The Urinary system of a cat never stops functioning, and under normal circumstances, a kitty needs to pee several times daily. But then when your feline friend suddenly stops urinating for a long time, it calls for urgent attention as it may be a symptom of a serious problem; however, it all depends on your cat’s eating habit. It is expected that a cat pees many times daily in its sandbox, depending on its breed, age, and of course weight, especially if it has a very healthy appetite. On the other hand, if an energetic and lively cat that consumes a lot of food ceases to urinate for 24 hours, a problem might be brewing. And if it holds it in for all of three days or more, it may turn out to be fatal. If you notice that your kitty is having peeing issues, continue reading for further information on how long cats can go without peeing.
The Urinary System of Cats – How It Works
Just as with humans, all the food that goes into the mouth of a feline, both liquid and solid, lands in the digestive system, after which the waste part of it will be taken out through filtering in the basic working units of the kidney called nephrons. Once the waste is out, the nephrons all the waste down to the bladder via a connecting tube known as the ureter. From the bladder, the waste then moves down to the genitals as urine through another connecting tube called urethra. The process is supposed to be a seamless and continuous one, and no obstruction is expected. However, it is important to know that your furry friend’s peeing times change with the eating habit, if the quantity of food and water intake reduces, then the peeing also goes down. Besides the urinating time for kitties also change with age.
What Causes a Cat to Stop Peeing
A lot of things can make a cat stop peeing; it might be that the kitty has a urinary disease or infection that usually goes to obstruct the urinary tract and if ignored, can lead to a life-threatening disorder. Any cat that has not urinated for three days can suddenly collapse and may die from there.
The symptoms of urinary tract infection in cats can come in different forms; the signs can even start manifesting before the infection sets in. However, to understand the feline population, you need to come to terms with the way they do their needs as well as the route their body waste takes before it gets to their genitals. In fact, you should know that the tube of a kitty’s urinary tract can clog at any time, and if that happens to be the case, you will notice changes in behavior.
The cat is likely to complain by incessant movement around the sandbox, snorting and protesting, and if you keep a closer watch, you will notice that the pee only comes in tiny trickles and drops without a constant stream. Once the cat is inconvenienced, it will take to licking its genitals in the hope that it will bring remedy to the situation. These types of symptoms call for urgent attention from the vet.
How Long is it Possible for a Cat to Hold Their Pee
This particular question does not come with a definite answer as it varies from one cat to another depending on certain factors like food and water intake, age, and state of health. The digestive system of the kittens functions in the same way as that of children since they need to pee more frequently than a full-grown cat. Many older cats, especially ones that have lost a lot of muscle tone, find it rather difficult to hold their pee for so long.
For the male cat that holds their pee longer than necessary, the consequences can be severe, since they are susceptible to inflammation of the urethra. It can even get more serious than that, unnecessary accumulation of excess crystals in the cat’s urethral tract can result in a blockage, so it reeks of negligence when you expect your cat to hold their pee for a long while you clean their dirty litter box or when the kitty does not find the box at the right spot.
The male can easily experience blockage because the opening in their genitals is rather narrow. Again, the male naturally voids sprinkles of urine on a regular basis, spraying it to mark his territory. The problem can be worsened by some dry cat food. Anytime it occurs, a blockage takes a lot of money and time to treat, and the success rate is not very high. However, when it becomes fatal, it can result in renal problems. This is common with male cats that have been castrated or desexed.
The simple explanation is that under no circumstance should any kitty be expected to hold their pee for a long time, and if their litter box is constantly clean, they shouldn’t need to. Again, if you are the type that takes long in cleaning your cat’s litter box, it just might find another location which is a rather difficult habit to break, so don’t even allow the cat to get used to another place. Besides, if a kitty is classed as having some behavioral issues, it might be taken to a shelter. The best option is to ensure that your cat always meets a clean litter anytime it has the need to use it.
The Best Way to Treat Urinary Problems in the Feline Population
When cats are stressed, they tend to urinate more, which is not abnormal, but if you have reasons to believe that your furry friend is stress-urinating, you need to get to the root of the problem. Talk to the vet, especially on any environmental triggers which you believe might be causing the stress. If the vet suspects that the frequent urinating is caused by a bacterial infection, he can go ahead and conduct a bacterial culture on the kitty’s urine before commencing treatment.
Important Facts About Your kitty’s Bladder and Urination
Here are a few facts to keep in mind when concerning your kitty’s urinary system;
- Bladder issues in cats vary with the gender
Any problem with the urethra (the tube that conveys urine from the bladder to genital) emanates from the bladder. According to statistics, it is the male cat that usually gets urethral problems like blockage because theirs is narrower than the female’s own. The major cause of urethral blockage are ‘stones’, which is a serious health issue because once the stones drop down and block the track, it becomes impossible to pass urine. Any cat that is diagnosed with this condition cannot survive for more than 72 hours.
What usually forms the blockage is thick mucus or crystalline-like minerals. It can be the resultant effect of FLUTD (feline lower urinary tract disease), cystitis, or urethritis. All three clinical conditions come with one symptom, urine cessation. However, the signs are more serious with FLUTD. While peeing, you may hear your kitty emit a loud cry, skip the litter box, pass blood or take to licking their genitals, with FLUTD the worst-case scenario is that the cat can fell into come and die if you fail to consult the vet.
- Fasting is not an option
It is important to know that the feline population is created to survive without any form of nourishment for a whole month, especially on a voyage. The story of Emily the Cat lends credence to this claim; she survived without food or water on a long voyage from Wisconsin to France in a shipping container. Upon arrival, she was discovered alive but very thirsty! Speculations are that Emily must have urinated during the journey, but the length of time a cat can go without peeing when they are fasting (without food) is yet to be discovered. But we would not be totally wrong to assume that the volume of the kitty’s urine will be reduced since it won’t have any food or fluid to filter.
- Keeping the litter box clean has a lot to do a kitty’s urinating
One thing to bear in mind about the feline population is that they can never take to a dirty litter box, especially when it stinks. This may cause them to continue holding their pee until such a time that their litter box is cleaned and free of any stench. What this means is that your fluffy friend’s litter box has to be kept clean at all times, especially if it is the type that is usually covered. If you find out that your cat is peeing outside the box, it only means that the inside is far from conducive.
The feline population is quite smart and clean by nature, and so wouldn’t wish to get their paws dirtied by going into a soiled litter box. The situation is comparable to a human who meets the public toilet dirty and unflushed; the next move will be to check the next loo, as the mind will be pondering on the parasites and bacteria present in the grubby stall. Nobody would want to expose himself to that. Same is true with the cats.
- Obesity affects bladder
Obesity is common among cats. Generally, it is associated with the cat’s heart and can seriously affect the bladder. Most of the times, excess weight can inconvenience a cat, and the resultant effect is that the kitty might not be able to pee as at when due. However, this is a redeemable condition; all you need to do is to bring down the cat’s body weight to a normal level.