Feline lower urinary tract disease or so called FLUTD is a condition which effect 1-3% of the cat population each and every year according to the International Cat Care charity. It might not seem like a lot but it is in fact one of the most common diseases out there.
Is my cat at risk?
There is a number of different underlying causes which can contribute to FLUTD and they can affect cats of any age, breed or gender but in general the disease in more common in middle-aged, neutered and over-weight cats, cats which lack exercise, are house bound and follow an exclusively dry diet. Stress is also a factor, stressed cats are more likely to become affected by it so it’s very important that your cat has a stress free, calm environment to live in.
How to recognise FLUTD?
Well, there is a range of different signs which vary from over grooming, changes in normal behaviour, more frequent, painful or problematic urination, blood in the urine or urinating outside of litter-box… be on the lookout for any of the changes described above as they may well suggest that your cat is affected by FLUTD.
What causes it?
This is a good question! As it stands around 65% of cats affected with FLUTD had no specific underlying disease causing it. Bladder stones, bacterial infections or urethral plugs are some of known causes of FLUTD, the rest isn’t known 🙁
What if my cat has a FLUTD?
Well, if you think that your kitty might be affected by it, a trip to the vet is a must. The vet will try to find an underlying cause and advice on further action.
Can FLUTD be prevented?
This I am not sure about but you can definitely undertake certain steps to help minimise the chances of it occurring:
- Good hydration is a must – fresh water in a few places around the house seems like a great place to start.
- Keep your cats weight under control and do not allow it to become a problem.
- Feed your cat wet food or at least a mixture of wet and dry food or ideally a special urinary cat food which was developed with FLUTD in mind.
- Make your home as much cat friendly as possible and avoid situations which can add abnormal stress levels for them.
- Play with your cat, especially if you have an indoors cat. Cats, just like everyone else, need some exercises to keep them fit and in good health.
Have you ever had a cat affected by FLUTD?
Has your friendly vet ever raised it as an issue for you?
Do you think your cat is at a higher risk of contracting FLUTD based on what you have just read?
* Post written in collaboration with Hill’s.