Bladder health issues are unfortunately relatively common in cats. Vets have a fancy medical term for such issues - Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease (FLUTD).
What are the signs of Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease?
Signs of Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease include:
- Straining to urinate
- Urinating small amounts frequently
- Frequent and/or prolonged attempts to urinate
- Crying out or exhibiting pain while urinating
- Excessive licking of the genital area
- Urinating outside the litter box when this has not happened before
- Blood in the urine
Should I be worried?
Yes! Especially if you have a male cat that has not urinated for 8-12 hours despite straining to do so. The urinary tract could be blocked. Please call a vet immediately as it could be an emergency!
What will my vet do?
Your veterinarian will do a physical examination and run a urinalysis assessing the urine pH and concentration and check for presence of crystals, bleeding, inflammation and infection. Your vet may recommend additional tests such ultrasound, X-ray and urine culture.
What can I do to prevent FLUTD?
To help reduce the chances of FLUTD, or prevent the recurrence of FLUTD, you can:
- Feed several small meals during the day
- Provide clean, fresh water at all times
- Encourage your cat to drink more water, either through adding water into their food or using a water fountain
- Reduce stressful situations, including minimising conflicts with other pets in the house
- Provide scratching postsand schedule play time with your cat
- Provide enough litter boxes. i.e. one more litter tray than the number of cats in the household. So if you have two cats, there should be three litter trays
- Keep litter boxes in quiet, safe areas of the house
- Keep litter boxes clean – they should be scooped twice a day and the litter changed weekly (or more often, as needed)
If ever in doubt, please remember to ask your vet! We want the best for your furkids too!
Dr Forest (@Dr Goh Shuling)
Principal Vet at Happy Vet