How to Treat Feline Constipation With Teaspoons of Pumpkin

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Constipation in cats can be a dangerous problem if not treated quickly. Signs of feline constipation include small, hard stools or misbehavior as cats strain to have a bowel movement. To avoid an expensive veterinarian visit to remove impacted stools, treat your cat with canned pumpkin at the first signs of constipation. Canned pumpkin will add fiber to your pet’s diet, but it should only be used at a vet’s recommendation. Adding fiber to an impacted colon may make the problem worse.

Things You'll Need

  • 1 8-ounce can pumpkin or fresh pumpkin
  • Fork or potato masher
  • Microwave-safe bowl
  • Regular pet food
  • Measuring spoons

Treat Constipation in Cats with Pumpkin

Choose an unsweetened canned pumpkin product, or prepare a puree from fresh pumpkin. Scoop out one cup of fresh pumpkin, avoiding the seeds. Add a tablespoon of water. Microwave on high for two minutes. Mash the cooked pumpkin with a potato masher or fork until the consistency is smooth. Store the mashed pumpkin in the refrigerator for up to one week.

Begin adding small amounts of pumpkin to your cat’s dry or canned food each day. Start adding one teaspoon to each meal. Mix the pumpkin evenly into a serving of wet food with a fork, or spread it out over a serving of dry kibble.

Add a slightly fuller teaspoon each day to increase the fiber intake. Continue increasing the amount until your feline is eating one tablespoon each day. Spread the pumpkin serving evenly throughout the day’s meals.

Monitor your cat’s bowel movements by checking the litter box. Watch your pet’s bathroom behavior for straining. If your cat does not appear to be digesting the added pumpkin fiber well, stop until you have consulted a vet.

Provide fresh, clean water each day near your cat’s food source. Encourage your pet to drink more water by adding ice cubes or dipping your fingers in the bowl to simulate a lapping effect.

Tips & Warnings

  • Brush your cat regularly to remove excess hair that may be impacting her colon.
  • If constipation goes untreated in cats toxins may build up in the impacted colon causing illness or death.

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References

  • Dr. Carla Johnson, West Tennessee Animal Hospital, Memphis, Tennessee
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