Treating Cat Urine Problems

Cat urine problems may develop due to behavioral reasons or medical reasons. Cats are sensitive and if they’re interrupted when they use the litter box or if they’re unhappy about the presence of guests, they react by not using the litter box. Such instances are indications of a behavioral problem. However, if your cat is suffering from a feline lower urinary tract disorder, he would associate the pain of urination with the litter box and stop using it. This is an instance of a medical problem.

Guidelines to Solve Behavioral Urine Problems: 

  • Restrict water intake a couple of hours before bedtime.
  • Place more litter boxes around the house and keep them clean.
  • Startle your cat when he exhibits bad urinary behavior and reinforce the message by saying “No”.
  • Clean any area previously urinated upon thoroughly, as cats return to the smell to urinate again.
  • Use ammonia-free detergents as the smell of ammonia is similar to cat urine smell and attracts them to urinate in appropriate places.

Conditions that Affect the Feline Urinary Tract:

  • Cystitis which is an inflammation of the bladder
  • Urethritis or inflammation of the urethra
  • Bladder stones that may occur due to feline urinary crystals
  • Tumors in the bladder
  • Idiopathic cystitis where the reason for inflammation of the bladder remains unknown

Diagnosis and Treatment

If you observe any symptoms such as bloody urine, frequent urination or painful urination, seek prompt medical help. A urine analysis will confirm or rule out infection, crystals or a behavioral problem. A blood test will also confirm underlying health conditions such as diabetes. X-rays and ultrasound help to diagnose bladder stones or crystals.

In case of an infection, your vet will prescribe antibiotics and medication to relieve the pain. If the presence of stones is diagnosed, surgery is the solution, and if crystals are the cause of the problem, your cat will be put on a special diet for a period of 6 to 8 weeks. This prescription diet changes the pH of the urine and helps dissolve the crystals. Antibiotics are also prescribed to prevent secondary infections, as are other medications that relieve pain and discomfort. After the crystals have dissolved, the cat is placed on a maintenance diet to prevent future crystals from forming. If diabetes is the cause of the urinary problem, the vet will prescribe medication to control pet blood glucose levels.

Tips to Prevent Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disorders:

  • Feed high quality canned food to your cat, as cats should get most of their water from their food.
  • Ensure that your cat has access to plenty of fresh, clean water.
  • Do not feed your cat dry foods exclusively, as these contribute to dehydration and urine concentration.
  • Feed meals regularly, timing them, rather than leaving food readily available.
  • Ensure the health of your cat with a nutritious diet, plenty of exercise and hygienic conditions.
  • Cat urinary problems are primarily stress related. Hence, it is best to address underlying emotional problems that cause stress.

Since cat urinary problems are distressing for both pets and their care takers, it’s best to resolve them at the earliest with vet assistance and supportive care.