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Symptoms of UTI in Dogs and Cats

By Meredith Alling. June 07, 2012 | See Comments

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    PetCareRx Staff Veterinarian

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Symptoms of UTI in Dogs and Cats

A urinary tract infection can bring excruciating pain along with it. Here are the symptoms your pet may experience.

Extremely painful symptoms go hand-in-hand with most urinary tract infections. A lower urinary tract infection that centralizes in the bladder makes it difficult for your pet to urinate freely, resulting in pain and strain during each attempt. Because lower UTIs can create the sensation of constantly having to urinate, your pet may try to eliminate over and over, resulting in further pain and distress when only small amounts of urine are expelled.

In the case of upper urinary tract infections that affect the kidneys, your pet would exhibit different symptoms such as vomiting, weight loss, and a disinterest in food. In some cases, your pet may not exhibit any symptoms at all, so it is important to keep up with regular trips to the veterinarian during which an infection can be detected.

Upper and Lower Symptoms

With lower urinary tract infections that centralize in the bladder you may see blood in your dog or cat’s urine, difficulty during urination (pets may cry or strain), frequent attempts at urination (cats may linger by the litter box and dogs the door), accidents in the house or dribbling of urine, licking near the urinary opening, and bad smelling, cloudy urine. With upper urinary tract infections that take place in the kidneys, your pet may exhibit weight loss, vomiting, and a disinterest in food.

More serious UTI symptoms that may be indicative of a greater problem include fever, tenderness in the lower abdomen, lethargy, and crying out while trying to urinate. These symptoms may mean that the infection has spread and become life-threatening.

If you observe any of these symptoms you should contact your veterinarian right away. The sooner that you begin treating an infection the sooner your pet will start to feel better.

Symptomless Infections

Some urinary tract infections will show no symptoms or may be more difficult to detect. This is just one of the reasons that regular veterinary visits are so important. Make sure that your pet is getting both a physical examination and any necessary lab work to detect abnormalities. The longer your pet’s UTI goes undiagnosed the more difficult it can be to treat, so stay ahead of the game with regular trips to the vet.

This information is for informational purposes only and is not meant as a substitute for the professional advice of, or diagnosis or treatment by, your veterinarian with respect to your pet. It has, however, been verified by a licensed veterinarian for accuracy.

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