Tanvi Shendye, Final Year Student, Bombay Veterinary College.
Does your pet show symptoms of painful urination, frequent urination, straining to urinate, excessive thirst, and /or occasional blood in the urine? There is a chance that your pet might have cystitis or urinary tract infection or both together. Yes, there are certain other conditions as well in which these symptoms may occur, although majorly these symptoms are related to Cystitis and concurrent Urinary Tract Infection. Read more about the cause, symptoms, clinical signs, diagnosis, and differential diagnosis along with treatment and management of Cystitis and UTI in our blog below –
WHAT IS CYSTITIS?
Cystitis word is derived from the Modern Latin word – ‘Cystis’ (meaning: Bladder) and ‘itis’ (meaning: inflammation). Thus, Cystitis means the inflammation or infection of the Urinary Bladder
Inflammation is the condition wherein an organ or tissue becomes irritated, red, swollen. Mostly, the cause of cystitis is a urinary tract infection (UTI). Since the urinary bladder is connected to the Urinary tract, an ascending infection from the urethra or lower urinary tract can cause bladder infection subsequently.
When does a UTI (Urinary Tract Infection) occur?
A UTI happens when a bacteria enter the urethra and bladder and begins to multiply and cause localized infection leading to inflammation of the tissues.
WHAT CAUSES CYSTITIS?
There are number of diseases and conditions that can cause cystitis. The most common cause of cystitis is an infection which is generally caused by bacteria. Bacteria such as Escherichia coli is the most notorious one and is the common cause of Cystitis followed by various other bacterias such as- Proteus, Klebsiella, Pasteurella, Pseudomonas, Corynebacterium, etc. This is termed as BACTERIAL CYSTITIS (since it’s caused by bacteria). Reversibly, these bacterias can and may also cause UTI because of which Cystitis occurs as a secondary infection.
Bacteria enter upwards through the urethral opening. The bacteria can invade and develop when feces/dirt enters the urinary/genital area, or if your dog has some wound in and around the urinary opening, or if your dog’s immune system is weak due to some other concurrent condition or due to lack of proper nutrition. In most cases, E. coli is the bacterium that causes such infections.
Other common causes of Cystitis include –
1. Bladder stones.
2. Stones in the ureter
3. Bladder Tumors
And other common causes of Urinary Tract Infection may include –
1. Chronic glucocorticoids administration
3. Kidney disease such as Chronic kidney disease,
4. Diabetes mellitus
Female dogs are more likely to get UTIs than males since the urethral tract of females is shorter as compared to males but male dogs may still get them.
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF CYSTITIS AND UTIs?
Majorly all symptoms would be related to urination, watch out for these symptoms –
1. Frequent urination
With excessive urination urge, your pet urinates quite frequently than normal.
This is also medically termed as Polyuria.
Accidents at home (loss of control over urination or excessive urge to urinate) or increased frequency in urination may also be related to other causes apart from UTI. The Symptom of polyuria could also be due to
• Cushing’s disease
2. Straining to urinate
There’s excessive straining to urinate. This is medically termed as Stranguria
3. Occasional or frank Blood in urine
This is termed as hematuria and often you would notice blood in the urine. This is an alarming situation and one must contact/visit a veterinarian immediately.
Also, it is to be noted that, blood in urine can be due to stones in the bladder or urethra which on contact with the surface of tissue causes sloughing of tissue and bleeding which mixes with urine hence hematuria.
Also, tumors or polyps inside the bladder can cause this condition.
Poisoning (rodent poison) or Kidney Disease too can cause blood in urine or hematuria.
Again, we should rule out any trauma caused externally (vehicle accidents, etc) which may have damaged your pet’s internal organs.
4. Difficulty in urinating.
Yes, this is also a possibility wherein your pet (may have voided urine before) may show signs of squatting again and again and trying to urinate while excessively straining to pass urine.
Apart from UTI, It is important to rule out other causes such as –
•Obstruction (stones, blockage)
• Tumor in the urinary tract
• Spinal Cord Injury
It is observed that there is pain on urination as well as generalized painful condition.
Since there is active infection happening inside the body, there is fever. Fever is a coping mechanism of the body. You can read further about fever in pets in our blog below –
HOW TO DIAGNOSE?
On consulting your Veterinarian, they may run a few tests and carry out certain medical procedures to rule out other causes of these symptoms and rule in Cystitis/UTIs.
1. Blood Test
A routine blood test – CBC (Complete Blood Count Test) along with LFT (Liver Function Test) and KFT (Kidney Function Test) is carried out to rule out other systemic causes as well as to keep an eye on kidney parameters (such as BUN- blood urea nitrogen, Creatinine, etc) to verify if whether these symptoms are due to Chronic Kidney Disease or Acute Kidney Injury.
2. Radiography (X-Ray)
To check for stones in the bladder or urinary tract, an x-ray is an excellent option as your vet can easily and quickly locate and rule out or rule in Stones.
3. USG (Ultra Sonography)
In USG, Bladder wall thickening, changes in Bladder, tumors, or growth, etc can be verified.
In a bladder infection, there is occasionally sloughing off of the bladder wall with thickening of the internal walls. These can be checked by USG procedure.
4. Urine Analysis.
A urinalysis consists of tests to detect abnormalities in the urine.
Urine culture helps your vet to find out which and what kind of bacterias are causing this issue and subsequently helps them to make the appropriate Antibiotic choice.
TREATMENT AND MANAGEMENT OF CYSTITIS AND UTIs
Treatment is generally cause-based. Depending on whether your pet has Bacterial Cystitis or infection due to some other concurrent infection occurring in the body. Usually, in Diabetes, there is UTI and the treatment involves the management of Diabetes itself and then the UTI resolves itself. Let’s focus primarily on the treatment protocol of Cystitis and bacterial UTI.
1. NSAIDs or Anti-inflammatory Drugs.
Your Vet may suggest anti-inflammatory drugs such as NSAID or Steroidal Anti-inflammatory drugs such as meloxicam to alleviate the pain and give temporary relief to your pet.
With appropriate diagnosis and figuring out the bacteria which is causing the inflammatory condition, antibiotics are then chosen based on the bacteria type.
3. Fluid Therapy
If your pet is anorectic (not eating) fluid therapy is offered to ensure that your pet is well hydrated and is getting prompt treatment for the same along with medicines such as Vitamin B complex, etc.
4. Homeopathic Treatment of Cystitis in Dogs & Cats
Our product CYSTIGO for pets is the best remedy in treating symptoms of painful(dysuria), frequent(polyuria), straining(stranguria) urination, excessive thirst(polydipsia), blood in the urine(haematuria). It is also very effective in cases of renal calculi and urinary tract infections in pets. Homeopathic remedies work on the principle of “similia similibus curanter” which means “like cures like”, so is our CYSTIGO. Hence, such formulations that cause symptoms like a diseased animal in a healthy one are used to prepare this wonder drug formula to be able to treat urinary tract infections of varied reasons
Dosage: 20 drops 3 times a day or as directed by the doctor
Along with conventional therapy, Homeopathic Veterinary Medicine Cystigo for Pets is an excellent cure for Cystitis and UTIs in pets.
Cystitis and Urinary Tract Infections are extremely important medical conditions and prompt treatment must be given as any negligence may cause major backfires such as Chronic Kidney Disease or systemic infection. On the brighter side, these conditions are easy to diagnose and with prompt treatment, uneventful recovery is possible. However, as vigilant pet parents, it’s up to you to be prompt, aware, and quick in noticing your pet’s change in behavior and noticing the symptoms.
Taking your pet to your vet at the earliest results in quick diagnosis, quicker treatment protocol, and quickest recovery.