Tuesday, April 23, 2024

How To Know If Cat Has Bladder Infection

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Preventing Future Utis In Your Cat

How to Tell if Your Cat Has a Bladder Infection

Following your vet visit, you can make other changes to your cats life to decrease the likelihood for FLUTD to come back. Environmental recurrence has shown to reduce the recurrence rate by 80 percent, and can also help your cat use her litter box. This includes spending more time with your cat, giving her access to windows, and giving her more toys. You can also increase the number of litter boxes in your home and make sure theyre properly cleaned.

What Is The Cost Of Treating A Uti In Cats

The cost to treat a UTI can run anywhere from a few hundred dollars into the thousands, depending on the severity of the infection and what needs to be done. Generally, the bigger the city you live in, the higher the costs for medical treatment.

Owners can expect costs to include:

  • Office visits

  • Possible surgery / hospitalization and other life-saving procedures.

As mentioned above, treating most UTIs is very straightforward, so expenses should be very reasonable.

What Are Urinary Tract Infections In Cats

Urinary tract infections are not common in cats. Only 1-3% of cats with signs of urinary tract disease will have a urinary tract infection.

Because they can resemble so many other conditions, UTIs need to be distinguished from other conditions, such as crystals in the urine. Fortunately, by running some simple tests, your veterinarian will be able to tell the difference.

In most cases, UTIs in cats are usually caused by bacteria. Bacterial urinary tract infections in cats are generally relatively easy to treat and respond well to medications. Chronic infections, or those that do not respond to regular medication, can require more testing to figure out why your cat is at higher risk for urinary tract infections.

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Which Cats Are At Risk For A Flutd

The reality is that a LARGE number of cats are at risk, 1particularly if they are kept inside, as the SPCA and many veterinarians urge. Heres a fast response to your question:

  • Cats in their middle years
  • Neutered cats
  • Cats who are overweight
  • Cats that do not get enough exercise
  • Cats that are only allowed indoors
  • Cats who eat only dry food
  • Cats who eat only canned food
  • Cats who eat only canned food

Diagnosing Utis In Cats

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If a cat owner is observing signs of abnormal urination in their cat they should schedule a visit with their cat’s veterinarian. A urine sample will need to be collected either by the owner at home with the use of special, non-absorbent litter, or by the veterinarian.

The veterinarian may temporarily keep the cat in the animal hospital until it urinates on its own in some non-absorbable litter or the urine may be obtained by cystocentesis. Cystocentesis is a procedure that involves collecting a sterile urine sample directly from the bladder via a needle. This procedure is the preferred method for urine collection if a UTI is suspected because it is the only way to obtain a sample without contamination. However, the procedure does come with some risk and the decision should be made with the guidance of your veterinarian.

Alternatively, it may be possible to obtain a sample by allowing the cat to urinate in a clean litter box filled with non-absorbent granules.

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What Is Feline Urinary Tract Disease

FLUTD actually refers to numerous clinical symptoms that can cause issues in your cats urethra and bladder, often leading the urethra to become obstructed, or preventing your cat’s bladder from emptying properly. These FLUTD conditions can prove fatal for cats if left untreated.

If your cat is suffering from FLUTD, urinating can be difficult, painful or impossible. They may also urinate more frequently, or in inappropriate areas outside their litter box .

Treatment Of A Urinary Infection In Cats

Treatment is based on findings. Bladder stones or crystals in the urinary tract may cause symptoms like those of a U.T.I. If this is the case, surgery or a diet change may solve the problem. If a U.T.I is confirmed, a round of antibiotics will help fight the infection. When a urinary blockage is present, a catheter may be inserted in the male cat’s urethra and flushed to unblock it. Special diets may be prescribed if necessary.

So next time your cat is urinating in odd places, don’t assume it’s a behavioral issue have him checked to rule out this dangerous condition. Many times it turns out to be just a moment of stress or a dirty litter box, but the saying “better safe than sorry” becomes a savvy one when dealing with your feline companion’s health.

This article is accurate and true to the best of the authorâs knowledge. It is not meant to substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, or formal and individualized advice from a veterinary medical professional. Animals exhibiting signs and symptoms of distress should be seen by a veterinarian immediately.

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Diagnosis Of Urinary Tract Infections In Cats


Your vet may collect a sample of your cats urine , called cystocentesis. This process will involve inserting a needle directly into the bladder to collect an uncontaminated sample of urine. In order to reach an accurate diagnosis, the urine must be free from contaminants found in the environment.

The urine may be sent to a lab to allow for cultures to grow. This way, the vet can see the specific type of bacteria present in your cats urine, which will aid with diagnosis and treatment.

Basic Urinalysis

The urinalysis will reveal the amount of blood present in the urine, as well as the urines pH balance, glucose, and protein levels. The vet will then analyze the urine using a microscope, looking for bacteria and uroliths, or stones in the urinary tract.


Your vet may perform an X-Ray on your cat in addition to the urine culture and urinalysis. Any crystals or stones in the bladder will show up on an X-Ray.

Treating A Urinary Blockage

How to Tell if Your Cat Has a Bladder Infection
  • 1Approve immediate treatment. If your cat has a severe case of urinary tract blockage, they will need immediate treatment. This immediate treatment usually includes sedation, intravenous fluids, and pain medication.XTrustworthy SourceAmerican College of Veterinary SurgeonsTrade organization responsible for setting standards of surgical excellence for the field of veterinary medicine and promoting safe practices for equine care.Go to source
  • These immediate treatments will make your cat much more comfortable by minimizing its pain.
  • 2Investigate underlying causes. Your catâs veterinarian will likely want to rule out any underlying causes that may be causing your catâs symptoms. Identifying these issues and treating them is necessary to ensure that your cat does not continue to experience the same symptoms.
  • Your catâs veterinarian may need to analyze your catâs urine, or perform an ultrasound or radiograph of your catâs bladder to identify potential problems with the lining of the bladder.
  • Your catâs veterinarian may recommend a special diet for your cat to manipulate the urine’s acidity and help to dissolve crystals in the bladder. They may also recommend antibiotics, antispasmodics, and pain relief medications.
  • This is not a permanent catheter. It will be removed once all obstructions and infections have cleared up. This typically takes a few days.
  • This is a common surgery and cats usually recover quickly from this procedure.XResearch source
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    Symptoms Of A Urinary Tract Infection In A Cat:

    • Excessive grooming or licking of the genital or abdominal areas
    • Frequent attempts to urinate, including multiple trips to the litter box
    • Urinating in unusual places outside of the litter box, especially on a cool surface like tile or the bathtub
    • Vomiting
    • Absence of large clumps in the litter box
    • Straining to urinate or crying out while urinating
    • Discolored urine or blood in urine

    The most common symptom is when the cat is no longer going to the bathroom in their litter box. Do not assume this is a behavior issue. Take your feline companion to the vet to rule out a urinary tract infection or other serious problem.

    General Signs Of Malaise

    Cats that have a UTI and that have received no treatment for it are going to be slightly more withdrawn than usual.

    They might sleep more if they develop a fever, and they will also prefer cold surfaces such as the porcelain or marble tiles you might have in the kitchen or bathroom. Theyll rest their bellies on the cold floor in an attempt to decrease the higher temperature they have in that body region.

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    What Happens If A Uti Goes Untreated In Your Cat

    UTIs are very common amongst cats, and many cats are generally prone to getting them. Most often, they are nothing to get too worried over as long as you get treatment for your cat. If left untreated, a UTI infection in a cat can progress and even become life-threatening.

    If your cats UTI progresses, it could cause a complete blockage of the urethra, leading to kidney failure. It could even rupture their bladder once it becomes too full, which is most certainly life-threatening.

    This is why it is important to always keep an eye on your cats health and day-to-day habits making sure that nothing seems out of the ordinary for them.

    Treating Utis In Cats

    Home Remedies For A Cat With A Urinary Tract Infection

    Antibiotics will be prescribed to kill the bacteria in the bladder and symptomatic treatment may also be necessary to ease a cat’s discomfort. This usually includes pain medications. Probiotics may also be recommended to restore a healthy population of bacteria in the gut after the antibiotics since beneficial bacteria may also be wiped out by a broad-spectrum antibiotic.

    The choice of antibiotic should be guided by the culture and sensitivity results, however, ease of administration, such as pills vs. liquid vs. injection, may also play a role in addition to any underlying conditions your cat may have.

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    Loss Of Bladder Control Or Problems Urinating

    If your cat has a UTI, they may start to have bladder issues. This could take the form of them peeing outside of the litter box, not peeing much at all, or trying to pee but only urinating a little each time they go. If your cat usually has very regular litter habits and never has accidents, this is something you should look for in your cat.

    Causes Of Bladder Stones In Cats

    No two cats are completely alike. Since there are several different types of bladder stones that can form, the cause of bladder stones in cats can vary. Some of these causes may include:

    • Excess phosphate, ammonium, or magnesium in the urine
    • Urine pH out of balance
    • Dietary supplements or drugs that affect the urine
    • Congenital liver shunt
    • Breed predisposition

    Do cats get bladder stones at certain ages? Cats can develop bladder stones at any age. Some types of stones are more likely to form at different life stages. The risk of developing calcium oxalate stones, for example, increases as your cat ages. These commonly show up in cats between 5 and 14 years old.

    Do some cats have a higher risk of getting bladder stones? Common belief has suggested that neutered male Burmese, Persian, Siamese, and Himalayan cats may be genetically predisposed to developing calcium oxalate stones, but more research is needed to prove this for sure. Overweight cats, male cats, and older cats are more likely to develop these stones as well.


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    How To Diagnose A Uti

    Now that you know how to tell if your cat has a UTI by looking out for these common symptoms, lets look at how your vet can tell if your cat has a UTI and what to expect when you take your kitty in.

    The first thing your vet will do is take a urinalysis to determine a few key metrics, such as whether there is blood present and its pH level. If your vet does suspect that it is an infection, they will likely do a urine culture and send the test to a lab for a few days to wait to see if a culture develops. This is testing whether or not there is a bacteria like E.Coli present. If nothing develops, something else may be causing your kittys bathroom woes.

    In addition to doing a urinalysis and culture, your vet may also recommend a blood test to check your cats kidney values. This is super important because these urinary issues can lead to kidney infection like stones and even kidney failure if not addressed early. Your vet will make sure your kittys kidney levels look good.

    Lastly, they will prescribe a course of treatment based on what they found.

    Causes Of Urinary Tract Issues In Cats

    How to recognize if your cat has a urinary tract infection

    It is possible for cats to get urinary tract infections that are unpleasant and can lead to bladder infections or renal problems. Recognize the indications of urinary tract infection in your cat so that you may treat it as soon as it appears. Whether youre a human or a cat, It hurts when I pee is not a joke. For both of you, it is a source of frustration when your cat has trouble or pain when peeing. It is difficult for your cat and you to go about your daily routine when he has a urinary tract infection .

    A cat UTI may progress to a bladder or kidney infection if not treated promptly.

    • Urinary stones, which grow in the bladder and urethra
    • A urinary tract infection is a bacterial infection of the urinary system that occurs after germs have made their way into the urethra. An blockage in the urethra, which may be caused by an accident, a tumor, or an anomaly that has existed from your cats conception
    • A convoluted phrase for an inflammation of the cats bladder whose etiology is uncertain, feline idiopathic cystitis is defined as follows: A typical diagnosis in cats less than ten years of age is hepatitis C. It is possible for a veterinarian to identify the illness after ruling out alternative possibilities.

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    My Cat Is Exhibiting One Or More Symptoms Now What

    It is critical to arrange an appointment with your veterinarian as soon as possible if your cat is experiencing symptoms of urinary tract illness or you believe anything is wrong, especially if your cat is male or has stopped peeing completely . He or she will examine your cat and take urine samples to be tested in the laboratory. In certain circumstances, blood tests may be necessary to confirm the diagnosis. For the diagnosis of FLUTD, radiographs and abdominal ultrasonography are frequently required in addition to the traditional methods of examination.

    Urinary Tract Infections In Cats

    While cats often have urinary tract issues, our kitty companions are more prone to urinary tract disease than infections. Cats that do develop urinary tract infections are typically 10 years of age or older and often suffer from endocrine diseases, including hyperthyroidism and diabetes mellitus.

    If your feline companion is displaying symptoms of a urinary tract infection and is diagnosed with cystitis, your veterinarian will prescribe and antibacterial to help battle your cats UTI.

    The most common symptoms of urinary tract infection in cats include reduced amounts of urine, straining to urinate, pain or discomfort when urinating, not urinating at all, urinating around the house , and passing urine tinged with blood .

    These symptoms may be caused by a urinary tract infection, but there are also numerous feline lower urinary tract diseases that may cause your cat to display the symptoms of UTI listed above.

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    When To Contact Your Vet

    Contact your vet as soon as you notice a change in your cats peeing habits, and if possible, take a urine sample to the appointment. Check out our video below on how to take a urine sample from your cat.

    Without treatment, a UTI can lead to serious illness. blocked bladder, which is a life threatening condition.

    Treatment given for a UTI depends on its cause, but is likely to include:

    • Pain relief. Anti-inflammatory pain relief is excellent at soothing bladder pain and inflammation.
    • Bladder supplements. Bladder supplements are designed to soothe the lining of the bladder, although, there is no solid evidence to prove that they work.
    • Antibiotics. A short course of antibiotics is usually an effective cure for a UTI. Its very important to follow your vets instructions and complete the full course. If you stop your cats antibiotics early, it could mean some of the remaining strongest remaining bacteria survive and a more severe infection will develop.

    Causes Of Male Cat Urinary Blockage

    Cat Urinary Tract Diseases: Cystitis, Urethral Obstruction, Urinary ...

    Neutered male cats are especially prone to urinary blockage because they have may narrow urethras so narrow that involuntary urethral muscle spasms can block the flow of urine. A male cat’s urethra can also become blocked by small urinary stones or by urethral plugs: a mixture of cells that are used to line the bladder, mucus and crystals formed from minerals in the urine. Additional causes of urinary blockage are from feeding foods high in magnesium or the presence of an underlying condition called feline idiopathic cystitis .

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    Increased Grooming Of The Urinary Opening

    If they feel pain in that body area, some cats are going to try to soothe themselves by over-grooming their nether region.

    This symptom is particularly common in intact male cats that have a UTI as a result of a blockage — they will try to clean their urinary opening as best as possible. The constant licking can cause secondary issues such as local dermatitis.

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