Do Siamese cats have sensitive stomachs?

Update April 2023: Pancreatitis

A study reports that Siamese cats are at increased risk of pancreatitis. Cats with pancreatitis rarely display signs of abdominal pain. Cats are good at hiding pain as we know. But cats with pancreatitis vomit and they have “sensitive stomachs”. They might experience nausea.

Knowing these things, it may be that Siamese cats suffering from a mild version of pancreatitis might show signs of having a ‘sensitive stomach’ as observed by their owner. But they won’t show signs that they are suffering from pancreatitis. And therefore, the owner just thinks that there are sensitive to foods without knowing the reason behind it.

I think this observation may have merit. I think the Siamese cat’s slightly increased predisposition to pancreatitis should be investigated.

I believe that modern Siamese cats can have weakened immune systems which can shorten lifespans
I believe that modern Siamese cats can have weakened immune systems which can shorten lifespans. Image in the public domain.
Two useful tags. Click either to see the articles: Toxic to cats | Dangers to cats

People ask if Siamese cats have sensitive stomachs. My first impression is that this is a complicated question. Even the phrase “sensitive stomach” means more than having a sensitive stomach. It can mean a problem with any part of the alimentary tract beyond the throat, namely the oesophagus, stomach, small intestine and large intestine.

This extends the scope of this anecdotal Siamese cat health problem. And it is largely anecdotal but it is so commonly stated that even a vet will say that Siamese cats can have sensitive stomachs. Or they might say that they are picky eaters. At this time, I am not altogether convinced that Siamese cats do have sensitive stomachs.

I have trawled through a very extensive page that I wrote on Siamese cat health problems to try and find any inherited disease associated with Siamese cats which might cause a sensitive stomach. Nothing very obvious came up but the following diseases might be a factor:

  • Esophageal hypomotility. Food takes longer to pass through the oesophagus due to lower muscular activity.
  • Pyloric stenosis – this is the narrowing of part of the stomach in young Siamese. It can cause vomiting after means and gastric distention.
  • Adenocarinomas of small intestine – this is a particular cancer of the small intestine. Siamese cats have an unusually high incidence of this cancer.
  • A predisposition to eating wool. Although unlikely this may make the stomach more sensitive. It may irritate the stomach.
  • Hepatic amyloidosis – this is a longshot. One of the symptoms of this serious disease is vomiting and nausea. They may be a link to sensitive stomachs although unlikely.

One theory that I might suggest is that perhaps purebred modern Siamese cats (slender with long faces) may suffer more often than normal with vague immune system problems.

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is caused by the immune system reacting in a negative way to the presence of certain foods or bad bacteria, or substances produced by parasites in the intestinal tract.

It may be the case that Siamese cats suffer from IBD more often than other cats but there is no evidence in the reference books that I have for this statement.

It is unlikely that Siamese cat owners feed their cats with poorer quality food than other cat owners! That would be a strange idea. But what if Siamese cat owners are more sensitive to their cat’s health and diet than other owners? This could result in over-reporting of this condition. If Siamese cats do have sensitive stomachs, it must be an inherited condition and, as mentioned, I have ticked that box above and not really come up with a standout cause.

If you are a companion to a Siamese cat I’d love to know if you believe that your cat has a sensitive stomach and if so how you dealt with it.

Please search using the search box at the top of the site. You are bound to find what you are looking for.

Useful tag. Click to see the articles: Cat behavior

3 thoughts on “Do Siamese cats have sensitive stomachs?”

  1. In 2015, I took my then 15 month old Siamese to emergency for vomiting bile fluid. He underwent bloodwork, xray, and sonogram. He showed elevated liver enzyme (ALT) and bilirubin (possible Triaditis which encompasses gall bladder infection or inflammation, pancreatitis, and IBD). He improved within a few days on multiple medications. After some reading to understand what Triaditis was and discovering other cat owners were controlling the problem with diet, I remembered I had just introduced a new treat to the cat. I had been giving him bonito flakes as his tooth brushing reward. I immediately stopped. Now two years later, the cat has never had another episode. In hindsight I think the problem was those bonito flakes as Triaditis seems to be rather chronic. The cat eats a raw lamb diet, gets a tablespoon of dry food as a treat (I feel I should stop this), and gets a 100% percent dried chicken treat for letting me brush his teeth. He never throws up.
    He is a purebred modern Siamese but has Microphthalmia. He looks like a one-eyed cat.

    1. Fabulous comment and a very useful addition to the page – most welcome and many thanks Chai. I’ll do a bit of work on Triaditis.

  2. My first 2 cats were Siamese-one a redpoint ( one of the first of the red color). He was of the original large Siamese with a round head, and a wonderful, friendly disposition. The other was a bluepoint, who preferred hearth and home to travel on vacations. Both were leash trained. Neither ever had stomach problems. They were fed wet and dry food. And a little people food

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