Why is PU so common??

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    I found this awesome messsage board looking up info about PU. My 7 year old male cat had problems with a blockage, had to stay at the vets for 3 days and have a catheter put in, then just two weeks later blocked up again and had to have the PU operation and stay for 5 days. It breaks my heart to see so many male cats suffering like this. What is the main cause and how can other pet owners prevent this from happening?
    When my cat first came home and I seen all the stitches I sat on the floor and cried like a baby thinking I made the wronge decision and I should have put him to sleep, but now that he’s healed and running around, playing, purring and acting normal I am glad I went with the operation.

    He was eating Pet Promise and him and my female cat LOVE that food, but the vet had me get Hills Prescription brand and they hate it. Does any one have any food suggestions?

    Thanks so much 🙂



    PU (penile urethrostomy) is a surgical correction for cats (mostly male) that is a “last resort” for chronic blockages due to a condition called FLUTD (Feline lower urinary tract disease) or FIC (feline interstitial cystitis). The PU surgery is not nearly as common as the condition that leads to it, but for owners that are frustrated with cats that chronically get blocked, it can be a solution that is preferable to euthanization or abandoning the cats in shelters. FLUTD is one of the most common reasons why a lot of cats end up in shelters or are euthanized because they soil the house inappropriately.

    FLUTD’s cause is often called ideopathic, since the underlying cause has often eluded the veterinarians diagnostic capabilities. Ideopathic means basically that we dont know what causes it. Recent studies have shown that this condition is multifactorial condition that is due to many different causes. These studies have shown that urinary tract infections are rarely a cause of the problem. Also, the formation of urinary crystals is not likely a reasonable cause either as this can be a “normal” finding. The formation of bladder stones can however be an underlying cause, and removal of the stones from the bladder often gives some relief.

    Recently some light has been shed on a neurophysiologic cause. Excessive stress can lead to the breakdown of the lining of the bladder with small amounts of urine leakage into the bladder wall. This predisposes them to the cascade of events that leads to blockage of the urethra.

    Reducing stress (increase environmental enrichment, clean the litter box often, ensure you are using a litter the cat enjoys, ensure you have the proper number, and size of litter boxes) and lastly, feeding a canned high quality meat based food can help prevent this disease. Canned food promotes more water intake which is vital in ensuring cats get enough water intake daily. Also the use of water fountains for cats can be enriching for them and can also promote higher levels of water intake.

    Medications are rarely necessary, but in severe or refractory conditions, tricyclic antidepressants can sometimes be beneficial to the condition, acupuncture has also proven to be an effective treatment modality as well.

    Hope this explanation helps, if you have questions about any of this please post again.


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