My Cat Can’t Poop in Groveport, OH – Should I Talk to My Vet?
No one likes having a sick pet, and constipated cats can be a troubling case. This is especially true if your cat has suddenly stopped using the bathroom or is showing some of the other more severe symptoms of constipation. This will leave many cat owners with constipated cats asking themselves: my cat can’t poop, should I talk to my vet?
You should seek veterinary treatment if your cat is exhibiting severe signs of constipation. This is because prolonged constipation in cats can be a sign of a serious problem that requires treatment from a vet to be resolved. Prolonged constipation in cats can cause further damaging complications as well.
In this article we will be explaining everything that cat owners need to know about constipation in cats. This includes the symptoms of constipation in cats, the causes of constipation in cats, and when you should take your cat to the veterinarian about this issue. In addition to all of this, we will also be letting you know about some of the dangers of letting a cat’s severe constipation go untreated.
What Are the Symptoms of Constipation in Cats?
There are many different symptoms and signs of constipation in cats. Possibly the most obvious sign of constipation in cats is the lack of stools from your cat. They may not be going at all, or the cat may be going in a greatly reduced amount. A constipated cat will usually pass a small amount of hard, dark stools. There are some other symptoms of severe constipation in cats as well. Some of the other signs of constipation in cats include but may not be limited to:
- Drinking and urinating more often (or the opposite, drinking and urinating less often)
- Vomiting and a reduced appetite
- Weight and muscle loss
- Having a difficulty with climbing and jumping
- Having a stiff gait while walking
- Hiding more often than usual
Causes of Constipation in Cats
There are many potential causes for cats not being able to poop. Although the most common cause of cat constipation is dehydration, other medical problems can cause constipation in cats as well. Here are the most common causes for constipation in cats.
Dehydration is possibly the most common cause for constipation in cats. This occurs because there is simply not enough water for proper digestion. Luckily, getting your cat to drink lots of water will usually bring things back to normal.
Problems With the GI Tract
Sometimes problems with the GI tract such as inflammatory bowel disease can cause constipation in cats. If you suspect that a problem with digestion is causing your cat to be constipated, then it is recommended that you take them to the veterinarian for this issue immediately. This is because they may need things like a prescription diet for things to get back to normal.
Other Medical Conditions
Sometimes other medical conditions can cause constipation in cats as well. Things like food allergies, obesity, and anal sac disease also commonly cause problems with passing stool. Of course, this can present itself in the form of constipation. Like with GI tract problems, it is recommended that you seek veterinary treatment as soon as possible if you suspect that your cat’s constipation is being caused by a medical condition. This way you can get your cat proper treatment early on.
Stress and Anxiety
It is amazing how much chronic stress and anxiety can take its toll on our pets’ health, and sometimes this can be the cause of a cat’s constipation issue. The only thing that you can do to help this problem when this is the cause is to reduce your cat’s stress or anxiety. You may want to consult with a vet on how you can do this if your cat’s anxiety is severe.
It Can Be a Side Effect to Certain Medications
Some medications that are given to cats for a variety of ailments can have constipation as a side effect. If this is the case for your cat, then it is recommended that you contact your veterinarian about this issue. They will be able to let you know if the side effect is severe enough to change your cat’s medication or not.
A Bowel Obstruction
A bowel obstruction is the most severe cause of constipation in cats. Sometimes over grooming can cause this problem when too much hair gets trapped somewhere in the GI tract, but it can also be caused by cats ingesting a foreign body as well. Some other symptoms of a bowel obstruction in cats other than constipation include but may not be limited to:
- A swollen stomach
- A reduced appetite
- A low body temperature
Bowel obstructions are extremely serious, and they require immediate veterinary attention. In fact, oftentimes cats with bowel obstructions require emergency surgery.
The Dangers of Prolonged Constipation in Cats
If a cat is constipated for an extended period of time, then they can be at risk for developing an enlarged colon. Unfortunately, this condition is often irreversible, and it can lead to even more constipation issues in the future. In fact, some extremely severe cases require that cats need surgery to repair their damaged and enlarged colon as they would be unable to pass any stools at all in the future.
When to See a Vet
A cat not pooping is never normal, and it is always a sign of a problem. However, the severity depends on what the constipation is caused by and if it is treatable at home. For example, if you noticed that your cat was constipated that day, but he had normal stools after you gave him some water then there is nothing to worry about. The cat was likely just a little dehydrated and now he is back to normal after drinking some water.
However, there are times where you may need to see a vet about your cat’s constipation. This is especially true if you believe that your cat’s constipation is being caused by a serious medical condition such as a bowel obstruction. In addition, you should take your cat to the vet immediately if he has not had any stools for a few days. This is because cats with prolonged constipation can develop an irreversible enlarged colon, which is extremely serious, and you want to prevent from occurring.