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Dee-O-Gee September 21st, 2013 10:35 PM

Collecting Cat Urine Sample
Anyone have any strategies on how to collect a cat urine sample?

Kitty, our 13 YO is approaching her 9th life, very quickly. We took her to the vet today and while he took a blood sample, he equipped us with a little pill jar to collect a urine sample. :wall:

Not to drag this out into a long post/story but Kitty has been urinating in spots that do not contain litter and items that require daily laundering or extensive renovation (hardwood floors-AGAIN!). :frustrated:

Our vet gave us few cans of Medi-Cal Urinary SO that he recommended we start [U]introducing[/U] to her regular food and suspects she has crystals or a UTI.

Our best guess tonight is that we've isolated her (away from Bella, our other cat) into a spare bedroom equipped with a empty litter box lined with Saran/Plastic wrap on one end with, her food/water bowl on the opposite.

Any other suggestions on how to capture a urine sample? :shrug:

Fortunately, our vet said if she does urinate anytime tomorrow, we can drop it off and he'll test it right then to get immediate results.

Loki Love September 21st, 2013 10:48 PM

Whenever our cats have needed a urine sample, they just do a 'day visit' at the vet's office. The vet has a special litter that they use for collection.

I have no idea what they expect you to do with a bottle to collect..?!

Longblades September 22nd, 2013 08:16 AM

Visit at the Vet's for us too. Dogs are hard enough but cats are much more private. Good luck.

Winston September 22nd, 2013 01:09 PM

DOG IMO the best and most accurate method would be centysis (not sure of spelling?) they remove it with a needle and you wont risk contamination usually. Getting the sample yourself can be tricky if its not sterile. They also have a litter which is disgusting but its called NOSORB.
I feel your pain on the inappropriate peeing. Tabitha destroyed the hardwood in out master bedroom. Its now on the to do list! good luck!

After trying many times to get a sample we found the first method was the easiest and each time Tabitha was not bothered by their method of collection.

Digston September 22nd, 2013 02:16 PM

Cystocentesis, and it is the most sterile way to collect a urine sample. They insert a needle directly into the bladder and draw up some urine. It is not without risks though, which is why most vets stick with trying to get a sample the natural way.

I've used the same method as you to get a feline urine sample in clinic, minus the saran wrap. If all your vet is interested in is crystals then sterility isn't as big a deal.

Good Luck!

Reg September 22nd, 2013 05:56 PM


With 5 cats I have found it necessary to take urine samples, and do my own urinalysis at home. I try to do the younger animals twice a year, and the older ones 3 to 4 times year unless there's an issue and then I do it immediately. I use 2 different methods of collection. The situation at hand dictates the method of collection. If I'm taking a sample just for a checkup I will use a spoon (gravy spoon shape) which holds about 20 mL, and the volume is sufficient for what I need. What I do is wait until the cat is going to the litter box, and then place the spoon under the cat's bottom, and in the stream to take the sample. This works great with some cats no problem. Some have their butt too close to the litter, and a very light lift on the tail can help. This does not work very well on a Manx, and the Pixie Bob is not impressed. I have one that will not agree with this idea at all, and if he could speak I think he would tell me where he would like to see the spoon placed, and that wouldn't be under his tail.

The 2nd method I use is a clean litter box that I put some clean natural aquarium gravel in. I will then put the litter box, and the cat that I want the sample from in a separate room by itself. Then start the waiting and checking game until you receive the sample. After the sample is deposited in the litter box I will tip the box so that the sample runs into a corner, and I will use a syringe to receive the sample and put in a container. I will then wash the gravel, and put it out in the sun to dry for a couple of days, before bagging it again for the next use.

Here are a couple of websites that are worth the read, and give you some idea on taking the sample, and the testing procedures of the urine sample.



I have one small issue with the author's timeline of 24 hours for freshness. Lab techs tell me that it is best to have the samples tested as soon as possible after they have been taken. Unrefrigerated they should be done within 2 hours, refrigerated 4 hours after that the accuracy will start to drop off. Just something to check out.

Hopefully this will help a wee bit, and your kitty will be accommodating and give freely of itself in your endeavors for retrieving a urine sample.

lindapalm September 23rd, 2013 12:50 AM

I buy a new litter box, and line it with tin foil. The foil can be taken out of the litter box and slightly folded, then put one end over the pill jar and tip the other end till everything drains into the jar.

Dee-O-Gee September 23rd, 2013 10:18 PM

Thank you everyone for your wonderful suggestions! :grouphug:

We were able to collect a sample yesterday morning from the litter box lined with plastic wrap. Hubby tilted the box while I syringed out a small sample. The vet examined it yesterday and concluded she does have crystals and prescribed 250 mg of Cephalexin, twice daily.

We took Kitty back tonight for a Complete Blood Count sample and will know the results of this test tomorrow morning to see how her kidney's are functioning.

In the meantime, we are slowly introducing her to the Medi Cal Urinary SO food but, I am not a big fan of Royal Canin foods. :frustrated:

I did some research on alternatives and a few people wrote about Petcurean NOW cat food. :shrug: If anyone has any other suggestions about how to control mineral concentration, I'd be open for suggestions.

Thanks again everyone. :thumbs up

Dee-O-Gee September 23rd, 2013 10:33 PM

I feel your pain on the inappropriate peeing. Tabitha destroyed the hardwood in out master bedroom. Its now on the to do list! good luck!


Thank you Winston. :grouphug:

We've had to hide and store all of the dog beds, throw mats and good blankets as well. We just had all our hardwood floors sanded and refinished in July which makes this a very difficult predicament/situation. We don't want to put her down because she's having a problem urinating and have elected to try and remedy the situation with something small as changing her diet and an antibiotic.

We'll see how the blood work comes back tomorrow as far as internal organs and kidney function.

sugarcatmom September 24th, 2013 08:30 AM

The vet examined it yesterday and concluded she does have crystals and prescribed 250 mg of Cephalexin, twice daily.

Cephalexin is an antibiotic, so I'm not sure why that would be prescribed for crystals. Crystal formation and bacterial infection don't necessarily go hand in hand.

What was Kitty eating before?

Dee-O-Gee September 24th, 2013 11:02 PM

Thanks SCM

The CBC test came back today and the vet called to advise all her organs are functioning normal so I too, am at a loss as to why the vet prescribed Cephalexin. :shrug: We've given her 2 doses so far and both times, about a 1/2 hour after giving her the med, she's thrown up. :wall:

Kitty has been eating Fancy Feast "Grilled Tuna Feast in Gravy" all her 13 years. :o and this is what I don't understand.

From what I've read, crystals are either present because of a lack of moisture in their food, lack of water intake or [U]stress[/U].

Pet food manufacturer's have to abide to a certain degree of guaranteed analysis and was advised that switching Kitty from a cat food such as Fancy Feast "Grilled Tuna" that's loaded with moisture to another cat food such as NOW or GO wouldn't make any difference in whether or not she has enough moisture in her diet that would prevent the crystals.

Kitty has always been (for a lack of better terms) a scaredy cat. She's never been a people or animal companion. If we entertain, she hides. If the music or television is too loud, she hides. If Gryphon or Mollie look at her the wrong way and either one of them start to approach her, she runs and hides. Her relationship with Bella, our other cat is a whole other story and firmly believe that the problem with the crystals is not from her food but, is stemming from her levels of stress. She's been like this all her life.

It's just starting to get very stressful for everyone in my house because we don't want to give her away or have her PTS but we cannot keep living in a litter box either. :(

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