Feline Colitis

Does your cat have access to the garbage can? Does she have internal parasites, such as Coccidia or hookworms? Does she have food sensitivities? Has she been diagnosed with feline leukemia, an immune disorder, a fungal infection, polyps, or tumors? If so, she may have colitis. Colitis is inflammation of the colon's mucous lining, which often results in painful diarrhea. The condition can be acute or chronic. If signs appeared suddenly in response to a change in diet, try withholding food from your cat for 24 hours. Return to feeding your cat her original diet over a two-week period. Introduce a new diet of bland, hypoallergenic food, such as strained-meat baby food. Vitamin A has been found to help certain types of colitis. You can try to reduce your cat's diarrhea with activated charcoal, which helps absorb toxins, poisons and other irritating materials. The diet-induced colitis can be prevented by feeding your cat a consistent high-fiber diet.

If the condition still doesn't improve, visit your veterinarians. To rule out a possible pre-existing condition that may have caused the colitis, your vet will perform a stool examination and perhaps an endoscopic test. Testing for food allergies may also be advised. If your cat does have colitis, the first step involves treating whatever underlying factor is causing the condition. For instance, diet-induced colitis responds to a daily menu of high-fiber, regularity-promoting food or a hypoallergenic diet. Parasite-induced colitis can be treated by ridding your cat of internal pests. Colitis related to an immune system disorder is treatable with cortisone, although long-term treatment should use other, less toxic anti-inflammatory remedies.

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