Do Cats Fart?

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Do cats fart? Although not necessarily the best topic for the dinner table, cat farts are an important topic for pet parents to learn about.

Like other gastrointestinal functions, flatulence is a natural occurrence in animals. Though not as often (or as loudly) as dogs and humans, the dignified cat does, indeed, pass gas.

Why Do Cats Fart?

Flatulence typically results from a buildup of gas in the digestive system, which is then released from the body. In most instances, cat flatulence occurs when your kitty swallows too much air, or it could be related to allergies or food.

Allergies to dust, pollen and pests such as ticks and fleas can also cause digestive distress, including vomiting, flatulence, or diarrhea. Flea allergies are quite common, says the Cat Hospital, but if these symptoms are profuse, you should check with your veterinarian before administering any treatment.

relaxed cat on back of couchFood allergies or sensitivities can contribute to excessive gas, too. In fact, food is considered one of the main causes of cat farts. In its nutritional guidelines, the World Small Animal Veterinary Association (WSAVA) includes flatulence as an "altered gastrointestinal function" in its global "Nutritional Screening Risk Factor" checklist for veterinarian nutritional assessment. WSAVA's nutritional assessment accounts "for snacks, treats, table food, foods used for medication administration, and dietary supplements" — basically, anything your kitty puts in their tummy.

Food and Cat Farts

Choosing the right cat food for your feline friend is a great first step for managing their flatulence. Select a meal plan that includes the necessary vitamins and minerals and fits their size, age and activity level. Fiber, for example, is great for a cat's digestive system, but too much fiber can cause excessive gas. In certain cases, your veterinarian may recommend a therapeutic cat food like Hill's® Prescription Diet® that is specially formulated for proper feline digestion.

Also, cat farts are just one reason that you generally shouldn't give your cat people food. There are some foods, including some fruits, that are safe for cats in moderation, according to the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO). But consider how an excess of fiber can affect you. Now, think about that happening to your cat. Not good, right?

Though your cat can tolerate some people food, it's best to stick to food that's formulated for your furry friend, as emphasized by AAFCO: "Sharing food from the family table with pets can introduce a nutrition imbalance because pet foods typically offer an entire complete and balanced diet in a single product. In fact, many food items that humans eat are toxic to cats and dogs."

Always contact your vet before feeding people food to your kitty to ensure that it's safe for you to do so.

Flatulence and Health Issues

In rare cases, cat flatulence may be caused by a serious illness such as Tritrichomonasfoetus, an intestinal parasite that can produce gassy, "malodorous" feces, says the North Carolina State College of Veterinary Medicine. If your cat shows other signs of gastrointestinal distress, including excessive diarrhea and vomiting, and their gas has a strong smell, take them to the vet right away so a doctor can check for an underlying health issue.

Rest assured, most cat farts are not a cause for concern. They won't pass gas frequently, and when they do, they'll probably be just as surprised as you are. Cats are elegant creatures; you won't always hear it or smell it, as most gas is odorless — dainty and delicate, just like your cat.

Most of the time, a toot is just a toot. However, if you have any concerns, be sure to talk to your vet. He or she can also make recommendations on a quality food for your cat to ensure that you are properly feeding their digestive health.

Christine O'Brien

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