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Any Idiopathic FLUTD Cats Out There?

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 
My cat Kota (neutered male, 1 year old) has been diagnosed as idiopathic (non-obstructive) feline lower urinary tract disease. This is the kind where NO CRYSTALS are found.

Does anyone have any experience with this? His ph is fine, but he has been under some stress in the past few months.

My vet recommended royal canin canned s/o or another of the prescription canned foods (c/o, etc). And daily doses of amitriptyline, as well as cosequin.

Well, prior to all this, I had been giving him daily doses of cosequin and he was eating a variety of canned foods (on a rotation) as well as some raw food (Nature's Variety frozen raw patties).

The canned foods that are in my rotation are:
Wellness (all grain-free flavors)
California Natural (Chicken and Brown Rice)
Natural Balance (Indoor and Ultra)
Fromms (all flavors)

All of these foods are pretty low in magnesium and ash.

I don't think he should eat a prescription food, everything that I've read about idopathic FLUTD says that it's not necessarily beneficial and may even be detrimental. I'm also not sure about the amitriptyline. I've read conflicting reports. The only thing I am sure of is that he needs more water and the cosequin. I've been making a slurry out of his canned food (we did 3 days prescription and now we're back on the rotation) and giving him additional water via a syringe at least twice a day. I've been giving him the amitriptyline but...it makes me nervous.

I'm just curious about what other people with cats with this diagnosis are doing...

I also wonder if he should be getting some other supplements. I don't know about cranberry stuff or maybe something else...any input would be appreciated...

Thanks!
post #2 of 24
One of the biggest things to deal with for idiopathic cystitis is stress. Look around your home and from your cat's perspective to see if there are stressors in his life that you can help control. Possible stressors include scary sounds, outside cats coming into the territory, unpredictability, and changes in the home. For sounds, you can try leaving music or the radio on, particularly when you're not home. It should help block out some of the noises. For outside cats coming on to your property, there are products that can be used to deter them. Feliway might also help your cat feel more secure. Make sure that there is some routine in your cat's life as much as possible--people get up at the same time, kitty gets fed at the same times each day, etc. Try to minimize the changes in the home when possible--bringing in new cats may not be a good idea right now as that would add to the stress. Recognize when changes occur and pay attention to how your cat responds. Some things are unavoidable, like new babies being brought home, but make sure your kitty gets plenty of attention and again consider Feliway to help calm him. Rescue Remedy is another good calming agent. It can be rubbed on the cat's ears or put in the water (as long as it's not a water fountain).
post #3 of 24
Thread Starter 
He's been through a lot of stress lately (like I mentioned), but I think things are settling down for him now...I hope.

He is my sister's cat, she moved in with me in July with her 3 cats...joining my 3 cats making a 6 cat household. Just a few weeks ago, my sister left for school with 2 of her 3 cats, leaving Kota behind for me to watch. Then I had to take Kota with me when I went away for a weekend (he was having symptoms and I couldn't leave him behind with the cat sitter. The next weekend I had to travel and was gone overnight. So...lots of stresfull senarios. Happily, things have calmed down a lot. Kota gets along great with my two boys. My elderly girl is confined to a bedroom, and we all join her at night.

Unfortunately, for a cowerdly old girl, she sure has taken a dislike to Kota. She chases him out of the bed whenever she sees him. But even that senario is calming down because Kota sleeps under the covers, where Kitty can't see him. :-)

Other than that, I don't see anything stressful in his life now that everything else is calm. Hopefully, he won't be feeling any more stress.

I have Feliway diffusers in every room in the house. My elderly girl has a innoperable tumor which causes her to get sick periodically and I try to reduce her stress as much as possible.

Do you have a cat with this condition? What do you feed him/her?
post #4 of 24
Willow had bouts of idiopathic cystitis. I tried my best to get her to eat canned, but she ended up losing too much weight. She just recently passed from an unrelated condition. It sounds like you're doing all the right things with Feliway and extra water. I would just give it time.
post #5 of 24
Royal canine SO (Waltham SO) is what my cat is on. It worked wonders for him. Ever since he started on it he had no urinary problems. I am not sure as to what kind of cystitis he had, as one vet told me he had no crystals, and the other vet told me he had crystals. They never could get a clean sample out of him as soon as they put him on the table trying to get a sample he would just pee on the table and they had to get it off the table rather than with a needle. All I know is that he had problems urinating, blood in his urine, stopped using his litterbox. He had these symptoms for over a month. On and off. He would become a little better but then he would be peeing everywhere again, with blood in his urine. But as soon as he went on the food, he became fine and had no symptoms anymore. The difference was immediate. I highly recommend this food, and I think you should try it. My cat in addition to his prescription dry food also eats non-prescription wet food.
post #6 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by cloud_shade View Post
One of the biggest things to deal with for idiopathic cystitis is stress. Look around your home and from your cat's perspective to see if there are stressors in his life that you can help control. Possible stressors include scary sounds, outside cats coming into the territory, unpredictability, and changes in the home. For sounds, you can try leaving music or the radio on, particularly when you're not home. It should help block out some of the noises. For outside cats coming on to your property, there are products that can be used to deter them. Feliway might also help your cat feel more secure. Make sure that there is some routine in your cat's life as much as possible--people get up at the same time, kitty gets fed at the same times each day, etc. Try to minimize the changes in the home when possible--bringing in new cats may not be a good idea right now as that would add to the stress. Recognize when changes occur and pay attention to how your cat responds. Some things are unavoidable, like new babies being brought home, but make sure your kitty gets plenty of attention and again consider Feliway to help calm him. Rescue Remedy is another good calming agent. It can be rubbed on the cat's ears or put in the water (as long as it's not a water fountain).
I am just curious from the contents of your post, are you a Veterinarian or a Vet tech?
post #7 of 24
Raven has it. He's been stable since 2004 (although he now has cancer). His trigger was roaming outdoor cats.

He was on Amitriptylene from June 2004 until beginning of October 2004. He was also on Cosequin for that time period. We moved in August of that year to a new state, and our current place only has a rare stray cat wander through the complex--plus we are on the 3rd floor now. So no problems. He did occasionally spray the patio blinds after moving here. But hasn't in a long time.

I was glad after we moved that a new vet took him off of the Amitriptylene. He was sleeping a lot, didn't play, gained about 2 lbs, and generally didn't do any of the normal Raven things anymore. He was weaned off under the vet's supervision.

He just stopped eating the cosequin, so I stopped trying with the vet's blessing.

He eats mostly canned food (at this point whatever he wants). Mostly Fancy Feast, some Meow Mix pouches, and random other foods. The vet who took him off of Amitriptylene said the pH of the canned food didn't matter for him, it was more important that he eats canned food. He does like a little dry food, so I just usually make sure I buy a dry food with a good target urine pH.

I use the Feliway Diffuser 24/7 but for different reasons now. Raven is a high anxiety cat, so it does help him a lot. We also have a pet fountain going 24/7. Raven pretty much only drinks from the fountain. Except last night when he drank out of my water glass. We use a Pur Pitcher for filtered water, and the cats get filtered water (which does help to keep them drinking--our tap water tastes sooo bad).

I read some of those same things about Rx food and Idiopathic Cystitis. Raven actually had MORE problems on Hill's c/d than when he ate regular foods. But, at the time he was eating more dry food too. The first time he had major troubles in 2000-2001, he was on all dry Eukanuba. Got crystals. Went on Hill's s/d then c/d for maintenance. And then had off and on UTIs with no cause at all. We actually got him stabilized for a couple years on Nutro Max (roasted chicken dry) and Nutro & Pro Plan urinary health canned foods. It was after a couple years he had another UTI, they put him on c/d and he started having problems again. None of my vets would order anything but Hill's when we were dealing with all of that. After we moved in 2004, consulted with a new vet who seemed more knowledgeable about nutrition; and we got him stabilized without medications.

Now he eats mostly canned food, and has a few snacks of dry. It works for him. I think the key is finding a canned food your kitty likes and go from there. Another thing you can do is add water to the canned food and see if he'll eat it hat way. Mine won't, so I don't do that.

My other 2 cats have also had urinary issues in the past, so everyone eats a minimum of 50% canned food for their diet. It's been tricky finding something everyone likes. Lately Raven & Nabu are junk food fiends, while Stimpy likes Natural Balance and Nutro canned.
post #8 of 24
I don't know anything about hill's. That's not what I feed my cat. It's Waltham's so (royal canine so). When he got his cystitis, I also tried to get him to eat more wet food, or drink more water, and I had no result at all, until i switched him to the prescription food. He's been eating it for a couple of years, and had no problems whatsoever, and no symptoms of cystitis. I could probably try to stop it, but I am afraid his cystitis will come back if I do. My cat is what I call a scaredy cat so his cystitis I am sure was brought by stress. He is still a scaredy cat but this food works for him.
post #9 of 24
Thread Starter 
jenniferd - I'm not sure the s/o makes a difference when the FLUTD is truely idiopathic. Kota's ph has been fine, although sometimes it's slightly TOO acidic. But...I just don't see that for him it's a good idea.

littleraven7726 - That's what I found frustrating, they were already on a mostly canned diet. But, I did let them have more dry food than I probably should have. Glad to know someone else doubts the Amitriptylene too. I'm going to contact my vet and discuss it with her. Everything I read says that the cat will have a higher recurrance of episodes when they go off it than if they had never taken it at all.

Meanwhile, I continue shoving water into Kota via syringe, sneaking dry food to one of my other cats, and feeding Kota and Tre (best buds, share everything) a regular canned food slurry that makes me ill just looking at it (I'm adding equal parts water to the amount of canned food they get. i.e. half a can of food gets half a can of water dumped on it).

I've also been using distilled water instead of tap water since someone had suggested that the minerals in tap water might contribute to the the FLUTD.
post #10 of 24
The only way to find out would be to put the cat on the food and see if he does better. Like I sad I don't know what caused my cat's urinary problems, because the first the vet told me he didn't have crystals, and the second vet said he did. As neither vet could get a clean sample, I have no idea which one was right. Obviously it's up to you if you want to try it or not. I just know my cat suffered for at least a month before he went on this food, and it worked like a charm. Before the food I also tried more wet food and try to get cat drink more water, with no results. Right now I am using that food as a maintance food, and it doesn't hurt the cat, as far as I can tell. I actually had troulbes getting it as my old vet moved, and I had to run all over the town until I found the vet that carried it.
post #11 of 24
With NO CRYSTALS... you TECHNICALLY have the easier one to treat ... theere are a WIDE variety of RX s and a few OTC dry s and MANY MANY wets that may help....

IF using RX I would start with the S/O as it is used worldwide with success and I generally trust RC over S/D
post #12 of 24
Have you tried Urinary Health formula canned foods that are over the counter brands? Pro Plan has one that is pretty tasty (at least according to my cats). I fed it for many years. Target pH is 6.3 on all Purina products that say "urinary health" on them. Includes Friskies Special Diet.

Nutro Max is formulated for a good pH (I think the target pH is 6.1-6.7) My cats liked the Gourmet Classics years ago, but in the year leading up to the recalls were pretty unimpressed with it and wouldn't eat it.

Raven hasn't had crystals since 1999/2000. All of his urinary tract problems since have been absent of a physical cause.

I have a file at home with Target Urine pH's of most foods. Let me know if you want me to PM you with it tonight. I'd be happy to.

Do you have any idea what is causing his stress? If you can figure that out, you can help minimize the UTIs.
post #13 of 24
Amitrityline seems like a stupid choice of drug. It is an anti-depressant. It is very bitter & not fun to pill regularly. What about Buspar? It is an anti-anxiety medication....not bitter, & non-habit forming. Meaning, you can stop it whenever you please, no weaning off.
post #14 of 24
Thread Starter 
I don't mean to sound defensive or rude, I just don't see WHY I should give him Rx food when the point of those foods is to acidify or make alcalyne his urine, when the ph of his urine is just fine.

I should add that so far every one of his episodes have been acute and shortlived. i.e. He seems fine one day, the next day he is peeing blood, going every ten minutes, and peeing all over the place, and the next day he is fine. This is with absolutely NO treatment. He's had one episode - lasting a day, every two to three weeks starting at the middle to end of July - 4 episodes total (he was treated with antibiotics every time except this last time when he was diagnosed as idiopathic FLUTD).

So, I don't want to give him Rx food when it won't do anything for his particular condition...at least, that's what I'm learning according to what I'm reading. Also, I don't like the look of the Royal Canin Rx (number 1 ingrediant after water is MEAT By-Products) OR the Science Diet C/D (number 1 ingrediant - Pork By-Products).

So, what I am trying to do is to prevent these episodes and I'm hoping that others with cats with the same condition can verify if what I am reading is accurate (that Rx food is unhelpful and Amitriptalyne can occaionally do more harm than good) and if they can point me at any other supplements (besides cosequin) that might help keep him stable. His last episode was a week ago today. So, we'll see how long and if it happens again with the Water/Amitriptelyne regimen.
post #15 of 24
Work with your vet ... ie voice concerns about the RX foods... if you went to my vet she likely would put you on raw or homemade ( I have homemade recipes if you want)...

If your vet is no help and says RX HAS to be get a second opnion or find the least offensive RX ( used to be purina ) .....
post #16 of 24
I wasn't trying to suggest Rx foods. Sorry.
post #17 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by white cat lover View Post
Amitrityline seems like a stupid choice of drug. It is an anti-depressant. It is very bitter & not fun to pill regularly. What about Buspar? It is an anti-anxiety medication....not bitter, & non-habit forming. Meaning, you can stop it whenever you please, no weaning off.
It's the standard drug given to treat idiopathic FLUTD. I've seen it on all the stuff I've been reading. I don't know if it's best for Kota or not and I worry about the weaning off and potential re-occurrences. But at least I don't have to worry about the bitterness. Kota is the CHAMP of pill taking. He chews up his cosequin gel caps and then I give him an chicken flavored gel cap with the Amitrityline crammed into one end. He chews that up and swallows it down too. Got to love that cat.

This article really helped solidify my findings and question the treatments prescribed in the first place:
http://www.vin.com/proceedings/Proce...6510&O=Generic

Kota will eat any food I put in front of him, so finding something he'll eat isn't a problem. I just don't think a Rx food would be benificial when his ph is just fine.
post #18 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by littleraven7726 View Post
I wasn't trying to suggest Rx foods. Sorry.
No, I appreciate the suggestions. I'm looking for any feedback I can get. :-) I just don't know if Rx or Urinary Health foods would actually be helpful for a cat with idiopathic FLUTD or if they don't really do anything for those cats.

Based on what I've read...it doesn't help.
post #19 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sharky View Post
Work with your vet ... ie voice concerns about the RX foods... if you went to my vet she likely would put you on raw or homemade ( I have homemade recipes if you want)...

If your vet is no help and says RX HAS to be get a second opnion or find the least offensive RX ( used to be purina ) .....
I'm waiting for my vet to call me back and I really like her, so I think we'll have a good discussion.

I have Nature's Variety Frozen Raw in my rotation. I can't quite get myself to go homemade though. :-) I don't even handle raw meat for myself. Although, if it comes down to it, I'd do it for the kids.
post #20 of 24
Truly the RXs all started out with the NON crystals as many yrs ago these are the ones designed for sturvite crystals...

I will send you some recipes to go over with the vet.... lmao.. I was thrilled to go to homemade thou one week a month I do raw.. homemade is 10 times the work thou
post #21 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kittys Mom View Post
I don't mean to sound defensive or rude, I just don't see WHY I should give him Rx food when the point of those foods is to acidify or make alcalyne his urine, when the ph of his urine is just fine.

I should add that so far every one of his episodes have been acute and shortlived. i.e. He seems fine one day, the next day he is peeing blood, going every ten minutes, and peeing all over the place, and the next day he is fine. This is with absolutely NO treatment. He's had one episode - lasting a day, every two to three weeks starting at the middle to end of July - 4 episodes total (he was treated with antibiotics every time except this last time when he was diagnosed as idiopathic FLUTD).

So, I don't want to give him Rx food when it won't do anything for his particular condition...at least, that's what I'm learning according to what I'm reading. Also, I don't like the look of the Royal Canin Rx (number 1 ingrediant after water is MEAT By-Products) OR the Science Diet C/D (number 1 ingrediant - Pork By-Products).

So, what I am trying to do is to prevent these episodes and I'm hoping that others with cats with the same condition can verify if what I am reading is accurate (that Rx food is unhelpful and Amitriptalyne can occaionally do more harm than good) and if they can point me at any other supplements (besides cosequin) that might help keep him stable. His last episode was a week ago today. So, we'll see how long and if it happens again with the Water/Amitriptelyne regimen.
That's what my cat was doing. He would have symptoms for several days, where he would pee everywhere is blood, then he would be o'key for several days, and then he would have symptoms again. He was a year old when it happened. It was brought up by stress. I was very frustrated because he kept relapsing, until he got put on the food. And there are no by-products in Urinary So. First ingredient is chicken meal. I am talking about dry food. I did not feed my cat wet Urinary So food because he only likes cuts in gravy styles. And like I already said, to my cat, it's been extremely helpful. It worked immediately, and he had no symptoms since he was put on it. I don't think I could add anything else.
post #22 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by white cat lover View Post
Amitrityline seems like a stupid choice of drug. It is an anti-depressant. It is very bitter & not fun to pill regularly. What about Buspar? It is an anti-anxiety medication....not bitter, & non-habit forming. Meaning, you can stop it whenever you please, no weaning off.
My cat was given xanax. I only kept him on for a couple of weeks because he didn't look himself to me after taking it. It seem to improve his anxiety but he was all spacy. Also he hates taking pills so it was a real struggle.
post #23 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by happy cassandra View Post
I am just curious from the contents of your post, are you a Veterinarian or a Vet tech?
Nope, I've just been through a lot of different medical problems with my cats in the past few years.
post #24 of 24
I adopted a male 3yrs. old from a shelter 1 yr. ago and he has the same problem. We have to give him "science diet " canned indoor chicken, gourmee beef, or gourmee chicken and liver.

And dry science diet natures blend chicken. He gets 1 tablespoon wet and 1/4 c. dry 2 x's a day.

You always have to check to see that there isn't any fish in the ingrediants, because it causes problems. alot of dinners say chicken but still have fish in them. and I was told to stay away from cat treats because they're full of starches and fillers that also cause problems.

we had one more problem because he wasn't drinking and had to buy a pet fountain. Now he is fine in that area, but he has gained alot of weight and apparently has mega colon. I never knew giving cats 1 tsp. of canned pumkin a day can help them with being boweled up till now.

Hey if you learn anything new I'd be glad for tips
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