Owner asks, “What does it mean if your cat screams repeatedly every time before taking a poop?”

Frankly, the question in the title irritates me, which is why I am writing about it. It is a question asked on social media (quora.com). The person should not be asking the question in the first place because they are directing the question at people who are not veterinarians. They are seeking advice from anybody. In fact, they don’t know who is providing the advice.

Cat screaming
Cat screaming. Image: MikeB

This is ridiculous. The question can only mean one thing which is that the cat is in pain when they are taking a poop. And if a cat is in pain when they are going to the toilet the problem is serious. It might be constipation and probably is but that is potentially serious.

They should be taking their cat down to the veterinarian immediately. Far too many people ask advice on cat health problems on social media to avoid paying veterinary fees. It’s a complete nonsense. It indicates that many cat owners just don’t have the disposable income to care for their cats properly.

For the sake of clarity, the information below comes from a book written by four veterinarians. It’s a book I can refer to. But that doesn’t justify asking the question in the title on social media.

When faeces are retained in the colon for a few days due to constipation, they become dry and hard. This means the cat has to strain to defecate and it causes pain during defecation. Humans will have experience of that so it is hardly worth saying regarding cats.

But the point is this, you need a veterinary opinion as it might be something else or the cause may be due to something else other than the usual causes for constipation which will include dehydration. But dehydration occurs in a cat with renal disease. So, the cat may have kidney disease. You see the reason why you’ve got to see a veterinarian.

Or the reason might be that the cat is in strange surroundings and anxious. Or they might refuse to defecate in a dirty litter box. Once again, the underlying cause needs to be investigated. Veterinary advice would be in very important in discovering these underlying causes.

A constipated cat might be on dry cat food all the time which is going to exacerbate the problem because domestic cats are rather poor drinkers and dry cat food is obviously unnaturally dry. It is not like typical cat food when eating in the wild.

Or constipation might be due to a broken pelvis causing nerve damage to the colon. Megacolon can also be a cause of chronic constipation. This is an enlarged, sluggish, poorly contracting colon.

Or the problem might be faecal impaction caused by chronic constipation. This requires a laxative and an enema. Once again you need a veterinarian to get to the root of the matter.

I’m not going go on because it will undermine the purpose of this article which is that a cat owner needs to see a veterinarian when required to do so based on common sense. And if your cat is screaming when the defecating that means pain and if your cat is in pain you got to treat it seriously and urgently.

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