Fighting Feline IBD with both a Traditional and Holistic Approach

By Lisa Provost, guest blogger and owner/operator of IBDKitties.Net

When my little girl Alex died, the last thing I wanted to do was mutter the words “feline IBD” ever again. I didn’t want to hear it, talk about it, type it, or think about it. I never could have imagined that two years later I’d be running a website in her memory, spending most of my time researching this insidious disease and trying desperately to find an answer for the poor little ones that still live with it.

The truth is there is no answer because IBD is a trickster, a shape shifter, an ever-changing face like Jeckyll and Hyde. How do you go into battle with something like that? And make no mistake about it; it IS a battle. Strap yourself in for the ride, because like any other inflammatory disease, this is a constant roller coaster of ups and downs. The stress from this disease can take its toll on both you and your pet. Some days you feel like they’re finally turning the corner and you’re able to exhale. Then without warning, things change and you’re trying to figure out what happened and how to fix it. Its frustrating, exhausting and can leave pet parents feeling helpless and hopeless. I know because that’s how I felt. But there is hope and there is indeed help.

In short, Feline Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) is a group of disorders that cause inflammation in the lining of the stomach and/or intestinal tracts, basically changing how these organs perform their normal bodily functions. IBD is an uncontrolled inflammatory response, causing the inflow of inflammatory cells into various parts of the gastrointestinal tract.

In the three years since Alex first got sick I’ve done nothing but research feline IBD and it’s cohorts in bodily trauma and I’ve come to find out a few things about this mysterious enemy. A good starting point is diet. I cannot stress enough how important it is to keep rotating your cat’s diet, whether they’re sick or healthy. The logic of feeding one food day in and day out to your pet is gone. That’s old school thinking and as food allergies, food intolerance, IBD, skin allergies, etc. pick up in cases everywhere, people are finding that out the hard way. If your cat stops eating its regular food, instead of leaving it there and just “waiting to see what happens”, try actually giving them something different. The longer you wait, the more they will resist. They have a strong will and can hold out for a long period of time. Problem is, the longer they hold out for food, the more damage is being done to their organs. It takes less than 48 hours for a cat’s liver to start feeding off its own stored reserves and to begin shutting down. This is called hepatic lipidosis, or fatty liver, and has a high mortality rate. Waiting too long for them to give in simply isn’t an option. I know because this happened to my Alex. She developed Triaditis; which is IBD, hepatic lipidosis and pancreatitis. She didn’t survive.

Switching your cat to a completely grain free diet is most often a helpful first step. The best diet includes high-quality protein, low or no carbohydrates and low fat. If you can switch them to a raw diet and they do well on it, they’ll be all the better. But be aware that any and all diets require proteins to be rotated continuously to work correctly. Any inflammatory disease is in a constant state of change and therefore everything done to treat it must be also. And I do mean everything! Food, alternative and all-natural treatments, probiotics and medications are only going to work for a couple of months before your kitty may begin to backslide. The reason being, the ever-changing intestinal flora, bacteria and micro-organisms with the capability of mutating, all need to be tricked in order to keep fighting the inflammation as they tend to adapt quickly to the new environment and stop working properly.

I am a big believer that both Western and Eastern medicine has a place in recovery from all diseases and health conditions. Feline IBD is not something to play around with and needs to be treated immediately. If your pet’s condition is deteriorating quickly and your vet feels that Western medications are warranted or things will continue to go downhill, I believe it’s necessary to do what you have to do in order to save your pet’s life. I’ve seen benefits from people who’ve brought their cats to two vets – one being a traditional vet and the other a holistic vet that works with their primary vet. This way, you know exactly what’s going into your pet’s body, and if there could be any potential side effects or contraindications in using any kind of medication or natural treatment.

When treating with all-natural remedies, be aware that natural doesn’t always mean it’s safe. Many natural remedies can actually be dangerous and even toxic to your pet. Try not to overload your pet with treatments. Your pet’s liver has to filter everything and too many treatments at once may unintentionally over-stress the liver. Please check with your vet on any vitamins or supplements to avoid any excess doses the body would have to deal with.

IBD is manageable; but not yet curable. IBD is a chronic disease; there are no magic pills, no magic diet or food, and no magic alternative treatments. There are however many safe and effective treatments that stabilize your pet’s condition and greatly help in their recovery. Make sure to always discuss alternative and all-natural therapies with your vet. Your pet may have several health conditions where using certain treatments could worsen recovery. Always obtain all-natural products from a reputable source. Many all-natural products that are safe for human consumption may be too strong or not safe at all in high doses for pets. Even if it may be cheaper to buy the human version, they could contain additives that are potentially harmful or damaging to your pet’s recovery. This isn’t the case with every product but that’s why it’s better to discuss these with your vet to be sure.

Here are some natural treatments to consider for feline IBD:

B12 injections – B12 is best given in injection form as it bypasses the stomach and small intestines, which often don’t process or absorb B12 adequately in kitties with IBD. Unfortunately not all pets can be given injections and some will certainly let you know it. Sick or not, they are usually still in fighting form. If this isn’t possible, give a B12 tablet that’s a vegetarian version. It has to be completely clean: meaning no sugar, artificial sweeteners, added coloring or flavoring, none of that. Sweeteners like sorbitol, mannitol, dextrose, xylitol, sucrose, fructose, high fructose corn syrup are hard for them to digest and can lead to diarrhea or stomach irritation. When choosing a dose of B12 it’s best to start with a 1,000 mcg but because it’s not being absorbed as much as the injection, you may have to raise the dose to 5,000 mcgs per day. B12 is non-toxic and water-soluble and in pill form won’t all be absorbed anyway. If doing the injections, ask your vet to write you a prescription for B12, it’s much cheaper and the bottle is larger for pets than it is for humans. You can have your script filled at any pharmacy that does generics for a very small cost. The guidelines for B12 injections are low at .25 ccs per month. Many vets are now agreeing that pets don’t see much improvement on this low dose and some will go as high as 1 full ml or cc per week for severe malabsorption. Ask your vet about raising the dosage, especially when it comes to gastrointestinal diseases. B12 also increases hunger naturally as a bonus side effect.

Probiotics that are made for pets not only help to get some vital healthy bacteria in their intestines but also entices them to eat. Be careful when using probiotics made for humans as pets have much different flora in their intestines and the human version may upsets the applecart way more than it helps.

Colostrum is passed down from the mother’s milk and is the first defense in newborns against foreign pathogens. Colostrum contains antibodies (immunoglobulins) that are necessary for stimulating and strengthening the immune system. It contains high quality protein and growth factors that promote the development and proper function of the gut.

All-natural anti-nausea treatments include things like slippery elm bark and marshmallow root. Be sure and give these 30 minutes away from any other medications like Pepcid to avoid the chance that either one will prevent absorption of the other.

Denosyl and Denamarin both contain S-Adenosylmethionine (SAMe), which may increase liver glutathione levels, a potent antioxidant. SAMe may also help protect against liver cell death and help liver cell repair and regeneration. It must be given on an empty stomach although the pills are very small and can be inserted into a small treat if your pet is too hard to pill.

L-lysine also has very good immune system support and is commonly used in the treatment of Feline Herpes Virus and its associated respiratory and ocular symptoms. It can be used for other inflammatory diseases such as IBD and has been shown to ward off attacks from colds, allergies, asthma, etc. due to a low functioning immune system. For a cat with an already compromised immune response, this may give them a leg up should they develop symptoms of something else.

There is hope for future treatments of IBD and other immune disorders as places like Colorado State University begin research into using stem cells to treat these diseases. It’s been rough going so far as the use of steroids, antibiotics and other immune suppressing drugs are essentially necessary to fight the effects of IBD. But eventually by repressing the immune system enough you leave it open for other diseases to attack and spread, and hardly able to fight them off. Using stem cells could finally be the breakthrough we’ve been looking for to let their own bodies fight these conditions and do the repairs naturally. It’s exciting news and something I hope to learn more about in the near future. It may have come too late for my little girl, but if it saves thousands of pet’s lives, better late than never.

View cat supplements at Only Natural Pet Store

For more information on Feline IBD and other GI disorders and how to feed them a proper diet, please go to www.ibdkitties.net.

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118 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Dee said,

    Excellent article, Lisa!!!
    I am so proud of you, and I am sure Alex is, too.

  2. 2

    Jim said,

    Great article, thanks so much!!!

  3. 3

    Lisa said,

    Thanks guys! I hope she is proud of me.

    • 4

      Jackie McComb said,

      Hi Lisa, your article is very clear and helpful. One thing I did not understand though… was your reference to colostrum. Is this something that can be given to an adult cat?
      thanks,

      • 5

        Lisa P said,

        Hi Jackie, yes colostrum can most definitely be given to adult cats. It’s used all the time for IBD and digestive disorders. I hope this helps.

  4. 6

    Julie said,

    Excellent article Lisa~ you should be very proud of yourself!

  5. 7

    Ann said,

    Thanks for the great info, Lisa. My cat has IBD and has been suffering for many months now. It only seems to be getting worse. She apparently is resistant to the medication my vet has prescribed. We just started B12 (which my vet said, “Hmmm… why haven’t we tried that yet?”) so I am hoping it helps her at least absorb the nutrition from the food she does eat and keep down. Thanks for your work.

  6. 8

    litta bitts said,

    Lisa,
    This is absoultely Powerful & a Wealth of knowledge!
    Alex is sure very proud of you as I am too!

    Thank you

  7. 9

    Lisa said,

    Hi everyone and thank you for your support. Ann, I’d love to hear from you so we could talk about your kitty’s case further! Maybe we can figure out why the medication isn’t working? There are always other options but B12 absolutely helps in a big way! Write to me info@ibdkitties.net when you get a chance.
    Lisa

  8. 10

    litta bitts Kally Kat's Mommy said,

    Hi Lisa,

    Thank you so much for all your help & support! I’m so amazed at what I’m learning here. Wow!

    Lubbs,
    Liz & Kally Kat

  9. 11

    Amanda said,

    Hi-
    I have been looking for exactly this type of info- my cat has been on prednisone (steroid) for several months- I am very concerned about his immune system and long-term liver function. For awhile I had him on fish oil caps and a probiotic that may or may not have been viable (it was on the grocery shelf at the health food store, not refrigerated) but have since stopped those now that he has moved from wet food and pumpkin to dry venison and green pea. Although his stool is much more firm he still goes (#2) outside of the box frequently. Other than the long-term concern the main concern now is that he is CONSTANTLY begging for food- although I am glad that he has a good weight (he had been too skinny before the diet change) I can’t help but think he must be miserable to be hungry all of the time…sorry for the whole story! Any suggestions for immune support, appetite control, etc. will be gratefully accepted!!

  10. 12

    Lisa said,

    Hi Amanda, I’m so sorry your baby has to go through this. Is he on pred for IBD or is it something else? Also, is he on Prednisone itself or prednisolone, which is the less harsher of the two. There is another steroid called Entocort that doesn’t have to be processed so much by the liver. It’s designed to go straight to the intestines and bowels. One thing is that pred can make them extremely hungry because it’s a steroid. In some respects that’s a good thing. Because with these types of issues, they’re usually nauseas and can starve themselves which is WAY worse than being hungry all the time.

    The other issue I’m concerned with is if he’s suffering from malabsorption syndrome. That also does this and that may also be indicative of other health issues like pancreatitis. I just put up a new page on my site about B12 exactly for things like this. It’s a very important vitamin and helps greatly with these issues. http://ibdkitties.net/B12.html. Also, feel free to email me if you’d like to talk more about it and give me more details. The more information you give me, the better I can see what might help and what you might want to ask the vet about. Mail me at contact@ibdkitties.net.

  11. 13

    Ellen Shelton said,

    I just found this page and wanted to thank you for sharing your information. My kitty has been ill now for 3 months. Few people understands the stress and the emotional upheaval. My kitty has an arsenal of foods we have tried but is just now 8 lbs and coming off of another bout of vomiting. She was about 13lbs of fluff. We are just learning and praying for the best. We have seen three veterinarians who have contradicted each other in small ways and this is very confusing for us. I have questions but am beginning to wonder where to turn. Thanks for posting and providing help after the loss of your dear kitty .

  12. 14

    Lisa Provost said,

    Hi Ellen, I know this frustration and helplessness well. Can you please email me at contact@ibdkitties.net and we can talk? I’d love to try and help you. there are many things the vets don’t know that we kitty parents do. Please come to my site and let’s chat. I’m so sorry you’re going through this with your sweet little baby. You are not alone, believe me. I hope to talk with you Ellen.
    Lisa

  13. 15

    Kate said,

    Great info! Thanks

  14. 16

    ines said,

    Dear Lisa,

    many thanks for this information and I agree that Alex would be glad to know that her case at least is now helping others! I’m myself desperately looking for an answer for my girl Kiki and hope you dont mind that I tell you her story.

    She’s 17y old and has had diabetes for 6,5 years and kidney problems for 2years. Nevertheless, she was doing fine until doctors insisted that I should change her food to support the kidneys. She has been on Hills m/d for four years for the diabetes which apparently was not good for the kidneys. However, she did well on the m/d and only started to go downhill as soon as I tried kidney food. Since November 2010 she has been vomiting and had diarrhea without any specific reason. I finally could convince the vets that she must be allergic to food and she’s now been back on m/d since February. Things went well until unfortunately I got a bad bag of Hills m/d (something went wrong in the factory with the coating apparently!) which threw her off again and she has now been struggling with stomach/intestinal problems for more than a month. Since I dont think she’s allergic to m/d I fear it might be IBD triggered by food allergies but I’m terrified to change her food again given that that made her sick in the first place. She can also not get cortisone due to the diabetes. I’m now starting the B12 but I was wondering if you would know of any other supplement I could give her? The vets have no idea but think it could be food allergy, chronic pancreatitis, the kidneys playing up, etc…

    She hasn’t lost weight yet but I can see she’s getting weaker so any advice would be very much appreciated!! Sorry for the long story but I’m running out of ideas…

    Ines

  15. 17

    Lisa Provost said,

    Hi Ines, the problem with Hill’s is it’s FULL of grains and fillers. Nothing but carbs and sugars which is not helping her diabetes at all and putting strain on her other organs. Can you change her food to something like Natural Balance Limited Ingredient? That one is very mild and is specially made for digestive disorders and food allergies and intolerance. It’s grain free and so much better than Hill’s. Many, many times when a diabetic kitty changes diet and gets off of grains, their diabetes improves and sometimes eventually even goes into remission. Is she eating only dry food or is there canned also? If there’s only dry, that’s not good for her kidneys. She should be put on a grain free wet food with lots of moisture and even a little added water.

    Now the other thing is that you don’t say if she’s ever had a PLI blood test done for pancreatitis. Pancreatitis happens often in elderly diabetic kitties because at this point, it’s been working hard for so long, it’s strained. That should have been done by your vet and/or an ultrasound to see exactly what’s going on. X-rays don’t show the pancreas, it’s located behind the stomach.

    Right now supplements are not going to help too much. She needs antibiotics to get that bacteria under control. And something for the nausea and acid. Kidney disease and diabetes both produce a lot of acid reflux and the more nauseas she gets, the less she eats. The less she eats and drinks, the more dehydrated she’s getting. Is she getting fluids for her kidney’s also? At her age and at this stage, she should be.

    Feel free to contact me through my website if you’d like to get deeper into what’s going on with her. I’ll be more than happy to help you either here on the blog or through email, whatever is best for you. Let me know what she’s had done for tests. I will tell you that a fantastic anti-inflammatory for the kidneys is the only Natural Kidney support. I used that for a long time on my nephew kitty Moufasa, it really helped a lot!!! The combination of the different herbs in that one works very well.

    I’ll give you some encouragement. A good friend of mine has a diabetic kitty who is about to turn 17. His was in remission but he got very sick this winter with pancreatitis for the first time ever. He’s doing very, very well now and is ready for his 17th birthday. So don’t give up! There are a lot of things left that can be done!

    Lisa

  16. 18

    Valerie said,

    HI Lisa:
    I am sorry to read about Alex first of all.
    Secondly, you are very brave to put a website up and share what you know, what you didn’t know and what you are learning and willing to share with others.
    It is 0500 CA time as I write this. I took my Princess Kitty to the VET ER yesterday morning and they have kept her overnight. She has vomited in the past 2 years but not consistently. I have taken her to the doc and he said she had mild stomach irritation. She doesn’t like my brothers who come to visit my 91 year old mom and after they leave is when she’d throw up the grass we let her go outside to eat. She is 15 or 16 and is an indoor kitty. We go out with her when she wants to go eat grass or to get some sunshine.
    Speed up to current time, in April 2011 she was having distress breathing and she was “barking” trying to get something out. I was out of town for mandatory training to my brother took her to the VET ER who said then her R kidney was smaller than the other and it appeared she had some constipation and to watch her and make sure she eats and drinks, which she has done.
    Last month, she was acting really listless and didn’t seem to want to eat much but looked well I guess you can say “depressed”. I took her in again and they said that as he heat jumped 20 degrees in a day and it was around 100 (we don’t have AC) that it may be heat stress as they had been seeing some cats and dogs come in with similar symptoms.
    This past Friday she would not eat. She would go to her food bowl and wait for us to give her some dry food, she would look at it, then walk away. On Saturday she did the same thing but then she started throwing up. When she used to throw up she would get whatever is stuck in there and then she would go eat again. She had been having normal bowel movements until Friday. On Saturday she started with wet stool, AKA diarrhea but it was small. Sat night she drank some water then threw it up and it was foamy.
    That night as she was laying down she let me rub her tummy. I thought if I could rub or “fix” her by massage she would get whatever it is out of her out, either through vomiting or by bowel. When I went to massage her right tummy area (she was laying on it) she gave me the pain growl but yet allowed me to rub her.
    Sunday morning she was yowling in pain but wanted to go outside to get some grass. I took her out and about 30 later, she went to the litter box and had runny stool but was red and somewhat mucous appearing. She had also passed some of the grass she ate and then she threw up again. I took her to the VET ER where they indicated her right kidney was smaller and it appeared she had gas but no obstruction. They said she seemed to be doing fine and wanted to hydrate her and put her on antibiotics for a possible infection. I called 8 hours later and talked to another doctor who said she may have IBD or indications of kidney cancer. (I DONT KNOW HOW HE KNOWS THAT) especially when her blood levels seem to be leveling out.
    He suggested a GI Profile to determine for malabsorption. He also suggested a scope however because she is a senior cat,she would go under anesthesia which may not work for her.
    It all depends on her blood tests and how she does. She has not eaten since Friday (that we know of) and if he said if she doesn’t eat soon then her liver could fail. I am a wreck and don’t know what to do or where to go. I was referred to you by a friend who is on Catster and is on a thread called CCLs on Facebook.
    You seem to have more answers and knowledge about this ugly illness/disease than any of the medical literature on the subject. I don’t know for sure it is IBD or kidney cancer or even pancreatitis. Or the triple threat that Alex had.
    All I know is I am so undecided on how to proceed with Princess Kitty. She is a finicky eater and if I have to change her diet everyday I will. If I have to force feed her I will. She is very tough to be “pilled” as she never had a need for it so she fights us all the way.
    I don’t know what else to say except for a confirmed diagnoses of IBD do they have to do the scope? That is certainly more invasive and I wonder if it would even do more damage to her. I guess I’m being greedy and wanting her home to take care of her instead of letting her stay in a hospital overnight (or 2) and thinking I abandoned her.

    Thank you for this board and I don’t know if you will get a chance to read this as the last time I saw you log on was 3 months ago.
    If you are unable to help can you refer me to somewhere else for more info? I won’t get any results until Tuesday morning. So the next 24 for me are very scary and I know they are for Princess Kitty.
    Thank you,
    Valerie

  17. 19

    Lisa said,

    Hi Valerie, I’m so very sorry this is happening to your Princess. I will be more than happy to talk with you and make some suggestions. It would be better if you contacted me through the website, that way we can get into more details: contact@ibdkitties.net. Please do so asap and I’ll be looking for your email. Something is very wrong here and as far as the doc suggesting IBD and maybe cancer, well he really has the experience on what her symptoms are. I’m not saying he’s right and I’m sure he said he only suspects it. But I do HIGHLY suggest a full blood panel and please do that ASAP. I also suggest an ultrasound instead of a GI scope. An ultrasound is just like with a person where they rub the belly with the little warm thing. It can show everything much better than the x-rays. But anytime there is this much vomiting, blood, diarrhea, and PAIN, you need to get the full blood work up right now especially to see if there’s anything going on with the liver. Is this vet the ER vet or the regular vet? PLEASE contact me at that address and let’s get her some help pronto.

    Again, I’m so sorry you’re going through this sweetie
    Lisa

  18. 20

    Lisa said,

    Valerie I haven’t heard anything from you. Please write to me so I can help you with this! I’m more than happy to talk at great lengths with you and make some suggestions but it’s easier to go back and forth on this board. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE email me at contact@ibdkitties.net.

    The same goes for anyone here that needs any help or just needs to talk.

  19. 21

    Madelyn Cousins said,

    Yes, good website – unfortunately I found it too late for my 18 yr old beloved cat who passed away 3 weeks ago. I figure now he had IBD – his bloodwork in June was fine but he did through up quite a bit.

    We got a kitten in July and maybe he wasn’t eating enough or drinking enough even though I was home with them for the first 2 weeks they were together. He died 8-22 with quite a bit of buildup of fluid in his intestines.

    The ER vet said he had hepatitis or fatty liver disease.

    I feel so bad thinking that maybe the kitten stressed him out of eating.

    Thanks for listening.

  20. 22

    Lisa said,

    I’m so sorry Madelyn, I too found out way too many things after Alex was already gone. It’s bittersweet for me now to be able to help others with this knowledge. But I couldn’t save my little girl. It’s heartbreaking. You have my sincere condolences. I know exactly how you feel. Please start the new kitten out on a feline appropriate diet. This will really help with health and well being.
    Lisa

  21. 23

    Maryann Handy said,

    My cat Casanova has just been diagnosed with IBD. I have him on hypoallergenic food which is from my vets. I have him on a stool softener which he takes not 2 times a day so he does not become constipated again. It is called laxaday powder. He is also on medi – cal wet food hypoallergenic too. He is also getting msn and glucosamine for his athritus in his wet food 2 times a day. He seems to be going to the bathroom okay and his vomiting is reduced to 1 a day at night or early morning it seems. The vomitt smells foul like it is right from deep in his intestine. He has both lower and upper Gi IBD. I am thinking of putting him on vitamin b12, Is there another way besides the needle to give it to him. He will not do needle or liquid well. What kind of probiotics should he get and how much. He is a pure bred Siamese chocolate point. He is my best friend and if anyone could help, this disease is horrible to watch him suffer and especially the vomiting. He is now 12 years old. Maryann

    • 24

      Lisa said,

      Hi Maryann, I’m sorry Casanova has IBD. Not fun at all! Be watchful of the glucosamine because sometimes it actually aggravates IBD. Only on occasion though so it may not bother him at all, just something to keep in mind.

      early morning vomiting is classic IBD. Make sure he gets several small meals per day especially late at night before you go to bed. At least 4 meals per day if you can manage it. Unfortunately B12 in a vitamin for ANYONE, pet or human, with intestinal issues has to be given by injection otherwise it just won’t be absorbed. I tried it myself with my Alex and again with my sister’s two cats and it does nothing in pill form when they have GI diseases. It really needs to be injection. Liquid won’t even work, it has to bypass the stomach and go right into the system.

      Him being a Siamese makes sense as they tend to get these diseases as part of genetics. It’s very easy to give shots, would you have someone who could help you by holding him? I have instructions and a video on my website: http://www.ibdkitties.net/Shots.html. If not, maybe you could have the vet do it. As far as probiotics I wouldn’t do Fortiflora like the vets offer, that has animal digest which is just gross. I’d do something like Prozyme, which is very good. I’d only do once a day to start with and see how it goes, if he tolerates it well (which he should, that’s a gentle one), do twice daily.

      Please feel free to contact me further if you need to talk more in-depth: contact@ibdkitties.net.

  22. 25

    Angela said,

    Lisa, thanks for making this place where IBD cat parents can come to discuss and learn more. My boy Leo who is only 10, doesn’t have much longer to live. I sit up nights wondering what I could have done differently, but I just don’t know. He was a turkey, once a 22 lb cat. When he started dropping weight the vets didn’t seem too concerned as it was very gradual. When he hit 14 lbs we started doing labs. No thyroid issues, no parasites, no diabetes, nothing. We eventually found some very painful diseased teeth in his mouth and ended up putting him through a dental procedure, which I still feel guilty about, but the vets said he would be a different cat. Over the months to follow he dropped so much weight he started losing strength. We had an ultrasound and a needle biopsy of the lymph nodes and his intestinal wall to rule out cancer. We started prescription foods and tried to keep him eating with appetite stimulating meds, along with his prednisone. This last month has been the worst. Now at 9 pounds 1 ounce, he is now no longer interested in anything. The vets said he is very sick and dying now. I still don’t want to accept this, he is only 10. I wish I knew more about IBD long ago when he first started losing weight. Maybe we could have given him more time or completely stopped the downward spiral. Now I am left with this emaciated little boy who was once the king of the castle. I am heartbroken but I can’t give up, even now with him so weak and now breathing heavily because his red blood cells are so low he can’t get enough oxygen to his blood. He still gets B-12 shots and meds. I can’t stop fighting but I am wondering if at this point I am just being selfish while he suffers.

    • 26

      Lisa said,

      Boy Angela, this post made me cry. It’s so similar to my Alex in a lot of ways. I know it’s easy for someone else to say try not to feel guilty. If I said that I’d be talking the talk and not walking the walk. I still have guilt trips and have to stop myself from getting too upset over what happened with Alex or I will be no good to my kitties that I have now. Angela is he open mouth breathing? If so, he needs to get to the vet immediately. Can he walk or anything or is he just too weak? If he’s still able to walk and is just breathing heavily, I’m wondering if he’s having problems with his heart. There is another steroid besides prednisone, called Entocort. Ask your vet and see if this is an option. It does not need to be converted by the liver and is easier on their systems. If he’s struggling as badly as you write here, it may be time to let him go sweetie. I could not be more sorry to even say that, I don’t say it lightly. I believe in giving the kitty every last chance available and nothing hurts more than losing our furchildren, I can vouch for that. I think you already do know and feel that you don’t want him to suffer either. So ask the vet about the Entocort asap. Tell the vet I have many case studies on my website that show it works on cats! If he wants to try it with Leo, then go for it. But if the vet thinks it’s too late, then please know you can write to me at my website and I’ll be there for support okay? I know how it feels and it’s torture. Sending you many hugs.

  23. 27

    Sue Branagan said,

    Lisa – I am so sorry about Alex. I read both yours and Angela’s stories about Alex and Leo and am just sitting here sobbing about the heartache you both have endured and because of months of watching my little girl suffer with IBD and feeling so helpless and inept.
    I have read everything I can find on feline IBD but despite all of this information I am still confused and frustrated as there are so many conflicting theories and recommendations (i.e. diet (raw vs canned), supplements, natural/holistic treatments vs traditional, vets with no knowledge of nutrition, etc.).

    Jasmine – my tiny little 12 year old Birman (just 6 lbs.) is the one I am so worried and would welcome your advice about. However, Angela’s post was in April of this year and it is now almost November so I’m not sure if you are still writing/accepting more posts. If so, I will try this coming weekend to put my experience with Jasmine’s IBD together chronologically to give you a better idea of our struggle. I lost my 1st cat to cancer at the age of 16 and, while he lived a good life right up until a few months before he died, that was over 10 years ago and I still haven’t gotten over losing him. Jasmine is 12 yrs. old and her “sister” Mya is 11. I got them at age 1 and 2 from a breeder who had “retired” them because for physical/reproductive issues that prevented her from showing them. As is typical of the breed, these little girls are such sweet, adoring & affectionate cats and I can’t bear the thought of losing Jasmine because of something I could/should have done differently and/or sooner.

    I will wait to hear back from you as to whether or not you are still accepting posts and willing to try to advise me. In the meantime, please know that I am so sorry that you lost Alex. I truly believe that no one can ever know the bond between cats and their moms unless they’ve been owned by one :-) ! Thank you so much for helping so many people who, like myself, are doing the best they can – albeit without results – out of love for their loving, furry, companions.

    Sue

    • 28

      Lisa said,

      Hi Sue, yes, I’m still here. This post will always be here and I’ll always reply to anyone who needs to help their little ones. Please let me know what I can do for you and your sweet Jasmine! I know it’s confusing but treatments are different for each kitty and as they respond to one thing, they may not respond to another. You just have to keep trying until you find what works. Let me know what you’ve done so far and what’s been going on and I’ll do my very best to help sort this out okay? Hang in there and thank you so much for your condolences. Four years has not softened the blow much.
      Hugs
      Lisa

  24. 29

    laceymoki said,

    I feel so discouraged about one of my cats, Moki, who has IBD. He went from a chunky 11# (overweight, he was eating the neighbor cat’s food) down to about 8# in 2 years. Currently nine years old, Moki had diarrhea from parasites when I first got him as a rescue kitty at 5 months. Over his life he had bouts of diarrhea, which would go away after giving him probiotics. A few years ago, the diarrhea got worse, the probiotics didn’t stop it. Poor little guy gets gas and cramps, has bowel spasms and never goes in his box except to pee. I tried him on various diets, from z/d (during which his fur looked terrible) to what I feed him now, which is raw. Nothing has helped. I’ve consulted with 4 vets. We tried Vit. B12 shots, that didn’t help, neither did acupuncture, Chinese herbs or other supplements for the intestines. With the raw food, at least his fur looks better, so he must be absorbing something. I go online and buy T/C Feline, a powdered pre-mix (no grains) which I add to previously frozen raw meat. The vet put him on Prednisone, which sometimes keeps the inflammation down but not always. Sometimes the vet prescribes Metronidazole for bacterial infection, but it leaves him weak and does not resolve the diarrhea. I give him probiotics. He is now outdoors most of the time including at night, which is problematic as Winter is coming. It’s a good thing he generally likes being outside (except during very cold/ wet weather). I just can’t take cleaning up the many splotches of feces, washing towels that I place on sofas etc. when he’s inside. He does go through periods of being a little better, but then he reverts right back. Right now he is at a severe stage.
    Thanks for listening!

    • 30

      Lisa said,

      I’m so sorry this is happening. I wish I had an answer for the diarrhea but I am having the same exact issue with my sister’s cat Midnight. Nothing I seem to do helps control it. One thing I am trying that I just got in today is something called Lectin Lock. It’s all natural and supposed to push out the bad bacteria. I have only given her one pill so far so I don’t have any idea how or if this will work. I can keep you posted though and let you know. I got this product idea from another person with an IBD kitties who is using this and also 500 Mg Curcumin with 5 Mg Piperine. I haven’t tried that one yet but am looking to see how she does on this first. I never had to deal with diarrhea with Alex, she didn’t have that issue so this is new to me. It’s really something isn’t it? HORRIBLE! The smell, the mess, the cleaning, it’s enough to make us vomit. Even though I don’t have the answers, I’m here to listen if you need to talk.

  25. 31

    Stacy said,

    Clyde will be 16 in May 2013 and has struggled with IBD for probably 4 years. I’ve gone to multiple vets who all prescribe the same things…prenisone, metronidozole, and pepcid ac. They tell me to go grain free or use the prescription food or the limited ingredient foods like duck and green peas…blah blah blah is all I keep hearing! We’ll need to do exploratory surgery, etc. I’ve probably spent $5000 and gotten no where. NOTHING…and I mean nothing has worked. He still has lost weight…down to about 7.5 pounds from his healthy 17lbs. He has left diarrhea messes in the house and even urinated where he shouldn’t. Many times I think it’s as if he can’t make it to the box. He’s constantly meowing for more food even though he just ate an hour ago. The food is not being digested and just moving right through him…typical colitis/IBD. And the smell is horrendous when it comes out the other end. So much so you can smell it on the second floor.

    Even though I have been researching this issue from day one and thought I’ve tried everything, there was one I had not and figured I needed to as a last resort. Raw diet… It’s now been 7 days since I put Clyde and his sister on a raw diet…cold turkey. I did not ease into it because what good what it to anyway with their issue. They throw up and have loose stools whatever you did before so who cares if it happens now. Just shock the system into it. There are many raw options so you don’t have to make it yourself because I wasn’t, so I bought every possible pre-packaged raw food from the pet stores around me and brought them all home for them to try. As cats are picky, I let them choose which one they wanted. They both love and eat the Stella & Chewy’s freeze dried frood….just add water and chop up. I had taken Clyde off the Metronidazole a week earlier because I figured it wasn’t helping him since he still had diarrhea. I also gave them Pure Vita dry so they had some kind of kibble to eat. Yes the Pure Vita is not pure meat but they needed something dry kibble. Within 36 hours of going cold turkey to Stella & Chewy’s, there are NO loose stools at all…no messes on the floor…no screaming hungry cat crying for more food…and no smelly stools. He’s going once in the box a day and no other issues. I’m not sure how long it will take to add the weight but I’ll feed him as much as he’ll eat of this and for the rest of his life. From research results, it may take as little as 6 weeks and as much as 6 months. I’ll just keep going at it this way and give them no other foods like treats, etc….nothing that’s not based on the raw diet. Keep your fingers crossed!

  26. 33

    Stephanie said,

    Hello everyone, I send my heartfelt empathy.
    I found this thread after searching for information for my beloved Oscar. Like Angela’s kitty, Oscar is only 10, and was formerly a big 14lb cat. Now he is 8lbs6oz (and I am thankful for the 5 oz. weight gain!), and has been on massive injections of Depo-Medrol *once a week* for many weeks now. He typically perks up for a few days and eats a lot (I cook him chicken thighs as he has been rejecting everything- canned, freeze-dried and otherwise- else.) Afterward, he crashes, and is now throwing up bile. I have a wonderful vet, and though we have discussed the downsides of this treatment, we can’t seem to come up with anything else that achieves him some relief. When an x-ray (he was limping, too) showed his whole belly looking very opaque, the vet thought perhaps he had lymphoma. but I am now reading that IBD can cause scarring in the stomach cavity. For the last 2 days, I have been trying a low-dose Prednisone (5 mgs) rather than giving the Depo-Medrol injection, but I am starting to think we should just give the injection, since he is feeling sick and eating nothing… It certainly doesn’t help that he was infected with FIV after a recent move to another state.
    By the way, I have used homeopathic and natural remedies for my cats with good success, but this condition really caught me off-guard. I often wonder what might have happened if I had said NO to that very first steroid shot, but know such second-guessing won’t help. Like Sue, I feel “helpless and inept”. I have hope for a little more quality life for sweet Oscar. He is still finding enjoyment in between these bad days. Perhaps things can still get better.
    I guess I am just grateful to have found this thread, and send out some virtual hugs to all those who are nursing (or who have lost) beloved companions to this condition.

    • 34

      Stephanie said,

      PS. Thank you, Lisa.

      • 35

        Lisa P said,

        Hi Stephanie, I’m sorry you and Oscar have to go through this. Has he never had an ultrasound? X-rays are not good enough to show what’s really going on inside his intestines. This way the vet can check his liver, pancreas, everything in there. Also, why isn’t he on B12 injections weekly? The great side effect of B12 is massive hunger and it helps him to absorb his nutrients. You said you have him on prednisone. Not prednisolone? prednisolone gives a much better response and is faster and better acting than regular pred. You could also try Leukeran, which is a chemo drug but is used in severe cases of IBD. It does work for many kitties. Oscar sounds like he’s in that category.

      • 36

        Stephanie said,

        Hi Lisa,
        thanks for writing me back. I think that things were looking so bad for awhile that the vet and I were both just “waiting for the inevitable”, but he had a pretty good week last week. I will definitely talk to the vet about an ultrasound, Prednisolone and Leukeran (he had mentioned that medicine once). And I failed to mention he has been getting B12 injections (his last one was last Thursday) and it does generally help with appetite. He still has not eaten anything at all today, and has thrown up bile a second time, so I gave him some subcutaneous fluids (the vet has let me take home a kit- I got some practice with that with my kitty Carl, who died of kidney failure). In any case, I just feel so sad about it, and don’t want to see him suffer. That is the worst part, not knowing when to let go.
        I am trying not to be “sorrowful”, but just to enjoy him every moment. I sure would love to see him fat and sassy once again.
        I appreciate your thoughts – thanks again.

      • 37

        Lisa P said,

        Stephanie please know you are not alone in this. I’m so sorry you’ve lost one already to kidney failure. This makes this even harder. What about pepcid a/c for nausea? You can also ask the vet about Cerenia for nausea and vomiting, that would definitely help. Can you syringe feed him if he goes too long without eating? Is he on appetite stimulants?
        Lisa

  27. 38

    Stephanie said,

    Thanks, Lisa. I will definitely see about getting Cerenia and an appetitie stimulant. He is SO hard to give pills to…and I gave him syringe antibiotics (for stomatitis) for months, and that was AWFUL. He fought me so hard. So I know that syringe feeding would not be ideal.
    After the FIV diagnosis, it has been one thing after after the other, and of course I wonder if the antibiotics caused the IBD… I have tried Fortiflora, too, but I just can’t get it down him.
    “tomorrow is another day”, and the vet will be open… I will pull out all the stops in a bid to get him some *quality* time.

    • 39

      Lisa P said,

      I understand, I’m not sure if they have Cerenia in transdermals but you can try. That’s so you can rub it on his ear instead of pilling him. But you can try pill pockets, will he eat those? You put the pill inside the treat and they usually eat it like that. That poor little guy of yours has a lot of issues. I’m so sorry you are both going through this. Please let me know what happens at the vet.

  28. 40

    Stephanie said,

    I did have a phone consult with the vet, and he said we could try one more round of meds and injections, but he was also pretty clear that we are likely near the end. At this point, I am wondering if he would prefer to not continue to be poked and prodded. I am sitting quietly with him, and this choice. Thanks for all your help – and your kind shoulder.

    • 41

      Lisa P said,

      I’m not there to see him so I can’t tell if that’s true. But there are other medications to try that you haven’t yet. Budesonide is another steroid that works differently than pred and could be tried. I am not trying to insult your vet at all, just wondering if there are no other vets in your area? Sometimes a vet will give up when they just don’t know what else to do. But as I said, I’m not there to see how your sweet little one is really doing. Again, I am so sorry you’re going through this. I know from personal experience how emotionally draining this is.

      • 42

        Stephanie said,

        Well, I have been to other vets before this one. I really do think he knows what he is doing, but I certainly appreciate those suggestions. He said that he is pretty sure that there are other elements at work than IBD (and yes, perhaps cancer). After reading about those treatments I am not sure I would want to pursue them as many folks report their cats suffering from them. Yes, I am pretty exhausted too, and I can only imagine how Oscar feels. He is peaceful for the moment, and I am still trying to feel my way through it.

  29. 43

    Stephanie said,

    I’ve been reading your other article (ibdkitties) and looking at your sweet Alex. What a beautiful girl! Our animals are such gifts, aren’t they? They often come to us with mysterious pasts, and they are returning to Mystery, too, like we will.
    But it is so hard to accept when they are sick with something that takes them all too soon. Thanks again, and blessings to you.
    I will let you know what happens.

    • 44

      Lisa P said,

      You’re welcome Stephanie and good luck to you both. I know that Oscar has a loving and wonderful mom who only wants the best for him, no matter if that will cause you pain. If you need to talk you can always contact me here or on my site at contact@ibdkitties.net. Feel free to email me okay?

      • 45

        Stephanie said,

        Hi Lisa! Well, Oscar has rallied! I was sure yesterday that the end was nigh, but not for nothing do we say cats have 9 lives, huh? I talked to my vet about all the meds that you have suggested… I’ve decided to keep up with the Depo-Medrol because it’s injectable, but also to add Pepcid and an appetite stimulant. He DID (finally!) eat a little tonight. I am relieved for the short term, but know were this is heading. I guess the life lesson is to treasure every purr, every trill and every head butt, right?
        I will keep checking in.
        I am also here to extend a sympathetic hand to anyone else dealing with this… and to say, once again, “thank you Lisa”…

      • 46

        Lisa P said,

        Oscar has proven to you what Alex used to do to me. That only HE will determine when he’s ready to go. Keep us posted!

  30. 47

    Isabella said,

    Hi everyone! I read all your posts and am having the same issues w/my baby girl Annie. She is 13 yrs old. She started to get diarrhea a while ago, sev years. Took her to 2 vets. One diagnosed her with giardia and put her on antibiotics. Still she had diarrhea with no improovement. 2nd vet said she may have food sensitivity. So i guessed and bought grain free. It worked! I was so relieved. Now her diarrhea is back. Recent vet trip ruled out any protozoa, blood or mucus in her stool. I havent had her blood work done or had an xray or ultrasound. But am thinking i can state she probably has IBD. I will try the raw diet and see how this helps her. Thanks everyone for your stories.

    • 48

      Lisa P said,

      Hi Isabella, try the raw diet but if that doesn’t help please get some blood work just to make sure nothing else is going on. Good luck!

      • 49

        Stephanie said,

        Hello everyone, and Lisa and Isabella;
        I am so sorry to hear about Annie!
        My cat Oscar is feeling less well the last 2 days, and that roller coaster is SO HARD. I do, however, feel a lump steadily growing in his left side, so I suspect my vet is right, and there are several things going on.
        I was talking to a neighbor about IBD in general, and she said her husband was helped tremendously by chiropractic, of all things… I wonder if there is a holistic vet around who might be able to help Annie? Also, I can highly recommend a book that saved one of my cat’s lives (more than once!) “Dr. Richard Pitcairn’s Natural Health for Dogs and Cats” – it also contains lots of recipes.
        For my own cat, I have decided (perhaps unfortunately) to mostly forgo the “holistic” approach in favor of simply keeping him as comfortable as possible for as long as possible. I am still trying to stay centered “in the moment”, but it’s hard when you don’t know what to do to help a friend.
        Sending a big hug all around -

      • 50

        Lisa P said,

        Stephanie I am so sorry to hear this. Please know we are here for you and Oscar.

  31. 51

    Lisa P said,

    I forgot to mention that IBD in people and cats are very different. Cats have it much worse than people do.

    • 52

      Stephanie said,

      YES, you are RIGHT… what I have observed is WAY beyond what people seem to describe. I’ve got tears in my eyes. Our poor babies.

      • 53

        Lisa P said,

        It’s not fair, it’s just not fair. they don’t deserve all this suffering.

      • 54

        Stephanie said,

        No, not fair at all. The good news for the cats on this page is that they have people who care, and some treatments available – if not for a cure, at least *some* comfort. Trying to look on the bright side, which is hard…

  32. 55

    Melissa said,

    Hi Lisa….

    My sincere condolences on the loss of your friend, Alex.

    I have spent the last few hours reading about IBD and came to your site. I’m stunned and saddened as I am believing that my dearest, fluffiest furr ball Haiku who is a 10-year old cuddly male has IBD. It all start last fall when he began vomiting and having diarrhea and I noticed that he was losing weight even though he was eating constantly (from 12 to 8 lbs.)…I couldn’t feed him enough. He was diagnosed in early October with hyperthyroidism. In mid November, my husband and I chose to have him treated with the I-131 shot. When he returned home after being away from us for 4 nights and 5 days (Yikes!), I had switched over to a raw diet, which initially he LOVED. However, after a few weeks, he started turning his nose up to it and began vomiting and having diarrhea again. I took him in a week before his regularly scheduled post I-131 check up as I was concerned he was exhibiting signs of kidney disease (which can often be masked by the hyperthyroidism). He had blood work done and his thyroid levels were back to normal (the I-131 worked!) and his kidney and liver were fine. He also gained weight! The vet was stumped and sent me on my way.

    I had come to the conclusion on my own that perhaps he had developed a food allergy. So I began changing his diet. His vomiting and diarrhea continued. This time, his vomit included a hair ball. Typically, his first throw up would be food and the subsequent ones would be bile. And he would always vomit in the early morning. I decided to put him on nature’s variety LID formula beginning last Thursday. The following day, I had made a vet appointment and she was stumped. She took a feces culture and saw some white blood cells and decided to put him on an antibiotic. I was happy that he hadn’t lost any weight and had continued to gain from the hyperthyroidism.

    He was doing GREAT until this evening when he had a bad vomiting/diarrhea spell – vomiting a hairball with food and then bile. Reading all through the thread, it sounds like my little buddy perhaps has IBD. I’m so heartbroken since he just went through everything last fall with the hyperthyroidism. I feel absolutely helpless. I don’t even know where to begin and how to help him. I’m not even entirely clear how my vet makes the diagnosis. I read somewhere about a biopsy, and I just don’t want to put him under anesthesia. My friend who is an acupuncturist told me this evening that he would look at him. I’m just stumped. Thank you for listening.

    • 56

      Lisa P said,

      Hi Melissa, you are understandably overwhelmed and the first thing I want you to do is to sit down and breath. I know this is scary but you are NOT alone okay? Now! I think your vet doesn’t sound like he knows that much about IBD and I’m wondering if you perhaps have another vet in your area (maybe even an all cats vet) that you can take him to. yes, for a definitive diagnosis you need a biopsy but I never got one for Alex and many people do not and their kitties are still treated as if it’s IBD. So you need to either get your vet on board or find another one who knows more about the condition and get another opinion on this matter. there may in fact be something else going on but at least you’ll find someone that doesn’t say they are stumped and send you home without any treatments or answers. That’s something you need asap and you need to get him on a treatment plan. Is there in fact another vet you can take him to?

    • 57

      Stephanie said,

      Hello Melissa and Lisa,
      I just wanted to check in – I saw Melissa’s post. I am so sorry, Melissa, that you and Haiku are dealing with this! I’m glad you have an acupunturist friend, though. Maybe that is an avenue to pursue, and what Lisa says makes a lot of sense.

      I let my dear cat Oscar go on Tuesday. My dad, who had a special affinity with him, was also present, so Oscar went gently, in the company of his two best friends. It was one of the hardest things I ever had to do, but yet I am glad we could render this last assistance.

      I wonder what is at the root of this blasted IBD in cats? Do you think it is diet? I guess that is the most likely culprit.
      Melissa, I am sending my *best* thoughts and *heartfelt* prayers that good help can be found for Haiku!

      • 58

        Lisa P said,

        Stephanie I am so very, very sorry about Oscar. There are many suspected causes to IBD and yes, diet can be one of them. Again, I’m so sorry for your loss.

  33. 59

    Natalie said,

    The love if my life developed food sensitivities a few years ago. He had diarrhea for two years. I had taken him to the vet during this time, he seemed healthy, we tried different medications, nothing worked. There were a few natural supplements I tried that worked, but only temporarily. He had been eating Blue Buffalo salon dry food for years. In my search for finding something to alleviate his diarrhea, I learned about raw diets for cats. I switched him over to Nature’s Variety chicken, dry and raw. The very first day, he had a solid stool! Cured! Or so I thought… He had been on this new diet for over a year, and everything was great, until a few weeks ago. The diarrhea returned… Then vomiting. He was lethargic and depressed. I didn’t understand. I was scared. I took him to the vet. His amylase was high. A sign of pancreatitis. He was eating good raw food. Why did this happen? The vet prescribed pain meds for his discomfort and suggested giving him Hill’s prescription diet. I took a couple cans, but was dissatisfied with their nutritional value. I got a different flavor of Nature’s Variety raw, duck this time. I mixed the Hill’s can with the NV raw duck and quit giving him the NV chicken dry. So far the vomiting had ceased and his stool seems to be improving. I really would prefer to keep him on a raw diet and avoid foods that lack nutrition. I am suspecting that he developed an allergy to chicken after being fed it too long. I am now researching pancreatitis, IBD, and diets for him; hoping that I will be able to continue feeding him raw. Then I came to read that rotation might be a key part in this mess. I’m hoping that I will not have to put him on a prescription diet, as I feel they lack nutrition, and that rotating raw will do the trick. I love Peri so much, he’s been in my life for 15 years. He’s an amazingly healthy youthful cat, except for this wicked disease. I came upon your article while looking for answers. It was very educational and helpful. Thank you so much for posting this.

    • 60

      Lisa P said,

      Hi Natalie, I’m so sorry Peri has this debilitating disease. I have to say you are not the first to be confused as to why it still happened even on a raw diet. That’s because although a raw diet is preferable and still the best option, it’s not a cure for IBD, there isn’t one. Pancreatitis is a painful and horrible condition that can happen out of the blue regardless of whether they are on the best diet possible or not. I hope that changing up the protein and rotating them will help little Peri. Please let me know if you need any help with anything.

    • 61

      Lisa R said,

      Honestly, in my opinion, I think IBD is just a result of a cat having an overactive immune response. I have tried several different foods and diets with my cat and it works short term but the IBD comes right back. I’ve been dealing with this for 3 years and the frequency of her “episodes” are now every 6-8 weeks. I can’t keep living like this so my next course of action is to try probiotics and fish oil. Google Vitality Science. I have been looking into their company and they have good reviews but I thought about trying their products as well. I do not believe diet plays a big a role in this as every one thinks or else most of these cats would be cured or at least have it under control, because we have all tried diet changes and yet we are all here sharing our stories and frustrated beyond belief. I’m at my wit’s end. I have missed work due to my cats illness, spent thousands of dollars on vet visits, and we are now looking at replacing our carpet because her vomiting has completely ruined it.

      • 62

        Lisa P said,

        Lisa I’m sorry your kitty is going through this. I will tell you though that the definition of IBD is a overactive immune response, that’s not a matter of opinion, it’s what the disease is. And yes, actually in some forms of IBD diet can control it and some do not need to be on medication. I get emails daily from people and some are much more difficult cases, which is what seems to be the case here on this site. But mostly IBD can be stabilized with the right diet and right medications together. IBD is very complicated and changes frequently so diet and supplements alone don’t always do it. But diet is one of the triggers for IBD as well as other things like parasites, genetics, and so on. There is NO cure for IBD so as far as diet or anything else curing it, that’s not going to happen unfortunately. It can only be stabilized and under control. Even with a raw food diet. I really don’t know what to say about your kitty because I don’t know if you’ve tried medications to stop the vomiting. If not, you should. Cerenia is a great med that acts as an anti-inflammatory, pain medication and anti-emetic. It should be considered, for your cat’s health and well being.

  34. 63

    Sue said,

    I’m glad I found this site. My 13 year old, Hendrix, started losing weight in December and became lethargic as well. I took him to a vet who said he had a uti and gave me amoxicillin. He seemed to be doing okay, but it gave him a slight diarrhea and after I came back from vacation in January he had a nasty vomiting attack that left him weak (I suspect the dry cd food did not agree with him since he eats it wet, but loves the dry). Since the beginning of last year he would vomit in the mornings when I went on vacation and I just figured it was stress vomiting, but when I returned from my vacation this time, he vomited 2 massive hairballs as well. He also did not want to eat his Hills cd wet food (he had crystals 8 years ago and the vet at the time told me he could only eat this). I brought him to a different vet who re-ran the blood work and is suspecting that he has IBD. He is scheduled for an ultra sound. I promptly stopped feeding him the prescription food and he has been on a digestive/probiotic since December. This has controlled his vomiting, but now he has a large amount of semi-soft stool (once a day) and has become very finicky about eating. When his system gets used to the food (grain free) he rejects it. I am constantly feeding him something new (just to get him to eat) which does not help with the soft stool. I’ve just started to add Pet Flora to his food along with Plant Enzymes and Probiotics mixed in. Tomorrow I will pick up cortisone from the vet because he is still having a hard time absorbing nutrients and I want him to stop losing weight. I will wait a few days to see if the Pet Flora works before giving him the steroid. Can you give a pet too much probiotics? The holistic pet store recommended the Pet Flora when he was on the antibiotics (told me to give it to him until the diarrhea stops). I have been giving Hendrix the Plant Enzymes and Probiotics since December and it has stopped his vomiting except for when he got sick after I returned from vacation and as I mentioned before I think this was because he got a mix of dry cd as well as wet since he was only fed once a day (and I forgot to tell my neighbor to sprinkle the enzymes on his dry as well). I sometimes feel horrible that I probably aggravated his illness by having him fed the dry cd when I was away.

  35. 64

    Alyson said,

    Hi Lisa, and everyone else who has a pet suffering from IBD or other intestinal issues. My beloved cat Smith is in the process of being diagnosed, (Lymphoma is still on the table too, he is scheduled for a full thickness biopsy April 3 to settle that issue.)

    Roller coaster is really the term for this condition. One day it seems like he is on the mend, happy as a clam, (except he always has diarrhea no matter what) and the next day he can spiral downward so fast I think he wont make it through the night.

    Cerenia, Mirtazipine, probiotics, Vitality Science products (I got their “resistant” kit) Metronidazole, Tylosin, Fenbendazole, even a triple whammy of Metronidazole, Clindamycin, and Amoxicillin. He worsens on Prednisone, so that has only been used for 4 days at a time, we have not yet tried the other immune suppressants. I’ve been afraid to, until we ruled out as many possible infectious agents as we could.

    Right now he is pretty bad. I am just feeding him boiled chicken and broth, some electrolytes, and probiotics. I am afraid to do anything for fear of making him worse. He has been grain free for a while now, but there was some gluten still hiding in a food I recently discovered, so finally, that has been removed too.

    Two things, one, for the people who have a lot of trouble pilling. Smith HATES pills. Particularly Metronidazole. (And I don’t blame him, I tasted it, it’s vile.) We used to have life or death struggles over medicines. I finally got wise and developed a technique that might help others. It saved our relationship.

    I use meat baby food. Just meat. Nothing else. You get a syringe, suck up a little of the baby food, and squirt a little in their mouth, then quickly pop in the pill, and then give them the rest of the baby food in the syringe to help it down. The first squirt coats the tongue, the second squirt helps it down the throat without dissolving. It is the same principle as giving children a pill in applesauce. It took a little while for the “pill dread” to wear off, but he is MUCH easier to pill now.

    Second thing, I read a lot of science. In humans, “fecal bacteriotherapy” is showing promise in treating many intractable intestinal issues, from C. Difficiles to IBD. It consists of, basically, giving enemas of a healthy persons feces to a sick person. Which apparently, allows the gut to be repopulated by some bacteria that they either have not yet identified, or if it is a known, administering orally is simply not feasible for whatever reason.

    I think it is the magic bullet, personally, as the results in humans can be amazing. Life saving. But I cannot find a single vet willing to try it to save my Smith. More and more, its becoming apparent that our “microbiome,” particularly in the gut, plays a HUGE role in our immune response. I personally think that the problem with many of these “IBD Kitties” began a long time ago when some vet gave them some antibiotic, for some other condition, which then threw their gut bacteria out of whack and began this nightmare ride we are all on with our beloved cats.

    Anyway, just my two cents. Thank you so much Lisa, for doing what you do. It is comforting to read other’s stories and know I am not alone in this. I wish everyone the best of luck. <3

    • 65

      Lisa P said,

      Hi Alyson, I’m so sorry for what you’re going through with Smith. I hope it’s not lymphoma. Have you considered trying Budesonide (Entocort)? It’s much easier on the liver than pred. That’s a great tip for pilling, do you mind if I put that on my website? Also, the fecal transplant has been brought up to me several times recently and one person actually wrote to some of the universities that do veterinary studies. They all said it sounded promising so please if you can, write to places like Tufts, Cornell, UC Davis, Texas A&M and encourage them to start studying that process. That’s the only way we’ll ever get vets to start doing it. The reason they aren’t right now is because it’s not been done in animals before, never. So it’s completely new and never been tested. There has to be a first time for everything. Thank you so much for the response, the kind words and for sharing your story. I hope Smith can find the help he so badly needs. Please let me know if i can ever help you with anything.

      • 66

        Alyson said,

        Lisa, absolutely do share the baby food trick on your website if you feel it would help others. It was really a game changer for Smith and I. He had gotten to the point where he would hide from me and scream as I dragged him out from under whatever piece of furniture he was hiding under by the scruff of his neck, and would dig his claws into my hands and try to pull them from his mouth as I attempted to pill him. I would hold his mouth shut so he wouldnt spit them out, and he would be drooling, making horrible sad miserable noises, refusing to swallow until it dissolved in his poor mouth. (Which of course only made it taste nastier, but try explaining that to Smith) And then he would be avoid me, act fearful of me. It broke my heart.

        Now, he only makes token attempt at escape. And the pills go right down. So please, do share it. Hopefully, it will spare some poor pet parent and their beloved some misery.

        Thank you for the suggestion about writing to those Universities. I will. Smith is going to U. of Tennessee for his biopsy. (Im still wavering between endoscopy and surgery. They want surgery, for a full thickness biopsy, but I’m so worried about subjecting him to major surgery.) I spoke to the vets there about it, but they basically just blew me off. Some nonesense about how they would be afraid to damage his bowel. (Really? Giving a cat an enema is THAT exotic a concept?? Funny, my regular vet, who also declined to try the procedure, just told me how he has another cat client who has the opposite problem Smith has, chronic constipation and how tired that owner is of having to give constant enemas.)

        Sorry. That was bitter. But I don’t have a lot of love for vets at this point in Smiths journey. (4 years in) I started off starry eyed and trusting, wanting to do the best thing for him, and now, I am totally jaded and I look up everything they say or prescribe. I’m sure they call me the nightmare pet mom behind my back, because I no longer just do what they tell me to do without question. Now, I want some serious rationale from them. I pissed off his vet at UT by asking them to test for Histoplasma before we did surgery. He got very annoyed with me, and let me know I was just delaying diagnosis. Which, did turn out to be the case. But thats not the point.

        The point was, from my point of view, that histoplasmosis was on the table as a possibility, and it could be diagnosed with a urine test. Being Smiths parent, it was a no brainer that we should do the urine test before hacking my poor baby open, but, he didn’t like the fact that I didn’t just do what he wanted to do, right when he wanted to do it.

        Sigh. Anyway. Thank you for your kind offer to help. You already have helped me enormously, just by doing what you do. I read every single case history on your website, and I am SOOOOO grateful you and the fur parents did those. I got more out of those histories than I have many technical papers on the topic of IBD or any vet I have ever seen. I am pretty sure that he does indeed have IBD, after reading those. It could have morphed into lymphosarcoma by this point, but he still rebounds, he isnt in a steady decline, so I’m hopeful that it has not progressed to that yet.

        Thank you’ thank you. thank you, and thanks to everyone who took the time to write those histories. I may pester you with some questions after the biopsy, but your site has given me a LOT of great ideas to try, including the Budesonide. :) It may take me a while to try out all the tricks I have already learned from you.

      • 67

        Lisa P said,

        Alyson thank you for letting me use your trick with the baby food and thank you telling me the case studies helped you. That’s what they are there for and I’m glad their purpose is being fulfilled. I hear what you’re saying about vets. A lot of them are great and then you get the stubborn ones that don’t care what the pet parent says at all or even wants to hear it. I’m sorry you’re going through that, it’s a tough and maddening situation. Please know I’m here for you if you need me at any point. I can only give recommendations and opinions but at least you’ll have some one in your corner.

  36. 68

    Andrea said,

    Hi Lisa,
    I am very sorry to read about your baby Alex. IBD is such an insidious disease. My sweet little 9 year old girl, Suki, is in the animal hospital in ICU as I write. This began two years ago when she started to vomit undigested food through the night until it was just bile. I rushed her to the ER and she was moved to the internal medicine ICU. After a battery of blood tests, ultrasounds, x-rays and a liver aspirate, she was diagnosed with IBD and inflammation of her liver and bile ducts. She stopped eating and they were afraid that she was heading into hepatic lipidosis (fatty liver) so they put an e-tube in and I had to feed her for several weeks through the tube until she started eating on her own. She has been on budesonide for two years since the first bout with IBD. She did not have symptoms for a while, but now it has come back in full force. They want to do an endoscopy, but I don’t want to traumatize her anymore when it seems obvious it is IBD. She is also significantly anemic this time and they are not sure why. She does not like wet food, so I am forced to give her dry. I’ve been reading up on raw food diets, but my vet said that was not good with her compromised immune system. On top of that, I seriously doubt she would eat it and I don’t want her to get fatty liver again. The doctors are suggesting I put her on Hill’s I/D dry. I am trying to find a holistic vet here in Houston, but for now I am at a loss as to what to feed her and what holistic approach to take to control this. I need help! Please let me know your thoughts!! Thank you, Andrea

    • 69

      Lisa P said,

      Hi Andrea, I’m so sorry that you and Suki are going through this. I suspect the reason they want to do a biopsy is to look for lymphoma not just IBD. As far as her being anemic are they going to do B12 injections? If not, that’s something that should be done immediately. As far as food is concerned I say just give her the Hill’s for now to get her back on track and then think about doing something like Natural Balance LID once she’s stable. Also, for her liver, I’d give her denosyl as it’s all natural and something that vets recommend very often. I’m not an expert in holistic medicine so I don’t know beyond that really what to do. I hope you can find a good holistic vet. You might want to consider adding Ursodiol to the medication mix for now until she stabilizes. It helps a lot with the liver and panreas. And once the liver is inflamed, you risk pancreatitis as well. Poor Suki, I’m so sorry again, I really hate to hear that a kitty is doing so poorly with this awful disease. Please let me know if there’s anything else you need and we’ll try and figure something out. Keep us posted!

      • 70

        Lisa P said,

        HI Sue, yes actually after awhile their body doesn’t need as much of the probiotics so I would hang back on those a bit and give only about twice a week and see how that goes. Also, I would request from the vet to start B12 injections immediately. This will help not only with the absorption issues because of the diarrhea but with hunger as well. I know this is tough, there is nothing easy about this disease. Please let us know how the ultrasound goes. I’m glad he’s going to be started soon on steroids because as much as I would rather give all natural, sometimes you need more to save their lives. It’s just the way it is. In time you can try tapering it down after he’s stabilized.

  37. 71

    Perry said,

    Hi,

    My little man, Bird, has been having a horrible time with IBD. He’s gone from 9+ pounds down to 5.8 – and he was always a very thin Abyssinian. He’s been having bloody diarrhea, no vomiting. The vet has been treating him with Dex, and she just started B-12 shots because of his anemia (19), and also a medication to stimulate red blood cell production. He’s been eating Hill’s A/D, and quite likes it, although goes off it when he’s about to explode.

    Anything further I should consider? I’m afraid he’s in his last week or two of life, at this point.

    -Perry-

    • 72

      Lisa P said,

      Oh perry, I’m so sorry to hear this. That’s a lot of weight to lose and it sounds like what happened with my Alex. Has she considered giving Leukeran with budesonide instead of the dex? This combination, either Leuk with bud or Leuk with prednisolone, seems to work well, especially for cases like this. Again, I’m so sorry Bird is so sick. This breaks my heart to hear this.

  38. 73

    suzanne said,

    Hello: My boy, Valentino, is 9 yrs old. He’s a pretty big guy, but has always been on the thin side…he’s about 10-11 lbs now…down about 2-3 lbs from his highest wt. Last 6 months or so, he’s thrown up several times a week. Mostly hairballs, but sometimes food and/or clear liquid. 2 weeks ago the vomit was bloody (he occasionally has bloody stools and they are always soft). Long story short…vet said possibly ibd or lymphoma..had ultrasound & needle asipration for mass and enlarged lymph nodes…inconclusive. They gave him B12 shot and wanted to do more invasive procedures to find the cause. He was so stressed, I didn’t want to do that. So he is now on .5 mg prednisolone. It hasn’t been quite 48 hours. His appetite is poor and he looks nauseous most of the time. I’m hoping the prednisolone kicks in today and he starts feeling better. I’ve order the cat probiotics and Life Gold Cancer support and both should arrive early next week.

    Can anyone tell me how long it will take for the prednisolone to start working…if he’s not feeling better in a day or two, should I discontinue it???

    Thanks for your support…this is a great service!!!

    Valentino’s Mom

    • 74

      Lisa P said,

      Hi Suzanne, sorry your poor boy is going through this. NEVER just stop a steroid cold turkey like that. It’ll do more harm than good. First of all they need to give him something for that nauseousness. Call the vet, ask about giving a 1/4 of a 10 mg tablet of pepcid a/c for the nausea. He’s not eating because he’s nauseous. if that doesn’t work, ask the vet about cerenia, works GREAT. Also ask about an appetite stimulant to get him eating again. He needs to keep eating. But don’t stop the pred whatsoever before speaking to the vet first! If the prednisone doesn’t work ask about Entocort.

      • 75

        suzanne said,

        Thanks, so much!!! I forgot to add that I do have him on 1/4 of 10 mg pepcid a/c tablet. I’m grinding it and giving it to him in 100% grass fed butter (which he laps up). I’ve read other folks grind up the pepcid – although on the package it says not to crush. Hope this is okay??? Also, he really likes the butter…not sure if fats are bad for IBD/Lymphoma kitties??? I’ve tried the raw food…he’s not going for it. Right now his favorite is organic turkey lunch meat from Costco and some Fancy Feast flavors..he’s also eating some dry food. He is eating…just not like his usual “always hungry” self. I’m hand feeding a lot…

        Thanks for the tip about the prednisolone…I won’t stop it….

        S

      • 76

        Lisa P said,

        I actually would not give anymore butter, saturated fats are not good. you can dip it in low fat cottage cheese though or mix it with a little water and syringe it into him. If the pepcid is not helping him, call the vet and ask about Cerenia. That pill works GREAT for nausea.

  39. 77

    suzanne said,

    Okay…no more butter…too bad, ( It is good quality grassfed, so high in Omega 3) because that’s the one thing I know can get the meds into him. What about crushing the pepcid. Have you heard anything negative about that? Thanks, again…

  40. 79

    Juidth said,

    Hello,
    Thank you very much for the website
    I am french so excuse me if my English is approximative…
    My cat is ckd .Against the gastristis due to ckd , i needed to give him omeprasole (prilosec) .I immediatly noticed a changing in the stools :they switched from good to soft.
    After a mouth , i stopped omeprazole and gave ranitidine .I noticed the stools became better .He was on ranitidine 3,5 mouths. During these mouth , i noticed problems with stools :sorbitol as excipients gave him diarrhea , propylene glycol (in echographic gel ) , macrogol .
    Unfortunaly , ranitidine wasn’t enought egainst gastritis from ckd so i added omeprazole .
    My cat has been improved by this addition but the stools were worst than before !!!
    I noticed than sight diarrhea with olive oïl , olive frut, olive cooked.
    With olive cooked , it was steatorrhea !!!
    So i gave him pancreatin .The stools were less nauseabond !
    I gave him hydroxyde aluminum and the stools became worst!!!
    The food has changed a lot of time since the begining :often veterinary diets and homemade food …
    Now i try (the kitty is difficult with food…) 70% homemade and 30%sensitive

    This is my question :i think i have to try giving him omeprazole in anothey administration route (subcutaneous ) .May be like this , the GI wil not get in direct contact with the substance …What do you think about this ?

    Thank you VERY MUCH for attention !!!

    Judith (in France),

    • 80

      Lisa P said,

      Hi Judith, I think you are giving too many things. All those olive products are just making things worse. I’d stop those immediately. I don’t know what hydroxyde aluminum is but if it made it worse I hope that’s been stopped as well. As far as giving omeprazole in sub q fluids, that confuses me because i’ve NEVER heard of doing that. I wouldn’t if it were me. Have you tried giving Pepcid A/C instead of omeprazole? I would ask the vet if you could give 1/4 of a 10 mg tablet of pepcid a/c instead. but try to eliminate a lot of this stuff if you can. if you’re feeding a homemade diet, that should help a lot. Also, see about giving probiotics. you can order some through this site or go to a wholistic store near you and get something that’s at least 6 billion in healthy bacteria. NO more anything with sorbitol or any propylene glycol, no more additives. Only clean products from now on. I hope this helps!

  41. 81

    Reina said,

    Dear Lisa,
    I don’t know if you can help me, but I’m desperate and there’s so much info you’re giving here (it’s much appreciated!).
    My cat has fatty liver disease. He’s only 5 years old and has gone from 25 lbs to 10 lbs. Presently, I’m feeding him with chicken breasts which I have cooked for him (then pass it in the meat grinder, then in the blender and add water to it to make a purée – that’s the only “texture” he can swallow). In it, I add Wei Ling Tang (1/4 teaspoon) which was prescribed to me by a holistic vet.
    The thing is, I don’t have the financial means to go see a vet anymore. I also bought the book: “Homeoathic Care for Cats & Dogs” by Don Hamilton, VM and from that, I’m also giving my cat Tsinami a granule of Chelodonium CPSE for his jaundice, one of Arsenicum Album for his nausea, and one of carbo vegetabilis for bloat as he was having a hard time to swallow.
    At first, he wouldn’t eat at all, but now he’s up to 10 very small mouthfuls at a time which I only manage to force into him 2 or 3 times in the most, per day. AND this is my biggest concern. I know he’s not eating enough.
    The source of the problem is that I moved from a city house to a trailer in rural region, changed province, etc. Big time cultural change for me which is affecting my cats as well too. The female cat Zoé is doing ok – even growling at Tsinami at one point – thus, I had to be firm with her to leave him alone.
    Thus, to get back to the issue of Tsinami not eating enough, the other thing is that after I give him food he wants to go out and eat grass – and I don’t know if that’s good for him. (I’ve come to sit him on my lap and sit him as if he’s a baby and force his mouth open and drop it onto his tongue – which works better than just having him sitting there and forcing his mouth open while he tries to back off from me.) When he’s really fed up he keeps his mouth shut tight and I stop. I don’t want to go back to “stuffing” him like the first vet had recommended that I do. I also tried the Hill’s A/D formula and that just made him throw up even more.
    I’m reading about the B-12 so do you think I should try it for the fatty liver disease? Do you know about that? I’ve also read on another blogue somewhere that Vitamin C is good – do you know about that?
    Also, at one point, I tried the Wei Ling Tang in the liquid formula and Tsinami just started foaming like crazy. I thought for sure I had finished him up instead of helping him. I called the holistic vet’s office and was “reassured” that he did that simply because it “tasted very bad”. Never again. I don’t want to put my cat through that kind of ordeal.
    Also, I’ve bought “GoProMatrix – the premium goat milk protein” which I’ve stopped giving him as I felt that he was getting too many things and I felt that it wasn’t necessarily better that way. At this point, he’s being hydrated by that special liquid that you put a needle under the skin (sorry, my mother tongue being French…) – I give him 50cc morning and again at night.
    Do you know what I can give him to stimulate his appetite?
    This all started mid-March and I’m exhausted from it all. Like you mention with your so very sad story, it’s ups and downs. Presently, I consider Tsinami to be “stable”. I started feeding him chicken breass something like 7 days ago. At first, he’d eat only 1 to 3 bites. Now, he’s up to 10 to 13 bites. I’ve tried the canned tuna (again) and he doesn’t want to hear about it. I bought all kinds of other foods (from Fancy Feast to baby food in jars – niet – nada – nothing. He doesn’t want to have nothing to do with them. I even tried haddock fish which he also turned down.
    Like I’ve mentioned above, I’m desperate. My deepest wish is jus to see him back to his old self – to be no longer stuck indoors – to be chasing mice and enjoying the wide open spaces.
    I’d like to see him dring and eat by himself and be well again.
    Would you happen to have any recommendations for me?
    Thank you ever so much for the time that you are taking for each of us. May you be blessed. Namaste.

    • 82

      Lisa P said,

      I’m so sorry this is happening to your baby. Some of the things you’re giving him I’m really not familiar with at all. And you have to be very careful here for several reasons. Too many things will stop the liver from healing properly and vitamin C is not recommended as too much can cause additional problems. Yes I recommend B12 injections for sure. As far as his eating, you really risk jaundice and him needing hospitalization if you don’t syringe feed him the proper amount of calories. Usually they insert a feeding tube to help with this but since you can’t afford it I highly recommend getting a high calorie cat food and blending it to syringe feed. I know you don’t want to shove anymore into his mouth but this is to save his life. Liver disease is nothing to fool around with, believe me I know. I also recommend giving Denosyl which is all natural and widely used by veterinarians. You can get it from the vet or order it online. I honestly wish I had something more concrete to tell you but food is the answer here! It’s absolutely essential he start getting more calories in him. That’s really A LOT of weight to lose and so quickly, I know you consider him stable but taking a total of 13 bites of food really is not stable at all. He needs to get much more than he is now. Can you syringe feed him? Have you done that before?

      • 83

        Reina said,

        Hi Lisa,

        Thanks for your reply. Well, yes my cat definitely has jaundice – has ever since the beginning. That’s why I bought “Homeopathic Care for Cats & Dogs by Don Hamilton, DVM”. After reading your reply above, I grabbed the book (again) and yes, Denosyl is in there in the “Amino acids” paragraph on p. 364. That’s why I had bought that (very expensive) goat protein powder. Thus, I’l start sprinkling some on his food again.
        You know Lisa, the very first vet I went to see had already given up on my cat. I’m a firm believer in “listening to my guts” and given my financial means, I couldn’t pay the 1200$ asked to have a ‘feeding tube” inserted in him.
        Thus, a month later I went to see the holistic vet who told me I was doing a very good job. Given my financial means, she couldn’t do much more either. However, she did elaborate on what to keep giving him, what dosage and how frequent. That’s why he’s having to three little pellets a day (one for nausea, one for bloat and one for jaundice). She had also given him acupunture to help the “fire” inside of him.
        Also, it was strongly recommended that I try giving him the Hill’s A/D formula but that isn’t working for him a this time and point I’ll try again somewhere down the line, but for now, the cooked chicken breasts that are passed in the meat grinder / blender with added source water work just fine (and the Chinese remedy). I totally realize that 12-13 bites twice a day (yesterday, I managed a 3rd feeding a around midnight!) isn’t much, but as long as I’m seeing progress, I’m not changing this diet. I’ve found out the hard way that “very small amount” is much better than bigger amount and then having him all throw it up. That would only weaken him more and he’d become overcome with lethargy.
        Also, with all the negative posts that I’ve come across on the internet with all those “commercial foods”. I now know that raw diet is the best thing for our cats, but realize that my cats are not there yet. I’m slowy starting with my other cat however, as I don’t cook as much the organic chicken I got.
        Well, just as your comments are helping so many people with their loved pets, I hope that other people out there who read mine will “not give up” even if the vet does. Of course, it’s all a matter of your cat,s choice, also. I’ve asked my cat many, many times if he’d just prefer to just “move on” and each time there was some sort of a sign that told me he wanted to stay here to eventually enjoy all the nature that’s now surrounding us.
        Also, I do realize that food is the solution here. Except, at the state that my cat was at when I went to see the Holistic Vet, she told me that my only concern was to get any amount of “good food” in him. In order for his system not to shut down on him. Thus, yes, 12-13 bites are not much, but they are way better than the ONLY, then TWO bites that I started off with 2 weeks ago. Oh yes, at first, it would be one bite every two hours (that’s how long it takes the system to digest it). Then, if he didn’t throw up, I’d feed him again 2 hours later. If he did throw up, that meant 2 hours after that (and not 2 hours after the last feed). Then, a second bite went in, then gradually it increased.
        The main thing I feel one has to remember is to do what works best for your cat and yourself. I would never have imagined one day that I’d sit my cat on my lap like a baby to feed him. But, that’s what working. After, he likes to go outside and eat grass. This worries me. But that’s what he wants. Given that I was able to give him a third feed late last night, maybe HE KNOWS what’s best for him after all?
        This morning, I saw him starting to do some sort of a “grooming” as he licked his front paws. That’s a FIRST since the beginning of this nightmare. I’m just keeping my fingers cossed.
        Again, thanks for your feedback and since I can’t buy Denosyl, I will most definitely try sprinkling some goat protein on his food for the Amino acids.

  42. 84

    Dean & Yuko said,

    Hello Lisa,

    Our 15 Yr. old girl “Nantee” has IBD and we are considering the use of steroids but are concerned because she is now on raw chicken diet. Our vet’s here in Australia do not seem to have much experience with IBD in cats and have not given good advice. We have had bloods, Ultra Sound, Elimination Tests etc. Nantee’s symptoms were many, but mainly vomiting after defecating (not due to constipation). We have changed her diet a number of times but always found that food with Carbs, Fibre, Veg or Oily types would make her feel sick after eating. She could not digest this type of food and would sometimes vomit. We have also tried giving supplements, B12 injections, Omega 3 etc but they nearly always seem to upset her. The raw chicken we now feed is Local Free Range, no hormones etc, lightly steamed and given in small amounts 5 to 6 times a day. Since she has been on this diet her condition has improved considerably. She has not been vomiting but she still seems lethargic. We would like to add more to her diet as we are aware that just feeding one type of food is not good for her long term and we feel that the steroids may help in this regard.

    We wish to ask your opinion regarding the use of steroids (Prednisolone) with raw diet as we have read that this may not be wise?

    • 85

      Lisa P said,

      HI Dean, did you not get my reply to you this morning? I sent you an email, check your spam folder. it’s really fine to use steroids with raw food. I’ve seen hundreds of people do that and never have any issues. Also, think about trying rabbit as a protein source next as it’s highly digestible and very lean.

  43. 86

    Meaghan said,

    Hi! Thank you so much for this site. My Odin ,a 4 year old albino, was diagnosed by biopsy in June. His only symptom was weight loss and eventually I realized it looked like his feces were fancy feast colored. He has been on 1 ml of prednisolone and I was told to do the prescription diet. Unfortunately when we went back in for his 4 week post biopsy check up he had lost more weight. He was at 7.5 he should be 10. So the vet told me that right now our main goal is to get some weight back on him. I had to put him back on fancy feast but I am sticking to the classic flavors as they have no wheat gluten. It has been 2 weeks and he is up 2 ounces. Tonight I was in the kitchen when he went and much to my dismay it looked like his feces were fancy feast colored again. I have bought a few more types of food that appear to be healthier and have more of the novel protein sources but he will not eat the prescription and he asks for his fancy feast. Sigh. Any suggestions? I have removed all seafood from the rotation for now and am going to try and stick to chicken, turkey, duck, venison and rabbit for now. Thank you so much for providing us with a place to ask and share our roller coaster stories.

    • 87

      Meaghan said,

      And my end goal is to get him off fancy feast completely. I will never ever feed this food to any cat again willingly.

      • 88

        Meaghan said,

        Sorry forgot to add this important bit. During his ultrasound we also found out he has some damage to his right kidney. It was also biopsied and it came back as a blood clot that has basically killed the top half. We are currently monitoring it by ultrasound until we get to a point where we will have to take further action. So we are also being careful with anything that may be bad for his kidney.

    • 89

      Lisa P said,

      Hi Meaghan, usually when the feces are the color of the food or the medication it doesn’t have so much to do with the food as it does that he’s most likely suffering from malabsorption syndrome. the food and nutrients are going through him and he’s not absorbing it. I would highly suggest getting B12 injections from the vet and getting them regularly to get his absorption levels back up. Also, as far as food, I like Nature’s Variety, Natural Balance LID, Evo, Wellness, Weruva, Merrick, there are plenty of them you just have to try them slowly. but really most importantly is to get that B12 and get it soon! it’ll help with hunger and also with gaining some weight.

      • 90

        Meaghan said,

        His appetite is actually very good, just being a picky pain in the butt. I did pick up some weruva today and gave it to him as a treat and he loved it. I will be trying to add that in as their primary food slowly. I have tried almost all of the others except Merrick and evo and he and the other two just bury them which is a pretty good sign that I won’t win that battle lol. I will look into the two I haven’t tried. I should have mentioned that he does have thickening of his small intestine wall, sorry I was nervous posting on a forum for my first time ever. We are due to go back to the vet next week for a weigh in so I will ask about the vitamin b12 and will continue trying to get him off his fancy feast. I just get so stressed out about him since he is acting lethargic and sick and he is normally such a happy, active cat and also he is so young. Thank you for getting back to me!

      • 91

        Lisa P said,

        it does sound to me like malabsorption syndrome if he’s pooping out his nutrients like that. Poor thing, I can perfectly understand why you’re feeling so stressed. I’ve been there! they may have to up his pred for a bit to get him stabilized.

      • 92

        Meaghan said,

        Yes I agree. I think I will put a call into the vet tomorrow. I decided to cut out the seafood flavors because it is more noticeable after has those but that may just be the dye coming though more. Thanks again!

      • 93

        Lisa P said,

        you’re welcome Meaghan, keep me posted and good luck!

  44. 94

    Lisa P said,

    If anyone would like to join my support group on Facebook, you’re more than welcome to: https://www.facebook.com/groups/527768930622787/. Lots of support there!

  45. 95

    David Breckman said,

    Lisa —

    My heart just about broke learning of your dear departed Alex. Here’s my own situation. My 13 yr. old black longhair Guinevere may well suffer from IBD. My wife and I noticed her eating less and less about two weeks ago,,, before she stopped eating altogether LAST week.

    She wasn’t vomiting though, and she defecated exactly ONCE outside her litter box, that was all.

    But as I said, she’d lost her appetite.

    So off she went to the vet, where an ultrasound revealed a swelling of the cecum which I soon found out is basically a feline appendix that is attached to the colon.

    Gwenny stayed in the hospital for three days as our wonderful veterinarian — Dr. Laurel Leach — attempted to make the swelling go down with IV-administered antibiotics, but subsequent ultrasounds revealed little if any improvement.

    And Gwenny still wasn’t eating.

    So Dr. Leach performed an “exploratory” tonight and removed the swollen cecum…but found severe inflammation of the colon as well, and sent the excised cecum and samples of the colon to a local lab for analysis.

    We ought to have the results back in 48-72 hours, and of course, there’s a chance it might be cancer.

    Gwenny’s in the hospital now, recovering.

    I got to see her after the surgery. She was weak, of course, but her eyes were open and able to focus on mine for a moment or two. Dr. Leech and her assistants were pumping milk down her throat via an olficatory hose, which broke my heart. It couldn’t have been comfortable for my little girl but I was glad they were getting some food in her.

    So here’s where we are, Lisa — it’s the reason I am writing you at 4:15 in the morning Los Angeles time:

    If the lab results say “Cancer” then we’re screwed, because Guinevere is 13 and I’m afraid she won’t survive a battle with the Big C (hope to hell I’m wrong though).

    But if the results say “IBD” I’m afraid we’re screwed there, too, because the more I read about this dreadful and difficult-to-manage disease, the more depressed I get.

    Because we’d have to be giving pills and shots to Guinevere every friggin’ day, Lisa, and here’s the problem: Guinevere is an INCREDIBLY skittish cat.

    How skittish?

    I’ve had her for 11 years and I still can’t pick her up or pet her. She’s never bitten or scratched me (thus far, although she isn’t shy about hissing), she just wriggles loose and darts away.

    Now it isn’t like we NEVER touch her, of course. We do. But on her terms. She’ll nuzzle against our legs when we’re opening the Fancy Feast at mealtime, and she’ll rub against our outstretched hand occasionally or let my wife or me scratch her behind her ears once in a while… but that’s about it.

    Long story short: She is NOT a lap cat. In fact getting her into her carrier is like the Invasion of Normandy. It easily takes us 15 or 20 minute and leaves the apartment looking like a twister came through. It isn’t pretty.

    So the question is, how the heck do you treat a cat like that.for IBD (assuming that’s what she has)?? You think Gwenny’s gonna submit to getting SHOTS every day? Think again.

    I know this is premature, and my wife and I will both be a lot smarter come Thursday.

    Meanwhile, God bless you and your remarkable website, Lisa. Talk soon!

    David

    • 96

      Lisa P said,

      Aw David, I’m so very, VERY sorry to hear all of this about your sweet Gwenny. Life can be so unfair and it’s just not fair that these beautiful creatures have to suffer so much. I wish I could give you an easy answer about treatments for her IBD but just know that there are some ways to handle it. there are steroids that are transdermals that you put on her ears. I don’t see shots every day, that’s only for diabetes so please put that out of your mind. Plenty of people have kitties like yours and although very difficult, they somehow manage to give medication. So let’s take this a step at a time and wait for those results first. Please know you can contact me anytime at contact@ibdkitties.net or here if you need to talk. Keep me posted on what the results of her tests say. I know this is very hard, there’s nothing pleasant about IBD or cancer for that matter. Big hugs to you, your wife and your sweet Gwenny.

  46. 97

    Nastasha said,

    Great website! I need to know how much slippery elm and marshmallow to give my cat. Thanks.

    My cat turned 18 years old this summer. She was diagnosed three years ago, and giving six months to live. It takes a lot of work to keep her feeling happy, and healthy. But as you well know, they are SO worth the work.

    I am sorry you lost your kitty.

    • 98

      Lisa P said,

      Hi Natasha, you said your kitty was diagnosed with something and given six months? What was she diagnosed with? It has to be more than IBD as there is no time frame to a kitty’s life with IBD. They really are worth it and I’m so sorry your kitty is sick. If you look at this page on my website, you should find instructions on slippery elm: http://www.ibdkitties.net/tipsandtricks.html

  47. 99

    Nena said,

    My Princess cat Is 12 and zwent slowly from 16 to 6 pounds. I thought she had cancer but by a process of elimination (no pun intended) we have deduced that she has
    iBD. She is 6.8 now. She is on Pepcid 5 mg daily, methimizole twice daily for hyperthyroid and prednisolone 2 .5 mg twice daily and B12 injection weekly. We now feed ZD low allergen prescription diet. She rarely vomits but has bouts of horrible yellow diarrhea sometimes for a day or two. She has great bloodwork every single time it’s been done with her thyroid levels being within normal limits and her liver showing totally normal values. What about boiled chicken, or drained cooked ground beef (just meat). I won’t do the raw diet. She gets a little wet food twice a day. I have four other cats too. I was hoping for some information on acupressure points for cats for bowel issues if you have any links.

    • 100

      Lisa P said,

      Hi Nena, so sorry Princess has lost so much weight! wow!! I’m surprised he liver levels are normal with that yellow diarrhea but glad to hear it. I’m sorry, I don’t have any information on acupressure points for kitties at all. Have you seen a holistic vet? they’d be able to help you with that. As far as foods, you can home cook, I have a page on my website for that: http://www.ibdkitties.net/Homecooked.html

  48. 101

    Vamp said,

    Great website and sorry for your loss. I came here looking for information of what could be wrong with one of my cats. He was a rescue from a neighbor who died and I’ve been doing my best to care for him and his family (I took them all). I don’t have much money so I’ve been doing it all on my own. A rescue helped me get them all fixed thank goodness for that.

    When I got him he was loaded full of worms (tape and round) and ear mites which I treated myself. He still had diarrhea and I’ve tried Metronidazole, Febendazole, and Amoxicillin. I can’t really afford to give him a raw diet and all special diets come from a vet for this problem which I can’t afford. Many vets try to push Prednisone and I don’t want to deal with diabetes as a side effect. I also don’t want to have a cat on Tylan for his whole life. I want to build good bacteria in him and not kill everything off. I’d like to try natural treatments if I can.

    A few days ago he started pooing in the bathtub and on the carpet. It was very loose and I suspect he feels worse. What I’ve started doing is giving him sodium bentonite clay by pill that I filled, digestive enzymes and a little Fage yogurt because it has lots of types live cultures. I pill him with clay before each meal and a whole enzyme pill after each meal. Today I woke up to clean carpeting and bathtub so it seems to be working. I never thought about B vitamins but I have a multiple B vitamin (B 50) that I might try adding to his diet. I have used this B vitamin in cats with failing kidneys so it’s safe to use.

    His fur is is soft and shiny but he’s a little on the thin side. I’m hoping I’m able to put some weight on him, stop the diarrhea and make him feel better. I will keep watching for accidents and try to see when he uses the box to keep an eye on what’s going on. I am cleaning boxes all day long so he will want to use it more. It’s hard when you have several cats using a few boxes.

    Wish me (us) luck!

  49. 103

    Dorothy Athey said,

    Lisa…Thank you for the IBD information. I lost one girl to IBD May 2013 and now my other girl has just been diagnosed.

  50. 105

    Dianne Bazarian said,

    Hello Lisa,
    Thank you so much for taking the time to provide this informative site. I know that your experience and loss of your kitty Alex propelled this….I know that there are a lot of cat owners who are very thankful for your time and knowledge.

    My name is Dianne and I’m Spanky’s mom. Spanky is 18 years old and has been having gastrointestinal issues on and off the past year or so, but over the past 4 months seems to have gotten worse. He also has early stage kidney disease, which is being managed with herbal drops. He was getting 2.5 mg of Pepcid, but since he gets Cerenia every day, he doesn’t really need that anymore. His kidney levels are still ok. Slight increase, but nothing terrible.

    I am desperate for some solid info in treating IBD. Due to Spanky’s age, and his fragile state, both the vet team and I thought it best to treat what we know, rather than try any biopsy. He has had extensive blood work, which revealed his B-12 was low, and his cardiac values were a little off. He had a cardiac ultrasound, which showed very mild thickening, not significant enough to treat, however, they did find that his blood pressure was up. He now receives amlopidine daily, and his blood pressure is now in the normal range.

    He’s always eaten wet food, but starting vomiting more than I was comfortable with, along with some pretty explosive diarrhea. If it wasn’t diarrhea, it was a very voluminous formed stool (grayish), and extra smelly. Sorry to be so graphic. We tested for EPI, which was negative. So, now we have started to treat for IBD, which the vets have told me could also be lymphoma. No way to know for sure at this point….

    Spanky has always had a great appetite. For most of his life, he ate canned Friskies and Fancy Feast wet food – never dry. I know that’s not optimal canned food, but I tried to get him to eat the “healthy” food, to no avail. I started him on Natural Instinct Grain Free Rabbit, and he really LOVED it. He would devour it. I also started using Forti-Flora, which did help initially with the loose stools. The vet started him on Prednisolone and I weaned him off, because he had a constant recurring eye infection. I suspect the immune system was already compromised, and the Pred sent that into orbit. At the recommendation of a friend, I purchased Arabinogalactan Powder (Larch Tree Bark Extract), which soothes the gastrointestinal tract. Everything seemed to be working okay, except now he’s not interested in the canned rabbit anymore. Tried that for a while, and most recently, it seemed as though it bothered him. I heard that Newman’s Own Chicken and Brown Rice was a good option, so I tried that slowly…seemed okay, but then he lost interest in that too. Just a few days ago, I tried EVO grain-free duck – another novel protein, which he’s never had before. He absolutely loved it, but it obviously didn’t love him. The diarrhea has been AWFUL. The Forti-Flora would always get the stool back to normal, but not this time. Up until a few days ago, his appetite was voracious….he would wake me up at least 4 times a night for food.

    I decided to try the Pred again to see if it could take care of the obvious inflammation. His dosage from the vet is 5mg twice per day for 2 weeks, then down to 5mg once per day. That seems to have quelled his appetite. He seems to eat at semi- normal intervals. With all of that previous voracious eating, he never really gained any weight. He was once a cat at 14 lbs, and is now at 7.2lbs. Here is a list of meds he currently gets:
    Morning:
    • Amlopodine
    • Kidney Gold Support (4 drops w/water)
    • 5 mg. Prednisolone
    Evening:
    • ½ Tab 16mg. Cerenia
    • Kidney Gold Support (4 drops w/water)
    • 5 mg. Pred

    I tried Proviable DC at the recommendation of others….it really bothered him, so I continued with the Forti-Flora. He did have B12 injections weekly for a month, and now we are ready for the once per month injection, along with a weight check.
    He’s also been urinating outside of his box, which is super frustrating. Boxes (3) are always clean, scooped immediately for him. He’s fastidious. I started confining him to one bedroom, and miraculously he started using his box again.
    Do you all feel like you are swimming in pool of Jello, and just can’t seem to make any progress??? I am feeling so helpless…I know this could be small cell intestinal lymphoma, but I’ll never really know because I can’t have a biopsy done. He’s just too fragile.

    My apologies for this extra long post, but there is so much information to give to receive any good suggestions back. Any and all help/suggestions would be appreciated…oh my gosh, I’m just overwhelmed at this point.

    With thanks,
    Dianne and Spanky

    • 106

      Lisa P said,

      Hi Dianne, I’m so sorry to hear this about your baby. First I would like to suggest your vet start him on Leukeran right away. there’s not reason not to start him on chemo if they even suspect lymphoma. in fact a lot of times severe IBD is brought under control with Leukeran as it has less side effects than pred does. And it’s not forever, just short term. secondly please read the probiotics page of my website as Fortiflora is garbage. The human grade stuff and certain strains is now what we’re recommending. http://www.ibdkitties.net/Probiotics.html. Can you do home cooking instead? a lot of times home cooking or raw is much better for them than commercial food. I also would love you to join us on my Facebook IBD support group. We have a bunch of wonderful and knowledgeable people there that can really help you through this step by step.

  51. 107

    Lisa P said,

    shoots, I’m sorry, I forgot the link for the group. https://www.facebook.com/groups/527768930622787/

  52. 108

    nona said,

    Hi, thanks so much for all the info. My 14-year-old snowshoe cat Buster has had IBD symptoms for a about a year an a half, tho not diagnosed till about 7 months ago. Started treating it with diet–pumpkin, wet food with new proteins like rabbit and venison, and B12 shots. Was doing very well. Then a couple of weeks ago, he got dehydrated and also started pooping outside the box. Went to vet who gave IV and also started on prednisolone. (I started with 1.25 to be sure no adverse affects. Then went to 2.5) Last few days his appetite has lessened and today he’s gotten enormously and unusually finicky. (Was giving prednisolone but had to switch to prednisone bec can’t get back to vet til middle of week; vet is 35 minutes away….and was wondering if he could smell difference. That is the only thing that has changed.) Have also given some ProZyme…not sure what/if it does anything. So current issue is his sudden finnicky attitude towards his food, and his eating less. He would always just chow down. It feels like a test of wits as I have been scrambling trying different things out. Maybe I need to calm down:) Perhaps B is picking up on my stress.

  53. 110

    Joanne said,

    Hi Lisa,
    I don’t know if this site is still active, however, if it is I would like your advice. My 16 year old cat has IBD as far as we know. She had many tests that rule out other things. This has been going on for about a year now and it is a horrible disease, and I am doing everything I can to help her. She is very thin and loses her appetite when she gets an episode. She vomits clear liquid often. She took some generic flagyl which made her letharic 2 days ago…I stopped that. She had taken flagyl mini tabs in the past without this reaction. I may now start prednisolone. I an nervous about the pred. Anyway, what dose do you recommend for flagyl and prednisolone. Does pepcid ac help at all? Thank you.

    • 111

      Joanne said,

      Lisa…the vet dose on the flagyl was 62.5 mg. and prednisolone 2.5 mg. I plan on half for each. I wanted to do flagyl mini tabs before the pred. because it is not as bad as pred. But they each have side effects. Any info or thoughts are appreciated.

      • 112

        Lisa P said,

        Hi there Joanne, I’m sorry your baby is sick. Believe me I understand. Frankly I hate Flagyl. That’s just my opinion, it helps some cats and others it makes them worse which it did to my kitties. she needs something for nausea it sounds like so ask the vet for Cerenia and if you can give Pepcid A/C. The Pepcid is over the counter, a 1/4 piece of a 10 mg regular strength tablet once to twice daily. That will help with acid reflux and the vomiting clear liquid. Did she have diarrhea? What’s the Flagyl for? Don’t be nervous about pred. I know it stinks to give it to them but cutting that already smallest dose in half will actually not do anything to help with the inflammation. You’re better off going with the 2.5 and giving it some time. Remember that inflammation can lead to cancer so you need to get this down some. Changing the diet to grain free, low carb and a good quality protein can help. Or going raw or home cooked is even better. I have a very loving and knowledgeable group on Facebook if you’d like to join us: https://www.facebook.com/groups/527768930622787/

  54. 113

    Joanne said,

    Lisa, thank you. I have joined the group on Facebook. I gave Heidi flagyl for diarrhea, inappetence and general IBD symptoms, which seemed to help in the past. This time around it made her feel very groggy. Is this why do you not like Flagyl? Right now, her biggest issue is not eating and looking very skinny. She is about 8.46 lbs. I was able to get her up to 9 lbs. a few months back, but now we are going through another episode. But this one doesn’t seem to go away, hence, I made the decision to try the prednisolone. My regular vet is away for a few weeks, but I plan on having a talk with him on her treatment. She is 16 years old so I worry a lot about her.

    • 114

      Lisa P said,

      Oh good. It’s actually much better if you ask these questions in the group as we can answer more in depth there and show you to the files we have on everything including Flagyl toxicity and side effects. Others can also join in as I am not as frequently on the computer right now, I’m caring for my very sick elderly mom full time. But I do participate in the group also, it’s just easier for me because they are all very knowledgeable as well there and can offer you some help if I’m not around. But PLEASE post and introduce yourself. they are a wonderful bunch and I know we can offer some suggestions. :)

  55. 115

    Alison said,

    Hi Lisa, I have a question about continuing my cat’s Prednisolone. My 15 year old rescue cat, Magic, was diagnosed with IBD about 2 months ago. We’ve tapered his Prednisolone down to 1/2 pill every other day. He’s on limited Ingredient and “no grain” wet and dry food. He’s doing great! Can I stop the Prednisolone?

    • 116

      Lisa P. said,

      Hi Alison, don’t ever stop a steroid cold turkey. never. You’ll send your kitty into serious withdrawals and Magic will become very sick. But since it’s a half a pill every other day I’d think you should try 1/4 of a pill every other day for a week and then probably stop. But please let your vet know what you’re doing just in case. SO glad he’s doing well!!! Lovely to hear good news for a change.

  56. 117

    Alice said,

    I’m so glad I found your website! I’ve been researching IBD ever since my 13 year old Maine Coon mix was given a tentative diagnosis 2 weeks ago. He went through blood tests and xrays (all normal) but his ultrasound showed mild pancreatitis, thickened intestines, splenomegaly, and possible triaditis. The lymph node aspirate was negative for lymphoma but my vet said it could still be there, just not obvious yet. I chose not to put him through a biopsy as he HATES the vet and gets insanely stressed going (I’m currently considering a mobile vet for him as he pees, howls, and pants when put into a carrier).

    So we started him on B12 injections 1x/week and prednisolone BID, and he’s continuing to get probiotics every morning. He’s also been switched to a straight rabbit grain-free diet, and while he hasn’t vomited or had diarrhea in almost 2 weeks, he’s hardly gained more than a few ounces. His appetite is way better and he eats 5-6 times a day, but he’s also drinking and peeing a lot (steroids). He recently developed an URI, of which he’s had in the past so we’re thinking the steroids just brought it out due to his immune supression, but the constant sneezing hasn’t helped. I feel so bad for him but luckily he’s only dropped from 16 to 13.5 pounds during all of this and he’s heading back towards 14. It’s just so stressful and frustrating. I’ve lost cats to cardiomyopathy several times in the past but have never had to deal with IBD, and I don’t want him to suffer. I also can’t stand waiting the 6 weeks to see if he relapses, which according to several vets is indicative of lymphoma. Luckily he’s still very affectionate, runs for his food, and ISN’T vomiting/diarrhea anymore, but the lack of weight gain is concerning and I’m the kind of person that while I consider my pets my kids and would do anything for them, I also refuse to let them suffer when I personally know what my limits would be if it were my own body (I’m an RN with an extensive living will).

    This is the first website to give straightforward and experienced answers so thank you.

    • 118

      Lisa P. said,

      Hello Alice. I understand your trepidation. This disease is indeed frustrating. the lack of weight gain is not unusual and I can assure you that if he’s not vomiting, does not have diarrhea anymore and is eating well, then he’s not suffering. Please don’t jump the gun on that because they can bounce back from this. It can’t be cured unfortunately and he will have to deal with it the rest of his life. But with the right care, supplements, diet, etc. he can be stabilized and have a wonderful quality of life. And believe me, my cats are my kids also. I have had 3 cats with IBD unfortunately and each time I learn more and more. As far as the sneezing is concerned I’d start him on L-lysine and also another supplement called Lactorferrin with it. They work in conjunction on the respiratory system to bump up the immune system. Also, I’d take a look at this page of my website about human grade probiotics for the gut: http://ibdkitties.net/Probiotics.html. Have you joined my Facebook IBD group? This post sounds familiar to me. https://www.facebook.com/groups/527768930622787/


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