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Swollen Belly

May 27th, 2011, 10:10 PM
I have a long haired cat that started becoming a gradually sick the year following the adoption of my dog. It was not lethargic but it started losing the fur on it's belly and eventually got diarreah and in the end went from 12 to 5 lbs. I took it to 3 different vets who all did bloodwork, put the cat on antibiotics and the diarreah stopped. No one was able to come up with a definitive diagnosis but thought it might be irritable bowel. We switched it to a gastro dry food and that seemed to help for a while.

Eventually the cat cut down on the amount it was eating and ended up with jaundice (apparently it only needs to eat 1/3 less for 3 days to get this). Still the cat was not lethargic and they told me that according to it's bloodwork, there was a 50/50 chance the cat would make it. They wanted to hositalize it and put a tube in and force feed it. I didn't want to because the cat was still eating and I thought the cat would die for sure if we left it in a cage.

I took it home and decided to give him some recovery cat food which he loves and over the last 2 weeks the jaundice has almost gone away and he has put on 2 pounds already. The cat is grooming itself and telling me when he's hungry. The fur is filling in again on his belly. But his belly now seems to be swollen/distended. He is pooping but it seems dry again. I'm not sure if he has gas or what the problem is. Maybe the recovery food it too rich to give a cat that was starving itself to death. Or maybe it's too hard on a liver that was just compromised. Is there something else I should try feeding it? It won't eat the wet gastro cat food. This cat is finiky beyong belief.

June 1st, 2011, 09:58 PM
Cats do best on a good quality canned food with no grains---no corn (especially), wheat, barley, rice, soy. You might want to check out this excellent article on nutrition: It's possible there is an underlying condition like IBS. I suggest you consult another vet or be recommended to a specialist. All the best and I do hope a solution can be found to your cat's problem.

June 2nd, 2011, 09:57 AM
The swollen belly might not mean anything.

I have one little cat that weighed less than 4 lbs when I took her in. I thought she was a kitten but turned out she was 3+ years old and starving.

Now, several years later, she weighs 10+ lbs.

She always has a swollen belly, she is food paranoid. she will always eat until she is stuffed full. If there is food in the bowl she will stuff in as much as she can.