Categories: Cat Healthdiarrhea

Cat Health Tip: Treatment of Routine Diarrhea or Vomiting

If your cat is suffering from diarrhoea or is vomiting but otherwise seems to be in good health generally, something a cat owner can do is to withhold all food for 24 hours and restrict water intake to small drinks every few hours.

We have to make sure that the vomiting is not a one-off vomit due to a hairball or due to antibiotics for example. Antibiotics alter the normal flora in the gut. If my cat vomited twice in one day I’d watch and probably withhold food as suggested above but ultimately it is about judgment.

This is a case where careful observation and a willingness to take your cat to the vet as soon as required is the rule which guides us. Home treatments are fine but they are limited unless you are very experienced and you work with your vet. I know that some cat owners do this.

If a cat is vomiting a great deal water should be restricted to very small amounts but not withheld completely as it will cause dehydration.

This allows the digestive system to calm down and rest while preventing the loss of fluids from the body. Loss of fluids can cause dehydration.

After the cat has stopped vomiting give him some more water. If the water is kept down, larger amounts of water can be given.

For diarrhoea, an over-the-counter drug for home veterinary use is suggested by some vets: loperamide (Immodium) at 1 mg per 10 pounds of body weight given orally every 12-24 hours. No idea how you give a cat that stuff orally, however 😉 .

After 24 hours a small amount of bland food can be given. An example would be strained meat baby food (high in meat protein). We are told that well-cooked white rice mixed with pieces of skinless chicken breast which has been boiled to remove fat will normally be tolerated. There are hypoallergenic commercially made cat foods which are bland. Hill’s Prescription Diet Feline i/d is recommended.

This bland diet should be provided for several days after a bout of diarrhoea or vomiting.

Pumpkin is said to help when treating both constipation and diarrhoea.

Important note:

  1. Common sense tells us that our cat should be carefully observed at this time for other signs of illness, and if there are, and if the vomiting or diarrhoea persists a veterinarian should see the cat as soon as possible.
  2. If the patient is a young kitten – call the vet and go for advice asap.
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Michael Broad

Hi, I'm a 71-year-old retired solicitor (attorney in the US). Before qualifying I worked in many jobs including professional photography. I have a girlfriend, Michelle. I love nature, cats and all animals. I am concerned about their welfare.

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  • Yes -people such as your Mama & my Papa exist, plus people like Ruth & her sister and everyone else on this website. But they seem to be in the minority. Only hope to God I'm wrong. . .

    • We do know some good people who will help others but also some selfish ones, I could never be like that, it would make me feel very unhappy.

      • I know a lot of good people, and I know a bad people.

        I made a lot of friends with a cat rescue group in my area. When my newest cat Lucky was a newborn his momma was ran over and killed while I was at work. Someone brought Lucky to my office and said he didn't know what to do for him. I said I did and would take Lucky. I called my roommate who had our friend's number, and I called her at 5am. I told her about Lucky, and made arrangements with a local vet to hold Lucky until Julie could pick him up after work. Julie got him to a bottle baby rescue group. When he was old enough to be weaned Julie fostered him until he was old enough to be adopted, and I got him back. Julie kept me up to date on Lucky's progress, and I am still doing the same now for her since she still asks about him.

        I've also told my elderly neighbors if they ever need help just let me know. My roommates and I will always help them. My neighbor called me once to tell me she had one of my cats in her garage. I had been looking for Stowie for hours. Apparently my adopted brother accidently left a door open and Stowie got out. Cindy knew Stowie was mine since she saw me leash training Stowie and Hitch. Stowie ended up in Cindy's garage thanks to Cindy thinking fast and getting a can of tuna for Stowie. She then locked Stowie up, and apologized for not letting Stowie into the warmer part of the house, but Dave (Cindy's husband) is allergic to cats. I went over and got Stowie back, and a few hours later Dave was nice enough to shovel my drive way due to the snow. After all of that I baked some homemade bread and cookies, took it over to them to thank them again for everything.

        I believe people do inherit a kind heart.

          • I try to be. I will stick up for those who need it, and you don't want to see what I do when I see someone abusing a child, elderly person, or animal.

            This year for Christmas my neighbor Cindy got me some cat toys and treats for the cats, and I got her dog a few chew toys and new orthopedic bed (Pugsley is about 14 years old I think Cindy said, and arthritic). My roommate will pick up cat and ferret supplies if I'm running low on food or kitty litter, and I'll pick up dog food and chew bones for her dogs.

            My other roommate also has a cat, so there's 7 cats total in the house, and we all look out for each other's pets. We also tend to look out for one another.

          • You paint a picture of an animal loving community. I hope you receive a reward of some kind somewhere for your kindness. Cindy sounds nice as does your roommate.

        • Frost you sound to be a very kind person and I'm glad people are kind to you too.
          Yes I agree kind hearts are inherited as well as a person's upbringing contributing. Children learn by example and it would be good if we all learned kindness and unselfishness from being very young, as some of us have.
          We have some lovely people in our town who support our local animal sanctuary even though they don't have much for themselves, they are my sort of people. We find those with the least are those who want to help animals and other people the most.

  • Ruthie – this is for you. Think you might chuckle.

    While I’m more into essays than blog-chats, Babz had mentioned the other day that her work requires her to participate in community events. Am sure it’s true. But after reading your comment in the rock star post that you used to walk dogs, etc. for people who were elderly or ill, I suspect you and your sister have something in your DNA that predisposes you to help others. My father had the same readiness to help: the peas-in-a-pod mentality of Quakers, et al., who build each other’s barns.

    I mentioned to you that the flasher came darting out of the bushes when I pulled into my driveway that night, and commenced to tell me his name and that of his live-in (as if I craved this information). Then went on to say he was going to fix the fence in a few days. The owner’s sons, who earn huge incomes as managers and CEOs would supply the materials. (The fence is theirs.) Need I tell you I knew no one would show up?

    Until yesterday, that is.

    John, who’d been working all morning and afternoon on his farm, drove a 36-mile round-trip to come down here and fix the fence. He did a professional – beautiful - job: sledge-hammered in this and that, bolted on cross-planks, and reinforced the section with T-posts. He worked so confoundedly hard - and the result is solid as a rock.

    Well, if you can believe this, the Perv and several others in the family were hunkered down inside the house all the while – their curtains drawn.

    Can’t help it. I sit here laughing at the difference between people’s personalities. How to explain it? It’s got to be inborn. It has to be something in the DNA.

    To date, I’ve spent several thousand dollars on their cat. The poor thing was skeletal when he started coming over here two years ago. Since then he’s filled out.

    Wish you could see him. It’s turning cold, so today I’m going down to the pet store (think it’s open) and buy a heating pad for his Snuggy Loo.

    As for his diarrhea, I shelled out $70.00 last week for a poo analysis. The vet found nothing wrong, but prescribed Purina’s probiotic ‘Forti-Flora,’ which he swears by. Says it works like a charm. He charged $40.00+ for a month’s supply, so I’ve bought it for @ $26.00 or so online. (Mostly ‘so’ - $5.00 for a Walmart ‘Green card’ plus $6.00 for shipping). Oh well, $90.00+ a month for Sid’s food and supplements is a mere trifle.

    Meanwhile, those characters wouldn’t have thought of coming outside for two minutes to help steady the fence as John was hammering and drilling away. It goes without saying I offered to pay him. It also goes w/o saying he wouldn’t accept a dime. To top it off, he brought me two quarts of his organic, homemade cider and wrote out a detailed recipe for homemade sauerkraut. The man is a prince.

    Hope to get up to the library Tuesday.
    Pet the boyz, and howdy to Babz. xx

    • John sounds to be a good sort. The perv and his lot are obviously horrible selfish people because they can neglect their poor innocent cat and turn their backs on someone who could do with some help. Looks like Sid is with you to stay, now didn't you say to me you couldn't emotionally take any more cats! lol
      I'm glad he has nothing wrong with him bless him, he deserves some quality life now and you are kindly giving him it :)

    • My mom used to go into cake baking mode anytime someone from church got sick or died. And at Christmas she made cookies for the elderly. I used to go on deliveries with her as a child. One man remembered mama 30 years later when I ran into him and told him mama used to visit every December with the cookies.

      • Our late mother was the most generous woman ever, one day she even gave her spectacles away to the old man next door lol we really had to get them back for her that time.

  • I'm hooked on Googling EVERYTHING. I drive shopkeepers crazy when I google a product before buying it.

    Sealy has pills he has to take for his tummy troubles. I need to find out the name of them and post. They work, but they turn a quiet little black cat into a real talker. He'll sit on Laura's lap and meow at her forever! :)

    • Try Bing sometimes. Bing is more "pure" in their search results. Google has an agenda and they manipulate search results.

      • I usually just type the question into the cell phone and go by what pops up under reviews. I do this a lot at the Dented Deals store. I get $35 products for $2 but you have to get what you want when you see it because it may not be there a day or two later. :)

        • LOL. It is Microsoft's search engine. It is nice. PoC pages come out better in a Bing search - that's why I like it ;)

    • Good on you Elisa, we need to check and recheck everything we give our cats, to keep them safe.

      • I have changed it. It is easy to get tripped up on cat health stuff which is why I tend to avoid it nowadays.

  • Michael, Kaopectate is no longer safe for cats. They changed the formula. A lot of vets don't even realize this. My vet recommended it and I looked it up and saw the change a few years ago. It is still safe for dogs.

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