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I have a 14 yr old female cat who has stomach issues (gas,

I have a 14...

I have a 14 yr old female cat who has stomach issues (gas, foul smelling stool, normal BM followed by diarrhea). She has been losing weight for years and is now just skin and bones. I finally figured out she has an allergy to fish and some dry cat food and treats. Eliminating these foods has helped with the diarrhea but not eliminated it entirely. Vet has checked her thyroid, and that was fine. No parasites either. She even treated her for SIBO with antibiotics (coupled with steroids to beef her up). This didn't help either. I recently started giving her probiotics and some homemade kitty food with nutritional supplements. She seemed to be doing better - more energy, maybe gained a couple of ounces. Lately, her stool has changed color - more greenish. She still has occasional diarrhea and cannot seem to put on any weight. I'm at my wits end. Any ideas as to what could be wrong with her?

Veterinarian's Assistant: I'll do all I can to help. There are all sorts of infestations the kitten can pick up. I'll have you talk to the Veterinarian who'll sort out what is wrong and help you decide what to do about it. What is the kitten's name?

She's not a kitten. She's 14 yrs. old, and her name is*****: Is there anything else important you think the Veterinarian should know about Leela?

Please read what I just typed above. It tells you Leela's entire history.

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Answered in 26 minutes by:
3/18/2018
Dr. Rachel
Dr. Rachel, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 811
Experience: Owner/Veterinarian at Austin Home Vet Care
Verified

Welcome to JustAnswer.com! My name is***** and I have been a licensed veterinarian for 10 years. I would be happy to answer your question. I'm sorry to hear that Leela has been having diarrhea and has been losing weight. There are a few things that I believe could be going on:

1. Irritable bowel disease - the immune system causes inflammation of gastrointestinal cells, leading to the signs you are seeing.

2. Gastrointestinal lymphoma - this can be a progression of irritable bowel disease and causes the same signs.

3. Exocrine pancreatic insufficiency (EPI)- With this condition, the pancreas does not secret enzymes that are necessary for digestion.

All 3 of these conditions lead to malabsorption and weight loss. I recommend an abdominal ultrasound to check for signs of irritable bowel disease and lymphoma. EPI is diagnosed by doing blood work - specifically, a GI panel sent to the lab at Texas A&M.

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Customer reply replied 1 month ago
I pretty much figured out Leela has IBD on my own. I personally have food allergies and intolerances, IBS, SIBO and EPI - all confirmed with tests. I have a very strict diet and struggle to manage these things on a daily basis. I also have hypothyroidism which has most likely contributed to this. But back to Leela. I worry that Leela has some kind of cancer, but she doesn't act sick. One vet I went to suggested that and gave her 6 months to live. That was 3 years ago. This thing has been going on for 5 years! If she had cancer, it would've gotten her by now. I live in Knoxville, TN, not far from the University of Tennessee School of Veterinary Medicine. Can they do the GI panel and abdominal ultrasound?

To my knowledge, Tennessee does not do the GI panel but it couldn't hurt to call and ask. I'm sure they would be able to do an abdominal ultrasound. To get the GI panel done at Texas A&M, you would just have your vet send them the blood sample. Have you ever tried treatment with prednisolone?

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Customer reply replied 1 month ago
My vet gave Leela prednisone along with the antibiotic when we treated her for SIBO back several months ago. I never could tell much difference - sometime between 3-4 weeks I gave up the medication routine. She hid from me all the time and "ran away from home" to avoid the medication (she's an indoor kitty, but I have cat doors). On occasion, I have asked my vet to give her a B12 shot and rehydrate her. This seems to perk her up for awhile. I just cannot figure out why she will do really well for a few days (maybe a week at a time), then revert back to diarrhea.

It's possible that she needs to be on a higher dose or prednisolone for a while. I would ask your vet about calling it in to a compounding pharmacy to make it into a liquid form. They should also be able to make it in fish or chicken flavor to make it more appetizing. I start treatment for IBD with 5 mg of prednisolone twice daily, for 5 days, then go to once daily, then wean down to 2.5 mg. The goal is to find the lowest effective dose of prednisolone. I would definitely try that again. I don't think this is a problem that will be helped with antibiotics.

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Customer reply replied 1 month ago
It's worth a try. Thanks for your suggestion! I will call and request this.

You're welcome! Good luck with her. If I have been helpful, I would greatly appreciate your 5-star rating. I would also be happy to continue our conversation if you have any other questions or concerns.

Dr. Rachel
Dr. Rachel, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 811
Experience: Owner/Veterinarian at Austin Home Vet Care
Verified
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Hi,

I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?

Dr. Rachel
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Dr. Rachel
Dr. Rachel
Dr. Rachel, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 811
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