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Hello,

I have never had cats before, but I recently adopted a four month old kitten and a 9-10 week old kitten. The four month old, Xena, has had on-and-off issues with diarrhea. I took her to the emergency vet the first weekend I had her, but I had no stool sample and she was "empty" when we went in. They thought she might have coccidia and they gave her albon for 2 weeks. Our younger kitten, Arya, had no problems with diarrhea until yesterday.

Both kittens were in to see the regular vet last week, and we dropped a stool sample off from Xena on Friday for them to test. The vet's office called today, and she has worms (despite the fact that she was dewormed multiple times before we got her). They prescribed Strongid for both kittens, so we gave that to them today and will give another dose in two weeks.

Since I've never had a cat, I don't know how worried I should be. Both kittens have EXTREMELY smelly diarrhea right now, and it is rough to deal with. I feel really bad for them (they have continued eating and playing, so I'm hoping that's a good sign). I just hope they're not suffering.

I also feel frustrated because they both just used the litter box, and the entire first floor of our condo smells like really unhealthy poop. It's honestly hard to even sit down there. The fact that it is so foul makes me feel like the kittens must be really miserable.

Does deworming medicine like Strongid typically work well? I'm so worried that we'll give them the two doses and still have them be infected when the next stool test comes back. Is there anything I can do in addition to the medicine that will help them in any way? I want them to get better ASAP!!
 

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I think you'll be fine. My personal experience in a similar situation was that it may take a bit (several treatments) to get rid of all the worms. As with you, the treatment resulted in some pretty awful smelling cat farts :) if you are of a mind to, you might read up on food grade diatomaceous earth as a supplement for the prevention of a reoccurrence ( just a suggestion for consideration).
 

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Cats can have all kinds of reactions to wormers like vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, lack of appetite. Scared the heck out of me when a vet suggested my girl might have worms and next thing I know she's got stuff coming out both ends and is hiding behind the couch trying to be brave and pretending she's just fine.

The reactions went away in about a week and your cats will probably recover too. I'd be mildly concerned about dehydration more than anything. Make sure they have multiple water sources throughout the home in places where they like to hang out and if you're not already, get them on a canned diet.

BTW - Xena and Arya? I like your style!
 

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Worms live in different stages of the life cycle in different parts of the body, so the first worming often is not enough to get all of the worms. If you feel like having a nasty read, google it... the worms actually even travel through their respiratory system! My kitten Bear actually sneezed a worm out when he had a really nasty worm and coccidia infestation (this is rare; vomiting up the worms is more common). Bear's diarrhea was so bad that it scalded the hair off his little bum, the base of his tail, and his ankles. It's grown back, thankfully, but he still has diarrhea because he also has tritrichomonas (another protozoa) and will have it intermittently for probably 9 months. Fun times! That being said, I have a lot of experience with cat diarrhea. Did your vet give you any probiotics to give them with the antibiotic? If not, you should ask for some or buy some yourself (I'm giving Bear human probiotics right now). I also add canned pumpkin and water mixed into his canned food at every meal; I can't say that it helps with the smell, but it will firm up the poo and help keep your kitties hydrated. Definitely watch for signs of dehydration, as that is the major concern with diarrhea. As Penguin_Dreams said, you definitely want to keep bowls of water out at all times as well. You can check for dehydration by doing a capillary test on their gums and by testing their skin elasticity (if you want more details on those, feel free to ask me, or you can find it pretty easily googling). As for the smell, I scoop the poo out as soon as they do it and put it in a plastic bag sealed trash can...it's time consuming but worth it in my opinion to rid the house of the odor.
 

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Omg Minikin, your poor Bear!

I don't think Diva even had worms so the worst part for us was dealing with the reaction. I definitely wasn't expecting that since I grew up with horses and they get wormed every two months just as a precautionary measure. I can't even imagine what it must feel like to sneeze out a worm, much less all the other stuff.
 

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All kittens have worms. If the younger one had them (which he probably did as he is not old enough to have been wormed much) then he passed it on to the other kitten (I assume they use the same ljtter box). Diarreah is natural when they have worms and also for a little while after worming (and it smells horribly). They are getting flushed out so to speak. They will be fine! Sit back and enjoy them. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thank you, everyone! You have made me feel a little better about this.

When I'm not at work or sleeping, I will go ahead and scoop out the litter box as soon as one of them uses it. I'll also look into a probiotic for them. Fortunately, my girls have always been good with drinking water, so let's hope it stays that way! I will put extra water supplies around though to encourage them to drink a little more than usual.

I didn't realize that worms could easily take several rounds of medicine to cure, so I will try to be more patient :)

Penny, I do think you're right that my younger kitten was the one that brought the worms in...

Oh and Penguin, thanks for the compliment on the names :)
 

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yea haha

Omg Minikin, your poor Bear!

I don't think Diva even had worms so the worst part for us was dealing with the reaction. I definitely wasn't expecting that since I grew up with horses and they get wormed every two months just as a precautionary measure. I can't even imagine what it must feel like to sneeze out a worm, much less all the other stuff.
I shouldn't laugh, but when he kept sneezing and sneezing, my mom saw something poking out of his nose and was like, "oh, a string!"... until the "string" started moving! :-D

The pumpkin and probiotics really seem to have done the trick though, so OP I'd try doing both if you can. I mix up the food, pumpkin, and water each night in a tupperware container and put it in the fridge, so that I have it ready for the next day and don't have to endure so much time of Bear throwing himself bodily at me trying to get his food! You're very right, though... it's hard to be patient when it feels like the worms just won't go away!
 

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Worms live in different stages of the life cycle in different parts of the body, so the first worming often is not enough to get all of the worms. If you feel like having a nasty read, google it... the worms actually even travel through their respiratory system! My kitten Bear actually sneezed a worm out when he had a really nasty worm and coccidia infestation (this is rare; vomiting up the worms is more common). Bear's diarrhea was so bad that it scalded the hair off his little bum, the base of his tail, and his ankles. It's grown back, thankfully, but he still has diarrhea because he also has tritrichomonas (another protozoa) and will have it intermittently for probably 9 months. Fun times! That being said, I have a lot of experience with cat diarrhea. Did your vet give you any probiotics to give them with the antibiotic? If not, you should ask for some or buy some yourself (I'm giving Bear human probiotics right now). I also add canned pumpkin and water mixed into his canned food at every meal; I can't say that it helps with the smell, but it will firm up the poo and help keep your kitties hydrated. Definitely watch for signs of dehydration, as that is the major concern with diarrhea. As Penguin_Dreams said, you definitely want to keep bowls of water out at all times as well. You can check for dehydration by doing a capillary test on their gums and by testing their skin elasticity (if you want more details on those, feel free to ask me, or you can find it pretty easily googling). As for the smell, I scoop the poo out as soon as they do it and put it in a plastic bag sealed trash can...it's time consuming but worth it in my opinion to rid the house of the odor.
Off topic: How is little Bear holding up now? I know he wasn't feeling well the other day....
 

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Aw, I have no helpful advice but I hope they get better!

Also, I wanna say I love the name Arya for a cat! ;) She's one of my favorite characters in ASOIAF. If I got a female cat I was gonna name her that. But instead we ended up adopting a male cat and his current name stuck. I still call him Lord Tywin occasionally though because he has green-gold eyes and puffy cheeks that look like sidewhiskers XD
 

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Aww, thanks for asking BigDaveyL! Bear is doing ok but is not 100%... of course, if the vet is right about it being tritrichomonas, he'll have diarrhea on and off for months. He has a good appetite back so I'm happy. I'm sticking with the pumpkin and probiotics until his stool is consistently formed, and I'm sticking with adding water to it permanently because it can't hurt to help keep him hydrated. :) Dh243405 how are your kitties doing diarrhea-wise?
 

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It's good to hear that Bear is at least doing better! I'm happy that is appetite is back :)

I tried some canned pumpkin, and that firmed the stool up a bit. My kittens seem to be going less frequently, so I'm not sure if that's a good or a bad thing. They were going A LOT before though. I did find a couple dead roundworms in the stool the day before yesterday, which freaked me out a little because I've just never seen them before.
 

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I think it's good when they go less frequently, as long as their eating. It at least means they're losing less fluids so are at less risk for dehydration. The roundworms are pretty nasty, but at least those were dead! That has to be a good sign. I'm surprised they showed up in the stool, as once they're dead they usually get digested. Perhaps kitty went not long after they died.
 

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Haha yeah, they were definitely not live worms, so that's good. And they're still eating and drinking just fine!

We were just cleaning their main litter box, which is in the downstairs bathroom. We completely removed it from in there to dump it out and wash it. I brought the other litter box from upstairs down and put it in the threshold of the bathroom. Even with the extra litter box down there, Arya still went into the other room and pooped on the carpet :( The only other time she did this was over the weekend when the bathroom door was actually closed (and this was right before we found out for sure about the worms). I'm wondering if all the commotion of us vacuuming, spraying cleaner, and mopping in the downstairs bathroom kept her from going to use the extra litter box. I definitely don't want her to keep doing this.
 

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Well, in my experience, vacuums definitely bother my cats and could scare them away from the box. I'm not sure about the other cleaning parts. Maybe if you put the other box in the other room instead of by the bathroom where the noise is?
 

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ahhh, you needn't worry about the kittens having worms. This is a very common occurrence. Your regular vet they will prescribe something to take care of that. It looks like they have already been taken care of by reading your last few posts.

Many moons ago I worked as a veterinary assistant and I remember a few useful tidbits and advice that the techs and sometimes myself would give to cat owners.

As far as litter box training. You may want to try confining the kittens in one room with the litter box for a week....maybe two That may help them get used to it. You would also have to feed them in the same room but you'd want to keep the food as far away as possible from the litter box. I know that sounds harsh and it would be difficult to do but, it may be worth it to help train them.

Training kittens to use the litter box can be difficult.
 
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