When To Contact Your Vet
Contact your vet immediately for an emergency appointment if your cat is having difficulty passing urine. Never wait to see if your cat improves left untreated a blocked bladder can cause death.
You know your cat if youre concerned its always best to contact your vet.
How To Treat Urinary Blockage In Cats
If your cat has a urinary obstruction, they should be taken to the pet emergency hospital at once to prevent a life-threatening situation. Typically, the attending vet team will treat your cat’s blockage with the following protocols:
- An intravenous catheter may be used to administer fluids and drugs.
- After that, the pet will be anesthetized, allowing them to insert a urinary catheter to clear the blockage and empty the bladder.
- The catheter will be left in place for a few days to allow the urethra to heal and your four-legged friend to recover. Most cats with urinary obstruction remain hospitalized for several days.
- Pain relievers, urethral relaxants, and antibiotics will most likely be prescribed, as well as a specially formulated therapeutic diet.
What To Expect At The Veterinary Visit
When gently pressing on your cats abdomen, your veterinarian may identify a large, firm and often painful bladder from which urine cannot be emptied manually. Once a urinary blockage is identified, emergency treatment and stabilization is required. Blood and urine tests will usually be recommended to help identify any underlying causes as well as complications associated with the blockage. Radiographs or ultrasound may be recommended to help identify urinary tract stones or other underlying issues. Most importantly, an affected cat must have the blockage relieved, typically while under heavy sedation or general anesthesia. A urinary catheter, or tube, is threaded into the urethra to help dislodge the obstruction and re-establish urine flow. The urinary catheter may be left in for a period of one to several days depending on the severity of the obstruction and associated complications. Many supportive treatments may be given during this time, including IV fluids, pain medications and sometimes antibiotics or other medications to help keep the urethra relaxed to encourage urine flow. Not all affected cats can be unblocked with a urinary catheter and some may require emergency surgery, although fortunately this is less common.
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Urinary Blockage In Cats: What All Cat Owners Should Know
A urinary blockage in cats is a very common and serious condition that can become fatal quickly if the symptoms are not noticed. The condition is caused by a blockage in the urethra, which is the tube that carries urine from the bladder to the outside of the body. When the urethra is blocked, urine cannot flow properly and can back up into the bladder leading to the buildup of uremic toxins into the bloodstream. This is a very serious condition and can become fatal quickly if the symptoms are not noticed. The goal of this blog article is to educate cat owners as to the symptoms and disease of urethral obstruction in cats.
How Much Does It Cost To Have A Urethral Obstruction Treated
The final costs for treatment of a case of urethral obstruction in a cat will be influenced by many factors, including:
- how long the cat was blocked and how sick they were on presentation
- whether or not they require surgery to correct the blockage or prevent a future blockage
- whether or not they re-obstruct upon removal of the indwelling urethral catheter
- the diagnostic tests and therapeutic treatments necessary in their care
- the duration of their hospital stay
- the type of hospital in which they receive their care
- your geographic location
Typically speaking though, treatment for a non-surgical case of feline urethral obstruction that doesnt re-obstruct when the catheter is pulled will likely cost you between $7501,500.However, for cats that obstruct multiple times, or those that require surgery as part of their treatment, you should expect the costs to be in excess of $3,000.What type of care is necessary following treatment for a case of feline urethral obstruction?Im glad you asked. Read this article on preventing feline urethral obstruction.If youve ever had a cat that has suffered a urethral obstruction, please take a couple of minutes to fill out the online survey weve created to help reinforce the importance of awareness, preparation, and prevention of this common feline emergency. Thanks very much for your time, and for helping other cat owners.
The information you share will help many other cats.It’s anonymous and will take 2 minutes.Thank you!
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What Does Treatment For Urethral Obstruction Involve
Of primary importance when treating a cat with a urethral obstruction is ensuring that their heart isnt at risk of failure due to the toxic metabolic imbalances created by the obstruction, and stabilizing the situation if it is. This is accomplished through the administration of certain drugs under the guidance of close monitoring of their EKG trace and heart rate, as well as evaluation of a STAT blood sample in most cases.
Some combination of radiographs , blood tests, and urine testing are frequently part of the workup for blocked cats as well. These tests can help to discover urinary stones, electrolyte abnormalities and kidney damage, and possible infections that may be present.
Common treatments include intravenous fluid administration, pain medication, and medications to relax the urethral muscle. Frequent bladder flushing and quantification of urine output should also be done. Additional diagnostics and/or treatments may also be necessary in some cases. Close monitoring of your cats hydration, vital signs, appetite, and comfort are also vitally important, as is close monitoring of certain blood parameters.When the time comes to pull the indwelling urinary catheter, it is important to appreciate that the period of monitoring that follows is vitally important. During this time its not uncommon for cats to re-obstruct, and this is where the frustration of dealing with urethral obstructions comes in .
A Case Of Urinary Blockage In A Cat
Alfie was a young male cat, hed put on a bit of weight since his castration 18 months ago and his energy levels werent the best, he enjoyed lazing on the sofa more than the outdoor life. His owners noticed one day that he was in and out of his litter tray by the minute and seemed unable to get comfortable.
Alfie was normally a very clean cat but that day his owners found him sat straining to toilet in all sorts of unusual places around the house, they also found several small spots of blood but could not work out where they had come from. They thought nothing of Alfies strange behaviour. Two days passed and Alfie was becoming very quiet and not wanting his food. He stopped coming for cuddles and became very lethargic, during that evening his owners phoned the vets as he was barely able to stand. He was rushed into Nantwich Veterinary Hospital where he was diagnosed with a blocked bladder. He had not been able to pass urine for three days which led to his kidneys beginning to fail and his blood potassium to rise to a dangerously high level. Because of this he had become a very weak and a very ill cat.
Alfie was very lucky, he could have died from this condition. We recommend if you notice any changes in your cats toileting habits to contact the surgery for an appointment, as prompt treatment can avoid such a life-threatening condition from developing.
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Why Does A Urinary Blockage Happen
We can see urinary obstruction occur in cats for a number of reasons. Sometimes its a simple urinary tract infection that becomes so severe the inflammatory cells, bacteria and mucous block the cats ability to pee. Other times cats can get stones that form in their bladder and eventually get stuck on the way out.
However the more common reasons for urinary blockage are crystals and whats sometimes referred to as sterile or idiopathic cystitis. Crystals are similar to having sand or sediment form in the bladder. If too many crystals try to leave at the same time, they will get wedged and become stuck in the urethra. Sterile cystitis occurs when there is no infection, stones or crystals in the bladder. The urinary tract will suffer inflammation and spasms often secondary to stress, and prevent the ability of urine to leave easily.
Your veterinarian will test your cats urine and often times take a radiograph to determine what the cause of the blockage is. There is no way for you to know the reason for blockage at home.
What Can I Do To Prevent This
While we cant say how to prevent all cases, there are some things you can do for your cat to reduce the risk of obstruction:
- Add wet food to your cats diet.
- Provide clean, fresh water at all times to encourage drinking. This is very important! Many cats do not like food floating in their water, so try to keep the water bowl away from their food dish. Consider using a water fountain, as some cats enjoy flowing water.
- Make sure to keep your cat a healthy weight. If your cat is overweight, talk to your veterinarian about a weight loss program.
- Provide enough litter boxes . Keep them clean and in a quiet area. Try different sizes and litters to see what your cat prefers.
- If your cat had urinary stones, use a specially formulated veterinary diet to help prevent them from reoccurring.
Please do not hesitate to contact us at Mitchell Veterinary Services immediately, if you suspect your male cat is unable to urinate.
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How Is Urethral Blockage Managed
If your cats urethra is blocked, your vet will need to relieve the obstruction quickly. However, your vet will usually want to perform some tests first to see if there are any significant complications. In particular, cats with a blocked urethra may develop acute kidney failure and may develop very high blood potassium concentrations these are life-threatening complications that should be checked when possible.
To relieve the obstruction, your vet will usually need to sedate or anaesthetise your cat. X-rays or ultrasound may be needed to help determine the underlying cause of the obstruction and to help determine the best treatment method.
If the obstruction is caused by spasm of the urethral muscle, simply sedating or anaesthetising the cat may be sufficient to allow easy passage of a catheter into the bladder.
What Types Of Foods Should I Feed My Cat
If your cat is at risk for urinary blockage, your veterinarian may recommend a urinary diet to help reduce crystalluria and dissolve stones. Increased water consumption is very important in reducing the risk of urinary blockage in cats. Please avoid feeding low-quality kibble-based diets to your cats as these types of foods can increase the risk of urinary blockage.
Urinary blockage in cats is a medical emergency. This condition can easily become fatal if the symptoms are not noticed. The causes of urinary blockage in cats can be due to urinary crystals, stones or inflammatory plugs. With proper treatment, the prognosis can be good and prevention depends on the cause of the urinary blockage. The best prevention is to feed your cat a high-quality diet with at least 50% of the daily amounts in the form of canned food. If you have any further questions about urinary blockage in cats, please contact your veterinarian.
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What Is Urinary Blockage In Cats
A urinary blockage occurs when the urethra, the tube that drains urine from the bladder, becomes obstructed by foreign material. This material plugs the tube-like urethra and prevents urine from leaving the cats body. The buildup of urine can cause the cats bladder to overfill, which will consequently cause the kidneys to swell and rupture.
Since a cats urethra is so narrow, several things can plug it. The most common culprits are:
- Struvite crystals
Sometimes, even involuntary muscle spasms can narrow the urethra enough to cause a blockage. Neutered male cats are far more susceptible to this condition as they have especially narrow urethras.
Urinary blockages are a life-threatening condition a cat that cannot urinate properly could die. The size of the blockage, and the amount of urine your cat is excreting, will determine the timeline and prognosis of the condition. If you suspect your cat is suffering from a urinary blockage, take it to the veterinarian immediately.
Cat Urinary Blockage Recovery
Your cat will be uncomfortable as they recover from their urinary blockage. Whether your kitty underwent surgery or endured a catheter for days, itll be feeling sluggish and distressed. Give your kitty some extra TLC during this time theyll certainly need it.
Its not unusual for your cat to still strain a bit during urination while theyre recovering from a blockage. The inflammation can take a few days to subside. Be sure to monitor your cats urinary output and watch for signs of blood in the urine. You will need to bring them back to the vet if the blockage recurs. To help relieve some of your cats discomfort, you can give them non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications like Onsior or Metacam.
If you dont want to go the pharmaceutical route, CBD products are another option that can aid your cats recovery. Like all mammals, cats have an endocannabinoid system that regulates swelling among other important processes in their body.
CBD interacts with the ECS and can provide some soothing effects for your pet. CBD is a non-intoxicating compound that is well-tolerated by most animals. Your cat wont get high from CBD, and they wont become addicted to the products either.
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Trust The Care Of Your Pet To The Professionals At Everhart Veterinary Medicine
At Everhart Veterinary Medicine, our veterinary professionals strive to provide your pet with the very best of veterinary care. We believe that the best care for your pet should be provided by experienced, compassionate, and knowledgeable veterinary professionals. With two Maryland locations in both Baltimore and Pasadena, we are always ready to welcome your pet as a new patient! Give us a call today at 410-355-3131 or 410-793-7670! For more information, as well as updates on veterinary news and topics, visit us on , , , or Pinterest!
How Much Does It Cost To Treat Blocked Cats
In general, non-surgical treatment for urinary blockage in a cat that does not re-obstruct when the catheter is removed will cost between $750 and $1,500. However, in the case of a cat that obstructs multiple times or requires surgery as part of its therapy, the cost can exceed more than $3,000.
The final costs for treating a blocked cat will depend on several factors, such as how long the animal was blocked, whether they require surgery to correct the obstruction, the duration of the hospitalization, the type of hospital in which they received care, your location, etc.
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Prevent Cat Urinary Obstruction
Cat urinary obstruction is a medical emergency that can be life-threatening. The most common cause is a blockage of the urethra, the tube that carries urine from the bladder to the outside of the body. The blockage can be caused by a buildup of crystals, mucus, or debris, or by a tumor. Treatment requires immediate veterinary care, and may include surgery, medication, or both. Prevention is the best cure, and can be achieved by feeding a diet that promotes urinary health, providing plenty of fresh water, and keeping the litter box clean.
Male cats are the only ones who have urinary obstruction problems. Male cats have much larger and narrower urethras than females. It is not a common condition, but when it happens, it can be very painful and pose a serious risk to your health. If obstruction is caused by a spasm of the urethral muscle, sedating or numbing the cat may be effective. If there has been a significant blockage, your veterinarian may need to leave the catheter in for a few days. Depending on the underlying cause, more treatment may be required. For the time being, cats may need to take anti-inflammatory medications, spasmsolytics, and possibly analgesics. Management should be focused on the underlying cause of urethral obstruction for the long term. Obstruction can be treated with surgical intervention if it is repeated despite the appropriate management.
Cat Urinary Blockage Home Remedies
Unfortunately, there is not much you can do to remedy a urinary blockage at home. Cats require veterinary attention, and trying to solve the issue at home may worsen the problem. Further on in this article, well take a look at what you can do at home to prevent blockages from happening.
When you bring your cat to the vet, he or she will likely sedate your pet immediately. Then, they will place a urinary catheter in your cats urinary tract for up to 72 hours to help the bladder drain. During this time, the vet will also monitor your cats cardiac function and other vitals. They will also administer intravenous fluids if needed.
The vet will treat your cat with pain medication and muscle relaxers as they flush your cats bladder. You can expect your cat to be hospitalized for a few days while the vet treats the urinary blockage.
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What Causes Urinary Blockages In Cats
Urinary blockages are usually caused by plugs of proteinaceous sludge, crystals and/or small stones that become lodged within a cats urethrathe tube leading from the urinary bladder to the outside of the body. Neutered males have very narrow urethras, which explains why these cats have, by far, the highest incidence of urinary blockages. Urinary obstructions can also be caused by involuntary muscular contractions called urethral spasms or, less frequently, by tumors, infections, trauma and other conditions.