Why Is My Cat Not Eating? 

Why Is My Cat Not Eating

Why is my cat not eating? Cats can change their food preferences and give up their food for a variety of reasons ranging from stress and illness.

It is important to identify why your cat is not eating and then figure out ways to get her back on track.

Here are some reasons why is my cat not eating, what you can do, and tips for getting a cat to eat again.

Why Is My Cat Not Eating?

It is important to note why is my cat not eating. Unlike dogs, cats sometimes do not eat, even when they are hungry. This can lead to long-term health problems, even if the underlying issue is not health-related.


If your cat is not eating because of stress, try to find ways to reduce the stressful environment.

It could be that your cat needs a quiet place to eat where children or other animals will not disturb it.

If you have more than one cat, one may dominate the other, causing the more timid to not eat as much at once.

This is easily achieved by placing food in different places or finding a safe place for the timid cat to eat.

Your vet may also prescribe anti-anxiety medication if none of these suggestions work to ease your cat’s stress.


Very often a cat stops eating because of illness. The reasons can range from something solvable to a problem that may prove to be terminal.

Only your vet can determine the cause of the loss of appetite and if there is anything you can do about it.

Even if the cat is seriously ill, you may still be able to prolong its life by either getting some food or helping the cat to eat if it is not ready to eat on its own.

Also Read: How To Prevent Hairballs In Cats?

Ways To Get Your Cat To Eat On Its Own Again

To get your cat to start eating again, you can first offer him something different.

Buy small cans or bags of different types of food – a sample size is good if you can find it.

Offer them to your cat at different times of the day.

He may become interested in a new type of food and may decide to start eating again.

Remember to take it slow.  If they haven’t been eating for a while, it may take some time to get them back up to their regular serving size.

Sometimes pouring a bit of tuna juice or chicken broth over the food can give a cat a try.

You can put anything on your hand or your finger and offer it to them. See if they want to attract extra attention.

This can make them start eating again.

What To Do If Your Cat Still Won’t Eat The Food

If your cat is still not eating, you may need to try to get it to eat.

Cat anorexia can cause the animal to develop other issues.

Severe weight loss puts a lot of pressure on a cat’s liver and can lead to other problems.

You can make your cat swallow food by putting it in its mouth.

Before doing this you should talk to your vet and determine if this is the right move for you and your cat.

If you do decide to feed your cat, you will need to be very gentle and patient with the cat.

It helps if you have a strong and trusting relationship with him and her.

Go to a quiet area and talk to the cat calmly and reassuringly as you are feeding it.

Also Read: What To Know About Vestibular Disease In Cats?

Here Are Steps For Feeding A Cat That Won’t Eat

How to Feed a Cat Won’t Eat Troubleshooting
Take the cat on your lap and gently hold it with the spine against your belly. If the cat is resistant, you may need to wrap it in a blanket or towel, with only the head sticking out.
Take a small amount of canned food with one hand and hold it at the end of your pointer finger. Make sure the food is soft.  Science Diet contains adult foods or ask your vet for some Science Diet A/D.
Open the cat’s mouth by gently loosening the jaw with your thumb and forefinger. You should be gentle and not use force.  In this position, the jaw opens easily.
Place the canned food on the roof of the cat’s mouth and allow it to lick and swallow for one minute. This method also works for nutritional paste or gel.
Frequently. It is important not to overfeed the cat, especially if she has been off food.

What Other Options Do I Have?

Cats not eating is an emergency.

A cat’s body composition and digestive system make sudden weight loss critical to its overall health and well-being.

If you don’t want to cook them using canned food, you can try a nutritious, high-calorie gel-like Nutri-Cal.

Many cats love the taste and will lick it easily with their finger or spoon.

If your cat won’t take it, you can use the above method to wipe the gel on the roof of his mouth.

You can also talk to your vet about a feeding tube.

While the thought of a feeding tube is intimidating, it may be the only way to get nutrition into your cat. Some feeding tubes may be a temporary measure that will work until the animal gets better.

Take Away

  • Cats do not need to be off their food for dangerous complications to develop.
  • Stress or illness can cause cats to stop eating.
  • It is very important to get your cat to eat as soon as possible.
  • Try canned food or high-calorie gel.
  • This can be a great resource for you to find out why your cat won’t eat.

Cats staying away from their food can cause stress for the owner. Sometimes, with a little attention and the right food choice, your cat will recover on its own and go back to eating and drinking in regular amounts. It is important to treat this as a high-priority situation and to feed your cat as soon as possible.

Vidhi Kapoor

Hi, I'm Vidhi! I have 2 years of content writing experience. I am running think-how.com, myinvestmentplaybook.com and smallpetanimals.com websites individually. And also I work for many other agencies and websites.

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