When a cat becomes constipated, the cat retains stool in her colon for a couple of days and the stool becomes hard and dry. It makes it difficult and painful for the cat to eliminate. There are some steps you can take at home to help ease the discomfort and resolve the condition. Natural remedies for cat constipation can resolve the condition if you catch the condition early and the condition isn’t too advanced. However, if your home treatment doesn’t work within a couple days, you need to take your cat to a veterinarian.
If your cat normally eats a dry food, try adding a tablespoon of olive oil to her meals to help resolve the constipation. Olive oil for cat constipation can resolve a mild condition. However, this treatment generally works best as a preventative rather than a cure. Canned pumpkin also acts as a natural laxative for cats. Try adding a tablespoon of 100-percent pure canned pumpkin to your cat’s meals to resolve the constipation.
Try to get your cat to drink lots of water while he is constipated. Water will help to resolve the constipation and the extra fluids will prevent the condition in the future. Many cats that drink little from a water bowl will take in extra fluids if you leave a faucet running slightly.
Hairballs are a common cause of constipation in cats. Brushing your cat regularly is a great natural preventative for cat constipation—especially in longhaired cats. If your cat is already constipated, natural products containing cod liver oil and malt extract are available at pet stores or from your veterinarian. These products are designed to help your cat pass hairballs and may help to resolve your cat’s constipation if the condition is mild.
While it’s always important to keep the litter box clean and accessible, be extra diligent about this responsibility if your cat is constipated. Some cats become constipated because they do not want to visit the litter box if it is dirty or another pet is harassing the cat when it tries to go to the box. Make sure the constipated cat can get to a clean box without stress or harassment. This may be one of the most effective steps in naturally treating cat constipation.
Many older cats and house cats become constipated because of lack of activity. Try to get your cat moving and this may help resolve the condition. Use a laser pointer or other interactive toy to get the cat to exercise and play. A good workout will often stimulate the cat to have a bowel movement.
Kitten image by RUZANNA ARUTYUNYAN from Fotolia.com
Bethney Foster is social justice coordinator for Mercy Junction ministry, where she edits the monthly publication "Holy Heretic." She is also an adoption coordinator with a pet rescue agency. Foster spent nearly two decades as a newspaper reporter/editor. She graduated from Campbellsville University, receiving a Bachelor of Arts in English, journalism and political science.