Cat Won’t Eat After Dental Surgery: What You Need to Know


If you’ve recently taken your cat for dental surgery, you may be concerned if your furry friend is not eating afterward.

It’s not uncommon for cats to experience a loss of appetite after dental procedures.

In this blog post, we will explore the reasons why your cat may not be eating after dental surgery and provide some helpful tips to encourage them to eat again.

Why Won’t My Cat Eat After Dental Surgery?

Pain and Discomfort

One of the main reasons why your cat may not be eating after dental surgery is pain and discomfort. Dental procedures can be invasive, and your cat’s mouth may be sore and tender.

This can make it difficult and painful for them to eat.

It’s important to remember that cats are masters at hiding pain, so even if they are not showing obvious signs of discomfort, they may still be experiencing it.


Another factor that can contribute to your cat’s lack of appetite is the medications they may be taking after dental surgery.

Pain medications and antibiotics can sometimes cause gastrointestinal upset, leading to nausea and a decreased appetite.

If your cat is on medication, it’s essential to follow your veterinarian’s instructions carefully and monitor any side effects they may be experiencing.

Stress and Anxiety

Cats are creatures of habit, and any disruption to their routine can cause stress and anxiety.

Dental surgery can be a stressful experience for cats, and this stress can affect their appetite.

Additionally, the use of anesthesia during the procedure can leave your cat feeling groggy and disoriented, further impacting their desire to eat.

Changes in Taste and Texture

After dental surgery, your cat’s mouth may be sensitive, making it challenging for them to eat certain foods. They may find it uncomfortable to chew hard kibble or dry food.

Additionally, the taste of their regular food may be altered due to the medications they are taking or the lingering effects of the anesthesia.

This change in taste and texture can lead to a loss of interest in eating.

Tips to Encourage Your Cat to Eat After Dental Surgery

Offer Soft and Wet Food

To make it easier for your cat to eat, try offering soft and wet food after dental surgery. Wet food has a higher moisture content, making it easier to chew and swallow.

You can also try warming the food slightly to enhance its aroma and make it more enticing for your cat.

Ensure Proper Pain Management

If your cat is in pain after dental surgery, it’s crucial to ensure they are receiving proper pain management.

Consult with your veterinarian to determine if additional pain medications are necessary. By alleviating their discomfort, you can help improve their appetite.

Try Different Food Options

If your cat is not interested in their regular food, try offering different options. Experiment with different flavors and textures to find something that appeals to their taste buds.

You can also try hand-feeding your cat or using food toppers to entice them to eat.

Maintain a Calm Environment

Creating a calm and stress-free environment for your cat can help stimulate their appetite. Provide a quiet and comfortable space for them to eat, away from loud noises and distractions.

Spending quality time with your cat and providing reassurance can also help reduce their anxiety and encourage them to eat.

Monitor Water Intake

In addition to food, it’s essential to monitor your cat’s water intake after dental surgery. Dehydration can further decrease their appetite.

Ensure fresh water is readily available and consider offering wet food with a higher moisture content to help keep them hydrated.


It’s not uncommon for cats to experience a loss of appetite after dental surgery.

Understanding the reasons behind their decreased appetite and implementing strategies to encourage them to eat can help ensure their recovery goes smoothly.

Remember to consult with your veterinarian if you have any concerns or if your cat’s appetite does not improve over time.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Why does my cat cry before throwing up?

A: Cats may cry or meow before throwing up due to discomfort or pain in their stomach. It’s their way of expressing distress or seeking attention.

Q: What should I do if my cat is crying and then throws up?

A: If your cat is crying and then throws up, it’s essential to monitor their behavior and overall health.

If the vomiting persists or is accompanied by other concerning symptoms, such as lethargy or loss of appetite, consult with your veterinarian.

Q: How can I help my cat if they are yowling and throwing up?

A: If your cat is yowling and throwing up, it’s crucial to identify the underlying cause.

Schedule a visit with your veterinarian to determine if there are any medical issues contributing to these symptoms.

Q: My cat is meowing loud and throwing up. What could be the cause?

A: Loud meowing and vomiting can be caused by various factors, including gastrointestinal issues, dietary changes, or stress.

Consult with your veterinarian to determine the cause and appropriate treatment.

Q: Why is my cat making weird noises and throwing up?

A: Weird noises and vomiting in cats can be a sign of digestive issues, hairballs, or other underlying health problems. If the symptoms persist or worsen, seek veterinary attention.

Q: What can I do if my cat won’t eat after dental surgery?

A: If your cat won’t eat after dental surgery, try offering soft and wet food, ensuring proper pain management, trying different food options, maintaining a calm environment, and monitoring their water intake.

If the issue persists, consult with your veterinarian for further guidance.

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