What causes feline urinary tract infections?

A urinary tract infection or feline urological syndrome is a condition where a substance similar to mucus in the bladder and urethra of the cat starts to develop. It has little tiny "stones" in it, and these can clog up the cat's urinary system, causing urinary problems in the cat. Sometimes it can stop the cat from urinating entirely - a condition that is fatal within 48 hours or so.


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What are the symptoms?

The cat may hang around the litter box trying to urinate - but you will only see little streams of urine in the litter. It will do this repeatedly. It may be painful to the cat to urinate to the point that it yelps or yowls when using the litter box. The cat may also just start going in random places. You might also see blood in the urine.

What causes feline urinary tract infections?

It is thought that this condition is caused by bacteria in the bladder. However, some vets think it is caused by a virus or by nutritional problems with the cat's diet. It may be caused by different things in different cases.

What is the treatment?

 Antibiotics are the most common treatment, because it will kill off any bacterial infections. Your vet will also make a determination on whether the blockage is severe enough to require something to be done about it - if the cat has stopped urinating entirely, then a catheter may be required to remove the urine. Sometimes the vet has to run narrow tubing through the urinary tract to remove any blockage, and the cat may need to be under anesthesia for this. If your cat has an infection or any of these problems, it needs to see the vet. Problems with urination are serious and they generally get worse if you try to wait it out, because the blockage does not usually clear up on its own - it just gets even more serious.

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