There are some regions of the body that lend themselves naturally to conversation. Consider the ear, a body part that is both visually appealing and conveniently close at hand for close inspection and, of course, furry. As for the colon, it’s a little trickier than that. Despite the fact that a visit to the litter box can often reveal whether or not something is wrong with the cat’s big intestine, it can be awkward for cat owners to talk about their pet’s elimination problems. And that’s a shame, because feline digestive problems are all too frequent. Some typical issues with a cat’s colon include:
1. Acute colitis
One of the most common reasons for taking a pet to the vet is because of sudden diarrhea. Young cats, cats in high stress or confined surroundings, and outdoor felines are more likely to be affected, but every cat is at risk. Infrequent diarrhea can be brought on by a number of factors, including stress, parasites, nutrition, and infectious agents.
Stool samples are analyzed in these situations for the presence of parasites. In most circumstances, the veterinarian’s recommended bland food and medication will do the trick. More investigation may be needed if a case drags on for more than two weeks.
2. Lymphocytic Plasmacytic Colitis
An inflammatory bowel disease called lymphocytic-plasmacytic colitis may be the cause of prolonged diarrhea in cats. Overgrowth of lymphocytes and plasma cells in the colon walls of affected cats causes inflammation and symptoms include diarrhea, constipation, and blood in the feces. Only a biopsy can provide a conclusive diagnosis. Once a diagnosis has been made, felines are often treated with a mix of dietary modification and medication.
3. Constipation and Megacolon
Cats can also have constipation, the opposite of diarrhea. While any cat is susceptible to the occasional bout of constipation, some felines experience a chronic variety that is more challenging to treat. Colon damage might be irreversible if it goes untreated. The painful condition known as megacolon is characterized by a huge, inflated colon. Obstructions that narrow the colon and prevent feces from leaving the body are one cause of this condition, but nerve sickness that disrupts regular colon function is another.
Veterinarians can provide quick relief by performing enemas and hand evacuation of big, impacted fecal lumps. Anesthesia may be necessary for this surgery because of the severity of the pain and the fragility of the colon’s tissues. Dietary modifications and the use of laxatives may be part of the aftercare treatment plan. It may be necessary to take additional drugs that stimulate the colon to help.
Cats do develop colon cancer, however it is much less prevalent than other types of the disease. Many different kinds of cancer can affect the colon, but the most prevalent ones include lymphoma, adenocarcinoma, and mast cell tumors. Colon cancer, especially in its early stages, can be hard to identify because its symptoms are shared by many other illnesses of the colon. The veterinarian may suggest an x-ray or ultrasound of the abdominal structures if he or she has any suspicions that cancer could be an issue. Generally, the outlook for patients with colon cancer is not optimistic.
5. Urinary Tract Disease
What? Urinary tract disease is included with colon issues? Constipation is a typical symptom of urinary tract illness in cats. Pet owners may mistake their cat’s increased excursions to the litter box and uncomfortable posture for colon issues because of how similar the two conditions look in a straining urinating cat compared to a squatting fecesing cat.
When a cat’s urinary tract becomes blocked, it’s a true medical emergency. Any concerned cat owner who calls a clinic about their feline friend’s constipation will likely be advised to bring their pet in for an examination as soon as possible because only a vet can tell if the feline is obstructed.
There will be times when cleanliness isn’t a priority, even if you have a cat that is very particular about its surroundings. It’s common to take one’s colon for granted until something goes wrong with it. Get your cat checked out right away if you notice any signs of intestinal trouble. You’ll appreciate it mutually.
Wondering about Tips for Preventing Kidney Failure in Cats? Check it out on our lastest post!