Constipation in senior cat


TCS Member
Thread starter
Feb 27, 2021
Our beloved little buddy Jack is about 15, we think. We adopted him from the shelter two years ago and they guessed he was at least 13. Anyway, he had to have a couple of teeth extracted three weeks ago. He was put on buprenorphine 1ml 3 times a day (tapered down to 0.5ml twice a day earlier this week and stopped on Wednesday) and clavamox twice a day for two weeks. He developed constipation, naturally, and a week after his dental surgery he had to spend a night and day at the vet for an enema and observation. Once home, we were given lactulose to administer 2mls twice a day, restoralax 1/4 tsp twice a day, and fiber food.

A week after all that drama, he is now off the pain meds and antibiotics, but his pooping has not settled down. Since coming off all the constipating meds, he is pooping once every two days. I was expecting one this morning, no luck so far and he seems uncomfortable. We've been continuing the lactulose at 1ml twice a day, and this morning gave him 2ml. He eats canned food - Royal canin recovery to get his weight and appetite back up, mixed with fibre food if I can convince him to eat it - and drinks water, and we mush his food with water as well. He has been eating food with the restoralax okay, and we manage to convince him to eat some food mixed with probiotics sometimes, but he's a bit reluctant. He loves the pure recovery food and doesn't always tolerate it mixed with other things.

I just don't know what I'm doing wrong. Canned food, water, restoralax, lactulose, really encourage him to play, feeding him small amounts several times a day. I feel like another enema will be really traumatic for him, and I'd do anything to avoid it.

Am I just being a bit impatient? Does it take a bit longer for things to settle down and get regular again? Am I messing up his system with the restoralax AND lactulose AND probiotics?


Mr.Mom to a house of cats 😇😼
Top Cat
Apr 1, 2016
Los Angeles
~ I would try an eyedropper of olive oil. I use that on my cats if they seem to be stuck. Good for hairball too ! 🐱


Every Life Should Have Nine Cats
Staff Member
Aug 13, 2009
Are you dissolving the Restoralax in a little bit of water before adding it to his food? And are you sure he's getting it all in? It has no odor or taste so should not be a problem adding it to his food at all, once dissolved. That all by itself should really do the trick, at least it works for my guys. But when they are really backed up, our Vet said to add in Laxatone once a day (over the counter stuff) and that did seem to work (avoided an enema).

Otherwise, it sounds like you are doing everything right. My guys do not go with any real consistency. I do keep a calendar of who goes when, and it's really all over the place. For instance, one day it will say 3 pees, 1 Darko poop, and the next day it might say 5 pees and no poops, then the following day it might say 4 pees and one huge Darko poop, followed by 2 pees and 1 huge Tinky poop. Granted, three days without a Tinky poop and I begin to fret, but I just get out the Miralax and it works like a charm.

If Jack has been on NSAIDS and antibiotics for all this time, I'm not surprised he's a little backed up, even with the precautions. He should settle back into his normal routine soon. The probiotics were to keep him from having diarrhea from the antibiotic, I imagine, and if they are keeping him from eating his food, then you can probably stop for the moment,either that or give him a smaller amount. Those do take some getting used to, I've found. When starting new probiotics with my guys, I always have to give a teeny amount and slowly work up to the recommended dose or they won't eat their food.

Several years ago we had a cat with chronic constipation who was on Lactulose, and it lost it's efficacy after awhile. Don't know if 3 weeks is long enough for that to happen, but possibly.

Hoping by now he's given you a nice poop so you can relax a bit ;)