Finding The Right Veterinarian

Signs And Symptoms Of A Feline Urinary Tract Infection

Most people understand that cats are independent and curious and sometimes act in seemingly strange ways. These strange behaviors may not always be an act of defiance, but they may be a sign of a medical problem. Urinary tract infections are a common illness that may cause some fairly telltale behaviors and symptoms. Keep reading to learn what they are and why they happen so you can make an appointment with your veterinarian. 

Inappropriate Elimination

Cats will urinate outside of the litter box for several reasons. The litter may be too dirty or it may not be the type of litter that your cat likes. Felines also urinate outside of the box when they feel stressed or when they have a negative aversion to it. For example, if your dog barks at your cat every time he urinates, then your cat may choose to go elsewhere. 

You should know that cats do not urinate outside the litter box if they are angry or upset at their owners. There is almost always a cause that can be found for the behavior. If you cannot locate a reason, then it is likely that your cat has a urinary tract infection.

The infection can cause lower abdominal pain that can make it difficult for your feline to get in and out of the litter box. Also, urination can be painful and your cat may associate the box with pain. This can make him avoid it altogether. Litter can irritate the urethra as well, and your cat may choose to eliminate on a soft towel, rug, or blanket instead to reduce the discomfort.

Extended Urination

Feline urinary tract infections can be caused by a number of things. Viruses, fungal infections, parasites, and metabolic disorders can all cause the infection. Also, if the litter box is not cleaned often, then bacteria can thrive in the fecal matter and then transfer to the urethra when your cat uses the box. 

In some cases, bladder stones can lead to infections as well. These stones are hard mineral formations that develop within the bladder. Many of the stones are formed from calcium. If small stones form, then your cat may be able to force them out of the bladder. When this happens, the urethra becomes irritated by the stones and an infection can develop. Sometimes the urethra becomes blocked either partially or fully, and you will notice your cat taking a longer time than usual to urinate. 

Even if your feline does not have a bladder stone blockage, bacterial infections cause the urethra to swell. This can close off the small opening that your cat uses to urinate, and it can make it difficult for your cat to pee. If your cat has a urinary tract infection, then you may see your cat sitting in the litter box for a good deal of time trying to pee, but you may only see a few wet drips in the box. 

Blood In Urine

If your cat is able to urinate at least a small amount, then you may see some blood in the litter box. This may be quite alarming. Bloody urine may have several causes. It may develop as the urinary tract infection progresses and causes the bladder to become inflamed. As the bladder swells, your cat places pressure on the organ as he tries to urinate. This can cause the bladder to tear a small amount and leak blood into the bladder.

Also, when an infection develops, the kidneys are often affected along with the bladder. Blood cells may leak or find their way into the kidneys, and the cells pass into the bladder and out the urethra. Blood may also be a sign that bladder stones are scraping the inside of the urethra.

Bloody urine is a serious symptom and should be cause for an eliminate immediate appointment with your veterinarian. For more information, see a website such as