More about TF and what might help a bit (besides medicines)

After I wrote my blog post yesterday I kissed the kittens good night and cleaned the litter boxes. And there it was, a cow-pie like poo in one of the ones that the kittens use. So it starts. 😦 And this morning there was an another one. Good that we will start with the medications tomorrow.

TF (tritrichomonas foetus) lives in large intestines, where all the nutrients are already absorbed when the food remains come there. What happens there is that the part of water is taken back to the body and if a cat has TF which causes diarrhea, the water that would otherwise go to the body comes out and the cat can gets dehydrated. So, if a small kitten has diarrhea from TF (or anything else) – hydrate, hydrate! Give the kitten a lot of liquids!

If it is a bigger kitten it may be enough to drink milk, water or or water with electrolytes, but a smaller ones will need extra liquids under their skin. I read about that and that is why we had two veterinary clinics informed about the possibility that our kittens may need re-hydration if they get Tf and we could come there with them urgently without waiting to help them. But no one got it until now. And it is not a diarrhea, but it is more watery that the normal stool. That is exactly how our bigger cats had it at start when they just got TF. It normalized with time. Leroy had the most of problems, but that I solved at the end with help of coconut virgin oil supplement and low fat food.

The thing is that TF ‘eats’ fat. All kind of fat except dodecanoic acid is promoting TF growth. And that is very interesting; dodecanoic acid (“laurinsyra in Swedish”) is as effective as Axilur (Panacur) against Giardia, another protosoe that is similar to TF, but lives in small intestine (our cats are tested negative to Giardia, and we never suspected it, but since we tested against many things, we checked that, too. They had ‘only’ TF, nothing else).

Here is a link to the study: : “Dodecanoic acid appeared to induce trophozoite death by accumulating within the parasite cytoplasm resulting in rupture of the cell membrane.”

The dose of cold pressed coconut oil for the cats is 1/4 teaspoon (or 1ml) 2 times per day. Also, low fat diet is beneficial when fighting TF. That is what stabilized Leroy’s tummy at the end! I found that Royal Canin Light and Brit Care Light were good for that. But any dry food with under 10% fat should be good. I got a tips from Denmark also that Royal Canin hairball dry food also works in stabilizing TF caused diarrhea.

Good we will start our treatment soon!

P.S. I am in no way associated with Royal Canin or any other cat food manufacturer. I do not write about any cat products in order to advertise them. I only write about what I believe and see works for my cats, in order to help other cat owners out there, if possible.

12 comments on “More about TF and what might help a bit (besides medicines)

  1. Thank you! I read many scientific studies and papers and contacted researchers and other breeders who had experience with TF and were willing to share what they learned with me.

    Some wrote about that on the net, and reading what they wrote was of an immense value to me; that is a part of the reason why I am blogging about it – my experiences may help someone else.

    It took me many hours, nights and days, but I learned more about TF. “Know your enemy”, that is how I felt. But we are almost there, and I hope that soon all the cats will have no more unwanted inhabitants in their bodies.

  2. We changed our rc sensible to rc intense hairball and voila!!! No more wet poo….. After three years with TF it finally seems to have an end…. We didn’t give any medicine, and yes we know, they still have the parasites inside, but it don’t shows…. But we don’t need to clean the house and bathing 4 persians several times a week…. And the smell of TF-poo is not in the house…. We are happy!!!

  3. I stumbled upon this site while trying to search for answers on what is causing my new adopted kitten to smell HORRIBLE! She has been to the vet several times and has been given a clean bill of health everytime. The drs always suggest to change her food and bring her back. It has been a waste of time and money. The smell is sometimes on her (but not as bad as it was when I first brought her home), but it’s the odor when she goes to the bathroom! Awful, and foul. It fills the whole house. Kind of like mothballs or mildew. It’s not runny, but it is soft. Does this description sound familiar to anyone else?

    • Dear Kathy, was your kitten tested against TF and Giardia, preferably with PCR-method?
      The smell and the consistency you describe sound like she may have TF.
      If you want a fast symptom relief, while looking for the right diagnose, you can try with RC Hairball dry food, it contains fiber that improves the stool consistency and can help a bit against TF (that parasite does not thrive well on a low fat and fiber-rich diet).
      You can also try to give her some probiotics, like Prokolin paste. Good luck!

  4. not yet. I was planning on collecting several samples to be sent off to the lab to be specifically tested for giardia, toxoplasma, cryptosporidium and coccidia. none of those sound like what Lucy has, though. all of those other parasites have show symptoms that she does not have. I was just crossing my fingers hoping they would find something. They have done a float test and the office, and some simple testing, and they have tested negative. they told me that if her smell doesn’t improve after switching her food, to being some in to be sent to the lab. so that is what i will be doing. I’ve read that it may take several samples for intestinal parasites to show, so my plan was to have 3 days worth to be sent off. now, i will be asking the vet about TF. i have not heard of it before, but it sounds like what she has.
    I brought her home from a shelter, where she had been for approx. 6 months. she was also cage mates with a feral kitten. she is otherwise healthy, GREAT appetite, playful, and affectionate. and not sickly, except she did have a respiratory infection when we first brought her home, which she is over now. the only symptoms i see in her is that awful smell, and the consistency of her stools.

    • Kittens with giardia usually are not in a good condition, since the parasite lives in small intestines. They fail to thrive and do not grow that well. The cats can get rid of Cryptosporidum even without medicines with time, when the cat grows up a bit. So can TF, but not always. In average it takes 9 months to get rid of it on their own, and some cats never do, unless they get the treatment.

  5. thank you for replying so quickly! I hope to start the lab work process next week. TF will definitely be brought up to the vet. If she is diagnosed with TF, i hope to switch her to a more appropriate diet, and see if she is able to fight it off herself. I have just lost a 2 1/2 year old cat due to over medication prescribed from a different vet, so the idea of starting her on medications is a scary thought to me. i am so glad i found your blog, i really think this might be her diagnoses! i feel so relieved already. thank you for posting your experience with TF, you may have helped me in my situation!

    • I hope that your kitten gets the right diagnose, and then you can take it from there! Please update us on how it goes.
      In some cases I believe that cats can fight of the problems themselves, with the help of right diet and/or supplements. I am not against medicines, not at all, but they do have side effects and should be used with caution. Good luck!

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