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What is Painful Abdomen?

Pain located in the abdomen can result from conditions ranging from trauma to disease, so it is important to take your  cat to a veterinarian for an examination as soon as possible if it is suffering.

There are numerous reasons why your cat may be experiencing abdominal pain. Cats are not normally expressive creatures when it comes to pain, but there are ways to detect if something is wrong in the abdominal region. Since the abdomen lies between the pelvis and the chest, a number of organs can be the culprit behind their pain.

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Painful Abdomen Average Cost

From 344 quotes ranging from $200 - $3,000

Average Cost

$800

Symptoms of Painful Abdomen in Cats

Your cat may not always show signs to indicate it is experiencing abdominal pain. Also, pain can, unfortunately, be referred to another area of the body that isn't the real sources. It is important to pay close attention to your cat to discover if it is experiencing abdominal pain. The main symptoms to look out for are listed below:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Loss of appetite
  • Blood in feces
  • Difficulty urinating
  • Change in appearance or posture (e.g. hunched over)
  • Tenderness/pain when touched
  • Weight loss
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Causes of Painful Abdomen in Cats

A number of conditions can bring about abdominal pain in your cat, including:

  • Pancreatitis (inflammation in pancreas)
  • Constipation
  • Cancer
  • Poisoning
  • Ruptured bladder
  • Urinary obstruction
  • Dietary intolerance
  • Kidney stones
  • Ascites (buildup of fluid within abdominal cavity)
  • Bacterial infection (e.g. pyometra, salmonellosis, campylobacteriosis)
  • Parasites
  • Intestinal obstruction
  • IBD (inflammatory bowel disease)
  • Feline infectious peritonitis (FIP, a fatal viral infection)
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Diagnosis of Painful Abdomen in Cats

To diagnosis your cat's condition, the veterinarian will want a full medical history and will also conduct a thorough physical examination that may lead to further diagnostic testing. What you provide the vet can help immensely in narrowing down potential causes. Knowing if there has been any reaction to a specific type of food, exposure to dangerous substances or circumstances, and all of the other symptoms your cat has shown can aid in this process.

If the vet has determined further tests are required, there are a few common ones they will conduct. The common diagnostic testing includes a CBC (complete blood count), a urinalysis, and a biochemical profile. The three tests are generally used to check for signs of inflammation or infection, and to examine how well the organs are functioning. A fecal test may be conducted as well if parasites are suspected.

Your vet may also perform a biopsy or even a peritoneal fluid analysis, which checks the type of fluid in your cat's abdomen if fluid is detected. Lastly, an X-ray or ultrasound of the abdomen will be taken. These scans can discover any inflammation, tumors, kidney stones, or ruptures in the organs.

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Treatment of Painful Abdomen in Cats

Since there is a range of causes for abdominal pain, treatment plans may vary.

Surgery

If cancer or tumors have been found, the vet will almost certainly recommend surgery to remove it. A surgical procedure is also sought in the case of a ruptured bladder.

Medication

In the event of a parasitic infestation or a bacterial infection, your vet will prescribe a round of antiparasitic or antibiotics. Although these medications may come with risks (e.g. side effects, developing a resistance), the benefits typically outweigh those concerns. It is important that they are given as prescribed so that your cat will reap all of the benefits.

Some medications may be given as supportive care. If your cat is suffering significantly, your vet may recommend the use of pain medication for relief. Anti-nausea medicine may be given to help stop vomiting, and in the event of seizures (mainly due to poisoning), your cat may be given anti-seizure medication. Additionally, drugs that suppress the immune system may be prescribed, typically in the case of IBD.

Poison Treatment

When poisoning is the cause behind your cat's suffering, your vet will begin treatment immediately upon knowing which toxin was ingested, if possible. If your cat only recently swallowed the poison, its stomach will be emptied and activated charcoal or fluid therapy may be administered to help curb any ill effects.

Additional treatment methods may vary based on the specific toxin. For example, in rat poisoning, the vet may administer vitamin K.

Diet

In the event of IBD or other dietary complications, a change in diet tends may be the recommended plan of treatment. Your vet may recommend a hypoallergenic diet or even an elimination diet. Both can help with IBD as well as determining if your cat has an allergy.

Supportive Care

Beyond pain and anti-nausea medication, supportive care may include the administration of fluids to treat dehydration. Also, if your cat has the misfortune of being afflicted with FIP, supportive care may be the primary form of treatment, as the viral infection has a high mortality rate.

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Recovery of Painful Abdomen in Cats

It is important to follow the treatment plan laid out by your veterinarian, especially if medicine has been prescribed. Prognosis will vary with the cause of abdominal pain. Relapse can occur from some conditions, and some be be chronic. IBD, for example, cannot be cured and is managed, rather than resolved. Keep a watch on your cat's appetite as well as any other symptoms. If they return, be sure to take your cat into see the veterinarian.

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Painful Abdomen Average Cost

From 344 quotes ranging from $200 - $3,000

Average Cost

$800

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Painful Abdomen Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals

Need pet health advice? Ask a vet

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Ask a Vet

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Tabby

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3 months

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Unknown severity

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1 found helpful

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Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Painful Belly

My cat was vomiting and was crying when I touched his belly, he also was really tired and slept alo, 24 hours later he is acting normal

Sept. 28, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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1 Recommendations

Thank you for your question. I'm sorry for the delay in answering, this platform is not set up for urgent responses. I hope that he is still okay. If he needed to have a bowel movement, he may have been uncomfortable. If he is doing well at this point, it should be okay to monitor for any further problems.

Oct. 7, 2020

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Short hair

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Three Years

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Unknown severity

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1 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Peeing Outside Box, Hiding, Lack Of Appetite

I think my cat is really sick...but no one in the area will see her

Sept. 27, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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1 Recommendations

Thank you for your question. I am sorry for the delay, this platform is not set up for urgent emails. Unfortunately, I cannot see her over an email, and I am not sure what might be going on with her. Sometimes cats can develop urinary tract infection, or kidney disease, and having her seen by a veterinarian would be best. If you cannot get into your regular veterinarian, it might be a good idea to take her to a 24 hour clinic.

Oct. 10, 2020

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Don’t know

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Six Months

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Unknown severity

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0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Stinky Poops A Lot Sore Side

She’s a stray. When I touch her side she gets upset like it hurts and she farts when I touch it? She also Poops a lot and it’s a smelly smell

Sept. 27, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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0 Recommendations

Thank you for your question. I apologize for the delay in answering, this platform is not set up for urgent emails. It is very possible that she has parasites, or is eating something that does not agree with her. It would be best to have your pet seen by a veterinarian, as they can examine them, see what might be going on, and get treatment.

Oct. 12, 2020

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mixed

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One Year

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Unknown severity

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0 found helpful

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Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Vomiting

she is vomiting yesterday and today so many times of vomit but its watery

Sept. 27, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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0 Recommendations

Thank you for your question. I apologize for the delay in answering, this venue is not set up for urgent emails. It would be best to have your pet seen by a veterinarian, as they can examine them, see what might be going on, and help get treatment if it is appropriate.

Oct. 13, 2020

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Calico cat

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Four Years

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Unknown severity

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0 found helpful

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Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Hunched Over/ Crying

Hi there, I was waking up, and my cats usually do when I do, when I looked over at my girl cat, she got up, but in a hunched over position & started crying, walking slow, and would not let me touch her. After about 5 minutes, it subsided, she ate some food, but I am very concerned since I’ve never seen her like that, or cry like that before

Sept. 26, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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0 Recommendations

Thank you for your question. I apologize for the delay, this venue is not set up for urgent emails. It would be best to have your pet seen by a veterinarian, as they can examine them, see what might be going on, and get treatment for them.

Oct. 16, 2020

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Rabbit

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DOMESTIC

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8 Years

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Moderate severity

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Moderate severity

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Weight Loss

A stray male cat came here a few months ago he is not neutered. I fed him and let him live outside since I have three other cats who live in and go out some. My cats are all spayed and neutered. I named him Rabbit and he seemed to be very independent. In the past 2-3 months he eats in my house but has lost a lot of weight. He just seems to be getting sick. I feed my cats good quality cat food and they are all healthy. I worm all my cats regularly as precaution just as my Vet has advised me to do especially since they go outside. I also wormed the stray right along with my own cats. My cats have learned they can just pick on him, slap him when he walks close them. I am working hard to stop that. Rabbit comes in with scratches on his head, across his face and upper body. I do what I can with Chlorahexadine and Vetracin (did not spell them right, I know). He fusses a little but I can coax him into letting me clean up the wounds and put antibiotics in the deeper ones. I am so dumbfounded about the weight loss. He seems to be wasting away so much that his hip bones are extremely prominent. I don't know what to do since I live on social security and have limited funds to take him to the Vet. I am feeding Iams cat food to all of them and the others are doing well on it. The only thing is maybe tape worms? I know it seems as if I am neglecting him and I am stressed about it, trying to take care of my other three cat, my aging dog, and Rabbit (cat's name). It is 3:15 a.m. I am sitting here sharing this with you all and he is steadily meowing loudly like he wants out. I try so hard to get him to stay in where he can heal up before he has to go out and get cut up again. He tries to be friends with my cats and George Burns my one year old male and Rabbit get along pretty well. The huge solution would be to have him neutered. This year the animal shelter here stopped the partial payments to Vets to spay and neuter. You know it looks like there would be some type of hormone pill to neuter chemically. It worries me so that he is so skinny now. He does not vomit. He has a healthy appetite. He is active. He just cries and cries and I don't know if it is wanting out or pain. If anyone has any idea I will be grateful for the help. He sometimes gets on couch with me and lets me pet and talk so calmly to him. Can I just try a tape worm pill as a preventative? I even thought about going to our Farm Store purchasing Penicillin and give him a couple of shots. He is a sweet cat who does not deserve to be in pain or to be cut up. He seems to be maybe in the senior ages. He is not a young cat.

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Cino

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Norwegian longhaired Calico

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6 Years

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Moderate severity

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0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Moderate severity

Has Symptoms

Blood In Stool
Bloating
Difficulty Urinating
Less Active
Difficulty Pooing
Pain In Lower Abdomen

I have noticed the past few days, She has tried going to the bathroom every 5-10mins and nothing happens, she doesn’t seem to be in pain, but if I touch her where her stomach seems to be hard and bloated she gets very angry. Over the past few months, I’ve noticed twice that she had some blood in her poop but she seemed fine. She isn’t nearly as active, still eats, drinks a lot of water, but has been sleeping for the majority of the time and very needing to be attached to me.

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Laila

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Persian

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1 Month

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Moderate severity

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0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Moderate severity

Has Symptoms

Urination Pain

My kitten is just 43 days old she z not eating since from 3 days only meowing and not passed urine and stool from 3 days...I think she will die but she is in pain wot to do????

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Shadow

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Long hair domestic

dog-age-icon

12 Years

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Moderate severity

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0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Moderate severity

Has Symptoms

Skinny
Wont Eat
Hard Time Walking
Sleepiness
Sleeps Alot
Peeing Small Amount

My cat is 12 years old he limps around and doesnt eat alot only drinks and he sleeps alot. And I can also feel his spin I've been giving him bone strength meds but it's not work.I have to carry him up the stairs to help him up.

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Bella

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Demestic c

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8 Months

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Mild severity

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0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Mild severity

Has Symptoms

Crying And Crawling On Her Belly

My parents is looking after my sister cat. She been find all week until 2nite they gave her new food and straight after her eating she started crying and crawling on her belly, I've told them 2 give her some milk so she will have a poo and maybe that's what's up... any ideas why she is behaving like this would be a great help please xx

Painful Abdomen Average Cost

From 344 quotes ranging from $200 - $3,000

Average Cost

$800

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