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Food Recs for Struvite Crystals

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
Leo ended up at the vet yesterday after peeing on the floor. He had some (but not complete) blockage in his urinary track. They catheterized him and kept him over night, and diagnosed him with struvite crystals. Today, he urinated on his own, but didn't empty his bladder all the way, so they're going to keep him for another night to make sure he's okay before he comes home. (I stopped by to see him, and he is *most* unhappy - mostly due to a yappy dog nearby!, but was full of lovies for me! )

My cats eat Wellness wet and dry. I know Wellness has a low magnesium level, and it contains cranberries. The vet suggested thinking about switching to Hill's c/d, which I don't think is as good of a food, and I'm skeptical of his recommendation since they sell it!

I've already searched the forums and read some previous threads about crystals. I'm looking for opinions on what you have done/ would do about food if it was your cat. Would you keep them on Wellness, switch to Hill's c/d, or something else?

I'm also planning on looking into buying a water "fountain" for them (in addition to the bowl, and multiple cups of water they have access to) to encourage him to drink more.

TIA for your advice!
post #2 of 11
DONT SHOOT the messanger ... but Max cat by Nutro and Purinas urinary in both pro plan and One are CERTIFIED for UTI health and aid in prevention of stuvites...

max adult in chn or the max light would be my choices ... yes they have wheat and corn gluten both are actually helpful in UTI health
post #3 of 11
I'm sorry to hear that Leo is having some trouble. I hope he'll be feeling better and home soon.

Regardless of brand or formula, I would not feed him *any* dry food.

I would stick with something grain free, like the Wellness. I like the By Nature canned too - no grains or veggies in that, just meat/liver/water/vitamins. Simple is better IMO, especially for a crystal prone cat.

My experience with urinary formula dry food, c/d in particular was very poor. You've probably seen my old posts so I'll spare the details. OK, I lied - some of the details are below. Dry food just doesn't make sense to me, especially for a cat with bladder issues. Don't shoot me, Sharky.

My Beandip was not keen on canned food. He took to a commercial pre-made raw (Nature's Variety) very well. He did well on that, it kept him out of trouble - away from the vet. I knew he wasn't at 100%, though and was still needing a few meds to help him along. At the advice of my vet, I started giving him L-Methionine to push his pH down. That helped, but he did need quite a bit of it. I switched him to a simpler raw, with no veggies, fruit or anything - just meat/organs/bone/supplements and he's doing *real* well now. I give him half the recommended dose of these tablets, which he loves, like treats. Other than that, I'm tapering off his other meds and he's been problem free for months now. Prior to that, we had a year and a half of constant misery. I still freak out if he thinks twice about which litterbox to use, but it all comes out OK now.
post #4 of 11
NO I wont shoot .... you know what your talking about

ALL canned is a better bet but I gave IMHO the better drys if using
post #5 of 11
Pippin had both kinds of crystals and very high ph at 8. He's done very well on the Nutro Max Cat Chicken which the other cats love too, and doesn't break the bank. He also gets 2 meals a day of wellness grain free canned food, or other high quality food. I limit his fish intake. He also gets a capsule of Cosequin each day for bladder health and Valium, as needed, for bladder spasms. He occasionally gets the Nature's Variety raw medallions for a treat. He doesn't like them enough to eat them everyday.

He had a PU last month and we don't fear him blocking (although I watch him closely still) but he occasionally has a flare up where he gets spasms and bloody urine for a day, then feels fine (especially after I give him a quarter to a half of a 5 mg valium.

In addition, I have a water fountain which he loves. The fountain basically cured him of his constipation issues last year and I'm so happy I got one!
I've also heard that Carpon is good, although I've never tried it. If Pippin has further issues with PH, I will probably get some to help acidify his urine.

Good luck!

post #6 of 11
Originally Posted by sharky View Post
NO I wont shoot .... you know what your talking about

ALL canned is a better bet but I gave IMHO the better drys if using
No problem, and thanks. After all, you helped me figure out that simple was better for the Bean. He thanks you too.
post #7 of 11
I have been giving Carpon for months now, and it has really helped. No more crystals, and regular full volume urination. I am testing his PH, and I am not sure what to make of my results. Not sure if PH should ALWAYS be within the normal range, or if just hitting it once a day is enough. If I understand Dr. Belfield, developer of Carpon, the cat needs only to be in the correct PH a few hours a day to dissolve, or interrupt the development of struvite crystals. I still have some research to do.
post #8 of 11
For 9 years my UTI persian was on Purina One Urinary Tract Health and never got another UTI. I then switched him to Royal Canin special 33 for the last year of his life and he did fine on that one also. Both foods have .08 magnesium. Canned food is the best for UTI though.
post #9 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thank you to everyone who replied!

I picked Leo up late last night (1:30 am), and he was so glad to be home. I woke up at 7, and he strained to pee on the floor 3 times in 45 minutes. So, we went back to the vet. She was able to manually get him to urinate with a strong stream. She gave him an injection with a painkiller & sedative, as well as his antibiotics. I asked about the behavioral aspect of avoiding the litter box b/c of pain association. She said there was likely some of that, combined with the residual pain & irritation.

He is confined in the bathroom now. I went and bought Cat Attract litter, which the vet recommended. I also got a water fountain. Other than having peed on himself at the vet and needing to clean himself, he's doing better and acting very affectionately.

I have a wedding in a couple hours, and then I'll be back to check on him before the reception.

I'll look into the Nutro - they have eaten it in the past, and I'd prefer that to the Hill's c/d, I think. I am going to up his wet food intake, but keep the wet food as Wellness for now.

Again, thank you to Sharky, beandip, devlyn, gailuvscats, and kitytize for your input. I'll update again later!
post #10 of 11
Hi ! So fish is not good for kitties with struvite?
post #11 of 11
No. Fish tends to have high magnesium levels, which increases the pH of the urine. High levels of magnesium is not good for kitties with any type of crystals-in-the-urine problem.

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