When your cat has bladder stones, it basically means that he has accumulated minerals in his urinary bladder that have developed into stone-like formations. These interfere with his ability to urinate normally.

Bladder stones are formed from different minerals, with most diagnosed cases involving struvite or calcium oxalate. These minerals may also combine with other crystal substances and organic elements to form a more complex mass. A sizeable mass may cause inflammation in the urinary tract hence painful urination. This condition should be treated as soon as possible at a Pleasantville, NY animal hospital before it becomes worse.

Common symptoms of bladder stones

Observe your cat’s behavior regularly especially during urination. If you realize that they are uneasy or releasing little amounts of urine, then the stones may be obstructing their urethra making it painful to urinate. This is called dysuria. You may also notice some blood in the urine, a condition known as hematuria. Blood comes about when the stones scrape the walls of the bladder as they move around in the abdomen. In more severe cases, the urethra may be blocked completely making it hard for your pet to urinate. If the stones are not removed, the pressure in the bladder may accumulate to a rupture point.

Treatment options

First, the vet needs to feel the abdomen for any hard lumps. In other situations, several tests have to be carried out to confirm the presence of bladder stones; radiographs and ultrasounds are sure ways of identifying the stones. Once the diagnosis has been confirmed, the first course of treatment is to perform a cystotomy. This involves cutting into the bladder in order to remove the accumulated mass. Following the surgery, most cats make a quick recovery; hence it is the most preferred form of treatment.

The vet may also decide to dissolve the stones using a special medical solution. This is beneficial to clients who do not want incisions done on their cats. The composition of the stones is first identified through other tests like urinalysis so as to determine whether they are soluble. The solution is then mixed in the patient’s diet and ingested over time. The stones dissolve slowly and are passed out of the patient’s body during the course of treatment.

The last method of treatment involves increasing your pet’s water intake in order to induce urination and flush out the stones in the process. However, this may be very painful. Very rarely, the stones may be broken down through shock waves in a process called lithotripsy.

Post-treatment management

Once the stones have been removed from the bladder walls, it is your responsibility to ensure that the condition does not recur. The vet should examine the stones to find out the underlying cause of the condition. Afterward, look out for anything that can cause the formations to build up again. Ensure that your cat has a balanced diet that is easy to digest and that they take in the right amounts of water to aid in the digestion. Water is also beneficial in dissolving minerals in the body thus reducing the chances of them accumulating in the bladder.