Cat Colitis Symptoms

Cat colitis is a painful medical condition that involves the swelling of the lining of the colon. The condition may last for less than 2 weeks, case in which it is an acute colitis, but if the condition persists, the colitis is chronic.

The colon is also known as the large intestine and this is the location of the feces before bowel movement. The cat may have trouble in defecation, diarrhea or he may experience great discomfort.

In case the small intestine is infected, this condition is known as enteritis. However, when both the small and the large intestine are swollen, this condition is known as enterocolitis.

Causes of Colitis

The inflammation of the large intestine may be caused by infections with viruses, bacteria or fungi. The cat may get these bacteria or viruses from other cats or by eating from garbage. A cat that suffers from stress and anxiety is more prone to getting colitis.

Colitis may also be caused by intestinal worms as these may irritate the lining of the intestine.

Also, if the cat ingests foreign objects, human food or medication, he may get colitis.

Colitis may be a secondary disease in conditions such as cancer or pancreatitis.

Symptoms of Colitis

As the large intestine is inflamed, the cat will experience diarrhea. The cat will defecate in different parts of the house, as he cannot hold it.

The feces will be very liquid and you may notice even blood or mucus, in more advanced cases of colitis.

Other symptoms of colitis include:

  • Vomiting
  • Dehydration
  • Stomach pain
  • Frequent elimination
  • Weight loss, in case the condition is chronic
  • Lethargy
  • Irritability
  • Worms in the feces, if the swelling is caused by parasites

These symptoms are common in other diseases, so check with your vet for an accurate diagnosis.

Colitis Diagnosis

The symptoms of colitis may be present in other conditions such as parasites.

A vet will be able to diagnose colitis. Acute colitis may be easily treated, however, if the condition persists, it may signal a more severe disease.

The vet will analyze the feces, urine and do some blood work. The vet may order a biopsy to determine whether the cells that cause the inflammation of the large intestine are cancerous.

To check for pancreatitis, which is the inflammation of the pancreas, the vet will run an immuno-reactivity test.

Treatment Options

The colitis treatment options depend on the underlying cause of the condition.

If the colitis is caused by viruses or bacteria, the vet will prescribe antibiotics and possibly a change in diet to stop the diarrhea.

Antifungal drugs should be administrated to flush out the fungi that may cause the swelling and irritation.

If the condition is caused by worms, the cat will receive a deworming treatment.

Keep your cat away from possible stress factors and in severe cases of stress, offer medication or therapy.

Diet is important during the colitis treatment. The diarrhea must be stopped to prevent dehydration. Fiber supplements are recommended to solidify the feces.