Signs & Symptoms of Cat Food Poisoning

By Debbie Tolle

It is important to be able to quickly assess if your cat has contracted cat food poisoning. Knowing the signs and symptoms can be the difference between life and death for your cat. It is not always easy to tell if your cat has been poisoned. The early symptoms are almost flu-like in nature.

First Stages

Vomiting and diarrhea are the first signs that your cat may have food poisoning. It is not normal for your cat to have these symptoms. If your cat suddenly exhibits these signs after eating the same food it always has, there may be a problem. The sooner that you have your cat checked by a veterinarian, the better the results will be.

Agitation or Lethargy

You know your cat's personality better than anyone. If your cat is normally playful and then becomes lethargic, take it to the vet immediately. Lethargy is a sign of renal failure. If your cat becomes unusually agitated when it is normally calm, it is exhibiting signs of distress. Your cat is speaking to you in physical ways that it cannot verbalize.

Weakness

Weakness and staggering are signs of serious problems. The poison is causing severe damage in the kidneys that may be irreversible at this point. It is possible to stop further damage if your cat receives treatment, but there can be long-term residual effects.

Salivation

Heavy salivating is not normal for cats. This can be a sign of liver damage. Tremors and seizures are also possible signs of liver damage. Liver damage is not the most common effect of food poisoning; the most damage happens in the kidneys. If you catch food poisoning in time, it is likely that your cat will survive.

Cat Illnesses

There are many illnesses that can mimic cat food poisoning. The only way to tell is to take your cat to the veterinarian. Do not wait if you think there is something wrong. It may not be food poisoning, but it could be symptoms of another disease or infection. It is better to be safe than sorry.