Even the mildest of health problems are a concern for cat owners, and Maine Coon diarrhea is no exception. While this particular breed is known for its hardiness and general lack of health issues, that does not mean your Maine Coon is completely immune to some health problems.
Diarrhea in Maine Coon cats is usually a result of dietary issues, including allergies, excessive feeding, and eating too quickly. If you notice that your Maine Coon has diarrhea, you should carefully monitor your cat’s diet and change any unhealthy feeding patterns.
If your Maine Coon has diarrhea, it is not typically something to worry about too much. In most cases, the issue can be solved through a simple change in diet. However, in rare cases, diarrhea may be a sign of underlying health problems that require assistance from a veterinarian. In this article, we will take a look at the main causes of diarrhea in Maine Coons, as well as how to treat it, and when it may be time to seek help from your vet.
Are Maine Coons Prone To Diarrhea?
Each cat breed can be susceptible to certain health issues. While Maine Coons are a very hardy breed, they do have a rather delicate gastrointestinal tract, and their tendency to eat large amounts of food very quickly can upset their sensitive stomachs. This often results in diarrhea, which can be categorized as any bowel movement that is loose or unformed.
For more details on the Maine Coon sensitive stomach, click here to view my recent article.
Another possible reason Maine Coons can be prone to diarrhea is that this breed is more likely to contract a disease known as polycystic kidney disease, which we will discuss later in this article. In general, however, diarrhea is usually not a cause for concern, as it is most often the result of dietary issues, the specifics of which we will talk about next.
Causes Of Maine Coon Diarrhea
If your Maine Coon is suffering from diarrhea, you may be tempted to rush your cat to the vet as soon as possible. However, the underlying cause of diarrhea is rarely dangerous. Here are some of the most common reasons for diarrhea in cats:
1. Food Allergies
Just like humans, cats can be susceptible to food allergies. The most common allergies in Maine Coons are gluten and dairy- two foods that your cat probably shouldn’t have access to in the first place. Some other possible allergens include seafood and certain meat products. You should check the ingredients of your cat’s food, as well as eliminate any human food that your cat might be consuming.
These foods and liquids are harmful to your Maine Coon cat. Make sure you avoid ALL OF THEM.
Maine Coons love to eat, and if your cat is crying for more food, you’ll probably be tempted to feed it as much as it wants. However, overfeeding your cat can lead to not only diarrhea but a host of other health problems, as well.
3. Eating Too Quickly
Because Maine Coons love to eat so much, they tend to devour their food extremely quickly. The sensitive stomach of a Maine Coon isn’t well equipped to handle large amounts of food in a short amount of time, resulting in diarrhea.
4. An Unbalanced Diet
If you mainly feed your Maine Coon only wet food or dry food, your cat’s stomach will have a difficult time breaking it all down, causing diarrhea. Maine Coons should be eating a healthy mix of both kinds of food.
These are my favourite Maine Coon dry foods.
If your Maine Coon has been exposed to certain poisonous materials, such as toxic plants or chemical substances, it may develop diarrhea as a result. Make sure any dangerous substances are kept well out of your cat’s reach to prevent this.
6. Polycystic Kidney Disease
This is an underlying condition that some Maine Coons develop when they are quite young. It can cause cysts to form in your cat’s kidneys, which may grow larger over time. While the disease can remain dormant throughout some cats’ entire lives, it can become an issue with others. However, a few instances of diarrhea is rarely a cause for concern; you should only worry about polycystic kidney disease if your cat is experiencing other symptoms such as weight loss, lethargy, and vomiting.
When I first heard about polycystic kidney disease, I wasn’t sure what it was. I therefore decided to research this particular health issue in greater detail, and produce this article so that Maine Coon lovers across the world can learn too. Click here to view article on Maine Coon polycystic kidney disease.
Diarrhea can also be caused by parasitic, viral, and bacterial infections. If your Maine Coon’s diarrhea lasts for longer than a few days, you should take a trip to the vet to rule out any infections, as these can be dangerous if left untreated.
8. Other Underlying Conditions
If diarrhea is accompanied by other symptoms, such as weight loss, lethargy, and vomiting, your cat may be suffering from an underlying condition such as pancreatitis or cancer. While these conditions are rare, you should keep a careful eye out on your cat, and take it to the vet if these symptoms persist.
Take a look at my article on the most common Maine Coon Health Issues.
Maine Coon Chronic Diarrhea
If you notice recurring Maine Coon diarrhea, your cat may have what is known as chronic diarrhea. Chronic diarrhea is categorized as diarrhea which lasts for three weeks or longer. This is usually a sign that the culprit is something besides your cat’s diet. If your cat has chronic diarrhea, it is likely it is suffering from an infection or underlying condition. A cat with recurring diarrhea should be taken to the vet right away to rule out any serious conditions.
Treating Maine Coon Diarrhea
Now that we’ve discussed some of the potential causes of your Maine Coon’s diarrhea, let’s look at the different ways in which it can be treated:
Diarrhea usually leads to dehydration, so if you notice that your Maine Coon is suffering from diarrhea, you should make sure to offer your cat plenty of fluids. I personally love this cat water fountain from Amazon, as it’s wide, sturdy and holds a great deal of water so our treasured Maine Coon can drink as much as he likes.
Here’s a video of our Maine Coon using his water fountain …
Your cat might require some fibrous supplements to its diet, such as pumpkin or unflavored yogurt, to help keep its bowel movements firm.
3. A More Balanced Diet
Because diarrhea can be caused by too much wet or dry food, you should make sure your cat is getting a healthy mix of both.
4. Eating More Slowly
To prevent your cat from chowing down its food too quickly, consider offering a small portion of food, waiting a little bit, and then adding more food to your cat’s dish. This will give your cat more time to digest its food and can prevent diarrhea.
5. Diet Regulation
If you suspect your cat has diarrhea as a result of food allergies, you should closely monitor what your cat is ingesting to see if certain foods more likely to cause diarrhea.
6. Veterinary Assistance
If your cat’s diarrhea persists for several days, or it is accompanied by other symptoms such as lethargy and vomiting, it is time to seek veterinary assistance to rule out any underlying conditions.
When Should I Worry?
While diarrhea in cats is usually caused by its diet, there could be a chance that your cat is suffering from an underlying condition. If you are wondering which signs could be indicative of a more serious condition, here are some things to look out for:
1. Diarrhea That Lasts For Multiple Days
While diarrhea that occurs once or twice in the same day is usually not a huge cause for concern, diarrhea that lasts for multiple days could be caused by something more serious.
If you notice your cat laying around more than usual, or if your cat seems less responsive to its environment, it could mean that your cat is ill.
While vomiting on its own can also be caused by dietary issues, if vomiting occurs alongside diarrhea, it could mean something more serious is going on.
4. Weight Loss
Closely monitor your cat’s weight to make sure it doesn’t decrease.
Take a look at my article ‘How Big Are Maine Coon Cats‘ to learn what a healthy adult Maine Coon size is.
5. Loss Of Appetite
This symptom on its own is already a cause for concern when it comes to cats, but when it occurs alongside diarrhea, you should take your cat to the vet right away.
6. Frequent Urination
If your cat seems to be drinking and urinating more frequently than normal, it could be a sign that something is wrong.
Diarrhea is extremely uncomfortable for humans, so why wouldn’t it be the same for cats? If you’ve noticed occasional bouts of diarrhea from your cat, you may have found yourself wondering, “Are Maine Coons prone to diarrhea?” Despite their hardiness, diarrhea is still a common symptom in this cat breed.
Maine Coon diarrhea is usually the result of poor diet or dietary habits and can be solved with some simple changes in routine. However, if your cat’s diarrhea persists, or if you notice other symptoms accompanying diarrhea, your cat may be suffering from a more serious condition. This is when it is time to seek assistance from your veterinarian. With proper medical care and careful attention to your cat’s symptoms, however, it is likely your cat will turn out to be just fine.
Here are the answers to a few related questions, that you might also be interested in:
Can Bad Teeth Cause Diarrhea In Cats?
There is no recorded correlation between bad teeth and diarrhea in cats.
Steroids For Cat Diarrhea
One possible treatment for cat diarrhea is steroids, such as prednisone, which can be prescribed by your vet.