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Hematuria in Cats: Causes Diagnosis and Treatment

Hematuria in Cats: Causes, Diagnosis, and


Cats are known to be stoic creatures, and it can be difficult to know when something is wrong with them. One of the clear signs that something is not right with your cat is seeing blood in their urine.

Hematuria, or blood in urine, is a common condition in cats that can be caused by various underlying factors. In this article, we will discuss the possible causes of hematuria in cats, how it can be diagnosed, and the available treatment options.

Causes of Hematuria in Cats

Feline Idiopathic Cystitis (FIC)

FIC is the most common cause of hematuria in cats. It is a puzzling condition that can cause bladder irritation and inflammation, leading to blood in urine.

FIC is often seen in young to middle-aged cats and is more common in males than females.

Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)

UTI refers to an infection of the urinary system, including the bladder, ureters, and kidneys. UTI can irritate the bladder, causing inflammation and bleeding.

It is more common in females than males.

Bladder Stones

Bladder stones, or urolithiasis, are mineral-based deposits that form in the bladder. These stones can cause irritation to the bladder wall, leading to hematuria.

Bladder stones are more common in middle-aged and older cats of both sexes.


Cancerous growths in the urinary tract can lead to hematuria in cats. Although less common, cancer can occur in cats of any age and gender.


Any damage to the urinary tract, such as that caused by an accident or injury, can lead to blood in urine.

Bleeding Disorders

Certain bleeding disorders can also cause hematuria in cats. Disorders that affect blood clotting, such as hemophilia, can cause spontaneous bleeding into the urinary tract.

Diagnosing the Underlying Cause of Hematuria in Cats

If you notice that your cat’s urine has an unusual color or contains blood, it is important to seek veterinary care right away. Your vet will take a thorough history and perform a physical exam on your cat.

Diagnostic tests may be recommended to identify the underlying cause of hematuria. These may include:


Urinalysis involves analyzing a urine sample to determine its composition and identify any abnormalities, such as blood or bacteria.

Blood tests

Blood tests can help measure various parameters like blood clotting factors, kidney function, and overall health.

Radiography and Ultrasound

Radiography and ultrasound can be used to visualize the urinary tract, identify any abnormalities that may be causing blood in urine, and help guide further diagnostic testing or treatment.

Treatment Options for Hematuria in Cats

The treatment of hematuria in cats depends on the underlying cause of the condition. Some treatment options include:


Antibiotics may be prescribed to treat infections, while urinary acidifiers may be recommended for the dissolution of bladder stones.


Surgical intervention may be necessary to remove bladder stones or cancerous growths.


Certain diets may help dissolve bladder stones in some cats.

Increasing Water Consumption

Increasing your cat’s water intake through various means like offering multiple sources of fresh water, wet food, and water fountains can help prevent Feline Idiopathic Cystitis.


Hematuria in cats is not a condition that should be ignored. Early detection and treatment can help prevent more severe health complications.

If you notice blood in your cat’s urine, seek professional veterinary care right away. Your vet will be able to diagnose the underlying cause and recommend treatment options that best suit your pet’s needs.

By following these recommendations, you can help keep your cat healthy and minimize the risks associated with hematuria. Surgical

Treatment for Hematuria in Cats: Procedures, Risks, and Post-

Surgery Care

In certain cases, surgery may be required to treat the underlying cause of hematuria in cats.

Surgery can be an effective approach to remove bladder stones, cancerous growths or other abnormalities that cause blood in urine. In this article, we will discuss the different surgical procedures, potential risks, and post-surgery care that cat owners should be aware of.

Surgical Procedures

Bladder Stone Removal

Bladder stones can be removed surgically in a procedure known as cystotomy. This involves making an incision into the bladder to access and remove the stones.

Cystotomy is often performed under general anesthesia and typically requires a one to two-day hospital stay.

Calcium Oxalate and Other Types of

Bladder Stones

Calcium oxalate and other types of bladder stones sometimes will not dissolve with urinary acidifiers or prescription diets, and surgery can be the only option. In these cases, Lithotripsy might be used – a non-invasive procedure, where ultrasound waves are aimed at the stones to break them down into small pieces that can be excreted out through the urine.

Treatment for


In some cases, surgery may be recommended to remove cancerous growths from the urinary tract.

Surgery is typically performed under anesthesia in a sterile environment and typically requires a one to two-day hospital stay, depending on the extent of the procedure. Risks of


As with all surgical procedures, there are inherent risks involved.

The potential for complications is significant with any operation, and cats are no exception. The risk of complications will depend on the type of procedure, the cat’s overall health, and the length of surgery.

Potential risks of surgery for hematuria in cats include:



Rupture of the bladder

Anesthesia complications

Blood clot formation


Surgery Care

Cats who undergo surgery for hematuria will require careful post-surgery monitoring and care. It is essential to closely follow the veterinarian’s post-operative instructions to ensure a successful recovery.

Here are some care tips to help your cat recover after surgery:

Monitor your cat closely for signs of discomfort, such as crying out, hiding, or refusing to eat or drink. Encourage your cat to eat and drink, as hydration is vital after surgery.

Administer any prescribed medications as directed and follow-up with any recheck appointments as recommended. Give your cat plenty of rest and provide a quiet and comfortable area for recovery.

Diet for Hematuria in Cats

Diet can also play a significant role in managing hematuria in cats. A diet that promotes dilute urine can help dissolve certain types of bladder stones and prevent their recurrence.

Certain prescription diets are formulated explicitly for this purpose, and your veterinarian can provide guidance on which one is best for your cat. In cases of Feline Idiopathic Cystitis, feeding canned foods is often recommended.

These foods have higher water content, which can encourage water intake and reduce the risk of bladder inflammation. Additionally, cats with hematuria may benefit from increasing their water consumption through the use of water fountains and multiple sources of fresh water.


Surgical procedures are a necessary step in treating hematuria that cannot be resolved through non-surgical management. Owners should be aware of the potential risks and complications of surgery and closely monitor their cats’ post-operative recovery.

Diet plays a significant role in managing hematuria in cats and owners should be aware of the benefits of prescription diets and feeding canned foods. By working closely with your veterinarian, you can help manage and treat hematuria in your beloved cat, ensuring a healthy and happy life for them.

Diagnosis of Hematuria in Cats: Diagnostic Tests and Underlying Causes

If you have noticed blood in your cat’s urine, it is essential to take them to the veterinarian to determine the underlying cause. There are various diagnostic tests that a veterinarian will perform to diagnose the cause of your kitty’s hematuria.

In this article, we will discuss the diagnostic tests commonly used in the diagnosis of hematuria and the possible underlying causes.

Diagnostic Tests

Blood Chemistry Panel

A blood chemistry panel helps the veterinarian assess your cat’s kidney and liver function, electrolyte balance, and overall health. Bloodwork can also detect underlying medical issues, such as blood clotting disorders or hormonal imbalances.

Complete Blood Cell Count (CBC)

A complete blood cell count evaluates the number of red and white blood cells in your cat’s bloodstream. CBC is helpful in identifying certain blood disorders that can cause hematuria.


Urinalysis involves analyzing a urine sample for abnormalities such as bacteria or crystals.

Urinalysis can indicate the presence of hematuria and help identify underlying causes such as infection, bladder stones, or cancer.

Urine Culture and Antibiotic Sensitivity Testing

Urine culture and sensitivity testing help identify the specific bacterial type causing an infection, and what antibiotics will best treat it. Proper diagnosis can help in the selection of an appropriate antibiotic.

Abdominal X-rays and/or Ultrasound

X-ray and ultrasound exams can help provide detailed images of the urinary tract. They are essential in identifying bladder stones, tumors, or other obstructions that can cause hematuria.

Underlying Causes

Feline Idiopathic Cystitis (FIC)

Feline idiopathic cystitis is one of the most common underlying causes of hematuria in cats. This non-bacterial inflammation of the bladder can cause blood in the urine and is often associated with stress.

The exact cause remains unknown, but it is hypothesized that a complex interplay of physiological and psychological factors are involved.

Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)

Urinary tract infections are often seen in older cats and females. Infections of the bladder and urethra can cause inflammation and irritation, leading to hematuria.

Bladder Stones

Bladder stones are mineral-based deposits that can form in the bladder of cats. They can cause irritation to the bladder wall, inflammation and may cause bleeding.


Cancerous growths such as tumors in the urinary tract can cause hematuria in cats. These are less common and can occur at any age.


Accidents or trauma to the abdominal area can lead to injury to the urinary tract, which can cause hematuria.

Bleeding Disorders

Blood disorders such as hemophilia or Von Willebrand’s disease affect blood clotting and can increase the risk of spontaneous bleeding and blood in the urine.

Feline Idiopathic Cystitis (FIC)

Treatment for FIC

FIC is a frustrating and often recurring condition, and treatment is aimed at reducing signs of inflammation, promoting comfort and reducing risk factors.

Treatment may involve the following:

– Pain relievers

– Anti-anxiety medication

– Nutritional supplements

– Canned food

– Stress relief

Management of FIC

It’s essential to minimize stress and prevent recurrence of FIC to keep your cat healthy. Management usually involves:

Clean Litter Boxes: Offer your cat clean and accessible litter boxes to ensure they can eliminate in a comfortable and calm environment.

Ample Opportunities for Play and Mental Stimulation: Help your cat become more physically active by engaging in play or providing toys to distract them. Prevention of Conflicts Between Feline Housemates: Feline behavior is complex.

Reducing conflicts between housemates can lower stress. Maintaining a Consistent Home Environment: Cats thrive in familiar environments, keep your cat’s daily routine and environment as consistent as possible.


Hematuria in cats is not something to ignore, vital tests including

Urinalysis and blood chemistry panel and ultrasound imaging, can determine the underlying cause.

Treatment and management techniques depend on the cause, and FIC can often be managed through a combination of prescribed medication, optimal nutrition, and stress reduction.

With close monitoring and proactive care, cats with hematuria can live healthy and happy lives.

Urinary Tract Infection (UTI):

Treatment and Management

Urinary tract infection is a common cause of hematuria in cats, and prompt treatment is necessary to prevent complications. In this article, we will discuss the treatment and management of UTI in cats and the importance of identifying the underlying causes, such as struvite bladder stones.

Treatment for UTI


Medications such as antibiotics are an effective way to treat UTIs. Prior to treatment, a urine culture and sensitivity test is performed to identify the specific bacteria causing the infection. This allows for the selection of an appropriate antibiotic for treatment.

Urine Culture and Antibiotic Sensitivity Testing

Urine culture and sensitivity testing is the process of growing bacteria in a petri dish and then testing which antibiotics are most effective in stopping the growth. Its important to wait for the results of a urine culture before antibiotics are administered to ensure the correct antibiotic is given, which helps prevent antibiotic resistance.

Management of UTI

Treatment for Struvite

Bladder Stones

Increased risk of UTI has been linked to struvite bladder stones, and it is essential to prevent recurrence. Prescription diets are specially formulated to promote urinary health, reducing mineral and magnesium contents in food and encourages urine acidifiers to prevent the formation of struvite bladder stones.

A low-stress, low-calorie, and a low-carbohydrate diet may be particularly helpful in overweight cats.

Bladder Stones: Types and

Treatment Options


Bladder stones can cause hematuria in cats, and in many cases, medical intervention is necessary.

Treatment depends on the type of bladder stones and may include:



Prescription diets have specialized formulas designed to dissolve struvite stones, which are composed primarily of magnesium, ammonium, and phosphorus.

The food is typically fed for several weeks or months, depending on the severity of the condition.


Medications can decrease the likelihood of recurrence after dissolution of bladder stones. These medications also decrease inflammation and irritation within the urinary tract by increasing blood flow and relaxing muscles.


Surgical intervention is necessary in cases where bladder stones cant be dissolved. Cystotomy is the most common surgical technique used to remove bladder stones in cats.

During this procedure, the surgeon makes a small incision in the bladder and removes the bladder stones. Types of

Bladder Stones


Bladder Stones

Struvite bladder stones form when cats’ urine is too alkaline, caused by certain bacterial infections. They are composed of magnesium, ammonium, and phosphorus and are the most common type in cats.

Calcium Oxalate and Other Types of

Bladder Stones

Calcium oxalate bladder stones, urate stones and cystine stones, are less common than struvite bladder stones and require different treatment options. Calcium oxalate and urate stones can be managed with diet changes, whereas cystine stones usually require surgery.


Bladder stones and UTI can cause hematuria in cats, and the underlying causes should be determined to help in the selection of the appropriate treatment. Prescription diets, medications, and surgical interventions are used to treat bladder stones whereas Antibiotics are the first line of defense in treating UTIs. It is essential to implement healthier diets, ample hydration and keeping litter boxes clean, to minimize urination-compromising infections and types of stones.

With close observation and prompt treatment, cats with hematuria can overcome any health condition, live happily, and thrive!

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