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Diarrhea in cat...taking to the vet but would like opinons

starr
June 3rd, 2008, 09:00 PM
First of all I've had cats for a very long time and only one that had an actual bowel condition requiring medication to prevent diarrhea. Otherwise the only time we've had this occur was when one of our cats ate something "disagreeable" outside.

Right now we have a male that is about a year and a half old. About a month ago he started having bouts of diarrhea and is quite skinny. We had the vet come out for routine shots as we have cats, dogs, and horses..so it's cheaper for a vet call than an in person visit. At that time the vet said that the cat's weight wasn't a problem because of his age. The overall physical showed him to be in great health.

We figured the first two rounds of diarrhea might be just coincidental..ie. something he ate..a bad mouse or something. The incidents started in the spring basically and he was fine all winter.

He doesn't act sick or anything...just has the diarrhea. We read online that if this happens to a cat, try taking them off commercial cat food and feeding chicken or fish. We are actually accustomed to doing this as we have a diabetic cat who needs high protein so we cook him lots of chicken to mix with his higher protein crunchies. So, providing chicken for another cat wouldn't be a problem. We also had a Kuvasz that needed a meat diet as he was allergic to anything with grains, so again, we could do the meat with the cat if we needed to.

What do you all think? :shrug:Any experience out there with this kind of thing? We have an appointment for our kitty tomorrow but sometimes a ton of minds working together can even help a vet! (((-:

ancientgirl
June 3rd, 2008, 09:22 PM
I'm sorry your cat is having the poops. I'm afraid I can't give you much help, because the first thing that comes to my mind is the food. Hopefully that's what it is and changing his diet will help.

Please let us know what the vet says when you take him. :goodvibes:

dbg10
June 3rd, 2008, 10:47 PM
We figured the first two rounds of diarrhea might be just coincidental..ie. something he ate..a bad mouse or something. The incidents started in the spring basically and he was fine all winter.


What comes to mind are something he eats when he's outside that is not agreeing with him or have you changed his food lately? Has he been getting into something that you aren't aware of, inside the house?

My cats regularly choke up hairballs but don't often get diarrhea. When they do, it is usually a result of something they've eaten outside and keeping them in for a day or two cures the problem. But when they get back outside, if they still have access to whatever it is that upset their tummy's the diarrhea appears again. That's how I identified the source of the problem...so far.

Good luck with your kitty :thumbs up

starr
June 3rd, 2008, 11:27 PM
Rectal exam showed nothing but excess mucous. Our cat is a little dehydrated which is to be expected and a minor fever. The vet says the fever could have been stress induced from having the rectal exam. Before going to the vet, our cat ate a helping of chicken normally given to our diabetic cat. He seems normal in all ways except for the diarrhea.

They are keeping him overnight to get some blood work done in the morning and hopefully to get a stool sample.

14+kitties
June 3rd, 2008, 11:35 PM
I hope the vet gets to the bottom of the problem quickly. Diarrhea is not something to fool around with.
I recently went through that with one litter of kittens and their mom. It turns out they had roundworms which is easily treated. We treated the other litter as well to be on the safe side. It is possible he has worms. Especially if he is allowed outside.
Good luck!!

sugarcatmom
June 4th, 2008, 12:20 AM
Mucusy diarrhea can be a sign of Inflammatory Bowel Disease (not saying that's what your cat has, just one of the options). Many people have success switching to a homemade raw diet with simple ingredients and no grains. Also works if it's a food intolerance, especially if you switch to a novel protein (something like rabbit, venison, buffalo, duck etc). Dry food tends not to be a good idea in these cases as the high rendering and excess carbohydrate content can be further irritating to the intestinal tract. Some good info here: http://www.catnutrition.org/index.php

Along with a diet change (which would also benefit the diabetic), you might want to try something like slippery elm bark powder. It has anti-inflammatory properties and soothes mucus membranes, as well as helps equalize water balance in the gut. You can find it at health food stores. Mix 50-100mg in with some wet food a couple times a day. http://www.littlebigcat.com/index.php?action=library&act=show&item=slipperyelm

Also, quick comment on adding cooked chicken to your cats' meals: if it makes up more than 10% you need to think about adding calcium and taurine. Plain muscle meat is not a balanced diet. Otherwise, it's great as a treat or supplement.

Love4himies
June 4th, 2008, 07:52 AM
I agree with Sugarcatmom, grains are not well digested by cats and can slow down the digestive system. Cats don't drink enough water so diarrhea can cause a cat to be dehydrated as the water is not being absorbed by the colon and therefore any kibble is a bad idea.

I would also get him dewormed, just incase. What about coccidia or giardia that can cause diarrhea too?

starr
June 4th, 2008, 04:35 PM
I noticed someone has himmies! We have a himmie cross. She's beautiful.

The cat was dewormed a month ago or more but maybe it is a parasite not "covered" by the vet's medication?

I have arranged a homeopathic consultation as well to discuss diet. I'll mention to her some of the remedies one of you suggested. I hope it's not IBD. Poor cat. Do you know if it's treatable?

We are still awaiting test results today from the vet. They claim he is eating and drinking normally...

BTW, thanks for the links sugarcatmom..going there now. (((-:

starr
June 4th, 2008, 09:43 PM
:sick::sick:The vet said his blood tests showed infection somewhere. They will test tomorrow for coccidia and giardia. I have been reading up on these and the second one is very scary. Our other 3 cats are fine and I can't figure out how he would have gotten these parasites or bugs. We got a new cat mid-February and I'm hesitant to think she is a carrier as the sick cat was fine until a month or two ago.

I read that he coccidia can come from an infected mouse...

What bothers me is the possibility of infecting our other cats.:sad:

I guess I just have to wait and see but the description of symptoms seems to lean towards something like these.

I have emailed a friend of mine who is a Himalayan breeder to see what she knows. Any help would be appreciated.

starr
June 5th, 2008, 12:25 AM
Tests for giardia came back negative. Now we are waiting on coccidia.

Incidentally I learned that coccidia can become a problem in cats after vaccination. A friend of mine has a neighbor who is a vet and this afternoon they were discussing the whole issue with our cat. The vet said that many cats have coccidia in their bowels that never gives them a problem but that can get out of control when the cat's immune system is compromised. One of the means of compromisation is vaccinations. She said a small percentage of cats will have the coccidia parasite take advantage of the body after vaccination and begin multiplying to the point where symptoms occur. Then if the cat's body is able to recover from the vaccination, it will often fight the coccidia down to tolerable levels again....but some just don't or can't.

She said the issue at hand if he has a coccidia problem is to boost his immune system to fight back. Medications help slow the coccidia growth to give the cat's body a chance to power up and erradicate itself of the pest. How-ev-er, I read that once a cat has coccidia it will always have it. I am going to ask our vet and homeopath about this and also see if my friend can ask her neighbor. If it's true then we'll always have to watch this cat as he ages because any slump in his immune system could bring the situation back I suppose..

Well, here I go talking about it as if he HAS it. Hopefully he doesn't. Then we just have to hope that all it is, is a problem with diet.

Love4himies
June 5th, 2008, 07:31 AM
http://www.peteducation.com/article.cfm?articleid=726

You are right about the immune system and coccidia, normally it is only a threat to kittens and animals who immune systems are weak.

sugarcatmom
June 5th, 2008, 07:32 AM
It would still be a good idea to look at his diet, since the best way to boost a cat's immune system is with species-appropriate nutrition. All your cats would benefit from grain-free wet food (although if your diabetic is getting insulin shots, don't change his diet without hometesting his blood glucose - a drop in carb intake can drop insulin requirements and result in hypoglycemia if you aren't monitoring). What do you currently feed them?

More links for you:
http://www.catinfo.org/
http://www.catinfo.org/felinediabetes.htm
http://www.felineoutreach.org/EducationDetail.asp?cat=Nutrition

starr
June 5th, 2008, 08:27 PM
Our little guy isn't responding to the antibiotics and further tests are pointing towards FIP. Our daughter is devasted because there is no cure and mortality is high and swift.

starr
June 5th, 2008, 09:45 PM
High white cell count..persistent and increased fever...intermittent diarrhea..
Those are his only symptoms. Thyroid, kidney, liver are all normal. He has an appetite, drinks well and was happy to see us despite a fever of 39 that isn't responding to antibiotics.

I have read about cats with FIP and they seem to have far more symptoms than this.