Feline Ideopathic Cystitis

21st Jun, 2017  

Feline Idiopathic Cystitis (FIC) – accounts for 50-70% of feline lower urinary tract disease (FLUTD).  It is an inflammation of the bladder for which the cause is not entirely understood.  The condition is recurrent lasting from 3-10 days and as such appears to respond to antibiotics.  In some cases the condition is so serious that it results in euthanasia.

Despite significant research over the last 30 years, FIC is not fully understood.  It is a complicated condition involving a complex combinations of interactions between the nerve supply to and from the bladder, the bladders protective lining glycosammogcan (GAG) layer and some constituents of urine and it is undoubtedly stress related.

Symptoms of FIC are common to other feline lower urinary tract disease and include:

•    Frequent urination
•    Blood in the urine
•    Painful urination
•    Difficulty passing urine – more likely in males
•    Inappropriate urination
•    Agitation and/or anxiety
•    Depression and/or withdrawal
•    Aggression towards people or other pets
•    Loss of appetite
•    Over-grooming of the lower abdomen and perineal area

Cats known to be especially at risk of FIC include:

•    Neutered cats
•    Cats less than 10 years of age
•    Cats reluctant to drink
•    Cats which are fed too frequently
•    Inactive cats
•    Obese cats
•    Indoor cats or those with restricted access to the outside

Stress factors which dramatically increase risk include:

•    Cats living in multi-cat households or in areas with dense cat population
•    Changes in environment or routine, including additions and losses to the household

Veterinary surgeons need to eliminate other causes of FLUTD and look at the case history and then work closely with a behaviourist and the owners to reduce stress and increase fluid intake.





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