We have two cats, Poffy and Candy. It’s fair to say that we love them, and they are a big part of our family. When we were recently contacted by Hill’s Science Plan Pet Food asking if we would could help raise awareness of female urinary tract health in cats, I really couldn’t say no.
The health and wellbeing of my cats is important to me. I’m certainly not an expert, but I do my best to keep them as healthy as possible. Honestly though, I didn’t know much about the urinary tract, and how much of a role it can play in a cats overall health!
Feline lower urinary tract diseases, or FLUTDs, can be pretty common but can cause a whole lot of trouble. They are painful and uncomfortable, and can be serious if left untreated.
In humans, talking about urinary health can be an embarrassing issue. As a woman who has suffered her fair share of urinary infections, I understand that. I also understand how uncomfortable they can be, which is why I will be taking steps to try and prevent my cats from suffering from a FLUTD.
There are many potential causes for FLUTDs, including:
- Spending a lot of time indoors – less exercise, being lazy & use of litter trays put cats at a higher risk or getting a urinary infection
- Being Overweight – Excess body weight can increase the risk of developing urinary stones, which can cause blockages and pose a serious health risk
- Not drinking enough – low water intake can increase the risk of a FLUTD
- Being Neutered – the metabolic changes that follow the neutering process can lead to urinary problems
- Stress – A stressed cat has a greater risk of developing urinary health problems
It is important to keep an eye on your cats urinary health, so that you can get her the treatment she needs as quickly as possible. Things to look out for include:
- Your cat shows pain when urinating – straining, crying or any other obvious discomfort such as inflamed genitals
- Changes to your cat’s behaviour – urinating more frequently (possibly with little result), having accidents or passing urine in unusual places
- Changes to urine – cloudy urine or blood, often seen as pink spots in the litter tray
If you spot any of the above signs, it is important to contact your vet as soon as possible!
The good news is, there are steps you can take to prevent your cat from developing a FLUTD.
- Make sure clean, fresh water is available at all times
- Keep an eye on your cats weight – feed small meals throughout the day rather than one or two large meals
- Give them regular exercise to help keep weight down – invest in things to keep your cat entertained indoors and play with them regularly to give them the exercise they need
- Keep litter trays clean – dirty litter trays can result in your cat peeing elsewhere in the house
- Reduce stress in the home – provide a cat with an area they can go to de stress
- Change their food – you can buy urinary cat food to help reduce the risk of FLUTDs
As part of the campaign I was kindly sent a ‘purrst aid box’ including some fun items for Poffy & Candy, along with some samples of Hill’s Science Plan pet food for the cats to try.
Of course, as with anything new that is brought in to the house, the cats were very interested, and were straight in to investigate. I think it helped that there was a little bag of catnip stashed away inside the kit.
Over the last week. the cats have been trying out their new Urinary Health food specifically designed for sterilised cats, and they love it. It supports a healthy urinary tract from the bladder to the kidneys. Until now I didn’t know that switching their food could help prevent infections. Finding a food that they like, which will also help keep them healthy, is great!
Fortunately, we haven’t experienced any urinary problems with either of the cats yet, and I hope that by taking a few easy steps we can help prevent it from ever occurring.
If you would like some more information on keeping your cat happy and healthy, you can visit the Hill’s Science plan page here. And remember, if in doubt, always contact your vet!
Collaboration with Hill’s Science Plan Pet Food