Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs) are a frustrating problem for pets and pet parents alike. Here’s more about this common illness. Signs your pet may have a urinary infection include frequent urination, straining during urination, mucus or blood with urination, licking the genitals, “accidents” or urinating in unusual places (even right in front of you), excessive drinking and crying or meowing. Sometimes the signs may be very subtle and the only clue is that your pet just isn’t acting like him or herself.
Many cats and dogs have chronic urinary tract infections (UTIs). As soon as the pet finishes a round of antibiotics, a few days later, the symptoms return.
There are many reasons why pets can get chronic urinary infections: stress, weakened immune system due to yeast overgrowth, viruses or other health condition, genital anatomical issues, bladder or prostate cancer and/or underlying kidney problems. In addition, an often overlooked contributor is inflammation due to the pet’s diet. Too many carbohydrates in the diet and/or food allergies can be a big contributor to chronic UTIs. Treatment of allergies using holistic care can often provide great relief for pets and put an end to chronic pain and suffering. Whatever the reason your pet is getting chronic infections, a comprehensive approach is needed.
Urinary tract infections can become a chronic problem. This can occur because even if the infection is temporarily stopped with antibiotics, the underlying tissue is still inflamed. Many times, the affected area remains inflamed and creates an environment where bacteria can hide within bladder walls….(aka interstitial cystitis). Furthermore, antibiotics can disrupt the intestinal flora and good bacteria which are needed to fight off infections. Many people report that they can actually tell that their cat or dog starts to get another urinary tract infection just days after finishing the antibiotic. While the antibiotic helps fight off the infection, the underlying conditions that contributed to the pet’s urinary tract infection in the first place are still present.
Diet is often a critical factor with cats and dogs that get chronic urinary tract infections (UTIs). Allergies for one can cause a great deal of inflammation and lower the pet’s immune response. Diets too high in carbohydrates break down into sugar and can also contribute to yeast overgrowth. Wheat and grains, for example can be high allergen foods and also contribute to yeast growth. Also, kibble and/or dry food can be problematic for both cats and dogs because of its low moisture content.There is no “one” hypoallergenic diet that works for all pets. For best results, scheduling a telephone appointment with us and we will ensure your pet gets on the right track once and for all. Also, many “hypoallergenic” foods are high in carbohydrates which can also contribute to chronic infections. Just like with humans, carbohydrates break down into sugars which can feed the infections. Sometimes the culprit is too many treats which contain wheat or corn, that also can create an environment for yeast to thrive.
Nutritional supplements can greatly help reduce the frequency of urinary tract infections and many times, in combination with diet changes, can eliminate them completely. Be sure to talk to us in depth so we understand the issues associated with your pet’s urinary infections. For example, are there crystals present, very high pH or is the urine pH acidic? In terms of supplements, Advanced Animal Care Center has a comprehensive pet UTI prevention program.