Nuke the Puke: Reduce Cat Vomiting by Eliminating Kibble | The Happy Beast

Nuke the Puke: Reduce Cat Vomiting by Eliminating Kibble

Puke, vomit, regurgitation… no matter what you call it, it is disgusting and totally annoying to clean up after your cat has gotten sick. Cat vomiting is also probably the number one complaint that we hear from our cat customers. If you’re able to eliminate the possibility of any underlying health issues then the solution is usually very simple and straightforward: ditch the dry food!

What is it about kibble that can lead to cat vomiting? No matter what brand you feed, kibble is too high in carbohydrates and too low in moisture for cats. Remember “grain-free” doesn’t mean “low carb.” The average kibble ranges from 25%-50% carbohydrates and only 10% moisture. A cat’s natural diet of rodents, birds, rabbits, etc. is less than 2% carbohydrates and 70% moisture. This deviation from cats’ natural nutritional profile makes kibble more difficult for them to digest and thus frequently regurgitated.


A cat’s physiology, whether they are an indoor or outdoor cat, is built to receive its energy from protein and fat. A cat feels satiated when they eat a meat-based diet, not a diet loaded with carbs. Therefore cats that are fed a kibble diet tend to overeat because they don’t feel satiated. Not only can overeating lead to regurgitation, but it can also lead to obesity and diabetes.

In addition to reducing cat vomiting, there are also many benefits to eliminating kibble and transitioning your cat to a meat-based diet. Cats are obligate carnivores, which means that they literally have no physiological need for carbohydrates in their diet. Optimal health can only be achieved when we feed a “species-appropriate” diet and ditching the kibble in favor or canned, freeze-dried or raw food is a great place to start.

Stop by the store and we can talk more about your cat’s diet and develop a customized nutrition plan to keep the vomiting down and the happiness up.


Stay tuned for Part 2 of this post and more info on how dry food affects your cat’s urinary and kidney health.

Why Do Cats Scratch? | The Happy Beast

Why Do Cats Scratch?

Why do cats scratch? I’m going to be straight up with you, your cat’s scratching is an instinctual behavior which means there is little to no hope of getting your cat to completely stop scratching. However, you can absolutely get your cat to stop scratching less desirable objects such as your couch, curtains, and carpet.

The first thing to understand is that cats scratch to mark their territory. The act of scratching allows the cat to leave both a visible sign and scent on the area through scent glands located on the paws. Scratching is also a simple pleasure that cats enjoy. When we take the time and have the patience to understand this is part of their nature, we can then take a deep breath, forgive them for all those destroyed items, and move forward towards a solution. Cat behaviorist and author, Pam Johnson-Bennett, also has a number of great articles on her website with all sorts of additional information on enabling healthy cat scratching behaviors.

Here at The Happy Beast, some of our favorite solutions include:

  • Cat furniture made of carpet and sisal are great options that give your cat a place to scratch and a place to perch. Midwest brand cat trees are a combination of sisal and carpet and are super easy to clean and fashionable. (Stop by the store to check them out!)
  • Corrugated cardboard scratchers are inexpensive and have the potential to last up to a year. Kong, Our Pets, and Vanness Scratchers brtands range in price from $11.99- $19.99. Cat’s love them, especially when sprinkled with a bit of catnip! A single Our Pets brand scratcher has lasted over a year at my house, and has withstood the aggressive scratching of four cats.
  • In general, simply making sure that your cat gets enough play and mental stimulation can also minimize bad scratching behaviors. Even toys that are not specifically geared toward scratching can help, including chase toys like Play n’ Squeak, Go-Cat feather tails, Peacock feathers, and Go-cat mouse catcher.
  • Regardless of what solution works best for you, there will certainly still be some setbacks along the way. 🙂 However, please don’t de-claw your cat under any circumstances! De-clawing your cat can often lead to other unwanted behaviors, such as litter box issues and inappropriate urinating. Please check out for more information on this important issue.
Live catnip plant

Catnip. Why does it make cats so wild?

What makes cats so wild about catnip? The plant contains a chemical called nepetalactone which enters the body through the olfactory system (the system responsible for our sense of smell.) When your cat sniffs catnip, the nepetalactone stimulates sensory neurons in the brain and causes a euphoric “high.” The sensation usually lasts about ten minutes with wild chasing, playing and hyperactivity and ends with your cat falling into an hour-long catnap. (Check out the awesome infographic below from

Catnip affects ~80% of cats and has no effect on young kittens.  It’s safe for cats and humans to consume. (But it just makes the humans sleepy, like chamomile tea.)

Catnip comes in many feel-good forms, but these are The Happy Beast’s cats very favorites. Try a couple and see which makes your cat the craziest. Watching your cat go nuts is part of the fun!

1. Live Catnip Plants

The BEST catnip is fresh! Our live plants are locally grown and can be left in the plastic pot or transferred into the ground where they will grow into your cat’s very own, private catnip jungle. Most cats enjoy chewing on the plant, but you can also harvest and dry the leaves.


2. LoveNips Wild Birds and Mice

Hand-sewn, locally made, and packed with local, organic catnip, these bright, wool birds with feather tails are a favorite among The Happy Beast kitties!


3. Yeowww! Bananas and Cigars

Filled with 100% organic catnip and the perfect size for tossing, batting and attacking!


4. Kong Catnip Spray

Make any toy a catnip toy with a spritz of Kong’s Catnip Spray. The oil is steam-distilled making it the most concentrated and potent form of the herb. The spray is convenient and leaves almost no mess.



5. PawBreakers

A ping pong-sized, solid ball of all-natural catnip. Cats go crazy chasing a Pawbreaker around their house! The balls last a long time (but may get trapped under the fridge or behind a couch!)




An awesome infographic from Catnipsum.comCatnipsum Catnip Infographic | The Happy Beast

The Scoop on Cat Litter

The most widely used cat litter brands are made of bentonite clay, but many cats and owners (including yours truly) prefer a litter made from pine, corn or wheat. Be sure to research your particular brand, but the points outlined below are true of most products. Experiment with different styles of litter until you find one that both you and your cat prefer.

Pine (Nat’s preferred litter!)
We like “Feline Fresh”

  • Non-tracking and non-dusting
  • Made of reclaimed pine wood from sustainable forestry products, in a zero-waste production facility
  • 100% renewable and biodegradable
  • No Chemicals or Additives

We like “Integrity Corn & Pine Blend” and “World’s Best Cat Litter”

  • Lower tracking than clay litter, with a texture that most cats prefer
  • High absorbency and odor control
  • Superior clumping for easy cleanup
  • Free of chemical fragrances

We like “Swheat Scoop”

  • Low tracking
  • Odor control from natural wheat enzymes
  • Clumping
  • Chemical and Clay free

We like “Dr. Elsey’s Precious Cat” and “Integrity”

  • Most common due to it’s superior clumping ability and odor control
  • Suitable for sifting/mechanical litter boxes
  • Texture preferred by most cats

Cons of clay litters:

  • More dust and tracking than other types of litters.
  • Cats with respiratory issues, such as asthma may benefit from a non-dusting litter.