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How to Behave with Your Cat When Sick

Watching your cat play around your home is enough to lighten up your heart. Oh, the sparkle it brings to your face! So, you do everything to keep your cat happy and healthy- because, in reality- that’s all you ever want. But, do you know what to do with your cat when sick?

Unfortunately, regardless of how much care you shower on your feline friend- just like us humans- there will be periods of breakdowns when your cat gets sick.

Of course, you would wish there was a magic button that would help you skip through this period- and honestly, we wish there was one too. 

However, since that’s not possible, here are some things you should do when facing these periods:

How to Behave with Your Cat When Sick

Give your cat extra attention

Do you remember how much you craved more attention when last you fell ill? The same is true for cats.

A sick cat requires a lot of extra care, so if possible, move its litter box closer to where your pet is, to prevent excessive movements.

However, you’d have to be sensitive to detect if your cat wants to be left alone to rest- be sure to honor its wishes.

Still, keep a close eye on it.

Another trick to limit your cat’s movement would be getting it a backpack, specifically a space backpack.

Before buying one, research the best space cat backpacks.

Woman brushing a gray cat

Groom it

Asides from giving your access to inspect its furs, cats generally loved being groomed, especially when sick.

Cats cannot talk – obviously, so look out for signs of what your cat might be feeling via grooming its furs.

Vet giving medication to a gray cat from syringe

If necessary, give medications

A sick cat needs medication – that’s a no-brainer.

However, what most people do is stop giving the medications (recommended by the vet) once the symptoms disappear.

Do not do that!

Give the medications as long as the vet advises.

Again, don’t ever give your cat human medications.

Certain drugs work for us humans because we have the enzymes needed to break them down- some of which your cat might not have.

So, regardless of how sick your cat appears, do not administer a painkiller or any sort of human medication- even vitamins can be toxic to your feline friend!

Black and white cat eating from a white saucer

Monitor your cat’s feeding habit

When cats fall ill, it is characteristic of them to stop eating and drinking or have trouble using the bathroom.

However, the irony is, for your cat to recover, it will require a supply of both food and water.

First off, you need to separate your sick cat from your remaining cat (assuming you own more than one cat).

This allows you to know for sure if your sick cat is eating well, or not.

If this is the case, it will require lots of fluid.

Fluids can be administered via the syringe into the mouth.

Your vet will give your instructions on the quantity of fluid that should be administered, as well as how often it should be done.

Orange cat with bandana riding in a car

Dealing with motion sickness

When traveling, it is usual for cats to have motion sickness.

There are generally two main causes of motion sickness: issues with the balance system of your cat and fear or anxiety.

Motion sickness is not actually a fatal condition.

With simple tips, you can train your cats to skip this hurdle.

First, take your cat on short trips.

Every day, take a drive around the block with your cat in the car.

Again, playing some soft music in the car and keeping the windows rolled up would be beneficial to your cat.

In conclusion,

This period doesn’t have to be a stressful one for you.

In fact, it can help you bond more with your cat as you devote your time to making sure it gets the best care possible!


Tuesday 26th of September 2023

As I age, I worry what I'll do if I can't scoop, etc.

Frank Sterle Jr.

Sunday 2nd of January 2022

Beautiful yet misunderstood, prejudged and often despised animals, cats are. ... Contrary to their oft misperceived worthlessness as pets by many people, cats can actually be very pleasant and amazingly attached to you if they sense enough genuine affection, including verbal attention, directed at them.

Our cat, Simon, seems to really appreciate an enthusiastic talking-to. He will slightly whine like a small child when wanting something, for example as he, with great expectation, stands next to his grooming brush. He’ll also have much to say, via loud trilling or an adorable combination of meow and trill, and hesitate eating food we drop to the floor while we eat at the table.

In regards to good companionship and health, I've found that pet cats, as with dogs, are often a case of owners basically receiving what they put into their pets — or fail to.

Sarah L

Monday 29th of November 2021

Very good tips. Especially making sure you give ALL the medication even if your cat is feeling better.

Dorothy Boucher

Sunday 28th of November 2021

I do think you should be spending more time with your cat when they are not feeling well, and giving them extra attention. It is a great bonding time also for both parties. @tisonlyme143

Thomas Gibson

Sunday 28th of November 2021

Cats are hard to read. Thanks for this post.

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