Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) is a complex syndrome seen in dogs and cats where there is inflammation in the lining of the digestive tract leading to chronic gastrointestinal symptoms.
Both dogs and cats develop IBD. There is no breed or sex predilection. Inflammatory Bowel Disease typically occurs in middle aged to senior pets, however with increasing diagnostic testing, more and younger dogs and cats are being diagnosed as well.
There are many potential causes of IBD in pets, including poor quality nutrient processed commercial foods, as well as allergies to proteins and grains in the food. Chronic exposure to toxins including oral and/or topical pesticides also may play a role in susceptible pets. Finally, a vaccine reaction can lead to chronic inflammatory bowel changes as well. Also, with many pets, the underlying causes cannot be identified, and it is felt that there is a genetic component in most of these cases.