Vomiting blood, or hematemesis, is a condition that requires immediate medical attention. There may be several different reasons for this, whether minor or life-threatening. Vomit that contains blood may have a coffee-grounds appearance.
Woman pointing to a cat's x-ray.(Photo: Brian McEntire/iStock/Getty Images)
A hemorrhage in the stomach or intestines can cause vomiting blood. A hemorrhage can affect the heart and cause a heart murmur and low blood pressure. A severe hemorrhage can result in rapid breathing.
A sick cat with head low to the ground.(Photo: Purestock/Purestock/Getty Images)
A cat may vomit blood when suffering from ulcers or an inflamed bowel. An inflamed bowel is common in cats with inflammatory bowel disease.
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A cat suffering from a respiratory or viral infection may have occurrences of hematemesis. Other metabolic or neurological infections can contribute to this as well.
Cat gives cat a syringe full of medicine.(Photo: Oksana Byelikova/iStock/Getty Images)
A cat that is critically ill will likely throw up blood. Drugs such as NSAIDs can increase the risk of vomiting blood.
Close up of cat wound.(Photo: Eileen Kumpf/iStock/Getty Images)
A cat may experience vomiting blood after a traumatic incident. This could include a burn, major surgery or snake bites. Toxic plants, pesticides and heartworm can cause vomiting blood.
What to Do
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Call the vet right away if you notice any blood in your cat's vomit. A vet will perform blood, urine and fecal tests and possibly an X-ray or ultrasound to determine the cause.