Thursday, September 9, 2010

Problem Child

If you have been reading this blog awhile you know poor Icy has been through more trauma and more surgery in her short life than most experience in a lifetime.  So, naturally it was time for her to develop a new problem. 

Over the summer I noticed when I scooped the litter box there was lots of small urine clumps instead of a few regular sized clumps.  Since I was not home much I sort of hoped this would just go away on it's own. Of course it did not. 

So I finally hauled Icy into work to try and get a urine sample.  The first attempt was a no go.  Not enough urine to get a sample.  I did take an X-ray and no bladder stones present.  Tried again a few days later.  She sat in her carrier all morning and did not produce enough urine to get a sample.  To make sure the day was not wasted I did bloodwork-normal, and went ahead and cleaned her teeth (not related to her urinary issue).  Then I let her sit in a cage the rest of the day with a pan of non-absorbent litter.  No pee.  So we went home and I shut her in the bathroom with the special litter box.  Finally, right before bed we got a sample.  I took it to work the next day and ran a routine urinalysis.  The urine was super concentrated, had an elevated pH, high protein levels and lots and lots of struvite crystals.  They look like this under the microscope.

So now we have an explanation-the high pH, crystals, and concentration all make the bladder feel very inflamed-like an infection would feel. The solution is

This food will balance her pH to dissolve the current crystals and prevent new ones.  It also has some altered mineral content to help reduce the possibility of recurrence and has some extra fatty acids to help reduce inflammation.  Feeding it in a canned form, although more inconvenient, allows for additional water intake which further dilutes the urine to help eliminate crystals and make the urine less irritating to the inflamed bladder.

Although I did not see evidence of bacteria I am going to treat her with antibiotics anyway to be on the safe side.  She should feel much better soon, although she never really acted like she felt bad in the first place.  But the clues were in the litter box!


Sue said...

Poor Icy. She likes to keep you on your toes. We hope she's better soon.

Paint Girl said...

Poor kitty. Hope she is feeling better soon!
A couple years ago, my cat Dakota, was having a problem going pee, and he is not one to go outside of the litter box, but he was trying to go anywhere in the house (which was a huge sign something wasn't right!) I took him to the vet, and they kept him all day waiting for him to pee, then they kept him over night. They finally got a urine sample and he had the same problem your Icy has. He hasn't had a problem since. I felt so bad for him.

Chris and Ricky said...

Hope Icy is better soon!

Elizabeth said...

I hope Icy likes the food. Some cats are so fussy about their food. My cat is one who refuses any change in food what so ever.. not sure what I would do if she needed a special diet.. I swear she would starve before she ate anything different.