Overview of Decreased in Appetite in Cats
There are many causes a cat may have a decreased in appetite or “lack of appetite”. Some cats don't want to eat or aren't able to eat.
Veterinarians that evaluate cats with a decrease in appetite categorize this symptom under anorexia. Anorexia is a term used to describe the situation where a cat loses his appetite and does not want to eat or is unable to eat.
Often, a decrease or loss of appetite is the first indication of illness in cats. Diseases of the digestive system, the kidneys, the blood, the eyes, mouth, nose, and throat, the skin, the brain, and many other organs in the body can cause a loss of appetite. Cats will also stop eating if they are experiencing pain of any cause.
Alternatively, cats will occasionally refuse food for reasons that are much less serious, such as dislike for a new food, or behavioral reasons (new home, new animal or new person in household, etc.) and stress.
Regardless of cause, loss of appetite can have a serious impact on your cat's health if it lasts 24 hours or more.
Diagnosis of Decrease in Appetite in Cats
Because of the numerous causes of anorexia in cats, your veterinarian will recommend certain procedures to pinpoint the underlying problem. These may include:
Treatment for Decrease in Appetite in Cats
Treatments are of two kinds: “specific” and “supportive.”
Supportive treatments do not reverse the problem that led to the loss of appetite. They simply help “carry” the cat through the most difficult part of the illness.
Home Care for Anorexia in Cats
Home care is concerned with observing your cat for possible reasons for his anorexia and helping him to eat.
For more information - see the full article “Anorexia in Cats“. This article will describe the common causes and give you more information on how the underlying causes are diagnosed and treated.
Prognosis for Decrease or Lack of Appetite in Cats
The prognosis for “Loss of appetite in cats” depends on the underlying cause for the loss of appetite and the cat's response to treatment.