Cats urinary tract infections are rare to find in cats, compare to the infections in dogs. Yet, most senior cats do experience other kinds of urinary tract issues. Today we're going to know the symptoms and how to prevent this cat's urinary tract infection.
Urinary Tract Infections in Cats
Urinary tract inflammation and infections can be a painful and uncomfortable experience for cats. This condition mostly happens to male cats. Why is it so? It is because male cats have narrower urethras. This makes them more prone to a condition of urethral blockages. Like people, your cats may experience dangerous and painful conditions.
A urinary tract infection is also known as UTI. This happens when the sterile urinary tract is attacked by bacteria. Inflammations may occur with or without infections.
Symptoms of Cat Urinary Tract Infections
Cats owners are usually familiar with their pet's habits. One of the causes of urinary tract problems you find on cats is caused by the cleanliness of the litter box.
If you find out their bathroom's habits change, you need to be aware that your cat might have a urinary tract problem. UTI happens to cats of any age. It may go away after cats are taking antibiotics. Yet, some experience bladder stones and blockages that need surgery.
UTI is a problem in the lower urinary tract. The lower tract including the urethra and bladder. In the bladder, urine is formed and stored, and it will flow out of the body through the cat's urethra. When those two parts get obstructed and infected, cats cannot urinate normally. There will be symptoms you see from them.
1. Pain while Urinating
When your cats experience pain when urinating they will continuously lick their penile or vaginal area to soothe the irritation. Yet, this might result in further infections. The combination of the rawness in the area of licking continuously and the infections will make your cats crying out in pain when urinating.
2. Blood in the Urine
Most cats who have urinary tract infections will have urine that is tinged or discolored with blood. You need to know that female cats are at a greater risk for this infection with bloody urine than male cats.
3. Frequent Urination
When experiencing UTI, cats will frequently be trying to urinate but it only passes a small amount of urine or even there is no urine being released. This is dangerous and frustrating, of course. Unable to urinate means that your cats cannot get rid of toxic waste products from their urine.
4. Urinating Outside the Litter Box
This doesn't always a red alert to your cats experiencing urinary tract infections. Yet, it has to be a concern, especially when other symptoms occur.
5. Straining to Urinate
When suffering from UTI, cats will experience inflammation with the formation of stones in their bladder. This will lead to blockage, and make them difficulty in urinating.
Other symptoms may be shown like increase licking of their urinary organs or stopping to urinate altogether. If you see these happen to your cats, see vets immediately. They will examine them and collect urine samples or even blood tests to see the situations. Yet, some cats might not show any symptoms of urinary tract infections until it turns to be a serious problem.
What Causes Cat Urethritis?
To see the cause of urinary tract problems, vets will ask the pet owners about the whole symptoms shown. Yet, there are several common causes for urinary tract problems in cats.
1. Urinary Tract Infections
Cats suffer from UTI when there are bacterial infections in their urethra or bladder. To diagnose the current condition, vets will check the urine sample.
2. Urethral Obstruction
In some cases of urinary tract problems, the cat's urethra can be blocked completely. That is caused by either a urethral plug (build-up of minerals and tissue) or by stones.
When cats have such a problem, they won't be able to urinate normally, even they can't urinate at all. See vets since this is a medical emergency.
3. Urinary Stones or Uroliths
Urines contain minerals that can form tiny crystals or stones in a cat's bladder. If this clumps up, it can irritate the lining of the urethra or bladder and result in pain while urinating even bloody urine.
To check on uroliths, vets will do a urine test, ultrasound, and x-rays to diagnose urinary stones.
4. Feline Idiopathic Cystitis
This problem occurs in the cat's lower urinary tract. When having this problem, the cat might not experience any infections or the presence of stones. The cause is mostly the change in diet or stress.
Other causes including thyroid issues and diabetes. In some cases, tumors in the urinary tract can be a possible cause. Urine and blood tests are required to have a further resolution.
If you question whether your female cats can suffer from this health problem, the answer is yes. All cats can experience urinary tract problems, both male and female cats. But, male cats are more likely to suffer from urethral obstructions, since they have thinner urethras compared to female cats. Stones and tiny crystals can block easily because of the narrower passage.
How to Treat and Prevent Urinary Tract Infections
Firstly, vets will examine if there are any physical problems or injuries that might contribute the urinary infections. The treatment is based on the diagnosis. To treat UTI, antibiotics are prescribed. Or they will be clearing the obstructions in the urethra by inserting a tube with sterile fluid that will flush the area. In several cases, doing a diet will also help to dissolve the stones in the bladder.
While to prevent the same problem occur in the future, cat owners can do the following steps:
1. Increase Water Intake
Ensure that your cats have enough water intake. Plenty of freshwaters has to be always available. If you have no time to control it, having a water fountain for cats is a good idea. Or give them wet food, and give it as a mixed diet.
2. Clean Environment
Always provide sufficient and clean cats litter trays for indoor cats. And minimize the stress for your cats. Provide them with a good routine and safe housing.
By doing all these parts you will keep your cats in good health and reduce the risk of health problems including urinary tract infections.