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Cat UTI Treatment: A Comprehensive Guide

Katelyn Son
By Katelyn Son
Medically reviewed by Ivana Crnec, DVM
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What is the Best Way to Treat a UTI in Cats?

A Comprehensive Guide to Cat UTI Treatments

Here are several cat UTI treatment options: 

  • Increase Water Intake. Increasing a cat’s water intake will increase its hydration and make urination more frequent. This will help to flush Escherichia coli, which is the bacterial infection that is the underlying cause of a cat’s urinary tract infections.
    Convincing cats to drink more water can be tricky. If your cat is not a keen drinker, you can get wet canned food made to treat UTIs. Wet food has higher moisture content and helps hydrate your cat while it eats.
  • Antibiotics. This is the fastest and most effective way to get rid of a UTI. A DVM will need to prescribe antibiotics to your cat, but after starting them, you should see a quick improvement.
  • Diet Modification. When considering modifying diet as a form of cat UTI treatment, recognize that this change is most likely going to be temporary. However, you should still introduce the food to your cat the same way you would any other food.
    If you are using urinary cat food, introduce it slowly to them over the course of about 10 days. As you change your cat’s diet, you should start seeing an improvement in urinary tract health.
  • Urinary Acidifiers. Increasing the acidity of your cat’s urine can be as simple as giving them a bit of apple cider vinegar with their food each day. This will help to increase the level of acidity in their urine, which will aid in killing a bacterial infection and preventing symptoms of urinary tract infections.
Vets Preferred Cat Urinary Tract Chews
  • Safe quality ingredients – Lab tested and GMP certified. Active ingredients include Licorice root, astragalus root, cranberry fruit and nettle leaf.
  • How much to use – Administer the following: Up to 5 lbs – 1 soft chew/ day, 5-10 lbs 2 soft chews/ day, 11-19 lbs – 3 soft chews/ day, Over 20 lbs – 4 soft chews/ day.
  • Supports a healthy urinary tract – Nettle Leaf helps your cat and dog get rid of waste from the body while Cranberry fruit helps prevent urinary tract infections caused by certain strains of E. coli.

What is the Best Food for Cats with Urinary Tract Issues?

Foods with loads of antioxidants and micronutrients support the cat UTI treatment. Foods like cranberries, fruits, and vegetables are great, as well as canned food.

Prescription or over-the-counter urinary food is also a great way to combat the symptoms of a UTI. These are foods that have been scientifically proven to be effective in combatting the symptoms and causes of urinary tract infections. They can also be used in conjunction with mainstream cat UTI treatment. 

Foods high in protein and moisture, and low in carbohydrates are great for cats with urinary tract issues.

Does Wet Cat Food Help With UTI?

Yes, wet food can help the cat UTI treatment.

Increasing your cat’s water intake is a good way to fight against UTIs, and wet food has a higher moisture content than dry food.

Wet food helps hydrate cats while they eat, and it is often recommended to introduce wet food to them even when the cat is healthy to support hydration.

How Can I Treat My Cat’s UTI at Home?

There are several products that can be used at home to aid the cat UTI treatment. Let’s take a close look at those products.

Vets Preferred Cat Urinary Tract Chews. The active ingredients in these urinary chews are licorice root, astragalus root, and cranberry to offer cats a powerful aid in fighting UTIs. They increase urine production and help fight infections.

Astragalus root helps improve kidney circulation and normalizes heart function, while the cranberry promotes normal bladder function and is rich in natural antioxidants.

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HomeoPet UTI Plus Urinary Tract Infection Support for Cats. This at-home cat UTI treatment is easy to use and requires only that you drop the medicine into the cat’s mouth.

It supports natural kidney and bladder function and can be added to cat food or water for easy use. It contains several active ingredients to provide a powerful aid to a cat’s bladder and immune system to help quickly fight off UTIs.

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UroMAXX Urinary Tract, Kidney & Bladder Formula for Cats. Active ingredients in this UTI food are nettle leaf, uva ursi extracts, glucosamine, and vitamin C. All of these help to either stimulate digestion and urination or support the immune system, so it is better able to fight off infections.

Naturally potent antioxidants in the formula help acidify urine which kills the bacteria that causes UTIs. Glucosamine and herbal extracts are included to help nourish the urinary tract lining and maintain urinary tract health.

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Get Naked Urinary Health Crunchy Treats For Cats, Cranberries. These are grain-free and made with cranberry juice to promote immune system support and urine acidity. Chicken is the first ingredient, and there are no wheat, corn, or soy products used in this cat treat.

The ingredients are all-natural and provide real nutrients for cats that help fight bladder infections. Each crunchy cat treat is under two calories and provides a wealth of health support to promote the wellness of your cat’s urinary tract.

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D-Mannose Supplement Preventative Treatment of Bladder and Urinary Tract Infections. This UTI treatment is safe for cats and dogs and relieves urinary blockages. It offers symptom relief in as little as 48 hours and provides a prebiotic for digestive health.

The addition of D-mannose prevents recurring urinary infections, and the prebiotic helps stimulate the growth of good bacteria in the gut. It is made in a simple and easy-to-use powder that you can sprinkle onto the cat’s food.

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How do You Know if the Cat UTI Treatment is Working?

A Comprehensive Guide to Cat UTI Treatments

The easiest way to tell if the cat UTI treatment is working is to monitor its symptoms. Symptoms of UTI include urination outside the litter box, straining to urinate, excessive licking of the genital area, and urinating only small amounts.

Another way to tell if a cat UTI treatment is working is through a urinalysis which is an examination of a urine sample that tells the pH, specific gravity, presence of blood & protein, and concentration of glucose and ketones.

Before, conducting a urinalysis, the vet will perform a physical exam to check your cat’s health and make a better assessment of the treatment’s efficacy.

How Long does it Take for a Cat to Get Over a UTI?

The length of the cat UTI treatment varies. Here are some factors determining how long it takes for cats to get over urinary tract infections:

  • Cat’s Age. If you have a senior cat, it may take longer for them to recover from a UTI. Their immune system might not be as strong as it was when they were in their prime, which could have been the cause of the UTI from the beginning. Generally speaking, older cats might take longer to recover from a bladder infection.
  • Breed and Gender. Certain cat breeds are more likely to get a UTI than others. Norwegian forest cats, Somalis, and Abyssinian cats are among the breeds most likely to develop a UTI. Male cats are also more likely to contract an infection than female cats and are more likely to develop a urethral obstruction.
  • Form of Treatment. Antibiotics are the best way to treat a UTI. This does, however, involve seeking veterinary treatment. If your cat is showing symptoms of a UTI, it is always best practice to seek veterinary advice immediately. If you are using an at-home remedy, then you can generally expect to see results in 1-2 weeks.
  • Infection Severity. The worse the infection, the longer will take to clear up. What’s worse is a severe infection can lead to further complications if it is left untreated for too long.

Can a Cat UTI go away on its own?

Yes, a cat’s UTI can go away on its own.

However, this is not recommended. UTI infections in cats can progress and spread, causing a host of potential complications.

Immediate intervention is required for a speedy recovery to avoid the chance of life-threatening or life-altering complications arising. In simple words, cat UTI treatment is a must. 

What Happens if a Cat’s UTI Goes Untreated?

If left untreated, cat urinary tract infections can cause life-threatening complications such as a blockage in the urethra that prevents them from peeing.

Other possible complications are bladder stones, kidney stones, feline idiopathic cystitis, kidney disease, and kidney failure. All of these not only pose a threat to your cat’s quality of life but will come with expensive bills from the animal hospital that could have been avoided.

Another possible effect of an untreated UTI in a cat is feline lower urinary tract disease (FLUTD).