cat pooping

How Long Can a Cat Go Without Pooping? The Interesting Truth!


f you’re asking yourself, “how long can a cat go without pooping”, for whatever reason, the answer could be life-saving to your cat’s life. Whether your cat is constipated or has a more serious underlying issue, you need to know.

How Long Can a Cat Go
Without Pooping?

how long cat pooping
  • The answer to this question is not one that is very straightforward for many reasons. Cats as individuals are very different from each other, personalities aside, with internal systems that work differently and, sometimes, on their own terms.

The question we need to look at is not “how long can a cat go without pooping”, but “how often should a cat be pooping”, instead. The answer to this question is at least once per day.

A cat should be exhibiting a normal bowel movement at least once every day of their lives, but there can be complications, such as constipation, for example, that will throw the normal movements off of their tracks.

Factors That Influence a Cat’s Bowel Movements

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The following is a list of factors that influence a cat’s bowel movements, but may not be the only influences existing in this case:

  • The age of your kitten or adult cat.
  • The amount of exercise they have a day.
  • Their feeding schedule and how much they are fed in a day.
  • If they have any current underlying medical issues or issues that affect their health and/or gut motility.
  • If your cat is currently taking any supplements or medications that may have an effect on their gut motility.

Taking all of these factors into careful consideration when viewing the gut and bowel health of your cat is very important. Your vet will also be able to give you additional factors to consider, as well.

The Problem With Constipation

how long without pooping

If your cat is not having normal bowel movements each day they may have an issue with constipation. Kittens should be having multiple bowel movements per day, while adult and senior cats should be having one bowel movement on average, as previously stated.

The problem with constipation is that the longer the stool has set into the colon of a cat, the harder and larger it will become over time. Even a single day can cause a small blockage to turn into a large one.

This does, however, depend on the amount of food your cat eats per day and whether or not it’s dry or wet food. More often than not, there is a large piece of stool in the colon that your cat is not able to pass, so everything becomes blocked up.

Things to Look For

If your cat’s bowel movements begin to change, other than the schedule of them and how often they are happening, you’re going to need to look at a couple things to figure out the situation.

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If the odor, color, frequency on a normal basis, general consistency, or anything changes overall with your cat’s bowel movement for longer than two days, make sure that you book an appointment with your cat’s veterinarian as soon as possible.

A cat straining to pass a bowel movement is very hard to watch, even harder for your cat to experience, so make sure that you nip this problem in the bud the minute you see it, no matter what the circumstances or situation may be.

Constipation and Diarrhea

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If a cat is currently constipated, but is having diarrhea, you may be wondering how this is even possible. After all, if their system is so clogged up, how can diarrhea possibly be allowed out?

The dry, hard stool causes fluid to be produced in the colon through the ongoing irritation, which is where the diarrhea will come from. The fluid then mixes with the surface of the stuck stool and allow it to go past the blocked area in the colon

What You Can Do

If you cannot bring your constipated cat immediately to the vet, don’t fret just yet. There are a couple of things you can do at home to help your cat’s constipation until he or she can be seen.

Listed below are just a couple of tips to help ease your cat’s constipation for a time:

  • Increase in play time and exercise.
  • Add bran cereal, pumpkin (canned) or Metamucil to their food.
  • Increase their consumption of water however you can.

All tips aside, bring your cat to the vet as soon as possible.

A Cat’s Bowel Movement Schedule

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Now that you know the answer to “how long can a cat go without pooping”, you’ll be able to make a sound judgment as to what is wrong and how you should go about it to help your cat.

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