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Terri, Feline Healthcare Expert
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 32665
Experience:  Expert in feline health and behavior. 20 years experience with cats.
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my kitten has a swollen anus. It is red, and is only ...

Customer Question

my kitten has a swollen anus. It is red, and is only swollen some of the time. He never learned to clean himself properly (abandoned by his feral mommy because he was sick and dying...but his rescuer nursed him back to health), but has always been great with the litter box. But in addition to the irritated anus, he sometimes has a bit of excrement that he hasn't cleaned off (sometimes a gob that will end up on you if you pick him up, or on the rug if he sits). He has been producing plenty in the litterbox, so I am not concerned with that. What could be causing this? How can I help him?
Submitted: 9 years ago.
Category: Cat
Expert:  Terri replied 9 years ago.


How old is he now?

has he always had this?

what does he eat?



Customer: replied 9 years ago.
Reply to Terri Riba's Post: The vet his rescuer took him to estimated that he was between 10-12 weeks old then, which would make him 12-14 weeks now. When I got him he still looked only about 6 weeks old, but was well taken care of by his rescuer, so came to me a healthy eater, and he is looking much closer to the size he should be now (and in only 2 weeks!). He has kibble out all day (Purina One Kitten Chow) and then gets a can or half-can (depending on the brand/size of the can) of soft food in the evening.
His last family never mentioned the problem, so I can only assume that it is new. Also, it wasn't noticed until he was already with us for several days, and he was handled a lot, so someone would have noticed, so I think we can safely assume that he did not always have it.
Expert:  Terri replied 9 years ago.


Please stand by. I am typing detailed answer.



Expert:  Terri replied 9 years ago.

Dear friend,

What an awful start this poor baby had. I am so glad he found such a womderful home with you!

He may have coccidia or giardia.These protozoan parasites run rampant in shelters and outdoors and are very common in kittens.Most are born with them.


Metronidazole (flagyl) is scripted for these parasites. It must be given for ten straight days - the off a week and repeat another ten days.That is because the parasites shed cysts (eggs) that do not mature in a week hence the cat keeps becoming reinfected.

Because of this lack of shedding into every stool, three separate tests are required to rule it out.

Of course stress is a factor. Surgery weakens the immune system and allows opportunistic bacteria to take over.

He may just have bad bacteria.

Give him one half teaspoon of plain yogurt every day. The acidophilus will keep "good" bacteria in his colon.

If he stops eating, begin by giving him two droppers (cc size) of unflavored pedialyte every ten minutes for an hour. Next water down(plain water) canned cat food or baby food chicken or turkey with no onion or garlic and give only one dropper every ten minutes for another hour. Wait two hours and repeat both. When he feels hydrated he will lick up the gruel on his own.Add infant rice cereal to his food - just a bit.That will firm the stool.

Make a temp electrolytes solution by adding an eighth of a tsp each of salt, sugar and pancake syrup to 12 oz of water.You can use tuna water to hydrate as well

Cats cannot take any human OTC's because the sensitive to the ingredients so we have to treat him holistically.

It is very important to keep him hydrated with the pedialyte.

Apply a dab of vaseline to his anus daily - it will keep the area lubricated.

Please let me know how your new baby is doing. I will always be here for both of you.

May God bless you for saving him!

Warmest best wishes,


Terri and 2 other Cat Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 9 years ago.
Thank you Terri. I didn't even think about dehydration. I see him drink his water sometimes, but that would certainly explain why he hasn't been cleaning himself.
He has had a rough start, but met up with the right guy, who then gave him to me. He is better every day (I have the scratches to prove it!), and I'd like to keep it that way.
If I have any more questions about little Houdini, I'll definitely use this site again. I really can't afford to take him to a vet, so would like to save that for emergencies. But I've had a lot of cats, and have just never seen this before. Thanks for the advice!