Will my cat be ok after eating grease?
March 11, 2012 7:31 PM   Subscribe

Zula got up on the counter this afternoon and ate about 1/3 cup of grease from ground beef and bacon. She's been pretty lazy since then, not eating dinner (no surprise). Can cats "overdose" on grease? Is there an amount that is considered toxic? Google told me about Pancreatitis so I know to watch for vomiting. I can call my vet in the morning.
posted by Ochre,Hugh to Pets & Animals (10 answers total)
Our cat got into a can of tuna in oil last week and proceeded to hurl bile on our bed the next day. She was 100% fine after that. I'd keep an eye on her, make sure she drinks and uses her litterbox, and if she's not back to her old self tomorrow, I'd call the vet.

Actually, depending on the quantity of grease, I may call the vet and ask for an opinion tonight.
posted by lydhre at 7:41 PM on March 11, 2012

My biggest concern, well, you might want to diaper that cat.

I am doubting 1/3 cup would do much otherwise. Also, if she vomits I wouldn't be too upset. That's her system saying she ate too much grease.
posted by cjorgensen at 7:41 PM on March 11, 2012 [5 favorites]

I once left an electric griddle on the kitchen counter. It was coated with the grease from an Epic Weekend Breakfast. When I came back hours later, there were little greasy footprints all over the counter and a hugely contented cat lounging on the sofa. The griddle was licked clean.

The next day kitty had a bout of diarrhea that was somewhat frightening to both me and kitty, but there were no long-term consequences, and I learned to clean the griddle immediately after use.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 7:47 PM on March 11, 2012 [3 favorites]

My Aunt's very old dog died from, along with many other things, pancreatitis. This dog's Sunday dinner was a few sausages, including all the grease from the pan he could get as it went in the dishwasher. For like 15 years.

I think your cat will be fine. Cats are pretty good at letting you know when they are not fine.
posted by fontophilic at 7:50 PM on March 11, 2012 [2 favorites]

She just threw up a lot. Mostly liquid, but a few pieces of grass. So this is good, right? That she got a lot of the grease out of her system?
posted by Ochre,Hugh at 8:09 PM on March 11, 2012 [1 favorite]

Cats and dogs often eat grass to endure vomiting. I can't imagine she'd have much of a problem. I would hate to be wrong, but I have a cat and I love my cat, and I wouldn't bat an eye if she'd done this. An indoor cat has few worries other than chemicals.
posted by cjorgensen at 8:57 PM on March 11, 2012

Thanks for the helpful answers. I think I can sleep peacfully tonight and call the vet in the morning. She's settled down and sleeping again. :)
posted by Ochre,Hugh at 9:15 PM on March 11, 2012 [1 favorite]

The one cooking thing I've been told to be aware of is onions and garlic - toxic to cats even in smallish amounts. If you had been cooking onions in with your ground beef, that would be a call-the-vet-now situation.
posted by LobsterMitten at 11:49 PM on March 11, 2012

Fun fact: I called the pet poison control line b/c I was unsure whether my cat had eaten a 1/2" by 1/2" piece of diced onion. According to them, for a ~10lb cat, they would need to eat something like a pearl onion or a shallot to be in trouble.

But I'm still paranoid and super careful about onions.
posted by Medieval Maven at 7:17 AM on March 12, 2012

I had a cat lick up a pan of grease left over from cooking Italian sausage. It vomited a number of times, ended up with aspiration pneumonia and had to spend a few nights at the vet getting antibiotics. I suspect that's a rare complication of pancreatitis. What I would worry about more is how long it goes without eating. Too long without eating can cause fat accumulation in the liver which causes further nausea, which prevents them from eating (this also happened to the same cat in a separate incident and required a feeding tube to be placed for a month, which was very expensive.
posted by Teeth of the Hydra at 7:53 AM on March 12, 2012

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