FLUTD is more than just an acronym that sounds funny if you try to say it out loud. Flu-ti-duh…Fl-UGH-tee-dee….FLU-tee-dee….yeah, it is awkward. What it stands for is Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease….and wow does that sound intense. In fact, the acronym is not entirely accurate. It is not a disease but a condition or conditions that can affect the bladder and/or urethra of cats.

FLUTD is a potentially life threatening condition for your cat, and at the very least, is extremely uncomfortable. Here are the SIGNS and SYMPTOMS:

  • Painful peeing- But how can you tell if it is painful, its not like they come over and tell you “it burns when I pee.” You have to read their body language. Do they strain when they try to pee, do they cry out, do you notice anxiety around going pee? These are all signs of painful urination,
  • Increased frequency of urination: If you see your cat peeing all the time, it could be a sign of an infection or inflammation. Typically a cat should be going pee a couple tines a day.
  • Blood in their urine: Sometimes you cannot see the blood, and it is only detectable when a vet does test, but if you see blood, then you know there is definitely a problem.
  • Peeing outside the litterbox: Most cats, once they are potty trained, prefer to pee in their litterbox. Cats are very neat like that and prefer to keep things tidy. If you see them peeing outside their box, or in inappropriate places then this is a big sign of something wrong. Typically this happens because of the urgency that can happen with an infection and your cat is not able to make it to the box in time.
  • Over grooming: Yes cats like to groom themselves, but when they do it should be all over their body. If you see your cat licking their urethra (what they pee out of) a lot, then this can be a sign of irritation or pain in that area.
  • Unable to pee: If you see your cat straining to pee but nothing comes out, this could be the sign of a blockage. This is more common in male cats than female cats, but can happen in both. This is an emergency situation and your cat needs to go to a vet immediately!

Healthy Cat Healthy Pee

Typically if your cat is a healthy weight, with a healthy diet, and a healthy exercise routine, they are at a lower risk of getting a FLUTD condition. Middle aged cats are at a higher risk, indoor only cats (because of the lack of exercise and issues with boredom which can cause excess licking), over weight cats, and cats that only eat a dry food, are all at a higher risk of FLUTD.

Common Causes of FLUTD

  • Bladder stones
  • Bacteria
  • Obstructions in the urethra from damage, or bacteria.
  • Tumors
  • General inflammation of the bladder

If you suspect your cat has a problem peeing, it is important to bring them to your Albuquerque vet immediately. This can be a very serious and life threatening condition. It is important to pay attention to your pets bathroom habits and the quality of their bathroom habits, we know it is not the most fun part of pet ownership but it is important to having a healthy cat..