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How To Treat Feline Urinary Tract Infection

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What Are The Treatments For Lower Urinary Tract Problems

How to Treat Urinary Tract Infections in Cats

When you bring your cat to the vet, they will examine your pet for any injuries or physical problems that might be contributing to the urinary problems.

The treatment will differ depending on the diagnosis.

Antibiotics Can Treat Cat UTIs

Your vet will prescribe the right medication for your pet. They can advise you on diet changes that might prevent future UTIs.

Clearing Obstructions in the Urethra

The vet will insert a tube into the urinary opening and flush the area with sterile fluid to clear the obstruction. Follow-up care may be required as well.

Special Diet

In other cases, a special diet can dissolve stones in your cat’s bladder. Your vet may suggest special food to prevent more stones from forming in the future.

Treatments for Other Health Problems


If your cat has diabetes, thyroid disease, or cancer, talk to your vet about treatment options.

Cat urinary tract issues are serious and you should not ignore the symptoms. Call your vet if you think your cat has a UTI or other urinary tract problem.

Causes Of Feline Urinary Tract Disease

FLUTD is a complex condition to diagnose and treat since there are multiple causes and contributing factors to this disease. Crystals, stones or debris can gradually build up in your cat’s urethra or bladder. Some other common causes of lower urinary tract issues in cats include:

  • Incontinence due to excessive water consumption or weak bladder
  • Spinal cord issues
  • Urethral plug caused by the accumulation of debris from urine
  • Bladder infection, inflammation, urinary tract infection
  • Injury or tumor in the urinary tract
  • Congenital abnormalities
  • Emotional or environmental stressors

Urinary tract disease in cats is most often diagnosed in overweight, middle-aged cats who have little to no access to outdoors, eat a dry food diet or do not get enough physical activity, although cats of any age can get the condition. Male cats are also more prone to urinary diseases since their narrower urethras are more likely to become blocked.

Using an indoor litter box, emotional or environmental stress, multi-cat households or sudden changes to their everyday routine can also leave cats more vulnerable to urinary tract disease.

If your kitty is diagnosed with FLUTD it is essential to determine the underlying cause. FLUTD symptoms can be caused by serious underlying health issues such as bladder stones or infection due to cancer or a blockage.

Symptoms Of Urinary Tract Infections And Inflammation In Cats

Before we get started, let us define what we mean by urinary tract infection. The term urinary tract infection, or UTI, refers to the condition in which bacteria colonize the normally sterile urinary system. As we will discuss in our blog article on Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease , inflammation can develop in conjunction with or without infection.

  • Effortlessly urinating
  • Frequent trips to the litter pan
  • Peeing or urinating outside of the litter tray Urine containing blood
  • Licking the bottom of the feet or the genitals
  • When stroked around the hindquarters, the dog feels uncomfortable.

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Can Both Male And Female Cats Get Urinary Tract Infections

Both male and female cats can get urinary tract infections, but they tend to be more common in females than in males. However, UTIs in male cats can become serious very quickly, so its important to consult your veterinarian immediately if you notice any symptoms, regardless of whether your cat is male or female.

What Is Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease

How To Treat Urinary Tract Infection In Cats Naturally ...

Feline lower urinary tract disease describes a variety of conditions that affect the bladder and urethra of cats. Cats with FLUTD most often show signs of difficulty and pain when urinating, increased frequency of urination, and blood in the urine. Cats with FLUTD also tend to lick themselves excessively and may urinate outside the litter box, often on cool, smooth surfaces like a tile floor or a bathtub.

While FLUTD can occur at any age, it is usually seen in middle-aged, overweight cats that get little exercise, use an indoor litter box, have little or no outdoor access, or eat a dry diet. Factors such as emotional or environment stress, multi-cat households, and abrupt changes in daily routine may also increase the risk that a cat will develop FLUTD.

Major signs of feline lower urinary tract disease include:

  • Straining to urinate
  • Frequent and/or prolonged attempts to urinate
  • Crying out while urinating
  • Excessive licking of the genital area
  • Urinating outside the litter box
  • Blood in the urine

Note that cats with a urethral obstruction will also show these signs but will pass little or no urine and become increasingly distressed. Urethral obstruction is seen more often in males than female cats due their longer, narrow urethra. A urethral obstruction is an emergency and requires immediate veterinary treatment.

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What Is The Prognosis For A Urinary Tract Infection

A good prognosis is usual for spontaneously resolved and quickly treated UTIs. Even patients that have rapidly developing symptoms and early pyelonephritis can have a good prognosis if quickly and adequately treated. The prognosis begins to decline if the UTI is not quickly recognized or treated. Elderly and immunosuppressed patients may not have the UTI recognized early their prognosis may range from fair to poor, depending on how much damage is done to the urinary tract or if complications like sepsis occur. Like adults, most adequately treated children will have a good prognosis. Children and adults with recurrent UTIs may develop complications and a worse prognosis recurrent UTIs may be a symptom of an underlying problem with the urinary tract structure. These patients should be referred to a specialist for further evaluation.

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What Are Urinary Tract Infections

Sometimes, urinary tract conditions can be associated with other diseases, including chronic kidney disease and hyperthyroidism. However, in many cases, there doesnt seem to be an underlying cause at all in this case, the technical diagnosis would be feline idiopathic cystitis .

Feline lower urinary tract disease, or FLUTD, is the umbrella term for urinary tract conditions in cats. A feline urinary tract infection is typically characterized by painful and difficult urination. Urinary tract infections in cats can range from mild to fatal, so it is important that you consult a vet right away if you suspect your cat is suffering from a UTI.

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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.

Are Some Cats Predisposed To Utis

how can I treat my cat if it has a UTI or FLUTD?

Older female cats, and cats with diabetes mellitus , develop UTIs more commonly than the general population. Cats who have bladder stones are prone to recurrent UTIs, pointing out the importance of getting a complete diagnosis whenever there are signs of disease in the urinary tract. Bladder stones must be removed or dissolved in order to restore bladder health .

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How Do I Know If My Cat Has A Urinary Infection

If you notice your cat has a change in behavior, such as reluctance to move, difficulty walking, or constant scratching, it is important to take them to the vet for a check-up. While there are many possible causes of a change in behavior, such as a new pet or change in environment, if your cat has recently had a urinary tract infection , the vet may be able to diagnose the problem and prescribe treatment.

If you think your cat may have a UTI, the first step is to take them to the vet for a check-up. The vet will take a thorough history of your cats health and will perform a physical exam. They may also perform a urinalysis to determine if

How To Prevent Your Cat From Getting Utis

If your cat has had more than one urinary tract infection, you may want to talk to your veterinarian about prevention strategies. In general, these involve changing your cats diet and certain supplements that may help strengthen the bladder wall. Of course, its also important to ensure that your cat always has access to fresh, clean water, and a clean litter box.

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Diagnosing Urinary Tract Infection In Cats

When diagnosing a UTI, your veterinarian will begin by taking a complete medical history. The vet may ask about changes in your cats water consumption, frequency of urination, amount of urination, how the urine looks, and any behavioral changes. Your vet will also perform a physical examination to assess the bladder and kidneys, as well as the genitalia and sometimes the rectum. If there is trouble with urination, a neurological exam may be conducted.

Your cats urine and blood will also be tested. Urinalysis is one of the most important and useful tests for diagnosing a UTI. It will look for the presence of certain chemicals or substances in the urine, like sugar, ketones, bilirubin, blood, and protein. A urinalysis is best conducted on a fresh urine sample to prevent inaccurate results.

Based on the findings, additional testing may need to be conducted. In particular, a urine culture may be performed to confirm the presence of an infection and to determine what type of bacteria are involved. Since it often takes 3 to 5 days to obtain final culture results, your veterinarian will likely start your cat on broad-spectrum antibiotics in the interim. The typical duration of antibiotic therapy is 7 to 14 days.

Which Cats Are Most At Risk For Utis

Cat Urinary Tract Infection Treatment

While any cat can get a UTI, some cats are more susceptible to infection than others. For example, older cats and cats with bladder stones and diabetes mellitus are more at risk for developing a UTI. The cat breeds thought to most commonly suffer from bladder stones include Himalayans, Persians, and Siamese cats.

Whats more, male cats are more likely to suffer from Urethral Obstructions, as their urethras are longer and thinner than those of female cats. Due to a more narrow passage, the male urethra is more likely to be blocked.

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How Does A Cat Get A Urinary Tract Infection

There are a variety of conditions that cats can get that affect the urinary tract that is labeled a feline lower urinary tract disease .

A bacterial UTI occurs when bacteria enter the urinary tract, usually by ascending up the urethra and entering the bladder. There are numerous causes for cat UTIs, whether bacterial or inflammatory.

These urinary conditions can occur at any age, but are usually seen in middle-aged, overweight cats that dont have a lot of environmental enrichment, are in multi-cat households, are prone to stress, and eat a dry kibble diet.

Cat Urinary Tract Infections

True urinary tract infections in cats are very rare. Instead, in cats, we see a range of conditions which can cause cystitis, referred to as feline lower urinary tract disease .

FLUTD is any disorder affecting the bladder or urethra of cats. It is common, affecting approximately 1-3% of cats each year. Both male and female cats can be affected. Male cats are more prone to obstructions by crystals or plugs, due to their long narrow urethra.

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When To See A Vet

These at-home treatments and remedies may be effective for clearing up minor infections, but more serious infections need to be treated by a professional animal doctor.

If your cat is experiencing mild or moderate symptoms, you can try these remedies to relieve their symptoms. If their symptoms show no sign of improvement in a few days, talk to a veterinarian. If your cat seems to be in pain or is unable to pass urine, see a vet immediately. This could be a sign of urethral obstruction, which can be fatal if not treated within 24 to 48 hours.

A vet may be able to prescribe antibiotics to target the harmful bacteria. Be sure to give your cat the full dose of prescribed antibiotics to prevent the UTI from returning or becoming resistant to treatment.

Even if youre pursuing professional treatment, these remedies can be effectively used alongside antibiotics to strengthen the bladder and balance your cats pH levels. Some can also be used as a daily supplement to prevent the UTI from coming back.

Diagnosis Of Urinary Tract Infections In Cats

Cat Urinary Tract Infection Treatment Advice from Patrick McHale DVM


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.

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Parsley And Uva Ursi Leaves

Parsley leaf is a reliable diuretic that can help in the removal of waste. And, in addition to being highly healthy, parsley leaves have antiseptic qualities that are excellent for dealing with urinary tract infections.

Uva Ursi leaf is among the most effective natural astringents available. Holistic vets use it to attack a range of pathogens that are often the reason for UTIs. It can stop bleeding and lower the inflammation related to these infections.

Signs My Cat Might Have A Uti

While most UTIs mean another issue is present, such as feline immunodeficiency virus or diabetes, some cats can experience chronic UTIs without an underlying condition. Here are some common signs your cat may display:

  • Frequently passing small amounts of urine

  • Straining to urinate

  • Crying out or whining while urinating

  • Urinating outside litter box

  • Stronger than normal urine odor

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Causes Of Urinary Tract Issues In Cats

Your cats inability to urinate might be caused by a variety of factors, some of which can be uncomfortable for your cat. They have the potential to obstruct urine flow or cause inflammation in the urinary system. While looking for information on the internet, you may have come across the phrase feline lower urinary tract disease , which is a catch-all term for a multitude of potential causes, including:

  • Trouble urinating in your cat can be caused by a variety of factors, some of which are uncomfortable for your feline companion. Inflammation of the urinary tract or obstruction of the flow of urine are possible consequences. The phrase feline lower urinary tract disease may have come up when you were looking for information on the internet. FLUTD is a catch-all word for a multitude of potential causes, which include the following:

Your cats inability to urinate might be caused by a variety of factors, some of which are uncomfortable. They have the potential to obstruct the flow of urine or cause inflammation in the urinary system.

If youve been looking for information on the internet, you may have come across the phrase feline lower urinary tract disease , which is a catch-all term for a multitude of potential causes, such as the following:

What On Earth Is Idiopathic Cystitis

If youâre worried about your catâs urinary health, youâre ...

One of the most commonly diagnosed problems in cats with urinary problems is idiopathic cystitis, which describes inflammation in the bladder that occurs for unknown reasons. This condition is not fully understood in cats, but is thought to be related to stress. As idiopathic cystitis progresses, it leads to significant inflammation in the bladder, along with the production of debris made up of inflammatory cells, blood clots, and mineral deposits. If this inflammation is persistent and persistent, enough debris can build up in the bladder to lead to urethral obstruction.

Urethral obstruction is the most severe form of urinary tract disease and can be life-threatening. Constipated cats cannot urinate, which means they cannot get rid of the bodys waste products that are filtered through the urine. Constipation almost always occurs in male cats due to the length and narrow diameter of their urethra compared to female cats. In men, small bladder stones often cause obstruction as they pass out of the bladder and through the urethra. Deposits of debris and inflammatory cells can also lead to an obstruction.

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