Ways to help my cat's stress induced cystitis without prescription food?

Kayseymac

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My 10 month old cat has stress induced cystitis. Basically from what I understand is she gets so stressed she gives herself an infection that irritates her bladder. She went 3 weeks without a flare up (I got feliway, a new cat tree, and I’ve been trying to make our home as calm as possible). My hypothesis is that she gets stressed out if I spend the night away. She’s pretty attached to me.

My vet gave us some pain medicine (gabapentin) and a prescription for science diet stress relief food. I’m not completely against the food, but I’d rather not have to to that due to the cost and because my other cat would have to eat it too but he has a sensitive stomach. I’d rather not mess with it.

I was wondering if maybe there are any good alternatives to chill her out? Like maybe drops I could put in her food as needed or something like that? Any similar experiences or recommendations? Thank you!!!
 

verna davies

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What were you feeding her before? How long has she had this and can you think of anything that changed about the first time she had cystitis. Did she have a scan to see how her bladder looked?
 

Furballsmom

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This retailer might have something for you for chews - I've used some of their other products and like them (not affiliated with them).
Stress & Anxiety Support for Cats

Also, there is Cat Music which can be surprisingly effecting in helping a cat to become more relaxed, and here below is a list of calming products from wipes to drops.

My Poppycat didn't respond to pheromone type products at all positively--with Feliway he just sort of hunched into himself 'til I removed him from the area where it was being used (a vet clinic), and he'd leave the room where I tried Comfort Zone at the house.

Only Natural Pet has a calming product called Just Relax Calming spray with essential oil (catnip oil)--see their link I gave you above.

There's this one, be sure and scroll all the way down the page;
www.bachflower.com

Also, there is ThunderWunders calming chews, Richard's Organic Pet Calm drops, Naturevet Hemp, HomeoPet Anxiety Relief, Head to Tail Calming, Relaxivet Quiet Moments Cat treats, GNC Calming formula, and there is Calm-o-mile, Natures Miracle calming spray, Vetri-Science's Composure is another item to look at, Pet Remedy - UK and US (it has valerian) is yet another, as is Essential Pet Pet-eze, Pet Organics No Stress, Only Natural Pet (brand and website) has other calming products, Pet Naturals also has one I believe, and there are others.

Lambert Vet Supply is a website to look at, and of course chewy, also there's Petwishpros, animaleo, 1-800-petmeds, Petco and PetSmart, and other pet stores.

This post talks about some other products;
Calming Treats For A Very Picky Cat
 
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Kayseymac

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What were you feeding her before? How long has she had this and can you think of anything that changed about the first time she had cystitis. Did she have a scan to see how her bladder looked?
She’s been eating blue Buffalo for 4 or 5 months now with fancy feast wet food at night. I really can’t think of anything other than the fact it usually happens when I’m gone overnight. I rescued her from my work when she was 2 months old and she’s always been more skittish than my other cat but she overall seems happy (eats, cuddles, plays, etc).

our vet didn’t recommend a scan of her bladder but she did do an in depth urinalysis.
 
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Kayseymac

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This retailer might have something for you for chews - I've used some of their other products and like them (not affiliated with them).
Stress & Anxiety Support for Cats

Also, there is Cat Music which can be surprisingly effecting in helping a cat to become more relaxed, and here below is a list of calming products from wipes to drops.

My Poppycat didn't respond to pheromone type products at all positively--with Feliway he just sort of hunched into himself 'til I removed him from the area where it was being used (a vet clinic), and he'd leave the room where I tried Comfort Zone at the house.

Only Natural Pet has a calming product called Just Relax Calming spray with essential oil (catnip oil)--see their link I gave you above.

There's this one, be sure and scroll all the way down the page;
www.bachflower.com

Also, there is ThunderWunders calming chews, Richard's Organic Pet Calm drops, Naturevet Hemp, HomeoPet Anxiety Relief, Head to Tail Calming, Relaxivet Quiet Moments Cat treats, GNC Calming formula, and there is Calm-o-mile, Natures Miracle calming spray, Vetri-Science's Composure is another item to look at, Pet Remedy - UK and US (it has valerian) is yet another, as is Essential Pet Pet-eze, Pet Organics No Stress, Only Natural Pet (brand and website) has other calming products, Pet Naturals also has one I believe, and there are others.

Lambert Vet Supply is a website to look at, and of course chewy, also there's Petwishpros, animaleo, 1-800-petmeds, Petco and PetSmart, and other pet stores.

This post talks about some other products;
Calming Treats For A Very Picky Cat
wow there is way more out there than I thought there was! I have a lot of research to do. Thank you!!!
 

FeebysOwner

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I would most definitely try all the suggestions offered by Furballsmom Furballsmom - and forget the vet-proposed food. There really isn't, IMO, much worth to those foods in terms of being effective to calm a cat - unless there is a calming drug in them. And, if there were, you could just buy that!

What happens with cystitis - most typically defined as stress related - is that the bladder lining becomes inflamed, sometimes brought on by spasms, sometimes brought on by crystals. and other times by unbalanced urine PH (or all three), all of which can irritate the lining - it is over time that the inflammation can lead to an infection. Find out if she has crystals in her urine. If that is not the case, you could ask the vet about what they call 'pulse therapy' through either an anti-spasmodic or anti-inflammatory. Pulse therapy simply means intermittent use of one or the other to minimize the chances of a recurring infection. If she has crystals, or an unbalanced urine PH, the key for that is to increase her water intake as much as is possible so that her bladder is routinely 'flushed out' which also helps to reduce the odds of inflammation. If the Blue Buffalo is dry, I would slowly reduce the dry and increase the FF wet food. I say slowly in order to decrease stress brought on by a drastic food change!!

More wet food and more water - maybe try a water fountain? It will sometimes entice a cat to drink more.
 
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Kayseymac

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I would most definitely try all the suggestions offered by Furballsmom Furballsmom - and forget the vet-proposed food. There really isn't, IMO, much worth to those foods in terms of being effective to calm a cat - unless there is a calming drug in them. And, if there were, you could just buy that!

What happens with cystitis - most typically defined as stress related - is that the bladder lining becomes inflamed, sometimes brought on by spasms, sometimes brought on by crystals. and other times by unbalanced urine PH (or all three), all of which can irritate the lining - it is over time that the inflammation can lead to an infection. Find out if she has crystals in her urine. If that is not the case, you could ask the vet about what they call 'pulse therapy' through either an anti-spasmodic or anti-inflammatory. Pulse therapy simply means intermittent use of one or the other to minimize the chances of a recurring infection. If she has crystals, or an unbalanced urine PH, the key for that is to increase her water intake as much as is possible so that her bladder is routinely 'flushed out' which also helps to reduce the odds of inflammation. If the Blue Buffalo is dry, I would slowly reduce the dry and increase the FF wet food. I say slowly in order to decrease stress brought on by a drastic food change!!

More wet food and more water - maybe try a water fountain? It will sometimes entice a cat to drink more.
Thanks for the tips! She drinks quite a bit. I have a fountain for her and I have a human cup she drinks out of. I also add water to her wet food at night.
 

verna davies

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My vet diagnosed stress related UTI, the scan showed debris in his bladder but no crystals. At that time he was eating mostly dry, once removed, feeding wet and adding water as mentioned above, he has been fine. Have a read up on d mannose and cornsilk, both help my cat.
 

Timewarpcat

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My cat has this. We got 2 elaborate cat trees (from Chewy) and call her the princess to remind us to give her wayyyyy more lap time and cuddling and brushing. Over the period of a year, she gradually improved.

(In the meantime, I got 2 waterproof fluffy blankets at Amazon to put on the couch and my chair, her alternate pee spots).

She had blood in her urine and peeing outside the litter box including on me about 5 days every 2 to 3 weeks.

Now it lasts 2 days, no blood that I can see, every 2 months or so. A few puddles of pee on the tile, maybe a day of that.
 

Timewarpcat

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I did take her to the vet. It turned out in the end to be cystitis. Cystitis does cause blood in the urine. I agree a person shouldn't assume it's this, the cat needs to be seen by a vet.
 

IndyJones

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Cystitis just means inflammation of the bladder. It's often used as a catch all term when they can't figure out the exact cause.

A bacterial infection of the bladder, for example can cause Cystitis. Kidney stones and bladder stones can also cause it.
 
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