for a blood and urine test and also switch his wet and dry cat food to a low phosphorus, low protein diet. See: Canned foods for Chronic Kidney Disease and Dry foods for CKD.

UPDATE 9-7-2018:  So I took my cat to the vet and after blood work and urine samples, my cat was diagnosed with Chronic Kidney Disease and Diabetes. He needed fluids at his appointment, and I'm now giving him fluids (drip bag) at home for the next week.  He is also now on an insulin drug (Lantus), that I have to give him shots twice a day for at least the next 3 weeks and hope he improves. I've changed his food to canned (Purina Pro Plan FOCUS Urinary Tract Health Formula Adult Wet Cat Food Chicken and Gravy), which he seems to like, is not puking, and is low in phosphorus to help with the kidney disease. My cat's improved a lot over the last few days, so the treatment definitely seems to be helping. Unfortunately, I believe feeding my cat mostly dry "crappy" cat food that was hign in carbohydrates) over the years has helped lead to these chronic diseases in my cat. So take it from me, if you're only feeding your cat dry cat, do your cat a favor and start giving him some healthy canned cat food at least once a day that doesn't make him vomit.

UPDATE 11-19-2019: After a Vet visit a few weeks ago, (my cat was dehydrated) he under went blood work, and it was determined my cat no longer has Chronic Kidney Disease, but still has Diabetes... and now has an Overactive Thyroid, as well as Pancreatitis.  In the last year, he was rarely throwing up food, but would still throw up white foam (maybe once every week or two). Since that Vet visit, my cat was put on Mehimazole for the Overactive Thyroid, and has NOT thrown up once in the last three weeks, and is doing much better overall.  From my quick research, it appears Diabetes and Overactive Thyroid symptoms can be similiar in cats. Also he was given Science Diet K/D wet cat food and Science Diet I/D wet cat food to try out, which my cat has eaten without complaint and may be better for him than the Purina Pro Plan (but he definitely likes the Purina Pro Plan wet cat food way better.  NOTE: I believe the white foam my cat is throwing up, is due in part to either being constipated or weak muscles after going to the bathroom or attempting to make a bowel movement, so I now give my cat Laxatone fairly regularly, so he doesn't get constipated and end up in a cat loaf position for an entire day.

UPDATE: 6/20/2021: If you're cat has continued to throw up, try giving your cat 1/8 teaspoon of MiraLax mixed in its wet cat food or water (daily or every other day).  This was the primary cure / health fix for my Mom's cat, so I know this can fix a cats chronic problem of throwing up (just check with your Vet first). MiraLax also seemed to help with a breathing / cough problem that my Mom's cat had. Her cat was throwing up even more than my cat ever was, and MiraLax seems to have been the answer to the problem. MiraLax has no taste so it should mix with wet cat food well and is said to be safe for cats.



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