Loss of the desire to eat, before the nutritional needs of the animal have been met, is called anorexia.
Causes of anorexia include:

  • loss of taste or smell due to age or physical damage
  • medical conditions (disease, physical trauma, inflammation)
  • emotional stress (pain, anxiety, fear)

Absence of food intake adversely affects all body systems. Pets that are underweight or have recently lost more than 10% of their body weight need extra nutritional support, and veterinary care is advised.

To encourage a cat to eat, try warming the food, encouraging words and stroking, gently cleaning the cat’s nose to improve its ability to smell, and using a highly palatable food with a strong, attractive aroma.

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