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Cat Urinary Issues

Sweefou
June 6th, 2012, 03:58 PM
What a wealth of information here!

Our 6 year old spayed cat, Ping came to us 1 1/2 years ago after being a stray for some time. She has always had a bad coat and vomited a couple of times a week. The vet said she has a sensitive stomach/hairballs. Fair enough.

Ping's has been eating Actr1m food from Walmart thinking it was a better alternative to big box food. Now I realize, not so much.

For the last month or so, Ping has been urinating out of the box, on clothes, bags, etc. This urine crystalizes very quickly. She drinks almost excessively, spending an hour at the water bowl. We've tried cleaning the box more often, getting an extra (we have 3 cats) etc. She also runs away like a crazy cat after she urinates.

I noticed the almost immediate crystallization this morning, and we've scraped together for a consult and urinalysis at the vet tonight.

There are various things the vet thinks it could be: bladder infection, diabetes, kidney failure (could explain the vomiting)

What questions should I ask the vet? How to turn down the standard "Science diet" recommendation due to the bad quality ingredients?

I've also been learning that wet food is better than dry? All 3 cats have only had dry food. I've heard the following brands are better than others: Wellness, Nature's Variety Instinct and Weruva?

Sorry for all the questions, just want to get this right:thumbs up

Longblades
June 6th, 2012, 04:26 PM
We have one with urninary tract issues too. It does sound that you've done ally you can at home on your own. My only advice would be to not decide ahead of time to dismiss the Vet diet. We have our girl on Science Diet CD and when I tried to research comparable ingredients I could not find one, but partly because none, including the big acceptable brands, gave the amount of crystal busting ingredient. And when we tried to switch off the CD to another so called better ingredient food meant for urinary issues her problems came right back. Here's what I suggest, try the Vet food, if offered and logically required. If it works then you know something in food can work. THEN, if you want to try a switch, move to another food.

sugarcatmom
June 6th, 2012, 04:36 PM
Aww, I'm sorry your having some health issues with Ping. I wouldn't jump to any conclusions until you have the urinalysis done at the clinic (even normal cat urine will crystalize fairly quickly, so that may be insignificant). If you can, I would make sure that the urine is acquired via cystocentisis (needle in the bladder - but it's not as bad as it sounds!) and sent out to a lab for a culture and sensitivity. The C&S will cost a bit more, but it's absolutely the best way to determine if there is a bacterial infection. Ask for a copy of all lab results as well.

You're right about feeding wet food rather than dry, so hopefully your kitties won't give you too much trouble switching them over. If you need any tips, just ask. I've got a ton of links on the subject, and spent many months converting my older guy after a lifetime of kibble addiction. But it can be done!!

If the vet tries to strong-arm you into feeding a prescription food (and some of their tactics can be downright sleazy, so hopefully your vet doesn't go down that path), just simply say no-thanks. Your cat, your decision. Or alternatively, you can offer to try 1 can and then claim that your cat wouldn't eat it.

Good luck at the vets! Do let us know what the results are. :goodvibes:

Sweefou
June 6th, 2012, 09:21 PM
Ping had the urinalysis done, the PH was 6.5, specific gravity was 1.049 and her urine was FULL of struvite crystals. They showed me on the microscope from a small sample of fresh urine, and there were piles of them large and small.

I left with a Hills bladder dry food to use for 3 months, I'm going to add a quality wet food as well. The vet said it is painful, and the likely cause of not using the litter box and being generally grumpy. She always gets mad and tears around the house after she pees, so hopefully she will get some relief.

Thanks guys:thumbs up

Barkingdog
June 6th, 2012, 09:42 PM
Ping had the urinalysis done, the PH was 6.5, specific gravity was 1.049 and her urine was FULL of struvite crystals. They showed me on the microscope from a small sample of fresh urine, and there were piles of them large and small.

I left with a Hills bladder dry food to use for 3 months, I'm going to add a quality wet food as well. The vet said it is painful, and the likely cause of not using the litter box and being generally grumpy. She always gets mad and tears around the house after she pees, so hopefully she will get some relief.

Thanks guys:thumbs up

I wish vets would carry other brands of pets food besides Hills. I keep hearing this is not the best food out there.

Sweefou
June 6th, 2012, 10:19 PM
Hills and Royal Canin "pay the bills" offering many incentives and sponsorships. If you read the ingredients, it's no better than a store brand. I need to figure out a wet food that will help, and an "acidiser" to add to the food.

Love4himies
June 7th, 2012, 09:57 AM
So sorry to hear about you kitty. :grouphug:



I left with a Hills bladder dry food to use for 3 months, I'm going to add a quality wet food as well.

:wall::wall::wall::wall::wall::wall: Please do not feed her any dry, in fact adding a bit of water to canned would be preferable so she can keep her bladder flushed.

Here are the ingredients:

Ingredients
Brewers Rice, Corn Gluten Meal, Chicken By-Product Meal, Pork Fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols and citric acid), Chicken Liver Flavor, Fish Oil, Lactic Acid, Potassium Chloride, Calcium Sulfate, Choline Chloride, Vitamin E Supplement, Iodized Salt, Potassium Citrate, DL-Methionine, vitamins (Vitamin E Supplement, Niacin, Thiamine Mononitrate, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Calcium Pantothenate, Riboflavin, Biotin, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Vitamin A Supplement, Folic Acid, Vitamin D3 Supplement), Taurine, minerals (Ferrous Sulfate, Zinc Oxide, Copper Sulfate, Manganous Oxide, Calcium Iodate, Sodium Selenite), preserved with Mixed Tocopherols and Citric Acid, Phosphoric Acid, Rosemary Extract, Beta-Carotene.

Brewers Rice??? Corn Gluten Meal? Is that really what a cat, which is an oblique carnivore, should be eating? It never ceases to amaze me what Vet's are selling to their customers :yell:. Do they even read the ingredients?


Here's a scenario to give some thought to:

You have a child. You only feed your child crackers. You do not allow your child to drink out of a cup, but to use her/his tongue to lap up water. What would you think your child's condition would be?

Nature's Variety Instinct, canned is a great food. Along with Wellness (grainfree) canned, Weruva, Fromm's 4 star, Organics by Nature and even Felidae, grain free, canned. These can be found at your local quality Pet Food store (Global is my fav) or Pet Value.

Love4himies
June 7th, 2012, 10:05 AM
Hills and Royal Canin "pay the bills" offering many incentives and sponsorships. If you read the ingredients, it's no better than a store brand. I need to figure out a wet food that will help, and an "acidiser" to add to the food.

Please don't add anything to a quality canned. Adding an acidifier can lead to other stones (calcium oxalate) that must be removed by surgery. If you really want to make sure your cat has healthy urine, a properly made raw meat diet is best. The body will regulate the ph of the urine. Quality canned is second best.

Here is some great reading on cat nutrition:

http://www.catinfo.org/

Barkingdog
June 7th, 2012, 10:43 AM
Hills and Royal Canin "pay the bills" offering many incentives and sponsorships. If you read the ingredients, it's no better than a store brand. I need to figure out a wet food that will help, and an "acidiser" to add to the food.

I did not say Hills was better than other pets food. I think Hills pet dog it overrated. It did nothing for my dog when he was sick.

Sweefou
June 7th, 2012, 11:29 AM
I was actually on that catinfo site this morning, we are switching to canned:)

From what I gather, the wet food alone may help get rid of and keep the crystals away.

sugarcatmom
June 7th, 2012, 11:36 AM
I need to figure out a wet food that will help, and an "acidiser" to add to the food.

I agree with everything L4H says, and especially the part about not adding an acidifier just yet. The ph of her urine at the vet was 6.5, which is a perfectly normal level. Since ph does fluctuate throughout the day, maybe testing her urine yourself with ph test strips from a health food store would be the first step. If it turns out that she's regularly above 7, then perhaps at that point you could consider adding a small amount of L-methionine to some wet food (and testing often to see how it effects her).

I think just getting Ping off the dry food should really go a long way to helping flush out any crystals that form. You could also add some supplements to help sooth and strengthen the lining of her bladder/urinary tract, such as glucosamine/chondroitin, marshmallow root or cornsilk powder.

More info on FLUTD here:
http://www.catinfo.org/?link=urinarytracthealth
http://www.holisticat.com/flutd.html