What does cat faeces look like? What colour is normal? How many times a day does a cat defecate? Even if some people find it disgusting, as a cat owner it is important to keep an eye on the excrements of your four-legged friend. This is because some diseases can be detected and treated in time. To keep an eye on your cat’s health, enter the faeces values in the pet profile. Everything you need to know about cat faeces can be found here.
How is faeces produced and what does it consist of?
The journey of faeces begins in the mouth. There, the food is mixed with saliva. In the stomach, the food pulp is then broken down, moistened and bacteria are partly killed by the stomach acid. In the small intestine, the food is broken down enzymatically and nutrients are absorbed. In the large intestine, nutrients are still absorbed into the body and water is reabsorbed, making the faeces more solid. As soon as the rectum is filled, the faeces are deposited.
This consists of indigestible food residues (mostly fibre), rejected cells of the intestinal mucosa and microorganisms of the intestinal flora.
What should I look out for in cat droppings?
- Frequency of dropping
- Shape and consistency
- Unusual content (worms, blood, mucus, but even if something inedible has been ingested, it should be excreted)
Record what the faeces look like every day in the animal profile to quickly detect changes.
How often does a cat defecate per day?
Newborn cats cannot yet defecate on their own. The reflex to do so is triggered by the mother cat licking the anal region.
A healthy adult cat will defecate once or twice a day, depending on what it is fed. Significantly more frequent defecation may indicate poorly digested food or illness. Less defecation can be an indication of constipation, but even if less food has been eaten, it may be that the cat only defecates every other day.
It is important that the cat defecates regularly.
Of course, this is strongly influenced by the amount of food fed, the quality of the food, how well the cat can digest the food, how active the cat is and much more. Puppies defecate even more frequently.
How should the cat faeces be shaped?
The faeces can be shaped or unshaped. Ideally, it should be sausage-like. The cat sausage can be formed in one piece or segmented, i.e. divided.
In case of constipation, several smaller faeces balls are formed, which are often difficult to excrete.
If the faeces are too soft, they lose their shape depending on the severity of the diarrhoea. It can be anything from somewhat misshapen, to a pile without contours, to a watery varnish.
What consistency should cat faeces have?
A distinction can be made here between liquid, soft and hard. The consistency should be soft. In this case, the droppings retain their shape when picked up, are compact and feel like soft dough when crushed. The surface of the cat faeces should be slightly moist, which may leave a slight residue when the faeces are picked up, or cat litter may stick to it.
Excessively hard droppings are very dry, harder to crush and the cat often has problems dropping them. Liquid droppings can be difficult or impossible to pick up, depending on the level of liquid. It is very watery.
If the faeces are covered with a layer of mucus, this may indicate an inflammation in the colon. An infestation with endoparasites (e.g. giardia) is also possible. Mucus can also occur when changing to a new food or after a hard-to-digest food.
Record the faecal consistency in your animal profile.
What is the normal colour of cat faeces?
The colour is related to the food ingested. But some shades can also be an indication of a disease.
A nice cat faeces has chocolate brown tones. Depending on the food, it can be lighter or darker.
Green tones can appear after eating a lot of grass or green vegetables. Otherwise it can be a sign of problems with the gall bladder.
Orange to yellowish is also an indication of difficulties with the gall bladder or liver. Often associated with impaired fat digestion.
Grey, greasy faeces can also indicate gallbladder or pancreatic disease.
Red faeces can be normal after eating beetroot or other red vegetables. In this case, the whole faeces is coloured. If only red streaks are visible, this could be fresh blood. This can occur if there is an injury to the anus or intestines.
White faeces can occur after too many bones have been given, and the faeces are usually hard. Single white spots could indicate a worm infestation.
Black, tarry faeces may be a sign of bleeding in the gastrointestinal tract, as digested blood turns the faeces black. This could be an emergency and should be checked with a vet immediately.
What should I do if the cat faeces is changed?
If the consistency is only slightly different, there is no need to panic. But if it is not back to normal the next day, have your pet examined. Especially in case of changes in colour (without the influence of food), diarrhoea or constipation, a vet should be consulted. It is best to take a faecal sample with you, so that the specialists can get an idea and, if necessary, examine the faeces directly. Please do not try to treat your pet yourself. Even if you mean well, sometimes the opposite can happen. Always consult your veterinarian.
Enter all values in the pet profile to be aware of diseases.
What does cat excrement smell like?
Admittedly, this is not very appetising, but the smell also tells you a lot. Cats sniff the droppings of their fellow cats because they get some information from them. This is part of their communication and is quite normal. However, make sure that your pet does not sniff extensively at a diarrhoea pile in order not to get infected.
Cat droppings naturally smell like faeces and often very strong. This is also due to the large amount of protein they eat. But if the excretions smell sour or putrid, this can be a sign of harmful bacteria, giardia or other unhealthy causes. Flatulence also indicates that the cat has digestive problems and may not be able to digest its food properly. Intolerances and allergies can also cause flatulence and foul-smelling faeces.
Cat faeces provide information about the health of the animal and about the digestibility of the food. So it is worth looking closely and keeping a record of it.