Food for your Cat’s Urinary Tract Health

Ring Ring: “Good morning Dr. Molson speaking how can I help you?”

“Hello Dr. Molson its Garfield here the orange, male neutered, domestic shorthair calling, I’m in need of some advice?”

“Well I’m here to help Garfield, what seems to be the problem?”

“Well I have had some trouble urinating in the litterbox the last couple weeks, my belly really hurts, and my urine is a weird reddish color. My parents are really upset I keep missing the litterbox when I urinate, can you help me?”

“What kind of diet are you on Garfield? Have you been drinking enough water lately? How has your weight been?”

“I’m on free fed dry Whiskas and I don’t like to drink a lot of water, it’s yucky! I only lick up the gravy from the wet food my parents feed me. I have gained some weight in the last couple months, and Doc, I love my temptations.”

“Well Garfield it sounds like you could have cystitis. We will need to do a urinalysis to see how bad it is and we will have to switch your diet to a wet food for at least 2 weeks to help flush out your bladder. After that you will be put on a dry diet specifically for bladder health.”

“Really??!! How did I get this? Will I have to be on a special diet the rest of my life? If so I hope it tastes good.”

“It’s actually a common problem in male neutered cats; you’re also at risk when you are overweight and if you have a lot of stress in your life. Your current diet isn’t helping, it is not tested to help prevent and treat urinary problems in cats. You will have to be on a veterinary recommended diet for life, specific to urinary health and I have heard a lot of other parents say their cat likes the taste of the food. Do you have stressful things happening at home?”

“Well actually yes, my parents just adopted my new brother a male short haired grey tabby named Norman, he’s younger than me, he really wants to play and run around the house. There is also only one litter box in the house so that causes me a lot of stress when I have go!”

“Well Garfield that will do it! It can cause a lot of stress when a new cat comes into your world and that can cause your bladder health to suffer. Especially when you’re holding your urine for such long periods, it would be best for your parents to get you another litter box and have them in different places so you feel more private when you go. But don’t worry we will discuss more when you come in to Lomsnes Veterinary Hospital for an exam, how does tomorrow at 9am sound?”

“Sounds great I will see you tomorrow for a urinalysis and an exam!”

Dr. Molson explains:

Bladder health in male neutered cats is a big problem. Stress and poor diet contributes to cystitis which means “bladder inflammation.” They can develop crystals in the bladder which leads to inflammation and a lot of pain, they have trouble urinating or will urinate outside the litterbox to let you know something is wrong.

Stress is usually a common problem when a new cat is introduced, they may look like they are getting along but usually the original cat starts having problems. Having multiple litter boxes and getting both cats on a urinary specific diet can help tremendously. Diet is a huge factor and can keep the bladder happy and healthy. Unfortunately foods from pet stores or grocery stores have had no scientific testing done for bladder and urinary health. Veterinary diets are the very best for feline nutrition; they are formulated and tested for bladder and urinary health and are proven to help prevent and dissolve crystals that are in the bladder so that it prevents urinary problems from occurring and reoccurring.

Keeping your feline on a veterinary diet is the best way from kitten to adult to help keep not only bladder health in check but other common issues as well. Ask a Lomsnes Veterinary Hospital team member if you have any questions, we are always here to help and only want the best for your feline friend.