I feed my cat a combination of dry and canned cat food. The brand of canned food I use comes in several varieties, including an "indoor" formula which is supposed to contain higher fiber and lower fat than the regular. I have been using this as the default variety, interspersed with the other flavors. However, my cat has recently started refusing to eat the indoor variety, though she still eats the others.

Why might this change have occurred? Is there any way I can convince her to accept the indoor variety again?

Note: I noticed that she had thrown up one morning a couple of weeks ago. Could she be associating this negative experience with the particular flavor of cat food?

  • maybe buy other types of indoor cat food
    – latte27
    May 25, 2017 at 20:58
  • Sometimes a lot of cat food is not manufactured correctly and the taste may be off. You can find a lot number on the cans and see if the cat is not eating multiple lots of the same type of food.
    – Beo
    May 29, 2017 at 11:00

2 Answers 2


She might. She might've felt bad after eating that particular food, and now associates the food with that experience. It happens. If you're sure that food hasn't gone bad, you can either stop giving it to your cat for a couple weeks and then 'reintroduce' it carefully (add a bit to her bowl with other food, then gradually heighten the percentage), or take the radical route and not give her anything else before she starts eating that food again. No healthy cat would starve him/herself to death, so it'll take 2 days at most. Or you might let your cat eat what she wants, that's also an option.

As for the reason, it might have nothing to do with the food, it might've been a coincidence that your cat got sick after a meal. Or the food could've gone bad. Or the formula might've changed, or your supplier switched to the same brand from another factory... Or it might not have anything to do with her throwing up, she might've got tired of that particular food, it also happens sometimes. My younger cat, an absolutely healthy girl, stopped eating one of the flavours of her regular food for a few weeks, then just as suddenly started eating it again as if nothing happened. Cats are like that, they have moods and preferences as well as instincts.

  • I have a cat like that. Every two weeks or so she will stop eating wet food for a day or so and leave it. Then she starts up again with the same flavors like nothing has happened.
    – Oldcat
    Mar 13, 2015 at 18:25
  • A cat may refuse to eat a particular food and thus make itself sick (hepatic lipidosis, aka fatty liver disease, can be fatal). Please see this answer for more information.
    – Zaralynda
    Mar 14, 2015 at 2:31

Would you like to eat the same meal every day?

Our two cats are rescues who lived in the wild for their first 6 months. Initially, they were the easiest cats to feed, they would eat anything I put in front of them.
Having had picky cats in the past, before I realized how easy our new cats were, I had already bought every type of cat food and checked which they liked best. As it turns out, they ate all of them with no complaints whatsoever.

So we decided on the brand that looked the best to us (affordable but food that actually looks good). The cats ate it for weeks. And after those weeks, we noticed that they ate less and less of it.

We switched up the cat food, and they happily ate all of it again. But after a week or so, they ate less and less again.

Although our earlier (picky) cats never tired of their favorite food (the only food they would still eat); our current cats seem to favor variety. We've seen the same happen to their preferred treats, and even where they sleep. They never stick with a single choice for long, and they like changing it up.

The best approach for us now is to remove something they're not excited about, and move to something different. After they've not had something for a while, we reintroduce them to the original food, and they love it again.

From your description, it's possible that your cat has simply tired from eating the same food. Maybe she always liked the indoor food less than the other options, but was happy enough to eat it (if she's sufficiently hungry). However, repeatedly being served the same meal (that she doesn't really like) can result in her trying to find ways to get something else.

Cats have no way of signaling that they want something else except by refusing to eat what you've currently served them.

Give her something else for a while. If she consistently dislikes the indoor formula faster than the other options, then she clearly doesn't like it as much.

Unless there's a medical reason for her to eat it, I'd suggest you follow your cat's feedback.
You told your parents what you did and didn't like to eat as a kid, wouldn't you prefer it if they actually listened to you?

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