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I run a small cat sanctuary in the Texas Hill Country and I have a 6 year old cat I've raised from a kitten. For as long as I can remember she's had chronic diarrhea, at least for the last 4 years. I've taken her to the vet and we've tried antibiotics and treating her for coccidia. I've put her on FortiFlora for lengths of time. Nothing helped. It's like it's just her normal bowel movement. It doesn't seem to dehydrate her or cause any other symptoms. I've got her isolated right now because I'm treating her for some cystitis. I'm giving her some wet food and some food for sensitive stomachs along with the FortiFlora again. She seems to have several bouts of diarrhea a day.

I was just wondering if anyone here has had a similar issue and maybe treated it unconventionally or has any idea what the issue might be. It would be nice to get this resolved for her.

  • I've had a similar problem with my dog for the last year. He's very old. After many investigations our vet prescribed calf scour tablets, which have helped. They may be too strong for a cat and are prescription medication in any case. But perhaps worth asking? – andrewbuilder Sep 7 '16 at 8:55
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Poor cat! It sounds like you've been working closely with your vet for a long time trying to resolve this, with little success. I'm not a vet, but I wonder if this is something a fecal transplant could help. I believe this has been used successfully to treat a variety of stubborn GI problems in humans; I don't know if it has been used in cats. It might be worth asking your vet about.

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You might ask your vet if vitamin B12 injections are worth a try. If it works, it may need to be repeated every two weeks.

I was at the vet today, and we got to talking about B12. She mentioned that it could work wonders for cats with irritable bowel syndrome. She also said that she has one feline patient that she's treating with B12, and if the cat is just a day or two late for the injection, the bloody diarrhoea returns. She said this can help dogs as well.

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  • That's interesting information. I have B12 I can inject myself, I guess I would just need to figure out the dose. I bought some hydrolyzed protein food to check for allergies. Yikes, it's expensive. From the reading I did, it sounds like she would have more of an intolerance over allergies because she doesn't itch. I'll do some more research on the B12. I don't know if she has IBS, I would have to check the other symptoms. – Elorah Sep 11 '16 at 16:13
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Diarrhea can be a symptom of an allergy.

To determine if its an allergy you need to start eliminating potential allergens. Try limiting its exposure to foreign material by changing things such as:

  • The type of cleaning solutions used in their cage / area.
  • The type of bedding material.
  • If bedding material is laundered change laundry detergent to
    something hypoallergenic and without perfumes. Don't use fabric softeners.
  • Remove cat toys, catnip, etc.
  • Try substantial changes to the cat's diet.

I recommend starting with home made cat food: link.

Rather than having an allergy the cat may be intolerant of certain foods or additives.Try bottled water rather than your tap or well water.

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  • That's a very interesting theory. I hadn't even considered allergies. She's normally an outside cat so there's no issues with bedding and detergents. Since I've had her isolated and she's not liking the wet food as much anymore, I put her on a Sensitive Systems diet and continued with the forti flora. And her stools are starting to be more solid. So maybe the new food is helping. I will have to do more research on the allergies. – Elorah Sep 9 '16 at 21:24
  • @Elorah If she is an outdoor cat it could be innumerable things causing the diarrhea. She could be eating rotten human food or dairy products or too much plant matter. If it is an allergy there is no way to eliminate all the potential allergens if she is outside a lot. Has she been checked worms and other parasites? – Beo Sep 14 '16 at 12:39
  • She's outside, but she's in an enclosed pen she can't get out of, so there's no human food available to her. There's grass for her to chew, though. She hasn't been checked for worms lately but she has in the past and nothing came up. There's also nothing that shows up in her stool, visually. I've had her isolated inside for 3 weeks now and the only thing that's caused a bit of a change is the food for sensitive systems along with forti flora. I started her on the hydrolyzed protein food yesterday, so we'll see how she does with that. She really likes it, I just hope it helps with her problem. – Elorah Sep 14 '16 at 14:35
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I'd like to add another idea in addition to the other answers. I'm coming from the perspective of a dog owner so please take that into consideration.

My cattle kelpie is now 16 years old. He was hospitalised after a severe spinal injury almost three years ago. After the hospitalisation and during his recovery period he was very sensitive to food. We reacted by making sure his food was thoroughly cooked and every aspect of our preparation and his eating was sterile. He's suffered from digestive issues over the last one and a half years that have manifested as long and severe bouts of diarrhea and "jelly" poo, which is sad. A number of carefully controlled diets failed to solve the problem.

The first hint of the solution came when the vet prescribed calf scour tablets. This medication was developed to stop baby calves dying from dehydration due to diarrhea. The symptoms are usually associated with poor gut health. We continue to treat our boy with a quarter tablet every three to four days. It helped a lot.

The next step was to feed him natural, mostly raw food. This was to encourage his body to produce the correct proteins in his bile duct and gallbladder during digestion. No dried food or grains. Raw beef mince, egg, spinach leaves and a spoonful of yoghurt for breakfast. Some partially cooked chicken and vegges for dinner. It helped more.

The final step was to feed him beef bones at least twice a week, in the dirt. I'm not joking - it was an accident the first time - it works! Raw beef bones fed to our dog on a patch of dirt. We allowed the bone to become covered in dirt throughout the eating process. Obviously healthy garden soil is preferable and avoid local environmental disasters.

It helped fix his digestive issues. He needs the beneficial microorganisms in the soil to help maintain gut health. Now he is the healthiest he's been since the accident! No more diarrhea!

Sometimes I think I forgot he was a dog and tried to keep him wrapped up in a blanket and fed on baby food. Certainly he needed that for a little while, but not in the long term.

All animals are different and even within breeds there is vast variation. Cats are different to dogs but both are evolved from meat eating species that lived in harsh environments without the "cleanliness" that humans surround ourselves with.

Perhaps our experience can give you a thought about how you might help heal your cat's digestive issues.

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