Blood in the stool of the cat: why?  Should we be worried?

Blood In The Stool Of The Cat: Why? Should We Be Worried?

You have noticed traces of blood in your cat’s stool after it has been in the litter box, and you are wondering about the seriousness of this situation. If this reaction is completely normal, it is however advisable not to give in to panic, multiple causes which can explain this phenomenon. We take stock in this file of the possible origins of this bleeding, and the behavior to adopt.

The Causes Of Bleeding In The Stool In Cats

Blood in a cat’s stool is not a specific symptom, and may be due to many reasons. It should therefore be kept in mind that it is not necessarily a serious or fatal illness. On the other hand, the presence of blood is not never normaland should not be minimized: the whole thing will be to understand it in order to be able to react appropriately, and to avoid any risk of complication.

If we take stock of the most common causes of blood in the cat’s stool, we quickly realize how varied they can be:

    • The constipation: if your cat is having difficulty breaking free, be aware that retention of stool can irritate and bleed the walls of the large intestine, colon, rectum or anus
    • Diarrhea: this can conversely lead to irritation of the intestinal mucous membranes. It embodies a typical symptom of feline typhus a viral illness caused by a parvovirus, which causes loose, bloody stools
    • Ingestion of a foreign body: the latter can injure his intestine and thus cause internal bleeding
    • A wound in the anus: a cat that often walks outside and fights is more likely to be injured in this area, defecation activating the bleeding from the wound which mixes with the stool
    • A sudden change in food, an allergy or food poisoning
    • A parasitic invasion: the parasites present in the intestinal wall of the cat cause irritation and bleeding
    • An intoxication: swallowing a toxic product, such as rat poison, causes serious internal bleeding
    • An intestinal polyp or cyst
    • Chronic inflammatory bowel disease
    • An intestinal tumor: it can damage certain parts of the digestive tract or the intestinal wall, and cause bleeding
    • An anal abscess

My Cat Has Blood In The Stool: What Should I Look For?

You will therefore have understood that the presence of blood in the stools of your little feline has multiple explanations, some of which are not serious. However, this phenomenon should not be taken lightly, especially since it is impossible to identify the reason for this bleeding with the naked eye or without expertise. We might as well say it from the start: the presence of blood in the stool alone constitutes sufficient reason for a consultation with the veterinarian. However, it is possible to judge the urgency of the situation based on certain factors.

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Thus a light bleeding, which appears in an isolated way, without other symptoms, and goes away as quickly as it came, is generally benign. This is probably a reaction to ingested food or following an episode of constipation. However, we must remain cautious and continue to observe your cat’s stool carefully, while taking him to a specialist if the phenomenon recurs or occurs frequently. In the same way, the color of the blood present in the stools allows you to get an idea about the part of the digestive tract that is affected:

    • The blood is bright red: it comes from a lesion of the colon, rectum or anus of the animal, either from the lower part. We are talking here about rectorrhagia.
    • The blood is dark red or black: it has been digested, and the hemorrhage affects the upper part, either the esophagus, the stomach or the intestine. We then speak of melena, and this option is much more worrying, leading to a quick consultation

Moreover, a copious amount of blood in the cat’s stool, whether light or dark red, should immediately call out to you: it may be a sign of internal bleeding, and therefore of a veterinary emergency. Finally, if you notice that this bleeding is associated with other unusual symptoms with your companion, it will also be important to quickly consult a professional. A general depression, lack of appetite, fever, vomiting, diarrhea or intestinal pain (the cat drags itself, complains, has a swollen or particularly noisy belly) are signs that should not be overlooked.

What Should I Do If My Cat Has Blood In The Stool?

If it is therefore preferable to consult in all cases, the visit to the veterinarian becomes essential if the phenomenon lasts more than 48 hours, or is accompanied by other clinical signs. Cats tend to hide their pain or discomfort, because they embody signs of weakness in nature in the face of predators. The teacher must then learn to observe well and decode the behavior of his little feline beyond the image that the latter sends back to him. A medical opinion will also make it possible to set up the appropriate treatment. It is important to remember here that while a slight amount of bright red blood may cause you to wait, the presence of black, dark, or tar-like blood need an emergency consultation.

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The Consultation With The Veterinarian

The specialist begins with a general clinical examination of the cat, while asking you questions about its health. Be sure on this occasion to train him a precise table the symptoms encountered, the quantity of blood, the color or the frequency of this phenomenon, because your pet will not be able to speak for you. He can also make a fecal test on the cat’s stool. You can also, if you have the possibility, collect a sample before the visit, and bring it directly to the practice. The veterinarian may also be required to carry out Additional tests, such as a blood test, urinalysis, x-ray or ultrasound, biopsy, endoscopy or colonoscopy. These examinations depend on the general condition of the animal, as well as the symptoms described or observed. In any case, they will make it possible to establish a precise diagnosis of the origin of the bleeding.


They entirely depend on the identified cause of blood in the stool. If the bleeding is due to constipation or diarrhea without infection, or chronic bowel disease, the veterinarian may recommend a simple diet change. Appropriate croquettes, as well as a better hygiene of life then make it possible to limit the fragility of the cat at this level, and to eliminate bleeding in the stools. It also has at its disposal a panel of drug solutions, always depending on the origin of the bleeding: digestive dressings, analgesics, antiparasitics, anti-inflammatories… His choice will be one or the other of these solutions by following the diagnosis. It is in all cases essential to respect the dosage indicated, and not to attempt self-medication of your animal.

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Finally, if the situation turns out to be more serious, the veterinarian can suggest a surgeryfor example in the case of a foreign body blocked in the intestine or a tumor there. Hospitalization will also be necessary for certain reasons, such as typhus, in order to relieve the cat and rehydrate it thanks to an infusion.

Preventing The Risk Of Bleeding In The Stool For The Cat

If it is impossible to prevent all the causes mentioned and which can cause bleeding in the stool, you can nevertheless follow these few simple rules for the health and well-being of your cat:

    • The vaccination is essential to protect it from certain diseases, including typhus. It is important to follow the schedule of reminders indicated by the veterinarian
    • Regularly deworming or administering an antiparasitic is also important to limit the risk of contamination by internal parasites
    • A quality diet, adapted to one’s age and gender, embodies another fundamental point. This healthy and well-balanced food must meet your cat’s nutritional needs, while allowing him to maintain his healthy weight and avoid health concerns related to overweight or obesity
    • Your cat must also drink enough. So be sure to provide it with enough fresh water. If he does not, opt for the playful solution of a water fountain, or for wet food (pâté), which encourages good hydration
    • In the case of a change in diet, for example brand or category of croquettes, it is recommended to make a smooth transition, over at least a week. You can for example mix the two foods, and gradually reduce the old while increasing the quantities of the new

Finally, keep in mind that your cat’s health, like that of a human being, is also reflected in its stool. The slightest unusual or doubtful sign should prompt you to consult a specialist, who will reassure you and take stock of the overall condition of your little companion.

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