“I have 6 week old kittens. Since a few days, they’ve all been having diarrhea. I’ve been trying to figure out a solution. Please help ! ” Does that sound familiar? This is something I read quite often on Facebook and other internet forums. This is, from far, the most frequent challenge encountered in breeding catteries.
Why? It is in fact a basic law of epidemiology: the more animals live together, the higher the risk. Catteries are therefore predisposed environments. Obviously, since kittens are more fragile, they tend to be the most affected ones inside those structures.
Diarrhea in kittens can take multiple clinical forms, from mild to life-threatening. However, none of those forms can be considered specific of a given disease. The problem will always need to be explored to pinpoint what causes it.
Because it happens inside a breeding cattery, this is however where things will turn different. Approaching each kitten suffering from diarrhea individually might not help solve the problem: in multi-cat households, it will always be important to see the bigger picture in order to define the appropriate corrective measures.