Cat Food Information for Urinary HealthFeline Lower Urinary Tract Disease (FLUTD) can be considered a catch-all phrase which describes several conditions affecting the lower urinary tract of cats. These conditions can be uncomfortable and in severe cases, life-threatening. Find out more about FLUTD and why nutrition is an important factor in treating and preventing conditions related to urinary crystals or stones.
Understanding FLUTD: Conditions & SymptomsThe three most common conditions are:
- Feline idiopathic cystitis
- Bladder stones
- Blockages of the urethra caused by the accumulation of urinary crystals (urethral plugs)
- Blood in the urine
- Frequent urination
- Painful urination
- Unproductive attempts at urination
- Inappropriate urination (outside of the litter box)
Causes of FLUTDThe exact cause of these diseases is unknown. However, it can occur when crystals accumulate and form stones that prevent urine from passing. Crystals can also form smaller pieces, called plugs, which may block the urethra, particularly in male cats.
The two most common types of crystals associated with FLUTD are:
- Struvite crystals that form when the urine pH is higher or alkaline
- Calcium oxalate crystals that form in more acidic urine with a lower pH