Fasting

What is the minimum time for fasting cat before endoscopy of upper intestine. I cannot, will not, starve my cat for 24 hours. If a small amount of baby food is in the stomach, how can this prevent view of upper intestine?

RESPONSE:

It is my understanding that a minimum of 6-8 hours fasting is required so that during the anesthesia the cat doesn't choke on vomit from the ingested food...because this could be life threatening. If slow gastric emptying is suspected then it's 12 to 18 hours. Allowing water is typically okay up to 6 hours prior to the procedure.

However, oftentimes they want a 24 hour fasting if they believe there is an obstruction or the age or condition of the feline is a factor. You didn't say how old your cat is but if it's over 15 then that would be a determining issue.

I understand how you feel about denying your cat food because they look to us to make sure they get their needed nutrition and they don't understand when we won't feed them.

However, I've had to do it a few times over the years and I usually justify it that if I let my "baby" eat, and he dies from vomiting under anesthesia, then it was my fault. I'd be a basket case for a long time.

I suggest you call your vet and ask if there's a reason for the 24 hours versus 6-8 hours. If the answer has to do with the age or condition of your cat, I'd be apt to follow their advice (with reluctance), and when your furry friend is back home spoil it with treats to make up for it.

It's a difficult position to be in, and I hope your vet gives you an honest answer.

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