Look For The Signs

They're fairly easy to spot, actually...

If you're not sure whether or not your cat has a UTI there are a couple of signs you should keep an eye out for. These include:

- Painful Urination: If it hurts to use the litter box, your cat isn't going to be afraid to let you know.

- Blood in The Urine: Might be hard to tell in the box, but check later symptoms.

- Urinating in Odd Places: If you find an unwanted trail of urine following your cat around then it might be caused by a UTI. This tends to be little drips and drops rather than full bladder busting.

- Press Against Your Cat's Bladder: Normally this might get you an irritated look since you're pressing on his or her tummy. If the bladder feels very full and the cat looks to be in pain, it probably hurts to pee.

If some or all of these symptoms make their presence(s) known, then chances are you've got a problem on your hands.

Crap... They're All Here

Computer Cat
Credit: MorgueFile image

Step One: Hydrate Your Feline Friend

While it might seem like the opposite of what you'd want to do when it hurts to go to the bathroom, you need to make sure your cat stays hydrated. More water means that there will be fewer health problems overall, but it will also help wash the cat's system and get the infection out of the bladder. The more the cat eliminates, the more often the pipes are going to get cleaned out.

While keeping the water bowl filled is a good idea, it's also a good idea to get a cat drinking fountain if you can afford it. If your feline still isn't drinking enough, get some wet food. With plenty of moisture in it, wet food provides a lot of additional hydration along with all of the other vitamins and minerals needed to fight off infection.

Step Two: Turn Up The Acidity

Urinary tract infections, both in cats and in people, are caused by bacteria. This bacteria clings to the walls of the urinary tract, causing pain, and generally making elimination something to be avoided rather than enjoyed.

One of the most effective tools for fighting a UTI is cranberry juice. Since cranberry juice is also one of the only types of people food that most cats won't leap at the chance to ingest, it's a good idea to mix some cranberry juice concentrate with a cat's wet food. The juice will actually make it harder for the bacteria to adhere to the urinary tract's walls, and it will help flush out the system while making urine more acidic, and less hospitable for bacteria.

Also, while not as effective as cranberry juice, Vitamin C tablets are another good way to boost your cat's immune system and kick out the infection. A standard bottle of 500 milligram tablets will do nicely. All you need to do is break a tablet in half, and then crush one half to sprinkle onto your cat's wet food. 250 milligrams is safe to take for 3 days or so in a row, and by that time it should have some noticeable effects on your cat's bathroom habits.

Any Box Is A Litter Box

When you have a UTI

Cat Box
Credit: MorgueFile Image

Don't Forget To Show Some Love

Things like stress or anger can create a bad environment, and that won't help your cat recuperate. Spend some quality time on the couch or in bed giving your furry friend some pets and saying it will be all right. If the UTI is particularly bad though, it's a good idea to put a towel down first.

Other Options

If the previous two remedies don't get the job done there are homeopathic remedies that can be used, such as those listed in the video over to the right. Generally these will take a couple of days to take effect, and they are typically a little harder to get your cat to take.

In the event that none of the homeopathic remedies shows an effect, then the last option is to go into your vet. He or she will likely prescribe some antibiotics, but these can carpet bomb your cat's insides killing all kinds of bacteria both the good and the bad. It's for this reason that so many pet owners go to the vet as the last court of appeal.