UTI, also known as Urinary Tract Infections, are any infection in the urinary system. Such infections are not common in cats. In fact, not every cat with UTI symptoms has a urinary tract infection. According to NCBI, only one to two percent of cats suffer from urinary tract infections. However, UTIs resemble several other feline diseases; hence, it is imperative to visit a vet for further diagnosis.
Since Urinary Tract Infections can cause severe pain and discomfort, every cat parent must learn about cat UTI symptoms. Here are a few major UTI symptoms in cats:
Blood in the urine
Constant licking of the urinary opening
Crying out while passing urine
Urinating outside the litter box
In order to diagnose UTI in cats, veterinarians first test urine samples. This test helps them detect any bacteria in the urine. Doctors directly draw urine from the bladder with a needle to avoid contamination. Once the urine sample is tested, the vet will then isolate the bacteria to study it further. This step is called the Culture and Sensitivity test. It helps determine the right medicines based on the cat's infection.
First-time infections or acute infections are generally cured using broad-spectrum antibiotics. However, if your cat is suffering from a chronic infection, the vet might recommend additional tests to start bacteria-specific medication.
There are multiple factors that can lead to UTI in cats. Let's explore a few common causes of cat UTI:
Replacement of the urinary catheter
Issues with the cat's gastrointestinal tract
Although UTI is rare in cats, it's best to take the right measures to prevent it at all costs. Here are a few points on how to prevent UTI in cats:
There are multiple cat UTI home remedies like cranberry juice, apple cider vinegar, bone broth, etc. And most of them are believed to alleviate the symptoms of UTI. However, we do not know if these remedies heal you completely. Hence, it is best to consult a veterinary doctor for cat UTIs. Moreover, in some cases, especially if left untreated, UTIs can be recurrent. The vet will provide the right medication to get rid of the bacteria.
A cat with UTI will exhibit following symptoms:
If you see any of the above symptoms, rush your cat to the doctor.
Certain Urinary Tract Infections can heal on their own. However, to understand whether it's a mild or chronic condition, you must visit your veterinarian. In case it is a chronic case, the doctor will prescribe antibiotics.
Water is essential for cats. Lack of water not only causes dehydration but also Urinary Tract Infections in cats. So, make sure that your fur baby drinks sufficient water throughout the day.
Cats contract Urinary Tract Infections when harmful bacteria enter their bladder. Does that mean cats that live indoors won’t get UTIs? No. Cats make use of a litter box to excrete every day. If you do not clean this box regularly, it can turn into a breeding ground for countless deadly bacteria. Hence, as a cat parent, you must clean the litter box at least twice daily. The bacteria around your cat's feces can enter its urethra every time your fur baby urinates. While this is one of the major causes of UTI in indoor cats, sudden changes in their routine, stress, and poor immunity can also lead to Urinary Tract Infections.