Cat Leaking Feces

by diane
(ma)

QUESTION:

My female cat who is 14 years old has been leaking feces all over the house. It is not solid but just a small amount of liquid. Outside the cat box is just a few small drops but on my bed it is the size of a quarter to a half dollar. What could this be and how can I help her?


Hi, Diane:

Well, it could be diarrhea and that's what most owners think when they see this. However, when they bring their cats in to see me, it often turns out that it's actually constipation and the liquid they are seeing is just what is coming out when the cat strains and tries to defecate but can't.

It would require a vet visit to tell the difference and I would highly recommend that. The treatments of course are quite different and neither condition is normal and healthy.

There are so many difficult causes of diarrhea and many different causes of constipation. The problems can originate from the intestinal tract itself and range from parasites to inflammation to infection to foreign bodies and more.

Intestinal problems can also be secondary to metabolic conditions such as kidney disease, hyperthyroidism, diabetes or even just dehydration or a food indiscretion.

Since your kitty is in her geriatric years, she is in the group of cats that could have any of these possibilities, including the more geriatric conditions of hyperthyroidism and kidney disease. Unfortunately, she is also at risk for cancer of the colon or recto-anal region. She really needs to see a vet right away. Something is not right.

I sincerely hope it turns out to be one of the less serious and easily treatable causes.

Thank you for writing and Best wishes,

Dr. Neely


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