Slippery Elm Bark for IBS? - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-08-2011, 04:12 AM Thread Starter
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Slippery Elm Bark for IBS?

Hello everyone,

I am new to the forum and joined to see if I could get information about Irritable Bowel Syndrome. I suspect my cat Kali has had it all of her life, but recently she has developed food allergies, and I am quite confident that it is to chicken. I won't go into the lengthy story of why I have come to this conclusion, but suffice to say since I've put her onto a new diet the symptoms have improved. She is now on Wysong Anergen "hard" food and Natural Balance Duck and Pea "wet" food.

I have read that Slippery Elm Bark is good for cats with IBS and I was wondering if any of you use it, and if so in what form? I have purchased some in liquid form but am unsure as to how much to give her, and how often. Does anyone else give their cat Slippery Elm in liquid form? I am also confused as to whether to give it only temporarily or as a continuing therapy.

Any help I could receive on this would be much appreciated. Thanks!
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-08-2011, 12:56 PM
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Be extremely cautious that your source does contain only elm bark with no willow bark added. I don't use it. I've only ever used it on horses & I harvested my own & made into a tea. Look up info on Marshmallow root which I gave to a kitty with cancer to help her keep food down. Make sure you do give only the amount per lb per directions & add to a bit of canned meat only baby food. Many good holistic vet sites available - just pick the ones written by vets & for cats. Your vet may be able to suggest dosage.
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-09-2011, 10:36 PM
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We buy the capsules and use a whole capsule per day. Only ingredient is SEB. We only use this when our cats/chihuahuas have upset tummies..

We buy it at a local health food shop.

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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-09-2011, 10:58 PM
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I've used Slippery Elm for my IBD cat and it was wonderful! I got the powder and made it into a syrup (instructions below) Then he got 1 tsp 5-10 minute before each meal.
Slippery Elm Syrup:
1/2 cup cold water and 1 tsp sl. elm powder in a sauce pan. Bring to boil while whisking, then simmer for a minute or two. Let stand and it will thicken. Keep in the fridge. It'll last for about a week.
The reason it's best to give it before food is because it'll coat and soothe the intestinal track first and will help them absorb their food better.

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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-09-2011, 11:28 PM
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We've used it from the health food store, too - very helpful for occasional stomach or bowel issues for Gracie ! I think she must know it is good for her, she has never minded the smell of the powder in her food, even though the bark has a distinctive sweetish smell...

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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-10-2011, 06:39 AM Thread Starter
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I purchased Organic Slippery Elm (the ingredients are slippery elm dried organic bark, vegetable glycerin and water.) There is no weight dosage, only adult, children and infant dosages. For example, for an infant 0-2 yrs it's 5 drops 3 X daily. For now I have only been giving her 1 drop 2 X daily, just because I didn't want to overdo it. I think the next time I purchase it I will buy the capsules so I can use the powder instead, as I am still unsure of a correct dosage. I am still wondering whether I should give it only when she has symptoms like diarrhea or vomiting, or as a preventative measure.

Thanks so much for the responses!
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-10-2011, 01:40 PM
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For almost every feline chronic health condition, there are specialized online self-help groups, and IBS/IBD is no exception. Many people join such groups for the sole purpose of reading other "owners'" stories/experiences and learning some of the common techniques and strategies for successfully managing their kitties' conditions. The wealth of experience generated from many members over many years certainly exceeds any individual's or even most Vets' knowledge and know-how. If I were in the position of having a cat with a chronic health condition, I'd be part of such a group. One such IBS group can be found here.

There's a good coverage of SEB on a well-respected kidney disease site - that will give you sound basic info/dosages etc. - it's right here.
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-11-2011, 04:47 AM Thread Starter
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Stryker ~

I have signed up with the Yahoo group you linked to, and I have also checked out the other link. Thanks very much for the helpful info!
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-11-2011, 01:57 PM
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The Little Big Cat website has an article on Slippery Elm. One of my friends foster has IBD and she religiously uses Slippery Elm for him. IBD is such a roller coaster ride. So many issues and one answer doesn't work on another IBD cat. Its almost like a customized disease! The IBD yahoo group is full of lots of ideas to help you. I had trouble handling it at times because the people on it are so passionate in helping find answers for their cats and at times their cats wouldn't survive. Stuff like that tares me up.


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With my hands, they will know comfort...With my action, they will be free...
~TNR and Rescue changes lives of animals.~

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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 08-19-2011, 06:31 AM Thread Starter
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I've been giving my cat two drops a day, and she hasn't vomited or had diarrhea since I began so that's good news. I am now focusing on trying to help her gain some weight, because she's underweight at 7 lbs or so. I have put a bit of her favorite Wysong Vitality kibble in with the Wysong allergen that she's been getting and she is eating that like crazy but has stopped eating the Natural Balance wet food. It's frustrating, because she has a good appetite when she eats her "old" food. With the new diet, she only seems to eat enough to get by. I feel so sorry for her. I hope that she can tolerate just a bit of the old food, because if she starts to vomit or gets diarrhea again I will have to take out the "regular" food again.
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