FLUTD: Urinary Problems in Male Cats

This weekend, I decided to sleep late. Louie came into the room and gave me some snuggles. I got up, cleaned the litter boxes, and watched Louie be the first to use the big one, not uncommon for him to want to be the primo pee-er after a scooping. Then he used the kitchen one. Then he went back to the big one. This was concerning.

The Louie in question.

I crept up on him and saw that he was only getting a few drops of urine out at a time. I’ve seen Pinkle do this, but Pinkle is a female and there is less risk of blockage (though I do still call the vet and treat her when it occurs). In male cats, it may only be a few hours before their urethra gets blocked and they go into kidney failure. I called my vet.

Since it was Saturday, both vets I keep on hand were closing soon. Neither would see him. They said it might turn out to be a hospitalization and he was going to have to go to the ER. And so, we packed the little guy up (me and “the dude”) and drove him to the ER in Indiana. Slightly farther but better care. (This is where I discovered the Humane Indiana Resale shop I wrote about in my minimalism post)

After a brief exam (his bladder was small and not hard), they concluded that he was not yet blocked, but that he did have blood in his urine and was at risk of blocking in the next few weeks.

Señor Pantalones has been stressing Louie out with his extra energy, high-speed attacks, so I needed to minimize this since stress could be a cause of idiopathic FLUTD in young cats (Idiopathic being there is no known cause). I was told to keep Louie stress-free (a tall order for a former feral) and hydrated.

Knowing that my blogger friend Connie over at Tails from the Foster Kittens has had this experience several times with her similarly-furred friend Jack, I reached out to her to find some possible solutions. She asked him what his urine pH was. Well, I had no idea so I called the emergency vet. They said it was 5. Normal is 6.0 – 6.5. So, too acidic. It seems that could have been caused by diet, except Louie is on a raw diet, high in protein, which should balance his urine pH appropriately. I did notice his fur was a bit flaky lately and Connie mentioned it could also be caused by dehydration. I noted that I had given him some extra dry food the last two days in a row. Perhaps that was it, since that seemed to be what caused it for Pinkle on her last occurrence. Connie also suggested Corn Silk, something I hadn’t heard of prior. Upon some research, it seems it is used to calm irritated bladders, as a mild diuretic, and to stop dogs from wetting the bed. I grabbed some from Amazon for a few dollars. The vet also recommended Cosequin, also available from Amazon, for slightly more dollars.

So far, Louie seems to be doing ok. He did not want to be sequestered, but I did keep Pants away from him while I wasn’t there to supervise. He’s been getting his corn silk and soup for meals (I like Honest Kitchen Prowl with extra water added) and making me feed him by hand. I am also giving him extra helpings of Answers raw Goat’s Milk. It’s their favorite.

The vet told me to look for signs of blockage that include yowling, pain, lying on his side, lethargy, or a hard bladder. Seeing as he’s been playing tag with he laser pointer, I’ll assume he is OK for now.

And, per usual, my favorite vet Dr. C. called us on Tuesday to make sure Louie is ok and doesn’t need further help. (If you find a vet like this, keep her.)

If your cats, male or female, are showing signs of distress in the litter box and it has never happened before, it’s worth a call to your vet, especially if your cat is a male. It could be a serious emergency. I am not a vet and do not play one on TV, either. Please always consult your vet about anything you read here before trying it out on your pets.

Love and Healthy Pee,

Alana.

Further reading:

Tails from the Foster Kitten’s piece of Jack and struvite blockage

AVMA article on FLUTD

An Honest Kitchen piece on natural urinary remedies

(This article was not sponsored by anyone. Any brands mentioned here are mentioned because we use and like them.)

Bachelor of the Week: Carrot!

Dear Citizens of CrepesTown (that’s right, I have annexed you all):

Please let me announce to you that, although spring has not quite sprung, have have our very first veggie of the year. Meet Carrot!

The lovely little veggie himself!

The lovely little veggie himself!

Carrot is a nine-month old sprout that loves to sing. In fact, we’ve heard tell that, before he ended up in a New York high-kill shelter, he had a band called “The Four Carrot Tops.” Unfortunately, many people thought it was a Motown-style band comprised of all red-headed comedians and no one showed up for their concerts.

In any case, Carrot has taken his talent and gone on tour, touching on each of the continents. Continent hopping, if you will. In fact, one might say he’s been in-continent and out of continent constantly. He’s even been slightly to the left of continent, which is where you can find him today. For the less astute of you, I shall spell it out: he has an injury that doesn’t allow him to fully empty his bladder.

BUT WAIT!

You know how when something is SO cute you just want to squeeze it? Well, you can squeeze Carrot! In fact, you’ll have to, at least twice a day, to make sure his little bladder is completely emptied and he doesn’t get an infection. It’s not that he doesn’t use the box; he does. He just doesn’t always realize that he is sprinkling the garden, so to speak.

Anyway, Carrot is lovely. He’s available for adoption. He’s happy go lucky, he sings non-stop, loves to climb, and wants to be the filling in your delicious cake. Pluck him from the garden that is Tabby’s Place, where  so many beautiful things grow.

Carrot singing into a rose microphone. It's how he learned to sing back in the garden.

Carrot practicing with a rose microphone. It’s how he learned to sing back in the garden.

Carrot wondering why you haven't clicked on his adoption link yet.

Carrot wondering why you haven’t clicked on his adoption link yet.

Love,

Crepes.

PS. He’s also accepting sponsorship if you can’t have him in your home. Consider it like a CSA, except the veggies stay at Tabby’s Place and instead you get a great sense of accomplishment.

Bachelorette of the Week: Rose!

You Guys!

This particular variety of Rose signifies love, friendship, AND happiness all rolled into one.

This particular variety of Rose signifies love, friendship, AND happiness all rolled into one.

I think we’re all ready for a little spring time, and so I bring you 11-month old Rose, a beautiful kitten who’s ready to enhance the life of a special person who doesn’t mind a little pee on his or her lap. You see, Rose was hit by a car when she was very small. And yet, as Roses do after being pruned, she bloomed into a lovely blossom. She has no problems walking, and, like all of the best flowers, she has a slight odor of je n’ai ce pas. Something floral perhaps, with a touch of ammonia.

Although Rose has no problems getting around, she does have trouble controlling her bladder. She is wonderful, she is sweet, she is beautiful, she is incontinent, kind, thoughtful, and great, and she loves to talk and hug. You see? When I say it like that, it’s but a trifle, a pittance, really. Hardly more than a word.

Do you want to meet Rose? Do you want to see her beautiful face first thing each morning? Do you want to express your love and her bladder at least twice a day? Then contact Tabby’s Place where Rose awaits.

And of course, if Rose has touched her heart but you don’t want her touching your furniture, please consider sponsoring her so she may continue to bloom happily.

Love,

Crepes.

"Bet you can't guess what I just did..." - Rose.

“Bet you can’t guess what I just did…” – Rose

Rose 1

“Do you smell that? It’s me.” – Rose

Photos kindly provided by Tabby’s Place. Read more about Rose here.