Q: Cat That Doesn't Chew Food, Just Swallows It Whole???

October 22, 2008 | By Deana D. | 4 answers | Expired: 2649 days ago

Deana D.

My 9 year old tabby has never in her life chewed her food. She just swallows it whole, including dry food. As a result, she prefers wet food instead, vomits frequently, has awful smelling breath, and has severe tooth decay. Anyone else familiar with this issue and know why she does this? Her brother, also a 9 year old tabby, chews everything fine and has none of the teeth issues she has...

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Oct 24, 2008

Has her vet checked it out? The bad breath and dental decay don't sound pretty.

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Ginny D.

Oct 23, 2008

Teeny does this too. He used to chew his dry food more often until he needed some teeth out, since then he swallows it whole. From the first day I adopted him, he's done the "eat too much too quickly and throw up" thing. I always thought it was because he spent an unknown amount of time surviving on his own, outside, but I also had a vet of his say that was an anxiety-related neurotic behavior. So I don't know WHY he does it, just that he does.
For years I would feed him several small meals a day, but with two or more cats, that's pretty difficult. I slowly transitioned him from that to free-feeding, and for the most part he does pretty well at regulating himself. I still have to watch him though - I tend to agree with my old vet's opinion, since I notice that it's usually when I get home after work, or a long day that he'll run over to the food bowl, gulp a bunch of food, and then throw up a few minutes later. Not pretty. So, for Teeny, it seems like a separation anxiety kind of thing to me.

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Oct 22, 2008

Have you thought about changing her diet? Believe me, I am a novice in this area. I just started reading up on cat nutrition last week. Both of these websites are extremely helpful -- and have a number of additional links off them: www.catnutrition.org/index.php and www.catinfo.org/.

The vet from the cat info page says the majority of cats don't chew dry food, all cats are better off on canned or raw food and our expectation that eating dry food prevents dental disease is unrealistic. As I said, this is all new to me -- I've fed dry food all my life. However, I just adopted two shelter cats and I've put them on a good quality canned food. I still need to tackle converting my two original cats to canned -- and maybe eventually to raw -- but that will be a challenge.

You just might want to consider an alternate diet -- seems that folks have had very good luck in treating a number of different conditions just by changing their cat's diet. As far as tartar, I know your vet can help address that -- I don't know of any home remedy.

Good luck!

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Oct 22, 2008

it might ease you to know one of mine does to but his breathe hasn't smelled

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