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Spud has a bladder infection *sigh*

cats+horse
November 25th, 2010, 03:46 PM
Hello, I am here again... you may remember me as the one who lost Yoshi to Leukemia and Lymphoma exactly one month ago... My trips to the vet seem to be continuing, however. After I caught him straining to pee and licking at himself, I took Spud to the vet and he was diagnosed with a bladder infection. So now he is on antiobiotics for three weeks and preventative food forever.

I know it could have been worse, and I am thankful, but I wouldn't mind catching a break... need good kitty karma :o

Winston
November 25th, 2010, 03:58 PM
Glad to see you back! I am curious what preventative food they asked you to purchase fro Spud?

sugarcatmom
November 25th, 2010, 04:53 PM
After I caught him straining to pee and licking at himself, I took Spud to the vet and he was diagnosed with a bladder infection. So now he is on antiobiotics for three weeks and preventative food forever.

How was the infection diagnosed? Did they do a culture and sensitivity on a urine sample aquired by cystocentisis?

You might have mentioned this before, I can't remember, but what was Spud eating before (wet? dry?) the prescription food. And as Winston asked, but food does the vet have him eating now?

cats+horse
November 26th, 2010, 12:36 AM
The food is MediCal Preventative from Royal Canin. Wet and dry (although dry is just for snacking).

Spud was not diagnosed through a urine sample. With Spud's positive Leukemia diagnosis, and the fact that his bladder was empty at the vet clinic, the vet decided that keeping him around at the vet clinic and procuring a pee sample would cause unneccessary stress that may aggravate the leukemia, especially since he was just at the vet on Monday for a checkup and already stressed about that. In fact, I'm not convinced the trip to the clinic didn't kick-start the bladder infection due to stress...

Anyways, he did a feel test and confirmed the bladder was empty and not causing pain at that point. Based on my observations (straining to finish urinating, crying, licking at himself, strong smelling urine) and the empty bladder, he was almost 100% sure that it was a bladder infection. I am still going to collect the urine on my own and bring it down to the clinic, to be sure.

sugarcatmom
November 26th, 2010, 08:35 AM
The food is MediCal Preventative from Royal Canin. Wet and dry (although dry is just for snacking).

What was he eating before?

These are the ingredients in the Preventive dry food:

Chicken Meal, Rice, Corn Gluten Meal, Corn, Chicken Fat, Dried Egg Powder, Natural Flavour, Dried Brewer’s Yeast, Tomato Pomace (Source of Lycopene), Dried Tomato (Source of Lycopene), Calcium Sulphate, Dried Beet Pulp, Flax Meal, Fish Oil, Potassium Chloride, DL-Methionine,

And this is the wet:

Water Sufficient for Processing, Pork By-Products, Chicken, Chicken Liver, Pork, Rice Flour, Salmon, Fish Oil, Guar Gum, Natural Flavour,

There is nothing magical in either of them, with some pretty poor quality ingredients (for an exorbitant price). The dry contains DL-methionine, an acidifier used to acidify urine and theoretically prevent struvite crystal formation. Except here's the kicker: if one was feeding a species appropriate food (ie meat-based, NOT plant based like most dry foods - including this one - are) in the first place, then the urine would be naturally acidic and struvite formation unlikely. One of the big problems with these acidifying diets is that they can actually cause a bigger problem: urine that is too acidic and therefore likely to form calcium oxalate crystals, which are much harder to get rid of if they form stones (surgery is the only way).

It is absolutely necessary that you read this link: http://www.catinfo.org/?link=urinarytracthealth Should explain things much better than I can. Given Spud's FeLV status, it's essential that he eat a top quality WET food, no dry, to keep his immune system in top form. These prescription diets do not fit the bill, no matter what the vet tells you.

In fact, I'm not convinced the trip to the clinic didn't kick-start the bladder infection due to stress...

It's entirely possible that stress is a factor in his urinary tract issues, but I'd be willing to bet it's not due to infection. Cystitis, painful sterile inflammation of the bladder, is related to stress and diet.

he was almost 100% sure that it was a bladder infection. True UTI in young cats is quite rare (less than 10%). Feline urine tends to be too concentrated for bacteria to grow happily, so if there really is an infection, you would want to know why the bacteria managed to get a foothold.

I am still going to collect the urine on my own and bring it down to the clinic, to be sure.

It won't tell you much at this point if he's already started the antibiotics. Plus, it's practically impossible to collect a urine sample yourself that wouldn't be contaminated. The best way is truly via cystocentisis, if a culture and sensitivity is to be performed. Otherwise any results would be suspect.

cats+horse
November 26th, 2010, 08:19 PM
Thank you for your informative reply. I am researching raw food diets for both the cats, but everything is still in the works. I admit that although I want what is best for the cats, I am still learning.

For now, I'm content to do as the vet tells me, only because based on what has gone on, I'm really just happy I came home from the clinic with a live cat in the crate.

sugarcatmom
November 26th, 2010, 08:42 PM
I am researching raw food diets for both the cats, but everything is still in the works. I admit that although I want what is best for the cats, I am still learning.

Raw diets are certainly an excellent option, but while you're researching that avenue, might as well at least feed the kitties a quality canned food. No need to keep kibble out for snacking. In fact, if you do want to leave food down, canned food is fine for that too. Doesn't go bad like you think it might, as long as it's discarded after about 12 hrs (and if there is food left at 12 hrs, you're probably feeding too much).

For now, I'm content to do as the vet tells me, only because based on what has gone on, I'm really just happy I came home from the clinic with a live cat in the crate.

Some interesting reading on the topic of vets and food:
http://catnutrition.wordpress.com/2008/01/22/dry-food-and-vets/
http://naturalcathealth.blogspot.com/2007/08/for-many-years-like-majority-of-pet.html

cats+horse
November 26th, 2010, 09:07 PM
What do you consider a top quality wet food?

I've always fed my cats Max Cat Gourmet; I thought it was pretty good, but then again, when I was growing up we fed our cats whatever was in the big bags from the grocery store haha :loser: I looked at the ingredients list of the Max Cat, pretty similar to the Preventative food....

Anyways, I've learned lots from the articles you've posted. And at the risk of sounding like an uninformed nitwit, you'll have to forgive me for maybe over-trusting my vet and not being informed enough, but I honestly was just relieved that it was nothing immediately life-threatening and was willing to just do what he told me at the time :)

sugarcatmom
November 26th, 2010, 11:46 PM
What do you consider a top quality wet food?

Seeing as I'm the queen of links :D, I got yet more reading for ya: http://www.catinfo.org/?link=cannedfoods But if you want the Coles Notes version, basically you're looking for a food containing little to no grains, muscle meat rather than byproducts as the main ingredients, and not too much fish. Some of the better products on the market include Wellness, Nature's Variety, Innova Evo 95%, By Nature, Merrick, Eagle Pack, Precise, Ziwi Peak, etc.

And at the risk of sounding like an uninformed nitwit, you'll have to forgive me for maybe over-trusting my vet and not being informed enough,

We've all been there! The reason I've researched feline nutrition so extensively is because I blindly trusted my own vet regarding what to feed my cats, to the detriment of their health (and my vet is not a *bad* vet - quite the contrary). One developed diabetes almost 8 yrs ago, thanks to many years of eating a "lite" dry food, and his brother died way too young at the age of 11 from IBD, a result of the same diet. It's unfortunate that it took these tragic events for me to see the light, but instead of bemoaning the situation, I prefer to see it all as an education in life. And the cats are my teachers. :lovestruck: