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I have a 3 month old kitten who I adopted from a rescue. I…

I have a 3 month...
I have a 3 month old kitten who I adopted from a rescue. I noticed even when holding her for the first time at the rescue that she had an odor, but figured maybe she was too little to clean herself well and that she would learn. As soon as I got her home though I realized that the smell was coming from chromic diarrhea. I have worked with my local vet to rule out worms, parasites, tons of different bacteria. I have her on a special EN diet from the vet and give her probiotics, enzymes and pumpkin, yet she continues to have uncontrollable foul smelling diarrhea that varies from liquid to pudding consistency. She doesn't seem to be able to control it because it happens very frequently all over the house, outside of the litter box and even when I hold her. She also passes gas that smells like vomit. I feel so bad for her. She is always hungry and after eating her abdomen becomes distended. I don' t know how to help her. The vet is now going to try another type of enzyme that is animal based rather than plant based. Is there anything you can think of to help? She has already been on two different courses of antibiotics, oral antifungal and topical antfungal- the rescue said she was found in a trash can but they have no additional history. HELP!
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Answered in 4 hours by:
11/17/2017
PitRottMommy
PitRottMommy, Veterinary Nurse
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 10,486
Experience: 15 yrs experience in vet med, 8 in emergency med. Founder of a non-profit animal rescue
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Hello, JACustomer. I have been a Veterinary Nurse for over 15 years and would be happy to help you today. I'm reviewing your question right now.

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Good morning, Karen. I have plenty of experience in this realm and work specifically with chronic diarrhea cats through my rescue. I hope to be able to offer you some options today. Can you share copies of any diagnostics that have been performed thus far? Do you know if your vet has run a diarrhea-specific PCR panel on Uma? What diets aside from the EN and pumpkin have been tried thus far? How long have you had her?

If you'd like, we can arrange a phone call later on today when we're both at the computer again. There is an extra charge for this, but it can make sharing information and receiving information much faster and concise.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Dear PittRott Mommy,Thank you for your response. I don't have the copies of the diagnostics, but can try to obtain these. The vet said that she was negative for everything and she did two regular fecal cultures and then a very expensive one that was supposed to look for everything under the sun. Aside from the EN and pumpkin, I had given her Nutro kitten food wet and dry and sometimes use some chicken broth (sodium free) to mix with her EN and pumpkin so that the supplements dissolve and are more palatable. The rescue estimated that she was about 6 weeks when I adopted her. The rescue had already spayed her, even though she was so young and I worried if that could have harmed her somehow.

You vet should be able to give you a copy of all diagnostics performed. Having this information on hand will make it that much easier to know how to advise you on where to go from here. If they can email a copy to you that might be the fastest. I will be around this weekend if it comes through quickly and we can keep discussing what options exist for diagnostics and treatment. Hopefully the "everything under the sun" panel was a diarrhea PCR panel.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Hi PittRott Mommy,Here are the lab results for Uma.I am not sure if they all downloaded and attached correctly, but in case they didn't, she had:
Aerobic Culture and MIC (Fecal): final result: No salmonella, shigella or Yersinia isolated. Feline GI PCR Panel: Negative for: Fel parvo/panleukopenia, tritrichomonas foetus, campylobacter jejuni/coli, cryptosporidium app, cryptosporidium felis, salmonella app, giardia app, Clos diff Tox A/B, Clos Perfringens ent. Fecal DX Prof W/Giard; Giardia Elisa: Negative, No ova or parasites seen, Hookworm Elisa - Negative, Whipworm-Negative and Roundworm-Negative. Our next step is to try enzymes derived from an animal source rather than the plant sourced enzymes we were using. Any thoughts?

I don't think you'd be wrong to consider switching to the plant-source enzymes, but I expect this is not going to help a great deal since the animal-based enzymes didn't help. I suspect that your kitten may have (in addition to the light growths of bacteria witnessed) a sensitivity to ingredients in her food. I would recommend moving Uma off of EN and on to a novel protein diet. This is the course that I take with diarrhea kittens when they're in Uma's position with diagnostics suggesting all should be well but the diarrhea persists. EN seems to be a good choice for kittens who have fiber-responsive diarrhea. Since she has not responded to the EN, I would urge you to go with a higher novel protein, lower fiber diet. I would recommend moving her directly over to one of the following and leaving her on only this for at least 10 days:

1) https://www.chewy.com/evangers-grain-free-rabbit-canned-dog/dp/44819
2) https://www.chewy.com/hound-gatos-rabbit-formula-grain/dp/142369?utm_source=google-product&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=f&utm_content=Hound%20%26%20Gatos&utm_term=&gclid=Cj0KCQiA0b_QBRCeARIsAFntQ9o-0ybZY580yrGItqE5Gme_DW3ecJ6PK-VL_jjb4STMAneD6u3PWq4aApA9EALw_wcB&gclsrc=aw.ds
3) http://wildcalling.com/products/rabbit-burrow/
4) Or a raw option like this: https://www.instinctpetfood.com/cats/raw/instinct-raw-frozen-medallions-farm-raised-rabbit-recipe

Once you have found a diet that works well for your kitten, you can work backwards to find other things that she can eat starting with novel proteins. So, from here you might try other limited ingredient foods containing mainly duck, turkey, pheasant, lamb, kangaroo, bison, etc. Then, you can work on finding commercial foods that are not limited ingredient by trying others including less novel proteins like chicken, beef, pork, salmon, etc. You can also work with http://www.balanceit.com's nutritionists to formulate home-cooked diets where you can rotate the protein source and keep her diet nutritionally balanced.

I have gone forward with offering a phone call if you'd like to discuss this more in-depth. I've worked with GI concerns in cats for about 10 years now and this is what we usually start with. I can recommend some other diets, as well, to try once her stool is solid. There's also a very useful article here regarding UC Davis' research regarding raw rabbit diet with idiopathic diarrhea in cats: http://www.vetmed.ucdavis.edu/ccah/local-assets/pdfs/Role_of_diet_feline%20health_Glasgow.pdf

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Checking in. How is your companion today?

PitRottMommy
PitRottMommy, Veterinary Nurse
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 10,486
Experience: 15 yrs experience in vet med, 8 in emergency med. Founder of a non-profit animal rescue
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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
She is still having diarrhea. We had started her on the plant based enzymes initially and the recent change was to give her the animal based enzymes. After the first dose, she had what appeared to be her first formed stool, but she has now subsequently continued to have diarrhea. The vet had said to use 1//4 tsp of the enzymes on her wet food twice per day. Would using more help at all since she seemed to have an initially positive response? Also, regarding the rabbit diet - what about canned chicken? Would that be safe or would that cause a taurine or other nutrient deficiency?

It's possible, but typically when enzymes are used its based on weight. I'd talk to your vet before upping the dose, but this may be an option before switching diets or discontinuing the therapy.

As far as chicken, I would re-read the last entry I shared. The whole reason to try rabbit is under the suspicion that she may be sensitive to other proteins. If she's sensitive to chicken, using chicken would likely be the worst approach possible. I cannot say this is or is not the case, but this is why I have recommended going with the most novel protein that tends to work well for cats. Canned meats alone are a bad choice due to nutritional deficiencies, including taurine deficiency for cats. This, alone, would not be a suitable option unless marketed specifically for cats. You could always use pure chicken first (evangers does carry a chicken-only canned product) to see if she might be sensitive to other ingredients but if this fails, I'd go straight to their rabbit-only option and work you way back as discussed in my last major entry above.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
okay - thank you

You're welcome. Good luck! Let me know how things go.

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