Cat Diarrhea Treatment at Home

In most cases, mild cases of cat diarrhea can be treated at home. Often, a diarrhea in cats is caused by a dietary indiscretion, sudden food change or an intestinal virus. Although it can be uncomfortable for cats, diarrhea serves to cleanse the intestinal tract, hastening the passage of toxins through the system.

Diarrhea can, however, be sign of something more serious. Atypical behavior in your cat (lethargy, behavioral changes or obvious signs of illness or distress) may indicate the need for veterinary assistance:

  • Severe diarrhea for more than twenty-four hours
  • Diarrhea accompanied by fever, vomiting, abdominal pain or excessive thirst
  • Bloody diarrhea
  • Confusion or disorientation
  • Dehydration

Twelve to Twenty-four Hour Fast

When treating cat diarrhea at home, the first step is simple: stop putting food into your cat that will-quickly and surely-come out the other end. Despite pleading looks and pitiful cries, your cat will survive a twelve to twenty-four hour fast. Often, this will be enough to rest the intestinal tract.

Tip: Be sure to provide fresh water during the fast.

Feed A Bland Diet

After a fast, reintroduce small amounts of food. A bland diet may help, too. Mix two parts cooked white rice and one part boiled ground beef or chicken and feed small amounts every four to six hours. Plain mashed potatoes can be substituted for the rice if you've got a picky eater. Begin mixing regular rations after two days, slowing switching back over three or four days.

Add Fiber

Fiber in the form of over-the-counter psyllium products like Metamucil can help firm your cat's stools. Fiber draws moisture out of the stool and colon, reducing diarrhea. For cats, one teaspoon mixed with water for one or two days should help.

Skip The Dairy

If you give your cat milk or other dairy products, stop. Many cats have difficulty digesting lactase and this intolerance can cause diarrhea. You can give your cat small amounts of yogurt; this is a better tolerated source of calcium.

Tip: Freeze and defrost cottage cheese. The liquid given up during the freezing process contains most of the lactase. Drain this off and you'll have cat-friendly cottage cheese.

Reduce Stress

Have you moved, added a new pet or made a change in routine that could be stressing your cat? Stress-related diarrhea can come on suddenly. Spend some extra time with your cat during periods of stress.

It may be tempting to medicate your cat to control her symptoms, but this may prolong the condition. The faster the toxins pass through her system, the faster she will be back to normal.