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Diarrhea in Cats: Common Causes & When It's Serious

Diarrhea in Cats: Common Causes & When It's Serious

Along with being messy and making your cat uncomfortable, diarrhea can sometimes also indicate that there is a more serious issue at hand. Here, our Yucaipa vets discuss what causes diarrhea in cats, potential concerns, and how to stop chronic diarrhea in cats.

When Cats Have Diarrhea

Diarrhea can be caused by a number of factors. From changing your cat's food to general tummy upset, the good news is that it is usually mild and should pass quickly.

even so, you should keep in mind that there could be a more serious underlying issue. This makes speaking with your vet important, no matter how serious it seems.

Why does my cat have diarrhea?

Below are some of the most common reasons for a cat to have 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

When should you be worried about cat diarrhea?

If your cat has a sporadic bout of diarrhea with no other symptoms then they are likely going to be okay. However, if they experience more than two episodes of diarrhea, it could indicate a problem. It's a good idea to contact your vet if your animal companion has two or more bouts of diarrhea. If your kitty has an ongoing issue with diarrhea then you may also need to speak with your vet about how to stop chronic diarrhea in cats.

If your cat strains while passing loose stool that resembles diarrhea, they may have some type of bowel obstruction. Bowel obstructions can be fatal in a short period of time. If it occurs you should speak with your vet or bring your cat to the nearest emergency animal hospital for care right away.

If your cat seems to be consistently experiencing reoccurring bouts of diarrhea it is likely a symptom of an underlying medical condition. This can be particularly true if your pet is very old, very young, 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 pet is experiencing repeated episodes of diarrhea.

Diarrhea on its own may not be worrisome, but diarrhea along with other concerning symptoms should be addressed by a vet as soon as possible. Here are some symptoms that may indicate a serious medical concern:

  • 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 showing any of the symptoms listed above, contact your veterinarian. Your vet will let you know whether your pet's symptoms indicate that an examination is necessary.

How to Treat Cat Diarrhea

When you are wondering how to stop cat diarrhea the first step will be to contact your vet. They can offer options for treating your cat and they will recommend an examination and diagnostics if necessary.

Some methods of treating diarrhea in cats include:

  • Change Your Cat’s Food
  • Add More Fiber Into Their Diet
  • Encourage Water and Electrolyte Intake
  • Start Them on Probiotics
  • Give Them Anti-Diarrheal Medications

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.

If your cat is experiencing reoccurring diarrhea or other concerning symptoms, please contact our Yucaipa vets.

New Patients Welcome

At Oak Glen Animal Hospital, we are always accepting new patients. Our experienced vets are passionate about the health of your pet. Contact us today to book your first appointment and learn more.

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