I don’t know anything about you, but I’ll bet that as a pet owner, you think no less of your furry friend than family. And like family, you see to it that you readily attend to him – be it an itsy-bitsy hairball or a deviation in the usual feeding pattern.
Hairballs, diet, and behavior aside, perhaps one of the greatest concerns pet owners have is cat urinary tract health – and for good reason.
Urinary tract infection in cats occurs in about five to eight percent of the worldwide population, recurring 50 percent of the time despite treatment. To pet lovers, the blood-stained urine and agonizing pain it brings, as evidenced by their cat’s high-pitched, constant meowing as they strain to urinate is a scenario that is heartbreaking at best.
Luckily, there are tried and tested natural ways against urinary tract infection in cats.
Your cat’s diet is of utmost importance. By nature, cat urine is highly concentrated, which makes them predisposed to bladder inflammation and stone formation. Your goal is to make the urine more diluted by adding large doses of water in the diet.
Unlike humans, though we can’t force fluids to our pets, add to that the fact that cats are not fond of drinking. In the wild, cats get water mostly from their prey and this characteristic is also typical of house cats. It is thus important to get creative. Keep water sources fresh and accessible in various parts of the house. You may even want to offer it through a flowing fountain to encourage them to drink while at play. Make sure too that water is free from fluoride and chlorine, as these are hazardous to cats.
Another key point is to provide canned food instead of kibbles. You see, dry cat food has little to no moisture content; canned chunks of meat contain up to 75% of water, giving him much needed moisture.
To supplement their diet, you can also provide them with readily available herbal and natural supplements that promote cat urinary tract health. Vitamin C is known for its anti-inflammatory and reparative functions. Cranberry juice acidifies the urine, which makes the urinary flora inhospitable to bacteria. Other proven herbal remedies for urinary tract infection for cats include cantharis, staphysagris, and berberis vulg.
More than anything, the best way to avoid feline UTI is through prevention. Aside from diet, you need to develop appropriate lifestyle measures for your cat. Make sure that litter boxes are cleaned regularly. Stasis also promotes bacteria overgrowth, so avoid placing your cat in a cage for extended periods.
Keep the house relatively safe for loitering to avoid trauma to the bladder and kidneys. Make sure that you visit your local veterinarian for routine urinalysis. Cat urinary tract health often becomes compromised by the time they reach four years of age, and it would do you good to strengthen it even before it reaches that time.
Best of all, whenever you notice even a slight difference in your cat’s normal day-to-day routine, investigate at once. In some cases, trivial signs such as excessive licking of the genitalia and smaller amounts of urine are the first signs of urinary tract infection in cats.