Colitis in cats - also called inflammatory bowel disease - is a more common condition than you might think and is usually one of the reasons behind a cat with diarrhea. The disease causes changes in the feline gut and needs attention so it doesn't develop into something more serious. Although it's a disease that can affect any feline, some breeds of cat tend to be more affectedTo understand a little more about colitis in cats and its consequences, we talked to veterinarian Felipe Ramires, from São Paulo. See what he said!
Colitis in cats: understand what it is and the main causes of the disease
According to the veterinarian, colitis in cats is characterized by an inflammation of the mucosa of the colon, which is a part of the animal's intestine responsible for absorbing food and liquids. Inflammation can present itself in two ways: acute or chronic. "In the first, the period of inflammation of the intestine is usually short. In chronic inflammation, the inflammatory process tends to have a long timeduration, which can be up to about two weeks," he says.
Felipe warns that the causes of colitis in cats can be both bacterial factors and related to the environment in which the animal lives. Therefore, it is not possible to define in a unique way what motivates the inflammatory bowel disease. Cats living in stressful and uncomfortable places, for example, can develop the condition as a response: the stress hormone causes inflammation of the colon,causing the diarrhea.
Inflammatory bowel disease: cats often have diarrhea and dehydration
Anyone who lives with a kitten knows how felines have a hard time showing when they have a health problem and, therefore, are experts in masking any sign that something is not going well. However, when it comes to colitis in cats, the signs are a little more evident. "The guardian will notice symptoms such as diarrhea, decreased frequency of bowel movements and presenceThe animal may also present vomiting along with diarrhea, which quickly results in an apparent picture of dehydration ", says Felipe. In addition, the feline tends to present lethargy, flatulence and great weight loss. Therefore, it is very important that at any symptom the tutor seeks the help of a veterinarian and does not medicate the pet forImproper use of colitis medication for cats can further damage your pet's health.
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How is colitis diagnosed in cats?
Ideally, when suspecting colitis in cats, the guardian should seek a veterinarian as soon as possible. Only then will it be possible to make the diagnosis through tests and ensure that the disease does not develop into a more serious condition, such as sepsis, which is when bacteria or pieces of bacteria travel through the bloodstream to other organs, resulting in generalized infection. deAccording to Felipe, the diagnosis of colitis can be made in different ways. "Generally, the first test done is ultrasound, as it makes it possible to evaluate the animal's intestinal loops and thus check for any changes in size or possible inflammation. Another test that can be done is the stool test to rule out the presence of parasites or endocrine diseases, such as pancreatitisIn addition to these, the blood count is also usually requested by the professional to assist in choosing the best medication to treat the problem.
Colitis in cats: treatment varies according to the cause of the disease
After the diagnosis is confirmed, it's time to treat colitis in cats. In this case, Felipe says: the treatment must be done with the veterinarian and varies according to the cause of the disease. In the case of colitis caused by parasites, for example, the use of a dewormer is the best solution. In cases where the condition is caused by other factors, anti-inflammatories may be necessary. But,It is worth remembering that the use of the remedy for colitis in cats must be done very carefully, since animals tend to have a more sensitive organism. To ensure the correct treatment, it is essential to follow the professional's guidelines.
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