If you’ve ever experienced a cat with a UTI we feel for you. It’s a horrible experience for a cat owner and lover. Lower the risk of a UTI in your cat with these tips and various products. All are backed by research and science.
It really is one of the most difficult things as a cat daddy or mommy to see your little pal in pain. I have first hand experience in this from a long time ago as a child witnessing a cat with a UTI Blockage. The screams of pain from that poor animal still haunt me today. It’s one of the reasons I’m writing this post. To try to eliminate that experience for our readers. I’ve compiled a list of products and why they help reduce the risk of a UTI in your cat.
What is a Feline UTI?
A UTI is a urinary tract infection which can affect cats at any stage of their lives. Male and female cats are at risk for developing this condition. Also known medically as Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease (FLUTD). One common cause of FLUTD is urinary crystals, the two most common types being struvite and calcium oxalate crystals. Crystals form in the urine and urinary tract and create a full or partial blockage. The result of this blockage is inability to urinate. Signs of this blockage in your cat are below, and your cat should be taken to a vet IMMEDIATELY.
Signs of a UTI in Cats
- Urinating outside the litter box, especially in places like a tub or cool tile floor.
- Straining when urinating, taking a long time to urinate, and urinating frequently.
- Urinating small amounts.
- Crying when urinating.
- Excessive grooming of genital area
- Lying on side crying and wailing in pain or discomfort
- Pacing, panting and wailing in pain.
My Experience with a Cat UTI
I had a cat go through this. He was a male Siamese and was about 6 years old. He loved to be outside and I’m certain the symptoms were building over time. We were uneducated to look for the signs. There wasn’t really much in the way of the internet back then. As a family we returned home from dinner to find our beloved cat wailing in pain, panting and pacing around the house. His cries were distressing and horrible and don’t believe any cretin who ever says animals don’t feel pain. We of course rushed the cat to a vet and he had emergency surgery to unblock his urinary tract.
Help to Reduce the Risks of FLUTD in cats.
Proper food for your cat is arguably Number 1 or 1B in all health risk reduction in your cat. Arguably water sources and availability of water might bump it out of top spot but I’m sure you get the picture. Don’t feed your cat junk food. Don’t feed your cat solely dry kibble. Ideally you want to allow your cat some high quality, high protein kibble through the day and high quality wet food in small amounts a couple times a day. Eating wet food a couple times a day mimics what a cat would do in the wild. (back to his roots) and helps keep your cats urine pH in balance. (Urine pH is a factor in FLUTD flare ups).
Lower the risk of a UTI in your cat with high quality food.
You want your wet food to be high moisture, raw meat that is mildly acidic with proper fats and nutrients. There is a company that makes high quality food of this nature who’s been in business since 2004. They provide specialty foods on vet subscription as well as their own ‘over the internet counter’ formula’ which checks all the boxes for cat nutrition and well being. They offer a trial pack for your kitty and you can find more information about them here.Darwin’s Natural Selections
Because options are the spice of life, we want to also suggest you check out Nom Nom subscription service. They also offer high quality natural ingredient food for your cat. Vet and pet nutritionist designed, the food is great for your cat and also checks the boxes on proper balanced food.
Cat Treats to lower the risk of a UTI in your cat
All cats love treats! A great way to lower the risk of a UTI in your cat is treats that are also medicinal. There’s a product on the market from a holistic pet medicine shop that is a treat for your cat, but helps prevent UTI’s. I alternate treats for my boys now, UTI treats and Dental treats and they chow them down happily. It’s great to give them ‘medicine’ they don’t know it medicine.
lower the risk of a UTI in your cat with Hydration
Most cat owners don’t realize their cats aren’t drinking enough water. It’s very easy to put the bowl out and think we’re providing. Many cats don’t want to drink still, stale water. It’s why you see many stories and pictures of cats drinking out of sink faucets or toilets. You can put that water out and they’ll take the bare minimum and be dehydrated and you might not even know it. Dehydration in cats is a huge health risk for their urinary tract as well as their kidneys. This is also a reason that a strict dry food diet for cats is a bad idea, as a lot of their moisture intake comes from their wet food.
Ways to help your cat drink more water.
- Have several water dishes with fresh water available for your cat.
- Make sure your cat’s water sources are in low-stress, cat-dominated areas.
- Make sure your cat gets exercise and maintains a healthy weight.
- Buy a bubbler or water fountain for your cat.
- Clean and refresh the water often at all sources.
Amazon has some great options for you for water fountains for your cats. This will hopefully stop your cat from constantly wanting to drink from the bathroom or kitchen sink. If he has fresh running water at all times it will stop the counter behavior (maybe) and help entice him to stay hydrated. Clicking the picture below will take you directly to the cat water fountain section of Amazon to pick one that fits your lifestyle. I don’t have room to post 500 of them here.
Your Cats Litter Can Be a UTI Cause
The final way to lower the risk of a UTI in your cat is the cat litter itself. Some of these should be automatic as a caring cat owner but I need to mention them. You need one extra litter box per cat. If you have one cat, have two litter boxes. Two cats, three litter boxes. Keep your litter cleaned daily. I don’t think it’s possible for your cat to never touch the litter with his private parts while digging, scratching and squatting in the box. Dirty litter is bound to touch him there. Keep your cats litter clean to avoid any cross contamination. I am also very anti clumping litter. If your cat ingests the dust, or touches it as discussed, it can cause health problems for them. Number one being UTIs or FLUTD issues. I recommend silica based cat litter that absorbs and dries urine on contact.
Our Choice to lower the risk of a UTI in your cat… with litter.
Silica based. Dust free. Health monitoring. It’s simply the way to go. It does have it’s downsides in that it’s more expensive than most clumping or grocery store brands out there. However, it makes up for it in many ways. It’s light, it’s delivered, it’s great at odor control if you use it as discussed above. It also monitors your cats health by measuring pH and other issues found in your cats urine. It’s worth it. Check it out here.
Pet Insurance Coverage Just In Case…
We mostly all want to take the steps to lower the risk of a UTI in your cat, or my cat, or your friends cats. This goes for all kitty or doggie related health issues that can affect our beloved family members. My family was fortunate at the time our major UTI issue happened to our cat that we had the financial means to get him to the Doctor and pay for proper care to save his life. There have also been times in my life that if that had happened to one of my animals I’d have been forced to put them down when a procedure I couldn’t afford would save them. This is a horrible feeling and major fear of mine. If you own a pet, I urge you to look into health coverage for your pet. There are some great, great companies providing this service.
Health Coverage Options
New company Eusoh is a health coverage ‘sharing’ service. It pools members money in groups and they share health costs of their pets as needed. Can be as low as $17 a month and covers regular check ups as well as emergencies. Downside being the cost is not always the same, but is likely less than traditional insurance.
Embrace Pet Insurance
We always like to give you options and variety, so check out Embrace as well. Embrace seperates themselves with these key highlights.
- The Best Diminishing Deductible Feature – Embrace’s Healthy Pet Deductible reduces your annual deductible $50 each year you don’t receive a claim payment. Included on every pet insurance policy at no additional cost.
- Wellness Rewards for Routine Care – Reimburses for preventative veterinary care, grooming, training, and more with no per-item limits.
- Pre-existing Conditions Evaluated Fairly – No pet insurance company covers pre-existing conditions, but Embrace distinguishes between curable and incurable pre-existing conditions, covering curable conditions after 12 months symptom and treatment free.
- Coverage for Exam Fees – Many pet insurance companies don’t cover the cost of the exam fee – that’s like having to pay an extra deductible for every claim.
Should you be looking for more reasons or thoughts on health insurance for your cat, please check out our blog post on Should You Insure Your Cat?
Conclusion for reducing chance of UTI in your cats…
We wish for the best for all kitties of this world. We know we all do our best to keep them happy and healthy. Following the above tips and guidelines are great steps to take to avoid a traumatic experience for you and your cat. If you like our site, please follow us on Facebook @Quirky Cat Products or Register for our newsletter.