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My Cat Has Diarrhea, Is it an Emergency? 2023 Guide

My Cat Has Diarrhea

Whether you’ve just brought a new feline friend into your home or you’re a seasoned cat parent with a bunch of furballs, dealing with cat diarrhea is never a walk in the park. It can quickly turn your living space into a bit of a mess, and the less said about the smell, the better. What’s even more worrying is when you spot blood in your cat’s less-than-solid business – it might be a sign of a more serious issue.

If you’re a bit concerned about your cat’s well-being or behavior, it’s a good idea to touch base with an emergency vet. Making sure your pet is in top-notch shape is vital, even if the problem doesn’t scream “urgent.” Staying on top of your pet’s health game is the key to providing them with the best care possible.

signsCat Has Diarrhea

Is Cat Diarrhea Something to Worry About?

Diarrhea in cats is like an unwelcome guest, and it’s never considered normal. The reasons behind it can range from not-so-serious to downright serious. Kittens, older cats, those with long-term health issues, and expecting moms face a higher risk of running into major problems if their bathroom habits go off-kilter.

If your cat’s stomach situation doesn’t improve within a day, especially if they fall into these categories, it’s time to pack them off to the vet. The consistency of the poop can give your vet a clue about how serious the situation is. Watery diarrhea is a big concern because it can quickly dehydrate and undernourish the cat. Soft, formed stool is usually less severe, but it’s still a good idea to have the vet check it out.

Causes Of Cat Diarrhea And Vomiting

If you catch your cat in the act of dealing with both diarrhea and vomiting, it’s essential to understand the common reasons behind these not-so-fun symptoms. Figuring out the cause can help you decide if your cat needs some professional veterinary TLC. Here are six common culprits:


Vomiting with a side of hairball is pretty normal. If your cat seems to be coughing without producing a hairball, grab a video to show your vet.

Stomach Virus:

Some stomach viruses can lead to a not-so-fun combo of vomiting and diarrhea. This is a moderate to severe issue, especially for kittens and those who missed their shots.


Food Sensitivity:

Trying out new treats or table scraps can lead to a bout of digestive drama. Abrupt diet changes can also cause a bit of tummy trouble for a day or two.



Those creepy crawlies known as worms can contribute to the vomiting and diarrhea saga. Only a vet can accurately diagnose and treat these critters.

Ingestion of Toxins:

If your cat nibbles on something toxic, like those lovely houseplants, vomiting and diarrhea are likely the first signs. Emergency vet care is a must in these cases.


Intestinal Obstruction:

Swallowing toy parts can lead to a life-threatening situation. Immediate vet attention is non-negotiable.


Is it Urgent When Cats Vomit and Have Diarrhea?

When your cat is doing the double act of throwing up and experiencing diarrhea, it might be a minor stomach hiccup. But, it could also be a sign of a more serious issue that needs a vet’s quick attention. If your cat is consistently in the throes of vomiting or dealing with severe diarrhea, treat it like an emergency and get them to the vet right away.


How can I stop my cat from getting diarrhea?

While you can’t always prevent a case of the runs in cats, there are steps you can take to reduce the chances. Avoid sudden changes in your cat’s food or slipping them some table scraps. Keep tempting non-food items, like houseplants, out of reach. Make sure your cat is up-to-date on parasite prevention and vaccinations. Regular wellness check-ups and testing can also help catch any problems early on.


When is it time to take my cat to the vet for diarrhea?

In healthy adult cats, mild diarrhea might clear up within 24-48 hours. But, it’s crucial to seek veterinary care promptly if:

1- Diarrhea persists for more than 24 hours.
2- Other symptoms like vomiting, lethargy, or loss of appetite join the party.
3- Your cat has an existing health condition.
4- There is blood in the stool.
After chatting with your vet, you might be taking a few steps at home to help your cat deal with diarrhea. Make sure they have plenty of clean water to prevent dehydration. Your vet might suggest fasting, offering a bland diet, or making changes to their regular diet (but only under the vet’s guidance). Additionally, your vet may recommend vet-approved anti-diarrheal medications to alleviate symptoms. Never give your cat any medications without your vet’s approval.

Sum Up

Knowing when your cat’s throwing up or having a runny tummy is a big deal or not can help you decide what to do for your pet. If you ever worry or think your pet is in big trouble, head to the emergency vet right away.

Taking care of your pets means trusting your feelings. If you’re not sure, talk to your regular vet or go to the emergency vet for professional help. If you’re worried about your cat’s tummy issues or have questions about their health, look for vet near me and give us a call.


Frequently Asked Questions

What do you give a cat with diarrhea?

For mild diarrhea in a healthy adult cat, it often clears up on its own within 24 hours. Make sure your cat has access to clean water to prevent dehydration from loose stools. Placing extra litter boxes around can help avoid accidents during this time. Remember not to fast your cat, change its diet, or give any medications without consulting your vet first.


When should I be concerned about my cat’s diarrhea?

While mild diarrhea is common and may resolve on its own, it’s a good idea to consult a vet if it lasts beyond 24 hours, comes with other symptoms, or affects a young kitten or a cat with existing health issues. Some fresh blood in the stool is normal due to irritation, but a large amount or digested blood is considered an emergency.


Why does my cat have diarrhea?

Diarrhea in cats can stem from various conditions. It may be triggered by sudden diet changes, dietary indiscretion, food allergies, viral or bacterial infections, parasitic infections, or even as a side effect of medications.


Is diarrhea in kittens dangerous?

Yes, kittens face a higher risk of severe infectious diseases that can be fatal. Rapid dehydration is also a concern for small kittens experiencing diarrhea. If your kitten has severe or persistent diarrhea lasting more than 24 hours, seek immediate veterinary attention.


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