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Just thought I would share this with all the cat owners out there who don't know this or maybe I'm the only one who didn't. Cats are prone to urinary tract blockage or disease. It is caused by a blockage as small as a grain if sand size crystal or stone which forms in the urinary tract and causes a blockage. Having an outside cat I was unaware of this and almost lost a beloved member of our family today. Not to mention spending more than my mortgage on vet bills to save him.
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I took my cat, Newbie, a 2 1/2 year old male long hair, to the vet the 1st week of July because he was unable to pee. The vet said he was completely blocked. They catherized him, put him on IVs and antibiotics, and kept him for 4 1/2 days. He was put on Hills Science Diet c/d,I took him home, but took him back a week later because it was still taking a couple of minutes to pee and only in small amounts. The vet examined him, said his bladder was small, he was hydrated, and his coat and eyes looked good.
He was sent home with antibiotics and steroids. Yesterday we went back to the vet for a urinalysis. The vet said he is hydrated and his bladder is small which is good, but he still has an infection so we were sent home with the antibiotic Baytril and another Hills Science Diet food, s/d, to go along with the c/d. I'm just wondering how long does it take until my baby feels better? Should I be doing anything else? This is getting expensive! Any input/suggestions would be greatly appreciated!
I we spent 500+ on a cat with bladder blockage, its back. I had a cat about 15 years ago and he had a blockage and the vet squeezed it out, is that still OK to do being as we are so broke and we just want to try anything to help our Joey?
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After a little brainstorming, I decided to try sprinkling Chamomile tea leaves on his food. He quit having tract infections, so it must have worked. Sadly, his kidneys had been so damaged from all the previous infections that he died 3 years later from kidney damage.
Ask your vet if he or she thinks this could be an option for your cat. My aunt had a cat who was prone to urinary tract infections and he had some kind of surgery. It cost a fortune, but it worked. I probably paid more in total vet bills than she did for the one operation, but my vet never offered an operation. You might want to ask about this as well. (06/18/2005)
He is fine now, I have switched his food and paid the 1300 dollar vet bill. I have spoken with several veterinarians who have told me that Purina Indoor Cat Chow has been the cause of many urinary blockages,sometimes resulting in deaths of cats. Please be careful. (05/03/2007)
I have fed only Hill's Feline CD or Purina UR, both prescription diets, since to all my cats (current population is 4 males and 11 females) and have not had the plugged up male problem. My last problem was about 12 years ago and that male is still a healthy 15 year old today. The prescription diets are expensive, but my personal experience has been that they are worth every penny in prevention as they are high quality foods and I have very few health issues given the number of animals I care for.
I do have a female with reoccurring bacterial infections of the urinary tract, a different problem, and this feed does not prevent her problems from coming back. She is a crippled Manx with birth defects in the hindquarters which may contribute to her problems. (04/12/2008)
He had a blockage and that was causing him to get sick. At that point he was too damaged and it was too expensive to try to cure him, we had to put him down. They wanted $700-$1000 to try to do surgery when the Vet let us know it was a bad case of blockage and that he felt would be difficult to do. I guess in some cases they even have to remove part of the penis to clear the blockage. I didn't want to put him through all that. We are lost and lonely without him, but after reading some posts about how blockage can reoccur in most cats I know it was better to not have him go through all the pain.
My advice is to read the labels on your cat food and make sure that there is not a lot of magnesium. We used Purina Complete Care (blue bag) high in magnesium, which we had no idea made it worse. I would also advise you to take your cat in ASAP when he is showing signs of a UTI. Good luck to all you owners who may have to make the same decision I did. It is hard, but it is better for the cat. (06/17/2008)
By Missing Bubba
Since then, I read the ingredients on all dry food meticulously and never buy any with fish meal, no matter how small the concentration. I have not had an issue since then. I believe that manufacturers know of this possibility, but are just not saying anything. If you look at the Purina One Urinary Tract dry food, it has no fish meal. I stick with Chicken based foods.
I am a Rescue Agency volunteer and have had, over the years, many many male cats. I have 8 in my household right now. Hope this info helps some of you avoid a very painful episode for your cat and heartache for you. (08/12/2008)
Purina products happen to have a very high content of magnesium which causes the blockages. He likened it to a lactose intolerant person. It isn't the milk that is bad, but the way the person processes the milk. It can be present forever or it can suddenly develop. So, we need to be vigilant about the magnesium content in the foods that we serve our pets. This adventure has surely taught me a lot. I hope that the information helped. (09/29/2008)
By Bobbie Jo
Here are signs to tell your cat has a bladder blockage. They will vomit. Pee a little bit in a weird place. Have odd behavior. Not eating. (01/12/2009)
Most of all, be vigilant if your cat exhibits signs of distress.You may see these as simply annoying and not realize there is a serious problem looming. The formation of crystals is most common in neutered males, as you can all glean from the other comments here. If you have a male, be ever more suspicious of the following symptoms if they develop in your cat.
Especially watch for these signs within 1 to 3 weeks after any change of diet, or even changing to a different water dish. Some cats will refuse to drink from metal or plastic because of the slight taint those materials can flavor the water with.
I have tried most of the over-the-counter type foods that can be bought outside a vets office. They claim to be for "urinary tract health", but beware this can mean different things. There are all sorts of less serious issues that these foods may help prevent. However, if you have a cat who develops crystals, and the older the cat becomes the more persistent this problem can become, these "over the counter" foods are often "not" going to prevent a panicked run to the vet due to another blockage.
The best preventative I found are the prescription diets you can only obtain through a veterinarian. Royal Canin SO and Hills Science Diet C/D. That is, unless you have the time and ability to formulate the raw/natural diets that you can create yourself. I know some who've had good luck with this, but I don't have the time to prepare these meals myself on daily basis.
Do encourage plenty of fresh clean water in whatever way works for yOUR cat. You might have to do some trial and error here.
Do feed wet food with extra water (room temp or slightly warm seems to work best). You can supply dry food as a supplement (see above), but not as the primary diet.
Do not mix other foods in with your cat's urinary health diet because you think that he might like something "different" once in a while.
Do give "Uriease" treats, (if your cat will eat them). There are liquid supplements as well, just do a little research to find ones available to you that are effective and can be easily mixed with food. Try just a tiny amount at first and gradually increase to correct dosage as your cat gets used to the taste/smell.
Caution: If you vary from the above due to financial strain or other reasons you will regret it. Don't try to cut corners because you and your favorite little friend will pay much more dearly in the long run. You, financially, and he with stress and pain and possibly his life.
If you should see the signs of blockage, this is "not" one of those things that can wait a day or two. Your cat "will" likely die if he is not treated within 12 hours or so. The sooner he can be treated, the better his chances are. I nearly lost my Mikko the first time and my heart goes out to those of you who have lost your own. (02/15/2009)