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Stool Issues

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
Hey all. We’re proudly owned by 3 ragdolls and a domestic. Our ragdolls joined us this year and we’re having some concerns. I’m looking for some help and thoughts.

We’ve been struggling since our second ragdoll arrived to determine what’s causing loose stools to diarrhea now in both of our ragdoll girls. They came from different breeders and 5 weeks apart. I’m worried for them and mentally exhausted. They’ve been checked multiple times for parasites (2 different vet clinics) and we had cultures done as well. Our second arrived and had diarrhea from the start. We chalked it up to the long trip she had to get here. During her wellness check the vet felt she observed some spirochetes from a direct draw of stool (she didn’t like the looks or smell of the stool sample we brought in) and prescribed Metro. At no time during this course of treatment did the diarrhea stop. Other than that, all other tests done on both of our female ragdolls have come back negative but the runs and loose stools continue. The diarrhea in our oldest ragdoll began 9 or 10 days after the arrival of our second ragdoll. The stools of our oldest furkid, a domestic 11 yrs young, are as they always have been and our newest raggie (arrived 10 September) has had no issues what so ever. His stools are perfect! So, if this is some sort of parasite or bacteria, I would think by now all of them would be experiencing the same loose stool/runs as they wrestle, play, and groom each other along with of course using the same litter boxes, which we have 7.

Over a month ago I started giving the girls some 100% pumpkin to see if that would help firm them since all the tests we’ve had done came back negative, except for the direct smear thing and possible spirochete. They really love the stuff. There was a wee bit of improvement. We went from cowpile to somewhat formed. After a week I increased it to twice a day to see if they needed more to firm up, 2 tablespoons a day each. It did seem to improve a bit more, less cowpiles and tubular in shape, but never anywhere close to normal. Now this week, they are both back to runs despite the added fiber.

Their diet consists of 1/3 Royal Canin (kitten - 4 mos to 1yr level), 1/3 Eukanuba Kitten and 1/3 IAMS hairball (added that slowly per one of the breeders). They get no table scraps or people food despite begging for it.

They’ve been checked multiple times for: Salmonella, Shigella, Campylobacter, Cryptosporidium, Giardia and Coccidia as well as for worms in the float tests.

They’ve been wormed multiple times. They were tested for the leukemias and have had all their baby shots.

We’ve not tested for Tritrichomonas foetus as the vets here think I’m a loon and it’s only found in cows not cats despite my giving them information about it from NC State.

They are alert, playful, happy and are growing and gaining weight. Their stool odor practically melts the paint off the walls and they go at least 3 or 4 times a day, maybe more on some days like today as they have the urge to go a lot but smaller amounts.

I’ve thought of food allergies, but I can’t wrap my mind around two having this same problem and the oldest ragdoll didn’t have this until after the arrival of number 2. But if this is contagious why would I have two that are perfectly fine? Are there other causes that I’ve not listed above that we could test for? My kids need relief and frankly so do we. I’ve not experienced anything like this ever before and I don’t want this to be a lifelong condition if there is something we can be doing. The only common factor the girls have is they both have been on antibiotics (number 1 for a suspected UTI and number 2 was on Metro for spirochetes and prior to arrival Panacur and I think something else) where my other two have not been. Could the resolution be something as simple as needing some good bacteria added back? How would I do that?

We’re really at a loss what to do to help them and they and us are very tired of bum baths. Does anyone have any suggestions? There is only one clinic in my state that is certified in felines and they are miles and miles away. I'm starting a new job this week and won't be able to get off work for a few weeks I'm sure and they don't offer saturday appointments.

Thank you so much for letting me vent.
post #2 of 6
Originally Posted by KewlKat23 View Post

We’ve not tested for Tritrichomonas foetus as the vets here think I’m a loon and it’s only found in cows not cats despite my giving them information about it from NC State.
First off, that ^^^, is ridiculous. That's just baffling.... Tritrich and giardia look VERY VERY similar under a microscope. They swim slightly differently. So maybe that's why he's never seen a case? Anyway.... Personally, that would send me running to another vet. But maybe that's just me going overboard, .

I've seen this chronic diarrhea (especially in ragdolls and Scottish folds actually....) be a pancreatic issue. Has any lab been run? That may be a route you want to discuss with your vet.

As far as treating the diarrhea symptomatically until you find the root of the problem, have you tried propectalin or proviable? It usually firms up stool very nicely. I always keep some in the kitty medicine cabinet for the occasional diarrhea.
post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 
I know it's hard to believe, and I felt like you. While the disease (T foetus) found in cows is similar, from the recent research I read it's not identical to what is found in felines. We did change clinics and got the same response from another clinic. In all, 6 doctors think I'm nuts. We lost our black beauty this spring when I knew in my heart it was lymphoma and they took way too much time in diagnosing. On my first visit I asked about it being lymphoma and was told no. A couple months later after half her body weight was lost they did tell us it was lymphoma and she was too weak to withstand any chemo. She lost precious time while they fumbled along. I hate to sound bitter, but I guess I am. We live in a very small community and vets for small animals are too few.

Would easing them into Science Diet I/D help them at all while we're trying to figure this out? They are a bit over 7 mos and 6 mos. I hate to not have them on kitten food but I really feel so bad for them with this runny poo stuff.

Both girls have had blood panels and everything looked fine. However, that's what they told us about our black beauty until I had them send her blood out for a special pancreas test after I discovered the in-house test was not very reliable. The test came back she DID also have a pancreas issue.

I've not heard of propectalin or proviable. Now that we've finished bathing bums and all are dry we're heading out to see if we can find this stuff.

Thanks for the advice.
post #4 of 6
Tell your vet to read this site:, then test your cat for TF.
post #5 of 6
Hi KewlKat23! Wow, it sounds like you've really run into a mess with the vets you've been talking to. Can I ask where you live, or at least what area? I'm in the Dallas area and have seen 4 vets in the last couple of years (until I finally found one I was really confident in) and all of them had heard of TF, although none of them really knew how to test for or treat it. This is probably going to sound bad, but one way you might want to approach it is to tell them that TF was found in the one of hte catteries you got your kitten from. I know this is a lie, but when you tell them this they're definitely going to be more likely to both believe that it occurs in cats and then find out more about it. Perhaps this is why my vets all "knew" about it or at least acted like they did since I came in knowing it was found in my cat's previous home.

If you still don't get anywhere with that, then I'd keep calling around until you find a vet willing to test for this. You can even try emailing Dr. Gookin (from the UNC site you mentioned) and ask if she has worked with any vets in your area. She was very helpful with my cat and getting me and my vet the infrormation we needed for treatment (there are a few old versions out there so I wanted to be sure).

Either way, it sounds like you have a definite possibility that this is TF so just keep trying. The good thing about TF is that at least it's treatable so you should be able to knock it out once you have a diagnosis, although all cats in your home have to be treated even if they have no symptoms. Please keep us posted and feel free to PM me anytime!

Hugs and headbutts,

post #6 of 6
First get them off the Iams hairball!

I'm wondering why your vet has not suggested a probiotic to help improve the intestinal flora.

I recommend a second opinion with another vet. This vet has been messing about too long, IMO. It's time to look elsewhere for answers.
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