Cat diarrhea – How to stop cat vomiting and diarrhea?
How does my cat digestive system work?
The cat’s digestive system not only breaks down food into nutrients for the cat’s body to absorb. It also acts as a protective barrier against diseases and harmful bacteria. It is therefore vital to take good care of your cat’s digestive health. We always say – healthier gut means healthier cat.
Cat digestive system includes all the organs that are involved in taking in and processing the food. The digestion process starts when the cat puts food in its mouth and ends with the cat’s defecation.
The cat digestive system therefore includes the mouth, esophagus, stomach, liver, pancreas, intestines, rectum and anus. Cat digestive issues can be related to any or all parts of their digestive system.
My cat has diarrhea – What are the main causes of diarrhea in cats?
There can be many possible causes of diarrhea in cats. Most of the time the cat has diarrhea for a short time, usually less than 24 – 48 hours. This can be because the cat ate something that does not agree with him. There is usually no reason to worry too much if your cat gets short bout of diarrhea or vomiting, that is as long as your cat is otherwise healthy and is drinking (very important).
However, if your cat is elderly or has other health issues, or if you have a kitten, then you should seek a professional advice just in case. Also, if your otherwise healthy cat is not drinking as dehydration can be dangerous for your cat’s health.
The most common causes of diarrhea in cats are:
– Infections (viruses or bacteria)
– Abrupt change of diet
– Eating inappropriate things / food
– Food allergy
– Inflammatory disorders (similar to IBD in people)
– Metabolic diseases
This list is not complete as cat digestive issues are one of the most common reasons why cat owners take their cats to the Vet. Some of the causes are less serious than others are but understanding the cause of your cats’ stomach upset is vital to get the right diarrhoea treatment for your cat.
What can I do about my kitten diarrhea?
Cat throwing up and diarrhea is not always a reason for concern but sometimes it is. Chronic diarrhea in cats needs to be addressed and the sooner the better.
You should also always be concerned about cat bloody stool. Stinky cat poop may have innocent explanations, like something your cat ate but the cause can also be more serious, like mal-digestion or mal-absorption, or be caused by bacteria or parasites. So if your cats stools are unusually smelly you may want to consult with your Vet just in case.
And if your cat’s diarrhea and stomach issues last longer than couple of days or are recurring, then you should take your cat to the Vet to find out what is causing your cat upset stomach and discuss possible cat diarrhea treatment.
Your Vet may have to do some tests to determine the cause of your cat diarrhea stress. Usually cat poo, blood and urine samples are sufficient to determine the cause but if the condition is more severe, then ultrasound, endoscopy, biopsies and / or X-Rays may be required.
Once your Vet has determined the cause of your cat’s diarrhea, he can administer appropriate diarrhea treatment which may include supplemental fluid, electrolyte administration, anti-diarrheal medication, change in diet and use of quality digestive enzymes and probiotics for cats.
But what can you do as the cat owners? Your first challenge is to make sure your cat takes any medication prescribed by your Vet. And with your Vet’s support, look into your cat’s diet and most likely do some changes it to it.
What is the best diet for cat vomiting and diarrhea?
Your Vet will most likely recommend diet with highly digestible ingredients. This helps to reduce the gut workload and can also help to improve food tolerance. Your Vet may also recommend restricting the number of protein sources as this can reduce the risk of allergic or adverse gastrointestinal reaction.
If your Vet suspects your cat’s diarrhea is causes by your cat’s food allergy, then he may recommend hypoallergenic diet formulated with hydrolyzed proteins (proteins that are broken down into very small pieces which are highly unlikely to cause an allergic reaction in cats).
Finally, your Vet is likely to recommend probiotics, i.e. beneficial bacteria in the gut that helps to balance the intestinal microflora and promotes a healthy inflammatory response in the intestines. As well as prebiotics that help by stimulating the growth of beneficial bacteria (probiotics) in the gut. Make sure you choose probiotics that survive your cats acidic stomach environment as the probiotics need to get to the GI tracts.
Other things you can do to improve your cat diarrhea and your cat’s digestive health in general are:
- Introduce regular feeding schedule, i.e. allow enough time between meals to allow the previous meal to be properly digested
- Provide a quiet, stress free environment for your cat to eat his food as stress is not good for the digestion
- Keep your cat’s litter box accessible and ‘inviting’ to encourage your cat to do his business as regular bowel movements are important for good digestive health in our cats.
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