I just collected Ripley from the vet where's he's been under their care for the last 2 days.
The urine test showed that there had been a buildup of crystals in his bladder and these had deposited in the urethra to cause the blockage that prevented hin from urinating.
The vet manually manipulated the urinary tract to get the urethra flushed out. With the blockage removed, he was kept in for observation to make sure that the problem was resolved and that he was able to urinate freely.
It's now been 36 hours since the blockage was removed and he's shown no signs of having difficulty urinating, so he's been allowed home. Naturally, I have to keep an eye on him over the next few days to make sure that there's no relapse.
What Causes Crystals In Cat Urine?
The cause of struvite crystals in cats is dry commercial pet foods. Due to the lack of moisture in the diet, the urine becomes too concentrated, and due to the use of plant-based ingredients in dry kibble, the urine becomes too alkaline. An alkaline environment in very concentrated urine predisposes struvite formation.
Ripley, helpfully, does not like wet cat food. He just won't touch it. So he's on a special diet of c/d Urinary Care dry cat food that's designed to reduce the alkalinity of urine. So, for the most part, it does keep his cystitis in check.
But both he and Mocha do seem to have a genetic predisposition to the condition and stress can set the condition off in them much more easily than cats without that disposition.
The vet did mention that after a cat is 4 years old, incidents of cystitis in sensitive cats does seem to tail off, for no known reason. I can only hope that that is the case with Ripley in particular.
Filed under: Ripley's Diary