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An admin recommended that I share our IBS story, so here goes!

My husband and I took over the care of Miss Kitty (now 14) when she was around 5 years old. At the time, she was very overweight, being fed low-quality food, had tooth issues, and had not been bathed, had her ears cleaned, or visited a vet in almost 4 years. She was an absolute love bug and very, very loved but living with my grandmother who did not have the money or know-how to properly care for a sphynx. We adopted Miss Kitty when my grandmother passed- also without knowledge of the breed.

We got her bathed and cleaned up, had her shots at the vet, and got her settled in very quickly. We then started to notice a pattern of vomiting about 3 months in. It started with once or twice a week and quickly became once a day with loose stools. Back to the vet we went. Blood work at the time showed an infection, likely from her teeth. We got that taken care of with antibiotics and a cleaning, but the vomiting persisted. One week with vomiting one to four times per day and then two weeks without anything. It was a terrible cycle with no real cause we could find.

The vet concluded that she was probably suffering from IBS, but we never did any testing because I believe it is too invasive for what the test could tell us. Thickening of her intestines was confirmed by radiograph. And so began years of constantly researching diets, changing foods, and trying to find something that works for her. Unfortunately, one of the hallmarks of IBS kitties is that they will suddenly stop eating something they have happily been eating for a long time and it is totally out of the blue. Each time this happens, it re-starts the cycle of research, trial, and error. We have found that any type of fish, turkey, rabbit, beef, and chicken set her off.

At the moment, she is eating Nature's Variety Instinct Grain-Free LID Duck dry and canned. We have found that grain free is one major key to success. Another is adding fiber. We had a lot of luck with canned pumpkin for a while, but eventually moved to a slippery elm bark "slime." (More info about this here: http://www.littlebigcat.com/health/slippery-elm/) The slime coats their system to reduce acid which was causing a lot of her vomiting. The fiber in the slime also makes her stools prize-worthy (most of the time.) The third key to our success is a very regular feeding schedule. We found that she will vomit from over-eating and drinking if we wait too long between feedings.

The problem is that IBS is a never-ending battle and is different for every cat. Our goal was to avoid steroids and over-testing and to get her on a diet that worked for her. I could go on and on about everything we tried that did not work for her- but as of writing today, everything is well-controlled. (knock on wood!) We take everything one day at a time.

Thanks for reading!
 

GoldHazel

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An admin recommended that I share our IBS story, so here goes!

My husband and I took over the care of Miss Kitty (now 14) when she was around 5 years old. At the time, she was very overweight, being fed low-quality food, had tooth issues, and had not been bathed, had her ears cleaned, or visited a vet in almost 4 years. She was an absolute love bug and very, very loved but living with my grandmother who did not have the money or know-how to properly care for a sphynx. We adopted Miss Kitty when my grandmother passed- also without knowledge of the breed.

We got her bathed and cleaned up, had her shots at the vet, and got her settled in very quickly. We then started to notice a pattern of vomiting about 3 months in. It started with once or twice a week and quickly became once a day with loose stools. Back to the vet we went. Blood work at the time showed an infection, likely from her teeth. We got that taken care of with antibiotics and a cleaning, but the vomiting persisted. One week with vomiting one to four times per day and then two weeks without anything. It was a terrible cycle with no real cause we could find.

The vet concluded that she was probably suffering from IBS, but we never did any testing because I believe it is too invasive for what the test could tell us. Thickening of her intestines was confirmed by radiograph. And so began years of constantly researching diets, changing foods, and trying to find something that works for her. Unfortunately, one of the hallmarks of IBS kitties is that they will suddenly stop eating something they have happily been eating for a long time and it is totally out of the blue. Each time this happens, it re-starts the cycle of research, trial, and error. We have found that any type of fish, turkey, rabbit, beef, and chicken set her off.

At the moment, she is eating Nature's Variety Instinct Grain-Free LID Duck dry and canned. We have found that grain free is one major key to success. Another is adding fiber. We had a lot of luck with canned pumpkin for a while, but eventually moved to a slippery elm bark "slime." (More info about this here: http://www.littlebigcat.com/health/slippery-elm/) The slime coats their system to reduce acid which was causing a lot of her vomiting. The fiber in the slime also makes her stools prize-worthy (most of the time.) The third key to our success is a very regular feeding schedule. We found that she will vomit from over-eating and drinking if we wait too long between feedings.

The problem is that IBS is a never-ending battle and is different for every cat. Our goal was to avoid steroids and over-testing and to get her on a diet that worked for her. I could go on and on about everything we tried that did not work for her- but as of writing today, everything is well-controlled. (knock on wood!) We take everything one day at a time.

Thanks for reading!
Hello and thank you for sharing that story. Also, thank you for not only adopting your grandma's sphynx, but for going to extremes to get her in the best condition anyone possibly could.

My Grayson seems to have IBS. Stress, of course, can be something that sets it off no matter what diet is working at the time. He's gone to the vet's office many times for IV fluids and an injection of Pepcid. Had him on Flagyl many times as well. I found two things that seem to keep things under control for the most part 1-Royal Canin Digestive Health dry cat food and 2- I give him 100% pure pumpkin daily with his wet food and L-Lysine.
I will check out your slime link as it surely sounds interesting.

Thanks again for this post.
 

MollysMom

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LOL @ "makes her stools prize worthy"

Good call on the frequency of feedings - I have IBS too, and know that if I go too long between eating it makes it worse.

She is lucky to have you in her life - sounds like she is getting top notch care!!
 

assibassi

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WoW thank You for the Your Story!! I am glad your kitty is doing so good for so long with you now.
 

gothicmist

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Welcome. My late jedi that passed had ibs as well its quite a journey. We did well with a probiotic powder our vet got us. its an uphill battle of the poops thats for sure.
 

NinaGato

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Thanks so much for sharing
I have been down that road too. Danser has IBD also.
Like you grain free has been a big help. We are down to rabbit and venison working right now.
If you ever want to talk feel free to contact me. It's good to know there is someone else out there who has gone through this woth their kitty also.
 
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@GoldHazel Keep doing whatever works! It seems that consistency is key. :) If you ever have any questions about the slippery elm bark, let me know. The good thing is that I can make a small batch every week (1/2 tsp powder and 1/4 cup of water- stir, heat 2-3 minutes, refrigerate) and a year supply of the powder probably only costs $4!
 

GoldHazel

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@GoldHazel Keep doing whatever works! It seems that consistency is key. :) If you ever have any questions about the slippery elm bark, let me know. The good thing is that I can make a small batch every week (1/2 tsp powder and 1/4 cup of water- stir, heat 2-3 minutes, refrigerate) and a year supply of the powder probably only costs $4!
Thank you. How did you find out about the elm bark (was it from a vet or by researching on your own)?
 
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@GoldHazel I did a lot of research on my own and then brought the information to my vet. He had not heard about it as an option, but then consulted with the holistic vet who has used it many times before. I read in one place that mixing it with the food *may* limit nutrient absorption, but it has not been studied or confirmed anywhere the vet could find and our blood work has been perfect, so it has not been a concern for us. Some people squirt the slime into their cat's mouth with a medicine syringe an hour or two before feeding to "prep" the tummy for the food, but we find that mixing it in with wet food has worked well for us for over a year:)
 

GoldHazel

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@GoldHazel I did a lot of research on my own and then brought the information to my vet. He had not heard about it as an option, but then consulted with the holistic vet who has used it many times before. I read in one place that mixing it with the food *may* limit nutrient absorption, but it has not been studied or confirmed anywhere the vet could find and our blood work has been perfect, so it has not been a concern for us. Some people squirt the slime into their cat's mouth with a medicine syringe an hour or two before feeding to "prep" the tummy for the food, but we find that mixing it in with wet food has worked well for us for over a year:)
Thank you for that helpful bit of information as well as everything else you have posted in this thread. :) Very interesting.
 

Embracing-Joyx4

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Very interesting post. Did you find the elm bark at health food store or online?
 
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@Embracing-Joyx4 We have been purchasing the slippery elm powder at the local health food store because we only use about 1/4 teaspoon weekly and we could only find 1 pound bags online (which would probably take 6+ years to use.) The health food store allows you to get whatever amount you need- we buy probably 1/3 cup at a time and it only costs around $5 (at $45 per pound) and lasts about a year.
 

pearlpollard

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Thanks so much for this post. I'm trying to figure out why my Pearl may be vomiting and having diarrhea. I feed Natures Variety raw bites and bought the lamb kind about a week ago and since last night she has been vomiting and diarrhea. I was advised by my vet to stop the raw for a few days to get vomiting and diarrhea controlled. I've just been feeding her a little pumpkin and some boiled chicken and the vomiting has stopped. She still seems to not feel so well but hopefully it starts to get better! Maybe IBS is a problem for her. She goes back to the vet tomorrow for a recheck and possible bloodwork!

Thanks again for sharing!
 

Shanebakertat2

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Oh man... so this sounds fairly similar to what's been going on with my Dobby. The vet had given him some anti vomitting meds in the few days after his Neuter - then since then, its been steadily half liquid, or full on diarrhea for the little guy. Starting to get concerned, but his behavior is mostly normal. Occasionally he will become visibly uncomfortable and sit in a way thats different than his norm, or just really cuddly, and meow a bit.

Any help would be great!
 

Yoda mom

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@Shanebakertat2 , my Toby took two weeks until his system got back to normal after his neuter -
He was given Cerenia from the vet and my vet told me a 1/4 pill of Pepcid AC regular 10 mg famotidine regulsr strength only!
-** always ask your vet about it if it would be helpful for Dobby
Also some foods too high in protein give poo issues
Or too many treats

I use kibble as treats now

Perhaps see if you can exchange the pea amd chicken food for the pea amd duck ?
I know so,e kitties here on the lair do well on the natural balance pea/duck instead of chicken

How about a little Libbys 100% pure canned pumpkin? For poo issues
My Toby loves it
I give 1/4 teaspoon as a treat - heated for 3 seconds -check to touch -

My IBD kitty does great on Fromm game bird recipe or Acana grasslands

Fromm Four-Star Nutritionals Grain-Free Game Bird Recipe Dry Cat Food, 15-lb bag
 
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Shanebakertat2

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Thanks! I'll pick up a bag of the Duck and pea, where can i get the Libby's pumpkin stuff? just at the grocery, or the pet store?
 

GoldHazel

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Thanks! I'll pick up a bag of the Duck and pea, where can i get the Libby's pumpkin stuff? just at the grocery, or the pet store?
In the baking isle of your supermarket or Target or Walmart, etc. It's for humans. Make sure the can says, "100 Pure Pumpkin" on the front of the label. Libby's has two kinds of pumpkin in the can. One is the one I just told you about and that's for your cat, the other can looks so much like that, but it's got spices in it. People mostly buy these cans for making pumpkin pies, but you certainly don't want to use the one with the spices in it, so be careful which can you pick up.

I use the pumpkin every single day, 2X a day for each of my nakeds. It's safe to use all the time if need be.
 

Shanebakertat2

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After having all the antibiotics, and probiotics, Dobby's digestive issues seem to have abated for now... He is switched to the Duck and Green pea recipe, and seems to enjoy it just as well. Occasionally he will have a small spot of blood in his stools, or on his butt after a bowel movement... its mildly concerning, but he seems normal enough, high energy, and no distress.
 

Shanebakertat2

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Yeah, i picked some of that up, is it supposed to help solidify his stools? or make them easier to pass? I gave Dobby some a couple times, but that was before his vet visit and subsequent medication... He's been pretty fine without.
 
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