The presence of occult blood in a cat’s feces does not necessarily indicate that the cat has colon cancer. Occult blood refers to the presence of small quantities of blood in the stool that cannot be seen with the naked eye. It can come from anywhere in the digestive tract, including the mouth, stomach, intestines, or rectum. Blood in the stool may be a sign of colorectal cancer or another medical problem, such as an ulcer or polyps. However, not all cancers or polyps bleed.
Intestinal cancer is a relatively uncommon form of cancer in cats, accounting for only a small percentage of all feline cancer cases. Approximately 90% of diagnosed feline intestinal tumors are malignant and metastasis is common. The clinical signs of intestinal cancer can vary significantly, depending on the location of the tumor and tumor characteristics. Common symptoms include vomiting, diarrhea, weight loss, poor appetite, blood in stool or vomit, and difficulty defecating.
If you suspect that your cat may have colon cancer or any other health concern, it is important to consult with a veterinarian for a proper diagnosis and appropriate treatment options. Veterinarians may perform various diagnostic tests such as bloodwork, x-ray, ultrasound, fine needle aspirate for cytology, and biopsy to determine the cause of occult blood in the feces.