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Cat of the Month – Jasper

Jasper is a handsome 4 year old ginger male cat who was brought into the vets as his owner noticed that he was unsettled and straining to pass urine without passing anything.

On examination the vet found that Jasper’s bladder was very full and painful but he wasn’t able to urinate. Jasper was in a lot of pain and needed to have a sedation to have a catheter passed up into his bladder to drain the urine. This condition is called Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease FLUTD) and can have many different underlying causes. Jasper was diagnosed with Idiopathic FLUTD which means that the exact cause is unknown.

Jasper was kept in the hospital for a few days with a urinary catheter in place to allow us to flush his bladder and monitor his urine output. He was also treated with a combination of medications to keep him comfortable and keep his urine flowing. Some cats will recover well after a few days in hospital but unfortunately Jasper was one of the unlucky ones who was in and out of hospital for a couple of weeks due to recurrent problems of obstruction.

Jasper was then referred to a veterinary medicine specialist for further investigation to give him the best chance of recovery, as he continued to have problems. After carrying out more tests he was put on additional medications. Fortunately for Jasper this was successful and he is doing well on his medication. He comes back for regular visits and has become very popular amongst our nurses.

FLUTD is a difficult condition to treat and manage. It is more common in male cats as they have a long narrow urethra compared to female cats and so are more susceptible to problems and obstruction. Overweight cats and indoor cats are also known to be at higher risk of this condition.

Jasper was very lucky that his owners spotted something was wrong early enough for him to be successfully treated. This is a very painful condition and can be life threatening if not treated immediately.

Please make sure you call your vet as an emergency if you notice any of the following signs –
  • Repeated attempts to urinate that are unproductive
  • Crying or discomfort when straining to urinate
  • Increased agitation, possible vomiting.
There are some things you can do at home to help prevent lower urinarytract disease like Jasper’s, which include
  • Increasing water intake
  • Use multiple litter trays around the home
  • Minimising stress
  • Reducing obesity and encouraging exercise
Please let us know if you would like to discuss any of these recommendations in relation to your cat as we have lots more advice to offer.

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Caroline Stevens

Caroline Stevens

Caroline Stevens BSc (Hons), RVN, Dip AVN, Dip He CVN, SQP, ISFM Dip FM - Caroline has been in practice since 2007, qualified in 2011. She have completed her Advanced Nursing Diploma in Clinical Veterinary Nursing and has recently completed her Diploma in Feline Nursing through ISFM. Her main interests are in feline medicine and behaviour, limiting stress in the hospital environment is also very important to her.
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