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Pooping outside litter box (diarrhea)

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
Hello,

First I'd like to share a little bit of information about my cat. She is 7 years old, and I adopted her about 3 years ago. Her previous owner put her up for adoption because she was having all sorts of bowel problems (Diarrhea, pooping outside the litter box, separating herself from owner) The owner was pregnant at the time and said ever since Maggie was a kitten, she had diarrhea but didn't start going outside of litter box until owner was pregnant. Maggie still has diarrhea (doctors have diagnosed the diarrhea as Irritable Bowel Syndrome). She was prescribed an antibiotic and steroid but doctors said if meds don't show improvement, there is no sense in medicating her because she will have this problem her whole life. She poops outside of litter box about 3-4 times per week (and vomits about 3-4 days per week as well), and I don't know what to do to help stop this behavior. She is the only cat in the household, and I keep the litter box very clean. It is in a low traffic area and she's on a high quality sensitive stomach food. The only thing I can think of is that she associates her litter box with pain. I know she is in pain, by the looks of her stools. She is still happy, eats and drinks normally.. I have been to several different doctors, and they seem to have no answers as to how to help her diarrhea. The only options I have been given are Prednisolone (which shows no improvement) and scoping her, which we can't afford ($1500 surgery). If it helps, her favorite place to go outside of the litter box is on carpet, and in corners or close to a wall. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
post #2 of 8
What kind of litter do you use, and do you use a covered litter pan or an open one? I've discovered recently that cats get really picky about litter. My nursing mom cat has been doing the same thing (pooping outside the box, and also moving the box around the room) and I think it's because she doesn't like the pine litter I started her on.
post #3 of 8
Did the vet never talk to you about food allergies and elimination diets?
I don't believe in IBS, honestly. Not in humans and not in cats. Something is wrong and this is what they say when they don't want to admit they're confused.

Try another vet or try reading up and educating your vet on allergies and IBD…

Health issues like this can not be fixed by a different litter box, retraining, or a new litter. Your cat shouldn't have to live with this, cause you're right she's likely in pain.

What food(s) does she eat now and what foods have you tried? And if your vet had you try something like Hills Z/D, was it the dry?

I suggest you make a very detailed post in the health section containing all of her past treatment history, maybe even add "IBD?" in your title so as to attract the attention of those who have experience with that and other causes of chronic diarrhea - those members may not see your thread here.
post #4 of 8
Different vets have explained to me the difference in between IBS and IBD, and your case fits more IBD. IBS, Irritable Bowel Syndrome seems to happen more in flares as oppose of as being a chronic issue as IBD, and can be caused by several different issues that will cause inflammation on the bowel. Stress seem to a factor in bringing a flare on.
IBD - Inflammatory Bowel Disease, on the other hand, is a chronic, immune-mediated disease where genetics most likely play a factor. The inflammation is present throughout the cells in the bowel at all times, which is why a biopsy can diagnose it.
Depending what areas of the digestive tract are more affected, your cat will have different types of diarrhea - volume, color, frequency and presence of mucous. Also, if the inflamed area is the upper digestive system, your cat will tend to throw up - which is also more consistent with IBD, and not IBS.
Aside from genetics, there can be other factors that could be inducing IBD - food allergies and intolerance are high on the list.
Strange_wings is absolutely right about the recommendation to talk to to your vet about an allergenic diet such as Z/D or Royal Canin HP.
I have been dealing with a very similar issue - minus the missing litter box and the pain. My cat Bugsy has had diarrhea consistently for the last 7 months... But he is not in pain, and in all other areas he is perfectly normal, happy and "healthy". I would be very worried if he was in any kind of pain... Please, more than the litter box issue, it is important that your vet gets to the bottom of this - it is no fun being in pain 24x7.
I would have a discussion with the vet about diet and also about treatments... Good luck!
post #5 of 8
^I disagree that it's impossible that he's not had some pain. You have GI issues, and I dealt with diarrhea for years. Sometimes it hurts, though it's not always the type of pain you can't ignore and carry on through. A cat can't say "ouch, that one hurt a bit" to us.
Maybe he's had a little but he's just a strong cat that does his best for you? I truly do hope you can find a lasting solution for him some day. No one, animal or human, deserves to live with that.

And the OP said" irritable" bowel syndrome, not inflamed. Sporatic inflammation is different than using the intestinal spasm excuse.

I mentioned Z/D because I remembered LDGm's warning about the brewers yeast in the dry but not in the wet, making the wet truly hypoallergenic while the dry is not.
post #6 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by strange_wings View Post
^I disagree that it's impossible that he's not had some pain. You have GI issues, and I dealt with diarrhea for years. Sometimes it hurts, though it's not always the type of pain you can't ignore and carry on through. A cat can't say "ouch, that one hurt a bit" to us.
Maybe he's had a little but he's just a strong cat that does his best for you? I truly do hope you can find a lasting solution for him some day. No one, animal or human, deserves that.

And the OP said" irritable" bowel syndrome, not inflamed. Sporatic inflammation is different than using the intestinal spasm excuse.

I mentioned Z/D because I remembered LDGm's warning about the brewers yeast in the dry but not in the wet, making the wet truly hypoallergenic while the dry is not.
Strange_Wings, please, do not misquote me - Your post came across to me, as though 1- I don't know if he is in pain or not, and 2- I have given up on him.
I am not, by any means saying he has never been in pain. He has and I know it. And I also know how to recognize the difference.
And please, never even think about saying that I have given up on treating Bugsy because you know well that not to be true (that's what it sounded like you were saying?)
The difference is, the OP knows her cat is in pain - she said so. I know Bugsy is not. Have I ever said I have given up? Where have you read that? Bugsy IS on treatment. He is being followed closely by his vet, and just started another treatment Friday. I talk to his vet about 2x a week about him. So please... before making assumptions like this... Nobody wants to find a solution more than I do.
I do however know him enough to know when he is ok and to know when he is not. To know when he is in pain and to know when he is not. And he is not in pain. There is no straining, he poops once a day, he has no gas, his behavior is 100% normal, he is happy and loving as he can be - completely different from when he is in pain, or has abdominal discomfort.
Yes, I do have IBD, so yes, I can relate. And no, it does not hurt all the time... in fact, it very rarely hurts (I do treat myself with something that works for me too).

By the Way, on the Z/D Dry, the problem is Brewers RICE, not yeast.
post #7 of 8
I think you misunderstood my post hoping that you find a solution to mean that you shouldn't? Oh well. I suppose I won't make the mistake of telling you that again.

And you're lucky your's doesn't cause pain, very lucky.
post #8 of 8
I have the exact same issue with my cat who is 4 years old. I have spent a lot of money trying to figure out what is going on and have tried all kinds of foods and am soon ready to give up as I am at a lose. My cat is 4 years old and has bad bowel problems since birth. He poops all over the house likes carpet as well but does pee in his litterbox. The past 2 weeks I have kept him in a cage, he will poop in the litter box when he is in there but as soon as I let him out to roam he will try and go on the carpet. I have a new job and commute over an hour and I cannot have this anymore. Did you find any solutions? IS there a food out there I can try? I've tried wellness- he won't eat it as he is a VERY picky eater, I've tried the prescription Hill's food for allergies, Iam's Hairball which he is on now. This was the situation yesterday morning. I woke up let him out of him cage while still restraining him to my bedroom after he pooped in his litter box (had some form to it) so i let him roam 5 min later he started throwing up (he violently throws up) then I put him back in his cage as I know what happens next... he has watery bloody diahrea... I am just at a total lose and so is my vet... please help as I am running out of options on him. I do have 5 other cats and am a foster Mom for a near by shelter. I am trying all I can do but like I said I am on my last cry for help here...
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