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FLUTD - Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease

Cats can develop serious urinary problems, so it’s important to learn how to recognise signs of trouble early to help treat and relieve your cat from unnecessary pain.

Here are the basics to how your cat’s urinary system works:

- The kidneys filter waste and toxins from the blood. The waste products then become part of the urine in the kidneys. Urine leaves the kidneys through narrow tubes called ureters which empty into the bladder. When your cat urinates the bladder is emptied through a tube called a urethra.

Feline urinary problems are usually grouped into two conditions- the lower urinary tract (the bladder and urethra) and the upper urinary tract (the kidneys and ureters). Urinary problems can make it difficult for your cat to store or pass urine.

This inability to urinate can be caused through blockages by stones or growths and muscle or nervous system problems. A urinary blockage is an emergency requiring immediate attention.

The most common signs of a urinary condition are:

- frequent trips to the litter box where they may or may not urinate
- blood in the urine
- crying or straining when urinating
- vomiting or abdominal pain.
There are several effective treatments for feline urinary problems. These may include surgery, a special diet and/or medication depending upon the cause of the problem.

One of the more common conditions we see is FLUTD, which stands for Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease. During and after treatment it is important for these patients to receive a specific therapeutic food. We use and recommend Hills Feline C/D as it is palatable, can be used for the dissolving and prevention of struvite and calcium oxalate urolithis with high levels of omega 3 fatty acids to manage painful inflammation. Hills feline C/D can be fed safely long term in multi cat households. So if one of your cats suffers this problem it may be easier to feed your other cats C/D to make meal times easier.

So keep in mind that if your cat’s urinary habits begin to slip or there are “splashes” in the wrong place this may be a signal of a serious health problem. It may not be bad behaviour it’s just a cry for help. Urinary conditions that are left unchecked may become fatal so please be aware.

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