Constipation – Cats>
What Do I Do if My Cat is Constipated?
Constipation may not sound like a big deal, but cats can suffer severe, life-threatening complications from being constipated. Severe constipation can become obstipation, when it is almost or completely impossible for your cat to poop. Obstipation is a very serious condition, since a buildup of waste can lead to internal infections.
Signs and Symptoms of Constipation in Cats
Since your cat can’t tell you when there’s a problem, you’ll have to observe their behavior and take a look at what is or is not in the litterbox. Some signs your cat may be constipated include:
- Little or no defecation
- Small, dry, hard feces
- Small amounts of feces
- Loose stool with blood or mucus
- Defecating outside the litterbox
- Not eating
Some cats develop a condition known as megacolon, in which the muscles of the colon have trouble contracting and moving fecal matter along. This causes an accumulation in the colon, causing constipation.
Urinary Tract Blockage
A blocked urinary tract in a male cat may be mistaken for constipation since the cat may be straining in the litterbox. If you notice your cat straining and don’t see any urine, or a very small amount, contact your vet right away—a urinary tract blockage needs to be treated immediately.
Causes of Cat Constipation
Your cat could become constipated due to any number of reasons, such as:
- Intestinal blockage (like a hairball)
- Stress or trauma
- Lack of exercise
- Kidney disease
- Nerve damage
- Anesthetics and other drugs
Cat Constipation Remedies
Consult your vet before giving your cat any supplements or medications for constipation. Never give your cat medication meant for humans or dogs, as many of these are toxic for felines. For mild constipation, our veterinarians may recommend fiber or medications such as:
- Stool softeners
In more severe cases, an enema may be needed to remove the impacted feces. If a cat develops megacolon and the muscles are damaged beyond repair, parts of the colon may have to be surgically removed.
Animal Wellness Center: Constipated Cats’ Favorite Vets
Hopefully your cat’s constipation can be cleared up with some extra fiber and water in the diet. Talk to your veterinarian to find out the best remedy for your cat. If you suspect severe constipation or obstipation, visit Animal Wellness Center.