Why does my cat fart when I pick him up: The stinky truth

For many cat owners, the act of picking up their furry friend is a common occurrence. However, what happens when your cat starts to fart when you lift them up? This experience can be off-putting, confusing, and downright stinky. In this article, we will explore the reasons behind why your cat farts when you pick them up and provide some tips on how to prevent this smelly problem.

What causes cats to fart?

Before we dive into what causes cats to fart, it is important to understand what flatulence is. Flatulence is the presence of excess gas in the digestive system that is expelled through the rectum. This gas can come from several sources, including swallowed air, microbial fermentation of undigested food in the colon, or from certain medical conditions.

Cats, like humans, can experience flatulence due to a variety of reasons:

  • Diet: Feeding your cat a diet high in carbohydrates or that contains certain ingredients can cause flatulence. Additionally, sudden changes in diet can also lead to digestive upset and gas.
  • Swallowing air: Cats can swallow air when they eat or drink too quickly or when they groom themselves excessively.
  • Medical conditions: Certain medical conditions can cause digestive upset and flatulence in cats, like inflammatory bowel disease or parasites. If you suspect your cat may have a medical issue, it is best to consult with your veterinarian.

Why do cats fart when you pick them up?

When you pick up your cat, you are essentially compressing their abdomen, which can cause any gas that is present in the digestive system to be expelled through the rectum. This can be exacerbated if your cat has a lot of gas or digestive upset.

Additionally, some cats may have a condition called megacolon, which is essentially an enlarged colon that can lead to constipation and flatulence. When you pick up a cat with megacolon, the pressure on their abdomen can cause them to pass gas.

Preventing flatulence in cats

If your cat is experiencing flatulence, there are several steps you can take to help prevent or reduce the occurrence:

  • Feed your cat a high-quality diet: A diet that is high in protein and low in carbohydrates can help promote healthy digestion in cats. Additionally, feeding your cat smaller, more frequent meals can also help prevent flatulence.
  • Slow down mealtime: If your cat eats too quickly, they may swallow air along with their food. Providing smaller portions and using a puzzle feeder toy can help slow down mealtime and prevent gas.
  • Minimize stress: Stress can disrupt your cat’s digestive system and lead to flatulence. Provide a calm and stable environment for your cat, and consider using calming aids like pheromone sprays or diffusers to help reduce stress.

When to seek help

If your cat’s flatulence is severe or persistent, there may be an underlying medical condition present. It is important to consult with your veterinarian if you notice any of the following:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Loss of appetite
  • Lethargy


Flatulence in cats can be a smelly and unpleasant experience for both you and your furry friend. However, with the proper diet, stress management, and attention to your cat’s digestive health, you can help prevent and reduce flatulence in your cat. If you suspect an underlying medical condition or chronic digestive upset, seek the advice of your veterinarian.

Common Questions and Answers:

  • Q: Is it normal for cats to fart?
    • A: Yes, flatulence in cats can be a normal occurrence. However, if the flatulence is excessive or accompanied by other digestive symptoms, it may indicate an underlying issue.
  • Q: Can I give my cat gas-relieving medication?
    • A: It is not recommended to give your cat any medication without consulting with your veterinarian first. Some medications that are safe for humans can be toxic to cats.
  • Q: Can a high-fiber diet cause flatulence in cats?
    • A: Yes, a high-fiber diet can sometimes cause flatulence in cats. However, fiber is an important part of a healthy diet for cats and should not be eliminated without consulting with your veterinarian.


  • https://vcahospitals.com/know-your-pet/flatulence-in-cats
  • https://www.catster.com/cat-health-care/why-do-cats-fart
  • https://www.petmd.com/cat/conditions/digestive/c_ct_megacolon

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