Feeding your cat after surgery to support recovery

Feeding your cat after surgery to support recovery
5 Min Read

Your cat's Diet is one of the main ways that you can give it a good start in the recovery period. Find out here how to feed and which foods to give your cat aft

If your cat has recently undergone surgery, it is important to properly care for it so that it can recover quickly and effectively.

Surgery can be a very difficult time for your cat, both mentally and physically. Their bodies will work hard to repair and maintain their strength, so the diet your cat feeds – and the way you feed it – is very important.

How do I feed my cat after surgery?

Your body may not be able to digest the same amount of food as it did before surgery. Proper digestion and absorption of nutrients from food requires a lot of ‘work’ from your cat's digestive system, and this energy may be diverted elsewhere to speed up the healing process.

Ask your veterinarian for advice on how to feed your cat immediately after surgery. How much food should you give after bringing your cat home? Does your cat need a diet change?

Most PetsLicious will advise feeding a smaller portion the night after discharge from the hospital, for example half the normal portion, but it depends on your cat and the type of procedure given. Many cats do not have a high appetite after surgery, but ask your veterinarian about this if it lasts a long time.

If your cat vomits after eating on the same day as the day of their surgery, ask your veterinarian for advice on how best to restore their feeding plan progressively.

Your cat may have to wear a protective mouthpiece to prevent it from licking or scratching the wound; make sure this does not interfere with eating and drinking activities, and if so, remove it while eating. Depending on the type of surgery your cat has undergone, they may need to be fed with the help of a feeding tube. If so, talk to your veterinarian about the best way to do it.

What food should I give my cat after surgery?

Your vet may recommend that you transition your cat to 'recovery' food when their condition improves after surgery. Food for recovery is designed to provide your cat with all the nutrients needed to return to full health while minimizing the digestive workload.

These foods contain higher amounts of protein, fat, and calories, making them energy-dense foods. This means your cat can eat smaller portions and still get the energy and nutrients it needs. The Protein in recovery foods helps in cell growth and re-formation and has a high digestibility so it is easily absorbed.

Many cats often experience after surgery, so any recovery food should be tasty and appetizing for your cat, with appropriately shaped kibble or chips, to encourage them to eat.

When should my cat return to the vet after surgery?

With proper care and diet, your cat is expected to return to full health soon after its operation. However, if you notice any of these symptoms, you should return to the veterinarian:


Vomiting, diarrhea, or constipation

Consistent loss of appetite or reduced water intake

Depression, weakness, or lethargy

Chills or changes in body temperature

Instability in their legs

Heavy or painful breathing

You carefully after the surgical procedure can make them most likely to recover faster and return to their normal condition earlier. If you are unsure about how to treat them, ask your veterinarian for advice.