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What Works Well For Constipation In Cats?

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 
About two weeks ago, I had to take Maverick into the vet for what I thought was a UTI: the vet didn't find anything wrong w/ him, w/ the exception of an ear infection - which he treated w/ ear drops - and also gave Maverick antibiotics "just in case".

But this morning, he was in the litterbox again, acting like he couldn't go. I'm thinking he's having a problem w/ constipation: he is getting old after all (almost 13), and I think older cats have problems w/ that. He seems to be just fine otherwise: he's eating and drinking, he has no fever, and he's been running around and playing/chasing the other furbabies. So I don't think it's a UTI.

What can you give a cat for constipation? Obviously, if I really thought that Maverick needed to go to the vet, I'd take him there. But I don't think he needs to go. I just think he needs help w/ having constipation, but I don't know what to give him to help him..

Any advice or suggestions would be greatly appreciated!

~KK~
post #2 of 27
Personally and after a TALK with my VET ... I use pumpkin ( for the one not allegic to it ) , baby food squash and slippery elm( works for constipation and diarrea)... yams also seem to work
post #3 of 27
Oh boy, another case of constipation. It seems to be a growing problem. I also suggest pumpkin (pure pumpkin in a can/not pie filling). If he doesn't poop soon, call a vet immediately because he may need an enema. The longer the stool stays in and impacted, the more damage it could cause in the long-term.
post #4 of 27
My vet suggested mineral oil for hairballs...so it might help for constipation too.

Art
post #5 of 27
I heard that if they didn't like the pumpkin to try pumpkin pie filling... also my vet has this gooey stuff in a tube that they use for constipation! Some cats have a real hard time with this, and you got to really watch it! Let us know how he is doing, or should I say "going"
post #6 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by artgecko View Post
My vet suggested mineral oil for hairballs...so it might help for constipation too.

Art
Steer clear of the mineral oil--it's no longer recommended. It is so light that it is easy for a cat to aspirate (suck it into their lungs) it instead of swallowing it.

From this site: http://marvistavet.com/html/constipa...megacolon.html

"An old fashioned remedy has been the oral administration of mineral oil. It is best to avoid this temptation as mineral oil, being a light fluid without flavor, is easily inhaled accidentally into the respiratory tract. Since it is a mineral based compound, it cannot ever be removed by the body and the immune system will forever attempt to wall it off with inflammatory granulomas."
post #7 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by glitch View Post
I heard that if they didn't like the pumpkin to try pumpkin pie filling... also my vet has this gooey stuff in a tube that they use for constipation! Some cats have a real hard time with this, and you got to really watch it! Let us know how he is doing, or should I say "going"
The gooey stuff in a tube is called Laxatone. It's primarily used for hairballs but can also work for constipation. It's supposed to be meat-flavored but most cats hate it.
post #8 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by glitch View Post
I heard that if they didn't like the pumpkin to try pumpkin pie filling... also my vet has this gooey stuff in a tube that they use for constipation! Some cats have a real hard time with this, and you got to really watch it! Let us know how he is doing, or should I say "going"
Don't use the pumpkin pie filling - it has spices in it that are not good for the cat. Just get the pure pureed pumpkin and mix it with their wet food.
post #9 of 27
There's also Vetbasis, a petroleum-free hairball/laxative gel. My kitty is very resistant to eating the gels. If/when he gets constipated again, I'm going to try the pumpkin as others have suggested. I hope Maverick feels better
post #10 of 27
I know it's already been mentioned but Slippery Elm worked for Kolohe when he was constipated. I bought the capsules and hid a bit of the powder in his food. Kolohe refuses pumpkin or any gel type medication so Slippery Elm was the last resort and it worked.
post #11 of 27
Thread Starter 
Thanks, Peeps, for your replies & advice. And I apologize for not responding sooner. I didn't log onto TCS yesterday, b/c my head was feeling foggy and I couldn't think clearly (I think my blood pressure was up ) and I was also having problems w/ a pinched nerve in my shoulder/neck area: when it flares up, it's difficult for me to be on the computer, b/c the angle of my head/neck is stuck in one position, and it hurts to be online for any length of time. So I didn't log on...

Anyway, Maverick is doing okay. I noticed him using the litterbox twice yesterday: the first time he just urinated (so that rules out a UTI), and the second time I think he had a BM, but I didn't get there fast enough to find out for sure. In both instances, he wasn't straining to go, and I haven't seen him having any problems today, either. So I think he was indeed constipated, and managed to pass the stool on his own. But I will still continue to moniter him..



Quote:
Originally Posted by cloud_shade View Post
Steer clear of the mineral oil--it's no longer recommended. It is so light that it is easy for a cat to aspirate (suck it into their lungs) it instead of swallowing it.

From this site: http://marvistavet.com/html/constipa...megacolon.html

"An old fashioned remedy has been the oral administration of mineral oil. It is best to avoid this temptation as mineral oil, being a light fluid without flavor, is easily inhaled accidentally into the respiratory tract. Since it is a mineral based compound, it cannot ever be removed by the body and the immune system will forever attempt to wall it off with inflammatory granulomas."
This is valuable info: thanks for posting it, Cloudshade. It especially comes in handy knowing this in Geronimo & Winchester's case, due to their FIP, b/c they have little or no immune system. If at any time I would have tried to give them any mineral oil, I could have caused more damage than they could have handled..

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blast-Off-Girl View Post
The gooey stuff in a tube is called Laxatone. It's primarily used for hairballs but can also work for constipation. It's supposed to be meat-flavored but most cats hate it.
I have some of that stuff for the purpose of hairballs, but none of my cats will touch it - and it's even tuna-flavored..

Thanks again peeps for your help! It is appreciated.

~KK~
post #12 of 27
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sharky View Post
Personally and after a TALK with my VET ... I use pumpkin ( for the one not allegic to it ) , baby food squash and slippery elm( works for constipation and diarrea)... yams also seem to work
Believe me, Sharky, if I thought for even one second that Maverick (or any of my cats) needed to go to the vet, I would take them there. I took him in the last time he had this problem, and the vet couldn't find anything wrong w/ him (except for the ear infection). I don't take any chances, when it comes to my furbabies' health..

What is this slippery elm stuff, and where can you get it?

~KK~
post #13 of 27
I get a powder at the healthfood store for humans... I use the NOW brand as it is just slippery elm and was cheaper than capsules.. It works for both constipation and diarrea plus it works for humans and dogs... call a vet for dosing... ummm mine said 1/10th to 1/2 human....
post #14 of 27
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sharky View Post
I get a powder at the healthfood store for humans... I use the NOW brand as it is just slippery elm and was cheaper than capsules.. It works for both constipation and diarrea plus it works for humans and dogs... call a vet for dosing... ummm mine said 1/10th to 1/2 human....
Okay. Thanks, Sharky!

~KK~
post #15 of 27
Regarding constipation.. would u change to Hills ID or similar prescription diet ?
Do you think those are effective? did someone tried ?
Thanks!
post #16 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by ronit View Post
Regarding constipation.. would u change to Hills ID or similar prescription diet ?
Do you think those are effective? did someone tried ?
Thanks!
Before changing to a prescription diet I would recommend talking to your vet. Personally, I would avoid Hills as it isn't a very good quality food but the prescription diets, although not terribly good, do have a place in the food chain.

Have you considered buying a water fountain to encourage your cat to drink more water? Our cats drink a lot more water since we got the CatIt fountain and it stays cleaner than the water just sitting in a dish. If you cat likes wet food I would also encourage you to feed more of that which is healthier than dry food for the kitties.
post #17 of 27
Coco is on C/D and is always Constipated. They gave her Lax Aire but she still Cried=s when she goes. i try to get her to eat more Can C/D but she prefers Dry.
post #18 of 27
I wish I would have one ! The problem is that they do not sell them here where I live (Naxos Island, Greece) and in Athens they are very expensive, and ordering one from UK will cost me lots of money in shipping costs...
But water is not the problem because they have 2 bowls in the house that i change every day and this specific cat with the constipation always drinks directy from the tap many times a day (he loves it)

Also the problem with wet food is that we do not have real "good quality food"
other than the cheap brands there are Whiskas, Friskies, Felix, KiteKat, Sheba, Gourmet.

Asking my vet wont be better than asking in the forum because the first time he brought a prescription diet to the vetshop was when a friend's cat had to eat that. So he started bringing a little of each, I do not think he has experience with patients eating prescription food....


Thanks !
post #19 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by ronit View Post
I wish I would have one ! The problem is that they do not sell them here where I live (Naxos Island, Greece) and in Athens they are very expensive, and ordering one from UK will cost me lots of money in shipping costs...
But water is not the problem because they have 2 bowls in the house that i change every day and this specific cat with the constipation always drinks directy from the tap many times a day (he loves it)

Also the problem with wet food is that we do not have real "good quality food"
other than the cheap brands there are Whiskas, Friskies, Felix, KiteKat, Sheba, Gourmet.

Asking my vet wont be better than asking in the forum because the first time he brought a prescription diet to the vetshop was when a friend's cat had to eat that. So he started bringing a little of each, I do not think he has experience with patients eating prescription food....


Thanks !
A lot of vets are lacking in knowledge about nutrition and diet for cats so that's not unusual.

I didn't realize you were in Greece. We have European members here that are more knowledgeable about foods available there than we North American folks. Hopefully one or more of them will offer some assistance. My old memory isn't what it used to be, but I seem to remember someone saying the Whiskas pouches weren't bad but I could be wrong on that.
post #20 of 27
Thanks Yosemite ! Sorry to sound so negative but we are limited in options here...
i always feel jealous that you have so many things to choose from in USA !
post #21 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by ronit View Post
Thanks Yosemite ! Sorry to sound so negative but we are limited in options here...
i always feel jealous that you have so many things to choose from in USA !
You didn't sound so much negative as frustrated to me. JennyRansom used to live in Yugoslavia and now lives in France, JCat is in Germany as is Fwan so hopefully one of them will chime in here.

But, I'm not from the USA - I'm from Canada which is very different in some ways but similar in others such as the choice of foods available.
post #22 of 27
Quote:
My vet suggested mineral oil for hairballs...so it might help for constipation too.
Mineral oil (liquid paraffin) should not be used, because it can easily be aspirated and cause pneumonia. If given regularly, it may also interfere with the absorption of nutrients. Merck Veterinary Manual explains more about this.
http://www.felinecrf.org/treatments....ation_cautions
post #23 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by cloud_shade View Post
Steer clear of the mineral oil--it's no longer recommended. It is so light that it is easy for a cat to aspirate (suck it into their lungs) it instead of swallowing it.

From this site: http://marvistavet.com/html/constipa...megacolon.html

"An old fashioned remedy has been the oral administration of mineral oil. It is best to avoid this temptation as mineral oil, being a light fluid without flavor, is easily inhaled accidentally into the respiratory tract. Since it is a mineral based compound, it cannot ever be removed by the body and the immune system will forever attempt to wall it off with inflammatory granulomas."
Quote:
Originally Posted by BLAISE View Post
Mineral oil (liquid paraffin) should not be used, because it can easily be aspirated and cause pneumonia. If given regularly, it may also interfere with the absorption of nutrients. Merck Veterinary Manual explains more about this.
http://www.felinecrf.org/treatments....ation_cautions

I know this got posted twice in this thread alone, but it's something worth remembering. Another good example of why we should talk to our vets when something is wrong. We can all give you examples of our own experiences and ideas for minor issues, but if in doubt about your pet's condition, the best advice is that given by a qualified vet.
post #24 of 27
I found a way to make my cat drink more water, he loves grass so i chop a few pices in the bowl and i've noticed that he drinks more !
I've changed his diet from breekies dry food special care for urinary tract to waltham mature for neutered and i am waiting for my order of hairball prescription diet, vet reccomended to try.
I am also giving a little bit more of wet food, but as i said before, there are not such a good quality, anyway, he only licks the juice and soft pate pieces, he always preferred dry food.
This has been for a week and I am monitoring the litter box... he is going every other day, and looks better. I wish he could go everyday like my other cats....
post #25 of 27
When my cat Rebby started having his constipation problems my vet recommended sprinkling a little Metamucil in his canned food. She said to sprinkle it like salt so I would put it in a salt shaker and just sprinkle a little in his food. Of course I used the unflavored and it did help him stay regular.
post #26 of 27
So I am still reading food posts... is all about this cat going every other day instead of daily as the others and having those constipations...
I tried the intestinal can from eukanuba, he hated it (I do not blame him it smells awfull)

The only way to keep him "regular" going every other day is on a wet food diet wich I am not crazy about because there is really no good wet cat food here... so I've been reading some posts and that a low carb - no grain diet might help constipation because there is less residue?

I got a contact for someone that supposely distribuites Orijen in Greece, I will try and contact them tomorrow... I do hope they could help me, I do want to try this food and see if with it he will go every day...

It is very stressful to run and check the litterbox all the time ..

If anyone thinks that Orijen will be good for him let me know !
post #27 of 27
First make sure he isn't obstructed. You do not want to give laxatives to a cat that has a bowel obstruction or twisted bowel.

My previous vet and the one I currently use suggested 1/8 teaspoon of plain metamucil mixed into wet food once per day. Usually one dose will do it

Also wet food along with proper hydration will help prevent constipation. My vet suggested mixing the wet food with a few tablespoons of water in order to Chynna some additional fluids in addition to what she drinks normally.
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