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Diarrhea in Cats

If your cat is experiencing diarrhea then it is not only messy for you but also very uncomfortable for your cat. You may also be wondering why your cat has diarrhea. In today's post, our Long Beach vets discuss the causes and symptoms of diarrhea in cats and what you can do to help them feel better.

If your cat is suffering from diarrhea then you will want to help your cat with the symptoms as quickly as possible, here are some things you should know about the causes, symptoms and treatment of diarrhea in cats.

Diarrhea in Cats

Mild bouts of diarrhea can be fairly common for feline companions and may be caused by mild intestinal distress due to your cat ingesting a small amount of something that doesn't agree with them, such as table scraps, or just from the simple act of switching to a new brand or flavor of food.

That said, there are also a number of more serious health issues that could lead to your cat suffering from diarrhea. 

What are the typical causes of diarrhea in cats?

Below are some of the most common reasons for cat or dog diarrhea:

  • Stress or anxiety
  • Change in diet or treats
  • Eating garbage or spoiled food
  • Ingestion of foreign objects such as toys, bones and fabric
  • Ingesting toxins or poisons
  • Viral infection
  • Parasites
  • Bacterial infections
  • Pancreatitis
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Colitis
  • Liver or kidney disease
  • Intestinal cancer
  • Medications such as antibiotics

What are the indications that you should seek urgent veterinary care if your cat has diarrhea?

When is diarrhea in cats considered an emergency?

If your pet has a single episode of diarrhea and is otherwise acting normal, it is likely not a cause for concern. Keep an eye on your cat's bowel movements to see if things clear up. More than 2 episodes could indicate a problem, so it's a good idea to contact your vet if your cat has two or more bouts of diarrhea.

If you notice that your cat is straining to pass a stool but only passing small amounts of watery diarrhea, they could be experiencing a painful blockage due to the ingestion of a foreign object such as a toy. This is a very serious concern and needs urgent veterinary attention, contact your vet right away or head to the nearest emergency animal hospital for care.

Recurring bouts of diarrhea over a short period of time could be a sign of a very serious health issue, particularly if you have a cat that is either a senior or a kitten or has a compromised immune system. A number of infections can be very serious, contagious, or even life-threatening. Contact your vet right away if your cat is experiencing repeated episodes of diarrhea.

Cats that are showing other symptoms, as well as diarrhea, should also be seen by a vet as soon as possible. If your pet has any of the following symptoms contact your vet right away to make an appointment:

  • Blood in stool
  • Unusual drooling
  • Vomiting
  • Lack of Appetite
  • Weakness
  • Signs of dehydration (Sunken dry-looking eyes, dry nose, or dry, sticky gums)

If your cat is displaying any symptoms that cause you concern, contact your veterinarian. Your vet will let you know whether your cat's diarrhea symptoms require further diagnostic testing and care.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

Is your cat experiencing the unpleasant symptoms of diarrhea? Contact our Long Beach veterinarians today to book an examination for your feline friend.

New Patients Welcome

Spring Animal Hospital is accepting new patients! Our experienced vets are passionate about the health of Long Beach companion animals. Get in touch today to book your pet's first appointment.

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