Theories for Chronic Diarrhea

A kitten's painful loose stools may be the result of an early parasitic infection. More tests may provide a diagnosis.

By J. Veronika Kiklevich, DVM

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Because you found this kitty you probably do not know his early history. Perhaps he was heavily parasitized before he came to you, and although I'm certain that you and your veterinarians have eliminated parasites as a primary cause for this problem by now, immunologists have a theory that early parasitization can cause the gut to become sensitized to proteins later in life. This is a much-simplified version of the entire theory, but I do think that it might be important for you to put your kitty on a very limited hypoallergenic diet for a minimum of eight weeks before you see any results. You may even have to cook his meals for a while. Most people do not keep their animal on a single diet for a long enough period of time, and trying one diet after another for short periods of time will ultimately do more harm than good. There is an excellent nutrition department at the University of Pennsylvania and you should insist that they be involved with managing your cats health.

Often, the only way to determine the cause of chronic diarrhea is to obtain multiple full thickness intestinal biopsies. This requires the cat to undergo a laparotomy (abdominal exploratory), but at this age the risks of having a complication with this type of surgery are rare. This might seem like a rather extreme measure, however if it provides a diagnosis, then it is worth having it done.

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Heather    Indianapolis, IN

5/12/2009 10:38:59 AM

I would just like to share my experience. I purchased two full blooded Persians. 3 weeks apart in age and have the same father. Brought them home, both had chronic diarrhea. They were messing all over theirselves, people, their bedroom, etc. Spent many visits to the vet with many stool samples, antibiotics, nutrional supplements, changing their diet many times. NOTHING WORKED. I mean nothing. Even tried Rx cat food called ID. made it worse. FINALLY, we found a simple solution. Boil grounded hamburger and grounded chicken, as well as plain white rice. It worked, literally over night. I am doing this for awhile and adding vitamin suuplement to this so I can assure they are getting the proper vitamins. It has been a very stressful 3 months and costly at that. I just wanted to share this receipe for anyone having this same problem. Obviously, my cats do not tolerate any kind of kitten/cat food. So until they are older, this is what they are getting. To make it easier on me, I boil 2 pounds of hamburger and 2 pounds of grounded chicken and, drain, and then add the rice. It makes about one weeks worth of supply for two cats/kittens.

debbie    philadelphia, PA

3/11/2009 5:15:08 PM

Very interesting. My 9 year old cat has had chronic diarrhea since he came home from the kennel in december.My vet has put him on vetasil and pretisone. Hasn't helped much.

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