Experienced and professional animal trainer provide their insights in answering this question :
A. To rule out UTI, have your vet collect a sterile sample for urinalysis and culture. Blood work may be able to diagnose kidney disease. The symptoms can be similar but kidney disease will progress to more serious symptoms such as vomiting, lethargy, loss of appetite or even cardiac symptoms or hypertension in severe cases.

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A urine culture is the best method for confirming the presence of a UTI. A urine culture involves sending a small part of the collected urine to a laboratory that will try to grow the bacteria. If no bacteria grow, then a UTI is unlikely to be present.
The most common symptoms of kidney infection in cats are fever, vomiting, loss of appetite, and changes in urination habits. Additional symptoms may include increased water consumption and abdominal discomfort. However, a significant number of cats with pyelonephritis have no clinical signs.
Blood work will provide us with a lot of information about organ function, diabetes, urinary tract infections, and hyperthyroidism. Sometimes we have to add on more lab work to the screening panels to make a further diagnosis.
The fastest and simplest test is a urinalysis, which analyzes a sample of your urine, looking for bacteria and blood cells (both white and red). If you have a urinalysis, your doctor may ask you to clean your genital area with a special cloth (to kill exterior bacteria) and to begin collecting your urine mid-stream.
In a urinalysis, your veterinarian will consider the concentration of the urine, its pH, and the presence of protein, blood cells, bacteria, and other cells that generally should not be found in feline urine, all of which provide important information regarding the health of a cat`s kidneys.
Although some urinary tract infections can heal on their own, if needed, we will prescribe antibiotics. Following all the instructions a vet gives you is the best way to ensure that a relapse or reinfection does not occur. Reinfection could point to an underlying or more serious issue.
Cats who have a urinary tract infection are likely to drink more water as they try to flush the infection out of their bodies. They may urinate more often or, on the other hand, may not be able to urinate much at all when dealing with this problem.
Because bacteria can change the pH of your cat`s urine long before your cat starts showing outward symptoms, PrettyLitter can give you a heads up. If your cat is using PrettyLitter, the granules will turn blue to indicate that your cat may have a urinary tract infection or other health problem.
You can buy over-the-counter UTI dipstick tests at your local pharmacy or online. They work much like a pregnancy test: Each kit comes with a testing strip (usually three to a kit). You wet a test strip by holding it in your urine stream for a few seconds.
If your UTI goes untreated, it may progress into a more serious infection. “An untreated bladder infection can become a kidney or prostate infection. These infections are more serious, because they can travel through the blood stream causing sepsis. Sepsis makes people very ill and can even be critical,” Dr.
Most cats will fully recover within 7-10 days of developing a urinary tract infection, but they may need to remain on a canned diet for longer.
So, while dry cat food does not directly cause lower urinary tract or kidney problems in cats, without additional fluids it could create an increased risk of dehydration and speed progression of urinary tract issues in cats who may be already predisposed to developing them.
When a litter box does not get cleaned properly, cats risk squatting over and stepping in old excretions. Bacteria from festering waste in the dirty litter box can travel up the urethra, causing a urinary tract infection (UTI) in your cat.
Initial identification tests for diagnosis usually range from $200-750. Long-term management of chronic kidney failure may range from $100-500 a month, depending on what medications are prescribed and how often fluid therapy is needed.
Symptoms of end stage kidney failure in cats include dull sunken eyes, inability to walk, body odour, incontinence in bladder or bowels, refusal to eat or drink, seizures, confusion, pacing and restlessness, withdrawing, hiding and running away.
That said, when cats do develop urinary tract infections (a UTI) it is often the result of an endocrine disease such as hyperthyroidism or diabetes. It is also the case that cats who suffer from UTIs are typically 10 years of age or older.
A dirty bowl or stale water can result in bacteria build-up, parasites and viruses that aren`t healthy for your kitty. Bacteria-filled water can cause serious illness in our cats like urinary infections and GI issues.
Cats with UTIs try to urinate very frequently, they may pass only small amounts of urine, they may strain to urinate, they may cry out or whine when urinating, and there may be blood visible in their urine. Urinating outside of the litterbox is also a red flag that something is wrong in the bladder.
The pain from the combination of the urinary tract infection and rawness in the area of continuous licking may cause your cat to scream out in pain, especially when urinating. The majority of cats with a urinary tract infection will generally have urine that is discolored or tinged with blood.
Any cat can develop FLUTD however urinary tract disease is most often diagnosed in middle-aged indoor cats that are overweight, eat a dry food diet or do not get enough physical activity. Male cats are also more prone to urinary diseases since their narrower urethras are more likely to become blocked.
It`s common for cats to begin eliminating outside of their litter box when they have a medical problem. For example, a urinary tract infection or crystals in the urine can make urination very painful. Cats often associate this pain with the litter box and begin to avoid it.
Urinary Tract Infections (UTI`s)

One of the most common reasons why cats lay in their litter box is due to urinary issues, including; Inflamed bladder or urinary tract. Crystals in their urine. Blockages of the urethra.

“A UTI can last several days up to a week without antibiotics. If symptoms are persisting longer than a week then antibiotics are typically necessary,” Dr. Tharakan says.

Relevant Questions and Answers :

the most relevant questions and answers related to your specific issue

Q. I have a cat with that virur (aids) could u tell me about her disposition and care
ANSWER : A. Thanks for your question.

Unfortunately the discussion about what you asked has no straightforward answers and can be quite complex.

First thing that I would double check, considering that your cat is very young, is whether she is really infected. It is important to remember that kittens born to FIV-infected queens will receive antibodies from the queen via the milk, and so will test positive early in life though they may not be infected. Kittens with a positive test result should always be retested when they are 5-6 months of age.

Many FIV infected cats are able to live happily with the virus for a long period of time, and indeed the virus will not necessarily ever cause clinical disease.

Different factors will influence the onset of disease in your cat including:

– The ”subtype” of FIV your cat is infected with,

– Her immune response

– The presence or absence of other infectious agents.

To maintain a good quality of life for your cat, I will give you these general guidelines, but you will then find certainly helpful to speak with your veterinarian for specific cases.

– Some antiviral medications used in human patients with HIV infection have also been shown to help some cats with FIV infection. Interferons may have anti-viral effects and modify immune responses. A recombinant feline interferon (feline interferon omega) is available in some countries. Down side is the cost usually.

– Keep your cat away from other cats and possible source of infections;

– Maintain good quality nutrition;

– Keep your cat indoor if possible regularly checked by your veterinarian;

– Keep your cat away from non-infected cats.

Q. Why do cats meow?
ANSWER : A. Cat parents often wish they could better understand what their favorite feline friends want or desire. A cat’s meow can be interpreted in many different ways and can indicate an array of feelings and needs. Here are some of the most common reasons for your cat’s vocalizations:

1. Greeting- Many cats will meow as a greeting when you enter your home or walk into a room. Cats will also meow at another cat or animal in the household to extend a hello and acknowledge the other animal’s presence.

2. Attention – An exuberant meow followed by leg rubbing or another attention seeking behavior may indicate your cat is looking for some quality time spent together. Some petting or rubbing behind the ears may be in order.

3. Hunger – A meowing cat is often a hungry cat. This is one of the most common reasons for a cat to vocalize to their owners. A cat will meow to get your attention at feeding times or even when they want extra food.

4. Sickness – A sick or hurt cat may begin to meow excessively, warranting a visit to the veterinarian. There are numerous reasons for a cat in distress to meow—whether it is related to an upset stomach, an injured leg or a urinary blockage. These meows should be carefully investigated.

5. Entering or leaving – Most cats will vocalize when they want to be let in or out of a room. You may notice when you are in the bathroom or behind the closed door of a room that your cat begins to meow, scratches at the door, and often reaches its paw under the door. This is a clear indication that the cat wants to be where you are.

6. Angry – An agitated cat may meow to warn their owner or another household pet that they are upset and would like to be left alone. This angry meow may increase in sound volume as the cat becomes more stressed or agitated. Often a cat will exhibit this type of meow at the veterinary office when they are unhappy with their examination or restraint.

Each feline is different and so are their vocalizations. Learn to understand the variety of meows your cat uses on a daily basis. This will help you develop a better relationship with your cat and help them live a more trusting and happier life.

Q. Vet is saying our dog has heartworm based on a sonogram. All tests are negative and he has no cough. I am very confused
ANSWER : A. Very rarely, a dog can have a heartworm infection and still test negative on an antigen test since the antigen tested for is produced only by the female worms. If the heartworms were not fully mature, or there were only male worms present, the antigen test result in infected animals would be falsely negative. This means the test result is negative when the animal is really infected.

An antibody test will be positive even if only one male worm is present. But this test has a downfall, too. Although it is very good at giving positive results when an infection is present, a positive antibody test just means the animal has been exposed to heartworms, but may or may not currently have heartworm disease. A negative antibody test means the animal has never been exposed to heartworms.

If they are actually seeing the heartworms via ultrasound, I would follow precautions by restricting exercise. This requirement might be difficult to adhere to, especially if your dog is accustomed to being active. But your dog’s normal physical activities must be restricted as soon as the diagnosis is confirmed, because physical exertion increases the rate at which the heartworms cause damage in the heart and lungs. The more severe the symptoms, the less activity your dog should have. And the diagnosis should be confirmed. Once a dog tests positive on an antigen test, the diagnosis should be confirmed with an additional—and different—test. Because the treatment regimen for heartworm is both expensive and complex, your veterinarian will want to be absolutely sure that treatment is necessary.

Q. My cat continues to scratch on furniture and carpets. He has plenty of scratching posts around the house. Please help!
ANSWER : A. Scratching is a natural behavior in cats that can be frequently frustrating for pet owners who want to keep their furniture from being shredded on a constant basis. The texture of furniture and carpet is very appealing to cats and this why they frequently choose to spend their time on this activity as opposed to playing with their own cat toys. Here are some suggestions to help curb this unwanted behavior:

1. Purchase a cat scratching post or cat tree that is covered in carpeted or textured material. Place it in an appealing spot that your cat would be inclined to spend time (eg. in the sun). You can also place catnip on the scratching post or cat tree to make your cat even more interested in the new object.

2. You can utilize double sided tape on the ends of the furniture because you cat will not like the sticky feeling and will learn to not scratch in that region. Use the tape that has a lighter adhesive in order to prevent any permanent damage. Other materials, such as aluminum foil or bubble wrap can also be placed on the furniture to discourage the scratching.

3. Keep nails trimmed short by either learning to do this on your own at home or using a veterinary technician, or groomer. Nails can usually be trimmed every 6-8 weeks.

4. Redirect the unwanted behavior. If your cat begins scratching, use a favorite or new toy to distract the cat from the scratching. Give your cat positive praise for not scratching.

5. As a last resort you can use a spray bottle full of water to spritz your cat when he or she is scratching inappropriately at your furniture. Generally, cats do not like water and this will discourage them from continuing the behavior.

Have patience with your cat because it can takes time to understand this is an unwanted behavior and that furniture is not another toy for them to use. You can always consult your veterinary or veterinary behaviorist to help with ideas or further solutions to this problem.

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Q. What tests are performed to determine if a cat has either a urinary tract infection or kidney infection? Are symptoms the same for both?
ANSWER : A. To rule out UTI, have your vet collect a sterile sample for urinalysis and culture. Blood work may be able to diagnose kidney disease. The symptoms can be similar but kidney disease will progress to more serious symptoms such as vomiting, lethargy, loss of appetite or even cardiac symptoms or hypertension in severe cases.

Q. Male neutered cat [1 1/2 years old] has just started trying to spray everywhere around the house. Nothing is coming out. No recent changes.
ANSWER : A. Changes in urinary habits can be caused by a number of things, especially in neutered male cats. Attempting to urinate or have accidents in places other than the litter box can often be a sign of a urinary tract infection, or crystals and debris in the bladder causing problems. Pets may need to go more frequently, may dribble or urinate in small amounts more often, may have accidents or may have blood-tinged or cloudy urine.Infections are usually treated with medications and changes to the diet, however in some cases of large stones or crystals surgery may be needed.

Male cats can also experience urinary blockage. This is due to a unique anatomical part or the urethra that forms a U-shape before exiting the body in male cats. If a cat has crystals or other debris in the urine, it can block at this point preventing urine from being able to exit. Cats may attempt to urinate without producing anything, may become very vocal (indicating pain) or may have a hunched back, full abdomen or pain in the abdomen (protecting the very full bladder). Urinary blockage IS a medical emergency so if suspected, your vet or local emergency clinic should be contacted immediately. Treatment usually involves a hospital stay and catheterization of the bladder to remove the blockage and allow urine to drain followed by medications and a change in diet to prevent further problems.

It is best to try and collect a sample of urine and make an appointment for your cat if he has had a change in urinary habits. If you do suspect a blockage, then contact your vet ASAP is best.

Q. Treatment & diet recommendation for Fanconi disease with stage 3-4 kidney failure
ANSWER : A. I’m sorry you’ve gotten this challenging diagnosis on your dog. The treatment for kidney failure in its acute phase usually centers around what we call “diuresis”, which means hospitalization with fairly aggressive IV fluid therapy in order to help the kidneys “rest” while the extra fluid load flushes toxins from the body, which is the kidneys’ job. Some specialty centers have actual dialysis, which is the mainstay of therapy for human kidney failure but isn’t widely available in veterinary medicine.

Also we try to control and treat the symptoms of the failing kidneys. This usually involves anti-nausea drugs and drugs to control the excess acid in the GI tract.

Sometimes with Fanconi’s syndrome we have to add bicarbonate to the fluids in order to control the blood pH. Potassium supplementation may also have to be given; like pH this depends on the current blood level of potassium. We also sometimes provide amino acid supplementation as well. Basically we are trying to replace what the kidneys are losing.

As far as diet goes we typically feed the standard prescription renal diets, which are low in protein and phosphorus. And as these dogs are susceptible to urinary tract infections it’s recommended to monitor the urine with a urine culture every 6 months, to look for infection.

Q. Male cat, 6 yrs old, neutered, good health. Suddenly urinating too often/sporadic. Now 4 days into this behavior, what can I do?
ANSWER : A. Sudden changes in urinary behavior such as an increase in frequency, sudden accidents in the house, or your cat attempting to urinate resulting in only a dribble, pain, or blood-tinged and cloudy urine can all indicate a possible bladder infection. Bringing in a sample of your cat’s urine (if possible) or bringing him in for a check-up is best to determine if this is the case. Your vet can then prescribe an antibiotic to help clear issues up.

Male neutered cats are more prone to lower urinary tract diseases as well as urinary blockages due to their unique anatomy. Their urethra makes a U-shaped turn prior to exiting the body and is a prime place for even small crystals or other urinary debris to become stuck and cause a partial or complete blockage. Signs of this blockage can include pain in the abdomen, constant pacing and meowing and attempting to go to the litter box multiple times without success. Blocked urinary tracts ARE a medical emergency and if suspected should be brought to a vet or ER clinic immediately.