One of the most common ailments that affect cats involve the lower urinary system. The variety of issues related to this type of condition can range between serious and fatal. More often than not, the cause of cat urinary tract problems is Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease or FLUTD. The symptoms of FLUTD can include bloody urine and painful or frequent urination, as well as other symptoms, depending on the cause. It is important to determine the root cause of FLUTD in order to provide the patient with the proper feline UTD treatments to cure the condition.
What Causes FLUTD?
There are many different conditions that can lead to cat urinary tract problems that your South Coast veterinarian will need to test for before feline UTD treatments can be given. Spinal cord problems and congenital abnormalities will need to be ruled out, as well as any type of injury to or tumor within the urinary tract. Incontinence can come from a weak bladder as well as from excessive drinking or stress.
Testing for infection and bladder inflammation as well as an exam to determine whether a urethral plug, crystals, stones or other types of debris could have accumulated in the urethra or bladder will also be conducted. In addition to all of these conditions, some pets can suffer from cat urinary tract problems as a result of other diseases. In many instances, an endocrine disease, such as diabetes or hyperthryroidism, can be the culprit.
What You Need to Know
As a cat owner, it is important to pay attention to your cat’s behavior and health condition, as well as take your pet to Anchor Animal Hospital in Dartmouth for a veterinary check-up if any illnesses are suspected. As a rule, FLUTD is rarely seen in cats that are one year old or younger. On average, the typical age that cat urinary tract problems are seen at your local South Coast veterinarian is four years old. Due to the fact that male cats have a more narrow urethra than female cats, they are more likely to suffer from a urethral blockage.
Signs to look for can include a loss of bladder control, frequent urination or dribbling or urine. Crying out when trying to urinate is another sign of cat urinary tract problems, as is an inability to urinate or only urinating a small amount in the litter box. Cloudy or bloody urine should be checked out right away, as well as a strong odor of ammonia in the urine. Cats that are more lethargic than usual, have an increase in the amount of water that they are drinking or that have a hard and distended abdomen area should all go to your South Coast veterinarian for a check-up and testing.
It is important to bring your cat into Anchor Animal Hospital in Dartmouth as soon as you suspect something might be wrong with your cat. Cat urinary tract problems can quickly become a medical emergency. Your South Coast veterinarian will likely complete a full physical exam and then, if the symptoms warrant it, will conduct a urinalysis, blood work, urine culture, ultrasound or any other indicated tests that will help to best diagnose your cat urinary tract problems or other conditions.
Feline UTD Treatments
Once your cat has been diagnosed with FLUTD or other related condition, proper treatment can be given. Feline UTD treatments will vary depending on the cause and type of cat urinary tract problems your pet is diagnosed with at Anchor Animal Hospital in Dartmouth. Some of the most common treatments can include antibiotics or other medications, urinary acidifiers, changes to diet, an increase in water intake, expulsion of stones, crystals or other blockages through the urethra, fluid therapy and, if the condition is quite serious, sometimes surgery is recommended.
Male cats that have a blockage will typically need a urinary catheter or surgery to remove the blockage. If ignored or left untreated, cat urinary tract problems can cause a partial or complete obstruction of the urethra, which would prevent the cat from being able to urinate or expel toxins from his or her body. This can become a medical emergency that could lead to a rupture of the bladder or kidney failure, which can be fatal if medical treatment is not provided and the obstruction removed right away.
To avoid serious life-threatening conditions from cat urinary tract problems and other common feline illnesses, bring your cat to Anchor Animal Hospital in Dartmouth for regular check-ups. Speak with your South Coast veterinarian about whether your pet needs annual or more frequent check-ups, which could depend on age, health and other determining factors. Feline UTD treatments can be quite expensive and uncomfortable for your pet, so your best bet is to take a pro-active approach to your cat’s health with regular check-ups, a healthy diet and by monitoring your pet’s health on a regular basis at home.