Urinary Tract Support for Cats

As cats age, urinary tract support becomes crucial to ensuring quality of life and longevity of life. Cats are extremely prone to developing diseases of the lower urinary tract, so the best way for cat owners to combat this is to be aware of the signs and aware of supplements and dietary changes that can help support urinary tract function in cats.

Biology and Function

The urinary system in cats is made of up the bladder and the urethra. The bladder is used as a storage facility for urine after the body has digested and metabolized foods and liquids. The urethra is the tube that extends into the vulva of females and the penis of males to allow for excretion. Both of these structures are essential to ensuring that urine can be properly excreted from a cat's body.

Lower Urinary Tract Disease

One of the most common ailments affecting the urinary tract of cats is lower urinary tract disease. The causes of lower urinary tract disease in cats are numerous, including bladder stones, urethral blockage, urinary tract infection, cancer of the urinary tract and kidney failure. However, almost 50% of all diagnosed cases of lower urinary tract disease in cats have no known cause. The signs typically include:

  • Straining to urinate
  • Blood in the urine
  • Swelling of the vulva in females
  • Loss of appetite
  • General fatigue

This disease most commonly occurs in cats aged 10 years or older, but because of how prone cats are to urinary tract conditions, it really can happen at any age.

Support and Treatment

The best way to combat any disease affecting the urinary system in cats is to provide them with supplemental urinary tract support. Some of the supplemental health products to choose from include:

  • PetNaturals UT Tract Support: Contains ingredients designed to support urinary function by maintaining pH levels, supporting circulation through the kidneys and minimizing the ability of crystals to form in the urinary tract.
  • Hills Prescription Diet c/d Formula: Controls minerals in the diet that traditionally lead to crystallization, including calcium, magnesium, phosphorus and oxalate, while increasing potassium intake to help interrupt the formation of bladder stones.

Another way to supplement urinary tract support for cats is to increase fluid intake. The best way to do this is to gradually switch over to a completely canned-food diet. Water is the best agent for ridding the body of infection. By increasing a cat's fluid intake, it can help to wash away secondary infectious conditions that might develop as the result of a weakened urinary tract.

Table scraps are no longer an option for cats with urinary tract conditions. In order to appropriately support the urinary tract, the proper type and amount of nutrients in the diet is essential, and table scraps are not something that a cat's urinary tract is going to be able to handle without causing problems.