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Ongoing cat UTI for a MONTH... anything I can do?


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My sweet Maggie has been on and off antibiotics since September 1st. First they gave her Clavamox, twice, which helped a lot but didn't make it go away. She had symptoms a couple days after both courses. So they did a culture, found ecoli, and switched to Enrofloxacin (sp?). She did 7 days of that, seemed great for 5 days, and just now was meowing, pawing, in the litterbox, drops of pinkish urine 😞. My DH is dropping her off at the vet now. 

I feel so bad for her, and I'm also scared and frustrated! Is this something that will eventually be untreatable and kill her? We've spent about $1,000 on vet bills in a month, and she seems no closer to being better than when we started. She is 15, has thyroid problems (treated), and moderate kidney disease, which she has special food for. 

Ugh. I know a cat UTI is small potatoes in the grand scheme of things, considering the state of the world, but I've been analyzing every pee and meow for 36 days and I'm about done in 😞 

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Plus, I'm wondering.... if this is some kind of antibiotic resistant e-coli.... can it spread to humans when I change the litter? When she walks on our couches, rugs...? Eek!

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You could try D-mannose.  That’s what women use to prevent and also to clear up a UTI. 

When I looked in the comments on Amazon when I first discovered D Mannose, I found that people also use it for pets. 

I’m going to copy here how it is used to clear up an infection in a human, and also I will copy the note of how someone uses it to prevent infection in cats.   If you use it for your cat, you’ll need to give it to her more often at first to clear the infection, and then you could give it to her in the smaller daily amount as prevention.  

First: how to clear up a UTI using D mannose in a human per the comment section on Amazon:

 

HOW I TAKE IT WHEN I HAVE A UTI (note that I have NOT A single UTI since I started using this as prevention!!)

 

Okay when you notice signs of UTI (aka the horrible feeling of death, burning, and would rather give birth again,) take one large teaspon in about 2 onces of water. now WAIT 45 mins so it can go through your body to your bladder, you want it to grab as much bacteria as possible, then start drinking alot of water like a large deer park water bottle at least 12-16 onces of water. Then wait 2-3 hours and repeat, then after the first two doses, do it EVERY 3-4 hours until sympotns start to disappear, I take AZO with it the first 24 hours to help with pain, but after about 20-30 hours, you are going to be shocked at how much better you feel.

 

IN NON PARAGRAPH FORM:

 

DOSE: Take one large tsp of D-Mannose in 2 oz water.  

WAIT: Wait 45 min, drink 16 oz or more of water.

Wait 2-3 hours and repeat the DOSE and WAIT steps.

Now wait 3-4 hours and repeat the DOSE and WAIT steps.

Continue repeating the DOSE and WAIT steps every 3-4 hours until the infection is gone.  (Round the clock.)

 

Take Uristat/AZO in the first 24 hours, but within 20-30 hours the infection should be going away.  

 

************************

And now how the person with the cat keeps her cat from getting a UTI:

 

My 20 yr old cat who has chronic kidney disease takes 1/8 tsp 2x a day in 5mls of water with her meds to prevent UTI's. I have been using it with her for over a year now and it works really well on certain types of UTI bacteria. The secret is to not mix with too much water so that it clings to the sides of the bladder, I think. I'm on our 3rd bottle in a little over a year. Will continue to buy for as long as it works for her.

 

*******************

Here is the link to buying powdered form of D mannose online. You can also see if they have it powdered form in stores near you.  Careful, it’s also sold in pill form and you won’t want that for your cat.  One last note, d-mannose only works on E-coli.  It’s more rare, but some people (cats?) get infections from bacteria other than e-coli.

 

https://smile.amazon.com/NOW-Foods-733739028099-D-Mannose-6-Ounce/dp/B00JWKDF6A/ref=sxts_sxwds-bia-wc-drs1_0?crid=33KQCHINV3BW1&cv_ct_cx=d+mannose+powder&dchild=1&keywords=d+mannose+powder&pd_rd_i=B00JWKDF6A&pd_rd_r=44400a2c-b675-4176-ac45-ac5d4ed8c8e9&pd_rd_w=sFBhC&pd_rd_wg=SPNij&pf_rd_p=99c7ce93-69a7-402a-ba4e-be326f866b88&pf_rd_r=EAM0KT9ET7JMEM1SPTKG&psc=1&qid=1601999249&sprefix=d+mannose%2Caps%2C165&sr=1-1-f6b8d51f-2c55-4dc3-89ad-0c3639671b2d

Edited by Garga
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What food is she eating and what measures are you taking to get extra water into her? We have a cat who has gone through the bloody urine, unable to pee issue, which has been diagnosed as crystals, and each time, copious amounts of water have been the cure. They gave her antibiotics the first time as a precaution. Each time hers has been triggered by eating dry food. After three different episodes we now just never ever allow her dry food. When she has had an episode, we stir extra water into her wet food so that it’s the consistency of split pea soup. Plain chicken or turkey baby food is also really high in liquid and they usually enjoy it (it has to be the kind with no seasonings). We feed her some thing every couple hours with a bunch of water stirred in, to really get the fluids going. Usually about 24 hours of this and she is better. If you’re already doing all this, then it sounds like it’s something different, and I would wonder if they had cultured her urine to figure out exactly which organism it is.

 

i’m sorry your kitty is going through this. I totally know how stressful it is!

 

eta: I just reread it and see that they did culture and they did fine E. coli. Sorry for missing that. So water alone may not be the main answer in this case, but I still would definitely still include that as part of the treatment, just as a person would with a UTI.

Edited by kand
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Thanks guys. She's at the vet now 😞

I do mostly wet food, but some dry still. I should just pull the plug and never let her have dry food. She does like the plain baby food, but the vet said to lay off pure meat because that much protein is hard on kidneys.

Latest kidney bloodwork showed "moderate" kidney disease. They said there's not too much we can do other than do lots of water.

 They did do Xrays last time at the vet (about a week ago) and didn't see anything. 

It does seem like the antibiotics are working... somewhat. I mean, she goes from very upset and peeing blood to being her normal self. But as soon as she's off them, she's in pain again in a few days. Maybe they just need to use a nuclear option of antibiotics? That makes me nervous for many reasons, but we have to do something.

Do you think my house is contaminated with ecoli? Or is there usually ecoli in cat stool, and it was just a random fluke that some ended up in her urinary tract?

 

 

 

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1 minute ago, Kanin said:

Thanks guys. She's at the vet now 😞

I do mostly wet food, but some dry still. I should just pull the plug and never let her have dry food. She does like the plain baby food, but the vet said to lay off pure meat because that much protein is hard on kidneys.

Latest kidney bloodwork showed "moderate" kidney disease. They said there's not too much we can do other than do lots of water.

 They did do Xrays last time at the vet (about a week ago) and didn't see anything. 

It does seem like the antibiotics are working... somewhat. I mean, she goes from very upset and peeing blood to being her normal self. But as soon as she's off them, she's in pain again in a few days. Maybe they just need to use a nuclear option of antibiotics? That makes me nervous for many reasons, but we have to do something.

Do you think my house is contaminated with ecoli? Or is there usually ecoli in cat stool, and it was just a random fluke that some ended up in her urinary tract?

 

 

 

My gut tells me there is something else going on.  Perhaps a fresh set of eyes might be a good starting place.  
 

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15 minutes ago, itsheresomewhere said:

My gut tells me there is something else going on.  Perhaps a fresh set of eyes might be a good starting place.  
 

You're probably right. Sigh. 

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16 minutes ago, Kanin said:

Thanks guys. She's at the vet now 😞

I do mostly wet food, but some dry still. I should just pull the plug and never let her have dry food. She does like the plain baby food, but the vet said to lay off pure meat because that much protein is hard on kidneys.

Latest kidney bloodwork showed "moderate" kidney disease. They said there's not too much we can do other than do lots of water.

 They did do Xrays last time at the vet (about a week ago) and didn't see anything. 

It does seem like the antibiotics are working... somewhat. I mean, she goes from very upset and peeing blood to being her normal self. But as soon as she's off them, she's in pain again in a few days. Maybe they just need to use a nuclear option of antibiotics? That makes me nervous for many reasons, but we have to do something.

Do you think my house is contaminated with ecoli? Or is there usually ecoli in cat stool, and it was just a random fluke that some ended up in her urinary tract?

 

 

 

Ecoli would be normal in her stool. Maybe she needs a much longer course if antibiotics. Do you know if they did susceptibility testing to make sure that she was on the right anabiotic for the bacteria she had? My other cat had a uti  one time, and the vet switched her after the culture came back because it turned out she was on the wrong one for her bacteria. Do you have a water fountain for her? My cat that had the UTI once had kidney disease and she drank large amounts of water from her fountain. 

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1 minute ago, kand said:

Ecoli would be normal in her stool. Maybe she needs a much longer course if antibiotics. Do you know if they did susceptibility testing to make sure that she was on the right anabiotic for the bacteria she had? My other cat had a uti  one time, and the vet switched her after the culture came back because it turned out she was on the wrong one for her bacteria. Do you have a water fountain for her? My cat that had the UTI once had kidney disease and she drank large amounts of water from her fountain. 

Ordering a fountain now!

Well, they didn't culture before the two courses of Clavamox, and then did after that and found ecoli. I assume they picked an antibiotic that's appropriate.... hopefully! I hope she just needs a longer course, but at this point, it's been an entire month of antibiotics.

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29 minutes ago, itsheresomewhere said:

Another thought-  have them do another culture.  It is possible that it there is another bacteria and they only saw the ecoli on the first culture.  I had that happened to an elderly dog once. 

I'll make sure they do that. This has been the easiest cat until this year, when she's had something new and strange every month or two. She's normally the most chill animal on the planet. Sleeps quietly all night... just wants to cuddle every time I sit down... and now this! I feel like a horrible pet owner for not being able to fix this for her.

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My cat is 16 now, but when he was much younger I had to take him to the emergency animal hospital one night because he kept going to the box but couldn't go very much.  I thought he would get an antibiotic, but the vet said he needed to drink more water and he shouldn't eat any dry food at all.  She also recommended cat fountains to encourage drinking.  

He never had that problem of pain and needing to go again, although he does have other health problems including kidney disease.  (For the last year he has needed subcutaneous fluids which we are able to do at home once a week.)

I've found helpful information at this website:  https://catinfo.org/feline-urinary-tract-diseases/   

I hope Maggie feels better soon!  And try not to blame yourself, although I understand how stressful, frustrating, (and yes, expen$ive) it is when our pets are sick.  

 

Edited by Laurie
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2 hours ago, Laurie said:

My cat is 16 now, but when he was much younger I had to take him to the emergency animal hospital one night because he kept going to the box but couldn't go very much.  I thought he would get an antibiotic, but the vet said he needed to drink more water and he shouldn't eat any dry food at all.  She also recommended cat fountains to encourage drinking.  

He never had that problem of pain and needing to go again, although he does have other health problems including kidney disease.  (For the last year he has needed subcutaneous fluids which we are able to do at home once a week.)

I've found helpful information at this website:  https://catinfo.org/feline-urinary-tract-diseases/   

I hope Maggie feels better soon!  And try not to blame yourself, although I understand how stressful, frustrating, (and yes, expen$ive) it is when our pets are sick.  

 

Thanks, Laurie. I'm sorry your cat is going through kidney disease, too. I ordered a cat fountain, and I'm sure she'll love it. I also told her no more dry food!

 

 

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The vet said that there is still bacteria and blood in her urine, which I expected. She also said that based on the urine culture from last time, the bacteria is susceptible to the antibiotics that have been used in the past month. So.... either the course wasn't long enough, or there's some other reason they keep coming back. I'll do wet food only, and extra water, and see what happens. 

An ultrasound showed no stones or crystals, but she did see that there are some masses on her liver that look like cysts. 😞  She offered to refer us to a specialist, but really, at age 15, with kidney disease, thyroid disease, bad teeth, etc... that doesn't really sound like a good idea for us or the cat. It's possible the cysts are benign, so I guess we'll wait and see for now.

Feeling bummed that the bacteria should be killed by the antibiotic, but haven't been yet. I guess we should talk to another vet and see if we get a different opinion. $1,200 so far this month and no better off than before. I'm not too stingy about money, and obviously her care comes first, but geez!

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9 hours ago, Garga said:

You could try D-mannose.  That’s what women use to prevent and also to clear up a UTI. 

 

Thanks for this, I did order some D-mannose. She's had it a couple times (mixed with bacon grease, yumm), and it didn't help this go round. But there's no harm in continuing, so I'll give it some more time.

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Just a few thoughts (also, sorry you're going this 😟).   

We once had a cat with chronic UTI's, and found that bottled water (instead of faucet water) really made a difference.

Also, it's true that an infection can start out with one bacteria, but in the meantime be exposed to another.  Ecoli is the most likely culprit for a UTI, but other bacteria can get in there too, and they might require a completely different antibiotic.  (That actually happened to me once.)

Lastly, be careful of how much D-mannose you give her.  D-mannose works like a miracle drug for my UTI's, but one of the first times I took it, I didn't know that I really needed only a very small amount.  I took way too much and that was one horrible experience.

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13 hours ago, J-rap said:

Just a few thoughts (also, sorry you're going this 😟).   

We once had a cat with chronic UTI's, and found that bottled water (instead of faucet water) really made a difference.

Also, it's true that an infection can start out with one bacteria, but in the meantime be exposed to another.  Ecoli is the most likely culprit for a UTI, but other bacteria can get in there too, and they might require a completely different antibiotic.  (That actually happened to me once.)

Lastly, be careful of how much D-mannose you give her.  D-mannose works like a miracle drug for my UTI's, but one of the first times I took it, I didn't know that I really needed only a very small amount.  I took way too much and that was one horrible experience.

Quoting because this is important.

We also had an elderly cat who suddenly started getting UTIs and the vet suggested filtered water and a fountain. (Actually he said Distilled would work, too, but that was going to be pricey with three animals!) We filled an empty water jug (the gallon size) with filtered water from the fridge and used that for the water bowl. We just kept it on the counter full of filtered water and ready to pour into the fountain. Eight months ago when we moved to a place with no filter in the fridge's water line, we used a Brita pitcher to filter the tap water.  The cat has been UTI-free for over two years now and is about to turn 19 years old. While the animals all adjusted the fountain, I never did and we chucked it after I got sick of cleaning slime out of it and we have been using a bowl for the last eight months. 

Oh, our vet gave Baytril? Bactrim? (something like that) for the UTIs and it cleared them right up. They occurred about once a year in our male cat and that med worked great. (Male cats are notoriously difficult to treat a UTI). OP, if your cat's UTI doesn't clear with this next round of abx, I'd suggest trying another vet for a second opinion. Nothing against your current vet, but sometimes others have different thoughts on treatments.

Oh, a side note about the filtered water. Dd has a Guinea Pig who got UTIs like crazy and once she changed to filtered water from a Brita pitcher, the UTIs reduced in frequency and severity (some piggies just get them no matter what), so we are all sold on the filtered water benefits and now we only drink filtered for ourselves, as well.

 

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