Why do my cat's farts smell?

cat_fart_smells.jpgSo I'm working on the computer the other night and my cat Maddy jumps on my lap for loving. Nothing unusual here, this happens every night. So I'm petting her and she's purring and everything seems to be all right. Suddenly, a strong sulphuric scent ruined the moment. My cat farted! I've had Maddy for about six years and she's probably farted a handful of times that I know of. This led me to wonder, why do cats fart? Is this a sign of a greater problem?

Here's what my research turned up:

  • If your cat eats a high grain diet like IAMS, your cat will be more prone to let one loose more often. IAMS isn't exactly the best cat food and is typically loaded with filler like corn that your cat can't digest. In worse situations, your cat can suffer from a bad stomach if he or she can't digest the food correctly. The next time you go to the store or vet, take a look at the ingredients in your cat food. If the ingredients are proportionately high in corn, wheat, soy, By-products, BHA, corn syrup, meat and bone meal (may include anything from road kill to dead pets), artificial colors, Ethoxyquin and beef tallow/lard you might want to start looking at a better brand of cat food.
  • Cat food with Ethoxyquin in particular can be very dangerous to the long term health of your cat. Although I'm not a vet, my research tells me that Ethoxyquin has been linked to leukemia, liver cancer, chronic diarrhea, immune deficiency syndrome, loss of hair, liver damage and kidney damage. Ethoxyquin was initially developed as a herbicide and it's also still being used as stabilizer in rubber production. Sound healthy for your cat? Probably not.
  • Many believe that wet food for cats make them pass gas more than dry food. I'm not so sure about that. My cat has been eating a combination of mostly wet and dry food for six years and she rarely farts.
  • Having said all of this, if your cat is having a consistent issue with passing smelly gas, you might want to take your cat to the vet to have his/her stool examined more closely. My cat rarely farts so I'm not worried about it and I don't think you should be either if it rarely happens. It's always a good idea to talk to the vet just in case though.

    Another way to look at your cat passing gas is that he or she is so comfortable with you that it simply flows out of them without any resistance. I've noticed that my cat has only farted when we've been cuddling. I'm squeezing her gently so that might be the issue too! Either way, I look at it is as a compliment.

    Other posts I think you might be into:

    12 cats that will be extinct by 2020

    The European Cave Lion was the largest cat that ever lived...

    A cat's daily diary vs a dog's daily diary...


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    mark said:

    I found your article to be informative. But I still have questions regarding my cats flatulous problem.

    Kirsty said:

    Hello :-)

    I came to your page because 1 of my kittens has been farting a lot. Thanks for the information, i will check her food.

    gena said:

    your article is soooo wrong...
    Cats fart because of wet food not dry.
    When meat is being digested through the cats digestive system it releases methane. Just like rotting meat that releases methane, meat in stomach of a cat does the same.

    The key to reducing the amount of gas in a cat is as follows:
    Day 1
    1 cup of dry food per day
    .25 (1/4) cups of wet food

    Day 2
    1.25 cups of dry food

    Try it, it works and you cat will be at a healthy weight as the meals are portioned.

    Angelwitch said:

    I was kind of wondering this myself! I have had cats before and I don't remember any of them passing gas but I have this new 3 month old kitten who seems to passing gas at least twice a day!

    Casper's Human said:

    Thanks so much for this info. I'd always given my cat a choice of dry food and fresh meat (in seperate dishes) which he'd eat a combo of each day - without the slightest untoward whiff. In the last week or so, however, he's been trumping like a cow! The smell is awful. I just now googled "cat farts" and happily found my way to this site. Without reading this piece it never would've occurred to me that the new dry food I'd introduced to Casper's diet recently might be the cause, but it actually all makes sense.
    And the likely culprit is...? You guessed it; IAMs. Needless to say I've eliminated it from his diet as of this minute. I'll continue to monitor the situation to see/smell whether or not the problem clears up - but it seems too much of a coincidence.
    So anyway, once again - I thank you; my cat thanks you; my entire household thanks you.

    Erin Creech said:

    My cat is a little over a year old and she recently had kittens (they're 6 weeks old). From the beginning of her pregnancy she began to have really bad gas that made you leave the room. We give her Friskies dry food. Even though she's had the kittens, her farts are still terrible. She passes gas at least 4-5 times a day. What should I do?

    Rose said:

    I is the type of cat food you give them. I have a 16 years old cat, and he has been on Science Diet since he was 2 months old. His farts nerver smelled.

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