Hygiene

Do Cats Fart? Get The Facts On Feline Flatulence

Have you ever wondered if your cat farts? We can answer that question quickly: yes cats sure do fart. Jump in and learn everything you ever needed to know about cats farting.

Danielle DeGroot

Last Updated: January 25, 2024 | 6 min read

A cat farting on their back on a bed.

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Have you ever wondered if cats fart? Unlike dogs, cat farts are not as obvious, but cats get gas and fart, the same as many other animals, including us. Cats are much more discreet about it, so you may not have noticed your feline fur baby letting a little wind loose.

Cats get gas and pass flatulence, but they often have much less of it than other animals. Along with that, their farts are often odorless. Odorless toots are fantastic news for us cat owners, especially if, like me, you also have a couple of gassy pups in the house.

There are a few things you should know about your cat farting, cats getting gas, and when it’s something to be concerned about. So, if you have ever asked, “Do cats fart?” or had any other gassy cat-related questions, I’ve got you. Sit back, and let’s get down to all the gassy details about cats farting.

Do Cats Fart?

Yes, of course they do! Your cat toots, just like your dog and you. I know farts are a touchy subject, and no one wants to get called out about it, but the fact of the matter is: everybody farts, including our four-legged feline family members. Farting happens when we swallow air, or our bodies create gas resulting from bacteria in our guts. Either way, that gas must exit the body and has only two places to come out of. Your purr baby can either toot or burp that air out.

Most felines “fart” at least one or two times a day. However, many kitty owners may not think their purr babies pass gas because they have never heard or smelled it. This perception is probably based on the experience many of us have with dogs. I personally have two dogs that can clear a room in about three seconds flat when they have a gassy day, but I have never heard any of my cats fart in over thirty years of feline ownership.

Do Cat Farts Smell?

A woman trying not to smell a cat fart sitting in her lap.
Feline toots are almost odorless, making them hard to detect.

I have seen the question, “Why do cat’s farts smell so bad?” In reality, most of the time, feline farts don’t smell at all. They eat far less hard-to-digest plant material than many other animals like cows and dogs, so they don’t usually have as smelly gas. Essentially, our cats are expert crop dusters and have likely farted near or directly on us hundreds of times.

5 Reasons Cat Farts Smell Bad

Below I discuss a few common reasons why cat’s farts might smell foul.

1. Food Related

Felines are obligate carnivores and need diets that are meat-based. High-quality animal proteins like chicken, beef, turkey, and fish are best. If they eat something that is new, high in plant material, rotten, or too rich to digest, they can experience gastrointestinal distress, pain, and stinky toots.

Tummy and digestive trouble can happen sometimes when switching pet foods. Different kinds of protein are broken down in the gut; some can cause more gassiness than others. Smelly flatulence can also be triggered by your kitty eating human food, which is part of why feeding them only feline-safe snacks is essential.

If our kitty has stinky gas after eating commercial pet food, something in it may trigger them. You can select food for sensitive stomachs and discuss this with your vet if it is a long-term problem.

2. Food Intolerance Or Allergy

Like us, our pets can have food allergies. These can trigger discomfort and gas. Some felines are allergic to proteins, including chicken and beef. Dairy is another big trigger for many kitties. Though they are often depicted as enjoying a nice saucer of milk, felines are often lactose intolerant. Some commercial pet foods may contain ingredients that trigger some indigestion or gassiness, which may make your kitty’s farting and poop smell worse.

3. Illness, Parasites, Or Infection

Illness, internal parasites, or infection, either viral or bacterial, can all cause your purr baby’s farts to smell. One common parasite that can cause stinky gas is Tritrichomonas foetus (T. foetus). Your kitty may also experience bloody, mucous-filled stools, diarrhea, and stomach pains. This infection requires an antibiotic to treat. It is common even in purebred cats, affecting up to 30%, according to the North Carolina State University College Of Veterinary Medicine. Some felines may also experience stinky farting as a side effect of taking medication. Different kinds of medication often interfere with digestion and could trigger some gastrointestinal upset.

4. Swallowing Too Much Air

If your kitty eats or drinks too fast, they may gulp down large amounts of extra air. Trapped air wants to get out and may expel as smelly gas. A slow or puzzle feeder may be a good investment if this happens to your pet.

5. Digestive Dysfunction

Just like us humans, felines can experience digestive dysfunction. It can even be present in the form of chronic issues, including inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), which often goes undiagnosed in cats. A feline with IBD may suffer from bloody stools, gassiness, diarrhea, loss of appetite, and vomiting. If you suspect that your kitty has IBD, it is best to discuss this with your veterinarian to come up with a diet that is least likely to trigger gastrointestinal dysfunction and pain. IBD is difficult to diagnose in kitties and usually requires a tissue biopsy.

Other medical conditions that affect the digestive tract include hairballs, liver disease, kidney disease, constipation, pancreatitis, gastrointestinal lymphoma, an imbalance in gut health, and malabsorption. These can all cause gas buildup and stinky farts. Even stress can cause your purr baby to have gastrointestinal distress and smelly toots.

If you are concerned that your cat’s flatulence and stinky farts are due to an underlying medical condition, it is best to discuss this with your veterinarian. They can help you rule out or identify any medical concerns and formulate a treatment plan. It may involve a special diet that will not trigger indigestion and gas.

Why Is My Kitten Farting So Much?

Hungry cat watches person cut raw meat.
Higher fiber content in food and red meat can be harder to digest and may cause gas.

Kittens may fart more than older felines due to their immature digestive systems. Eating food that is too rich, spoiled, or simply not for them can be the cause of stinky kitten toots. Try to pick a high-quality, meat-based kitten chow and stick to it. Switching food too much can cause gas, but also pain, and even bloody stools.

Frequently Asked Questions

I know there are plenty of questions about cats’ farting. Below, I cover a few of the top ones, but if I missed yours, let me know in the comments.

My cat’s farts are very smelly. What’s wrong?

If your kitty’s farts are smelly, there are a few reasons why. Most of the time, their toots do not smell at all, but if they eat something bad or that doesn’t agree with them, it can cause stinky gas.

Why does my cat fart when I pick him up?

You are much larger than your purr baby, and when you pick him up, even without meaning to, you squeeze his body a little bit. If there is any air trapped inside, this pressure can cause it to exit the body in the form of a fart. Sometimes, kitties can get stressed out, anxious, or afraid when they are picked up from a comfortable spot suddenly, which may also cause them to fart as a reaction.

How can I get my cat to stop farting?

Most of the time, your kitty’s farts will be odorless and unnoticeable. However, if you are noticing a lot of farting, especially smelly ones, it is best to talk to your veterinarian first to rule out any medical issues. Afterward, you must feed your kitty a high-quality diet and stay consistent. Avoid adding new foods and lots of treats. Maintaining a healthy gut is the best way you can prevent your pet from farting excessively.

Is it normal for my cat to fart a lot?

It is perfectly normal for kitties to fart. However, they do not fart as much as humans or even dogs. That is mainly due to how their digestive system works and the high meat content of their diets. Even if you don’t see or hear it, every cat farts. If you start noticing the farting more, or they start smelling really bad, this is an indication that there may be something wrong. If the farting is excessive, very smelly, or highly noticeable, stay on the safe side and schedule a checkup with your vet.

Keeping Your Cat Healthy

Taking your kitty to the vet for regular checkups is a pivotal element of lifelong health. While they need to see the vet more during their kitten days, every cat should go for at least one or two regular checkups a year. Preventative care is crucial in identifying problems early and getting proper treatment.

Along with regular vet care, healthy food benefits your cat’s physical and mental growth and development and supports proper body function and health. I can tell you from experience that the cheaper the food you pick for your pet, the worse their bowel movements and farts will smell. Fortunately, there are plenty of high-quality options, including human-grade fresh meals like Smalls or top-notch dry food like Stella & Chewy’s. Along with that, make sure you keep the litter box clean to encourage healthy bathroom behavior (but never flush the poop).

Why Trust Love Your Cat?

Danielle is a feline owner with over 30 years of experience. She has worked as a professional researcher for many years. She is dedicated to providing the best data-backed research and information to help pet owners. Danielle spends countless hours researching the latest pet care, health, food, and training developments. She works alongside a professional and experienced team to bring the best, most accurate, and up-to-date information to our readers.

A cat licking woman's face.

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