Health Peeing/Pooping Urinary

Urinary Blockages in Cats & One Cat’s Rough Recovery

Learn about urinary blockages and how some cats have a harder time recovering than others.

Urinary blockages in cats are serious business. I’ll review signs and symptoms, as well as share a personal experience that was extremely stressful. I never want to scare anyone, but my goal is always education to help other cat owners prepare for the unexpected.

After a urinary blockage, my cat Beaker struggled to recover. I felt completely unprepared and uneducated. One of my foster cats had a super smooth recovery after a blockage, so when Beaker was struggling, I was baffled. A learned a small percentage of cats have an extremely hard time recovering. By sharing Beaker’s experience, I hope you’re better prepared than I was IF it happens to one of your cats.

Side note: I’m not in the veterinary field, so this is a very laywoman’s simplistic explanation of the condition.

What Are Urinary Blockages?

tabby cat
My foster Bobcat recovered easily from a urinary blockage.

Mucus plugs are most often the culprit of urinary blockages. They’re composed of crystals and mucus (I know, ew). They are more common in males because they have a longer urethra than females. The plug blocks the urine from passing. Since the cat can’t pee, toxins build up in their system, and if the cat doesn’t have the blockage removed, it can be fatal. Outside of plugs, other causes for urinary blockages include bladder stones or tumors. Urinary blockages can also occur from inflammation or spasming of the urethra.

What Causes the Physical Urinary Blockage to Form?

The actual cause of these issues is unknown (many theories, but no conclusions). Science seems to support some combo of genetic makeup, breed, age, diet, hydration, urine concentration, urine pH, and stress. We’ll look specifically at crystals, since they are the most common culprit. Keep in mind, the presence of crystals alone are not a problem. Issues arise when they are in high enough levels, with high (or low) urine pH. They sometimes clump together and the cat is at risk for a mucus plug or bladder stone, which causes a blockage.

The Role Players That Lead to Crystals

Cat Evolution

To understand what’s going on in a cat’s body, we have to look at their origins. Cats are obligate carnivores, eating diets that are mostly protein and fat, with very little carbohydrates. Their ancestors hunted prey in deserts. Hydration came from consuming their prey since water was scare. Because of this, cats have a low thirst drive and don’t tend to drink a ton of water. Their urine pH would also be slightly acidic in the wild, which is important for urinary health. Merck Veterinary Manual recommends a healthy cat’s urine pH to fall between 6.3-6.6, and slightly on the acidic side (with 7 balanced between acidic and alkaline).

Now, we’ve brought cats inside where they don’t have to hunt, which caused a lot of changes.

Diet & Urine pH

Cats’ diets have changed and most commercial food contains carbohydrates, which they encounter on a minimal basis in the wild. Commercial foods also affect their urine pH, putting them at a higher risk for two types of crystals:

  1. Foods with too much magnesium, ammonium, and phosphate can lead to the formation of struvite crystals and a higher, more alkaline urine pH. Studies have shown a high-protein diet may make the struvite crystals dissolve (supporting how they would successfully live in the wild without issues).
  2. More acidic magnesium-restricted diets can lead to calcium oxalate crystals and a more acidic urine pH. (A push for these diets occurred to combat struvite crystals, but now calcium oxalate crystals are more common than they were before, so it might have pushed too far in the opposite direction.)


cat drinking from fountain
Many cats like Miss Lucy drink more water when it’s flowing from a fountain, which helps to decrease the risk of urinary blockages.

Hydration matters too. Where cats used to eat prey to get moisture, cats now eat dry food, which contains around 10% moisture, or wet food, which has around 70%. Since cats already have a low thirst drive, they aren’t drinking as much water as they should, which makes it more difficult for the kidneys to flush out bad stuff. I often recommend water fountains to help encourage cats to drink more water.

Urine Concentration

Less water leads to more concentrated urine. Since the urine is more concentrated and the cat isn’t drinking and peeing frequently, the crystals are at risk for clumping together, or at a minimum, creating inflammation in the bladder or urethra. This contributes to an increased risk in urinary blockages.

How Blocks Form

A plug can form if the struvite crystals and mucus clump together. Once the plug blocks the urethra, a cat can’t pee. The plug must be removed. For long-term treatment to prevent more urinary blockages, cats are typically fed a prescription food to treat and dissolve the struvite crystals.

Now, when calcium oxalate crystals can clump together, they form bladder stones, which need surgical removal. Long-term treatment is a prescription diet low in calcium and oxalate that also increases the urine pH.

Genetic predisposition and stress can exacerbate any type of blockage.

Cat Study: Beaker’s Urinary Blockage

cat on shelf
Meet Beaker.

Now that you have a little bit of background, I want to share what happened to my cat Beaker when he was just over four years old. Beaker had been peeing on vertical surfaces, which would typically be marking behavior, but marking involves a small amount of pee. Beaker would empty his entire bladder on vertical places.

During his annual visit, we discussed this and ran a urinalysis. It was positive for struvite crystals. The challenge was crystals probably contributed to the behavior, but there was probably a behavioral component as well. With a revolving door of fosters in my home, Beaker faced a lot of change. At the time, my super senior Vito’s health was a declining, adding even more stress to the home. I had tried some prescription urinary food, but he didn’t seem to like it and it didn’t decrease the peeing. After some rough research, I decided to give him just OTC wet food, and hopefully that would help the issue.

The Block

One day, I saw him jump into the litter box, then jump out, then jump back in. What was going on? I walked over and watched as he was straining to pee but nothing was coming out. Although I knew he had crystals, I was hopefully it was only inflammation, and it would be a quick ER visit.

The vet called, “Beaker is completely blocked. We’ll need to anesthetize him, remove the blockage and keep a catheter in him for 24-48 hours. After we remove it and he pees on his own, you can take him home.”

There wasn’t really a choice because without the procedure, toxins would build in his system and he would die, so I told them to do it. After removing the blockage, the vet informed me it was very gritty, so likely from struvite crystals. The good news was based on his bloodwork and the color of the urine, I caught the blockage immediately when it happened (otherwise his urine would have been extremely dark and his bloodwork abnormal). Because I caught it so quickly, I assumed his recovery would be smooth sailing. I was wrong.


The vet sent Beaker home with buprenorphine for pain and prazosin, a vasodilator that helps with urethral spasms. I also received a prescription for Urinary S/O by Royal Canin, a prescription diet that would dissolve the crystals.

grey cat with big eyes
Buprenorphine is a strong painkiller. Beaker’s eyes are dilated from the drug.

The discharge instructions included a warning to keep an eye out because the next week was the most sensitive time for another blockage. He may strain to pee and go in and out of the box, almost acting like he has a UTI (urinary tract infection). As long as some pee comes out, he’s not blocked. If he gets reblocked, we’d need to consider a very invasive and expensive surgery called a perineal urethrostomy (PU), where the narrowest part of the urethra is removed and new urethra opening is created. This is sort of like turning the male’s urethra into what a female has. Not the exact same, but a similar idea. Obviously, we wanted to avoid that at all costs.

I was so happy to have him home, and decided I’d confine him to my room so I could keep an eye on his litter box habits.

Beaky is happy to be home.

Pee Here, Pee There, Pee Everywhere

It didn’t take long for the strange behavior to appear. As the vet predicted, Beaker started going in and out of the box. Then, he would just pee a few drops, so the litter box had tons of tiny little clumps in it. I mean, it was good he wasn’t blocked, I guess. Then he started meowing, growling, and hissing.

Beaker would frantically pace and cry until he would eventually lie on his side, meowing loudly while pee dripped out of his urethra. The pee would puddle on the floor and get all over the side of him that was in contact with the floor. He would also constantly lick himself, trying to either clean or just soothe his penis. This became a routine for him every few hours, and it was so, so, so hard to watch.

I called the ER again, and they told me he wasn’t blocked, so there was nothing to be done, and to make sure I kept him on the meds. Then, they suggested adding gabapentin, which I did.

The following day, these episodes continued, but this time, there was blood in his urine. Did he get a UTI from the catheter? I took him to his normal vet, where they told me the blood was from inflammation. They added Oncior, the only anti-inflammatory approved for use in cats, as well as a cone so he would stop licking himself, which was likely causing further irritation.

His episodes were still happening, and I just felt so badly for him. Although they were getting shorter, I still didn’t understand why he was having such a hard time. I caught the blockage immediately and was following all the instructions. Why was he still leaking pee everywhere?

An Explanation

Finally, I spoke to two different vets who explained a very small percentage of cats (maybe 10%) have these difficulties when recovering from a urinary blockage. Plus, the crystals were likely still dissolving, and their presence would cause more irritation and inflammation. It can take weeks for the crystals to dissolve while on a prescription diet. Plus, a high-stress environment, like one with lots of foster cats (aka my house) would make the inflammation worse.

The best course of action was to extend the Oncior, and keep him on a tight schedule of gabapentin and prazosin for at least a month. Although his episodes would continue, as long as they were getting shorter, he was healing. Our goal: Keep his stress low and him physically comfortable.

Thankfully, this solution worked.

Urinary Blockages Are Behind Us … Hopefully

Gray cat in tower
Beaker today still has some housesoiling issues, but they are very mild. He remains on Royal Canin Urinary SO Calm.

I wanted to share what happened to Beaker to prepare you that this could happen to your kitty too. Yes, a majority of cats with urinary blockages don’t have this experience. But there are some, like Beaker, who have a really hard time, and will need ongoing treatment and meds to help them feel comfortable and heal. It’s really important to tell your vet what you’re seeing and get feedback. Additionally, the entire experience is very stressful for your cat, so managing their stress will be key to their recovery.

Sources: Learn More

Barnette, Catherine. VCA Hospitals, Oxalate Bladder Stones in Cats,

Brooks, Wendy. Veterinary Partner, Bladder Stones (Struvite) in Cats,

Coates, Jennifer. The Spruce Pets, Cats’ Urinary pH and Their Health,

Darwin’s Natural Pet Food, Urinary Crystals in Cats,

Dowling, Patricia M. Merck Veterinary Manual, Controlling Urine pH,

Feinstein, Jill. Happy Tails From Husse, Urinary Crystals and Stones … What Are They?

Grauer, Gregory F. Today’s Veterinary Practice, Feline Struvite and Calcium Oxalate Urolithiasis,

Meeks, Cathy. PetMD, Wet vs. Dry Cat Food: Which Is Better,

Minnesota Urolith Center. University of Minnesota, Feline Struvite Uroliths,

Union Park Veterinary Hospital. A Day in the Life of Union Park Veterinary Hospital, Struvite Crystals … Pesky Buggers,

By LizsKittyBootCamp

Hi, I'm Liz, and I'm a cat behaviorist who provides advice and insights on cat behavior.

65 replies on “Urinary Blockages in Cats & One Cat’s Rough Recovery”

Yes, it’s not the exact same, but a similar idea. It was very hard to see him so uncomfortable and feeling helpless. His most recent urinalysis showed no crystals, so that’s good. Doesn’t mean he won’t get blocked again, but lowers the risk

How is this cat doing today? Wondering because my cat had a block and I just want to get an idea of what to expect in the future. Thanks

Question: our cat is going through the same thing. We are concerned because he isn’t eating and we are giving him water with an eye dropper, we are on day two after discharge. Did your little man do similar?

Hi Lisa, I can’t fully remember because it was a number of years ago, but maybe reach out to your vet to see if they can add an appetite stimulant. That should help.

This article helps a lot! We are experiencing somewhat the same thing with our cat. He had a urinary blockage and we took him to the vet where he had a catheterization and a catheter placed. After spending 2 days at the vet we took him home. The veterinarian told us to keep a close eye to see if he is urinating or not. The veterinarian also prescribed the C/D prescription food. Thankfully he is eating it and we are forcing him to drink water. We also took home with us two medications to give him. One is Prazosin to help him urinate and the other is Gabapentin to help with the pain. We are noticing the same behaviour with him like Beaker. The first two days he came home he urinated in his litter box but they were small amounts. And he even urinated outside the litter box as well. However, today we noticed that he is leaking urine whenever he sits somewhere. He’ll sit somewhere and once he gets up, there would be small drops of urine or just a wet spot.Thankfully however, he did pass a good amount of urine… but not in his litter box. Maybe it’s because the urethra is expanding and he really has no control over his bladder? My family and I are not exactly sure why. Today, he peed twice good amount of urine but on his bed instead of the litter. Also, his urine is continuously leaking wherever he sits. He also is continuously licking his private part. I’m sure this is all in the recovery process as he is still taking his meds. Thank God, we have also noticed that his behaviour has changed… he is more active and not always sleeping. I’m not sure if you are still responding, but if you are, please kindly write back!

Hi Sarah,
From what I understand, there is extreme inflammation in the urethra after a blockage, and that contributes to the leaking pee. Everything you described sounds like just part of the recovery.

The prescription diet was what got rid of the crystals. Good luck with your kitty. Most cats recover very well from blockages. Beaky’s experience wasn’t common but can happen.

I hate reading your story, only because my baby is going through the exact same thing! We picked him up from the emergency vet last night, so happy for him to be home! He is literally the sweetest little thing and my certified emotional support cat. He seemed to be doing great and this morning I received a growl and saw what looked like bloody mucus in his litter box. I plan on calling his regular vet now and mentioning the oncior medication. Thank you so much for sharing this, as I hate feeling part of the 10%! I am thrilled to hear beaky is feeling better and wish you all the best of luck ❤️

I’m so sorry you’re experiencing this too. Beaker is fully recovered and I’m sure your boy will get there soon too! Just be patient and give him all the meds he’s prescribed. Keeping the pain under control as the inflammation goes down is the most important thing. Hang in there and thanks for commenting.

Thank you for the kind attention to detail. It helps so much. Vets aren’t always honest and that condescension uhmmm hum head shaking just doesn’t do the trick.

I appreciate the compliment and agree. I felt so unprepared for his recovery and would have liked more details. I hope this article helps others who experience it. Thanks for reading.

My cat is going through the exact same thing. I’ve been driving myself insane looking up why he would be having such a tough time after getting unblocked. I wake up and sit with him every night because I feel horrible that he is in pain during his recovery. I’m glad you said that it eventually got better. He’s on the same medications as your cat, and started eating the Hills Science Diet c/d prescription food. He’s been urinating but over grooming and peeing inappropriately. I’m praying for the best.

Stay positive, Taylor. I was told 10% of cats have this problem, and I wish it was talked about more. All of us pet parents just want to know if something is normal or okay because our pets can’t speak to us. I know they probably don’t want to scare people and maybe that’s why it isn’t discussed more, but I would have 100% been better if from day one they explained that some cats have a hard time recovering and that is normal and okay. I know you’re doing the best job taking care of your boy. Try to stay positive and keep loving on him as he heals.

My male cat is on day 2 of recovery, and oh my! The vet did not prepare me at all on what to do (other then the meds and keeping a close eye) they have him on the onsior (2 pills sent home) and prazosin. He’s eating great, mostly wet food, but some hard. Drinking good. But he is leaking urine bad, since he’s been more clingy to me, and stays sleepy alot, he’s been laying on me, all night he’s laying in my lap. But over grooming, I thought at first it may have been where they shaved him around that area, but I don’t believe that’s it now. I’m disabled, so this has been so hard for us all. His sister hisses and smacks at him now since he’s been home, she’s showing signs of stress, I saved these babies almost 3 years ago when my husband and son found them under our home, and found that the mother had been ran over just when they was 2 days old. He’s always been a fighter, vet said if he hadn’t been strong I would’ve already lost him. But it’s constant changing of bedding, laundry, and mopping or cleaning up urine wherever he goes. But mostly laying in bed with me, in my lap, with towels and blankets to keep me from getting soaked with his urine. How long will this last? Why is his sister/litter mate acting out? What can I do to help her, she used to be my lap cat, but now she will not even come lay or get on the bed with me. And vet couldn’t assure me that the procedure would take care of the problem, so I’m worried to death that I may loose him. I’ve cried so much, most people I’ve ever met, doesn’t understand that our kids are grown with kids and life’s of ther own. So these babies is our babies… my heart is broken. I just wish I knew how to help him, or knew if this will possibly take him away from us…. the uncertainty and stress is causing my health to be worse, and seeing him leaking, and grooming like this, I was very afraid he wasn’t getting better, but I know he is, because he is nothing like he was before he was taken to the vet. And of course with me being disabled, husband recovering from cancer and health problems his self, he works but his Dr won’t allow overtime, so we are on a tight budget. And can’t afford anything else at this time. Especially not any $2000 and up for any surgery. And I had people criticize me, and tell me I needed to either put him to sleep, or surrender him to a place that can find someone that can afford to get treatment for him. My animals eat better then I do, I always make sure they are very well taken care of. And as I said they are our babies, how could anyone just take their baby and give it away, when your are capable of taken very good care of them, just can’t afford to pay 1000’s out of pocket for emergencies as this. Vet bills are ridiculously high. But I can’t give my baby up, amd definitely don’t wanna put him to sleep when he’s always been a fighter, and is still fighting.

So sorry this is happening, Lana. The leaking pee really differs from cat to cat, but my Beaker had issues for a few weeks. Definitely keep your boy on the meds to help him get through it. Everything is still very inflamed and uncomfortable down there and the meds will provide relief.

Your other cat is experiencing pod aggression, which occurs when one cat leaves the house and comes back smelling like a different animal. The best thing you can do is try to mix the cats’ scents using blankets. I’d also get some Feliway spray and spray it around where she hangs out to hopefully calm her down.

Prayers for you. Everything you described just happened to us this past week. Even the struggles to pay. But he is our baby. I hope things got better for your family, Lana. Is he okay now? Sending you hugs.

Yes, Beaker is perfect. No crystals in his urine any more. It took him a while to heal from the blockage, but he’s okay. I hope you all are hanging in

We are in the same boat. Did not warn us and there is no information on this topic and it’s infuriating. Our cat had a sediment build up but we caught the block early. He has been leaking and in so much pain and the vet did NOT give use pain killers. Feeling useless but we can’t afford the surgery either due to a baby on the way and the expenses having a newborn. We are going to try and get pain killers first thing tomorrow.

I’m so sorry. Ask for gabapentin (for pain), buprenorphine (pain), Prazosin (vasodilator), and Oncior (antiinflammatory). Ask them to give you a detailed schedule and still to it. Goal is to manage pain while the urethra goes down (from inflammation). May take a few weeks. Keep me posted

My kitty just came home three days ago after three days in hospital with the catheter. I too feel like I caught his blockage early and immediately took him to the vet. He’s not having the issues of leaking pee like you all have described but he’s weak, still very much in recovery mode.

I have no faith in the value of the food that the vets prescribe. The ingredients don’t have any real food, just meat by products and meat flavorings and a bunch of chemical words. Purina, Science Diet, and Hills, all make their food with non human grade rendering plant products. If you don’t know what this is I suggest you research it.

Also, that pain opioid drug Buprenex that the vets prescribe is 30 times more powerful than morphine, and the side effects are difficulty urinating, and severe constipation. Upon withdrawal some cats have gran mal seizures and die. No thank you.

During the three days my cat was hospitalized he did not poop and barely ate. He came home looking and feeling much lighter. The vet did not seem to be the least bit concerned about any of this but I certainly was.

I did my research while my cat was hospitalized. I learned there is a more natural way to help my cat recover and hopefully never get sick again. I found that Primal makes a raw goat milk that has cranberry, apple cider vinegar, and inulin. These four ingredients, including the milk itself, are natural acidifiers. I have been giving my cat three tablespoons of this raw milk a day. I give it to him via an eye dropper, not a syringe. The syringe shoots the liquid out like a fire hydrant, whereas with an eye dropper I can release just a small amount at a time. The Primal raw goat milk can be bought at the specialty pet stores and comes frozen. They say it’s good for ten days but I don’t like to use it for more than seven days. It cost about $15 per bottle. I freeze in ice cube trays about two thirds of the bottle. I found ice cube trays that have a lid. I found the frozen raw milk cubes don’t release easily out of the tray, but if you let it sit on the counter for a few minutes the cubes slide right out.

I’ve also been adding to the raw goat milk Dr Mercola supplements. There’s one called Bladder Support, Liver and Kidney Support, and Vitamin B Complex. And for his pain management I’m adding CBD drops to the milk. It doesn’t seem like he has pain but just in case I’m giving him the CBD without any worry of side effects.

For food I’ve completely cut out the kibble. I’m feeding my cat a half raw and half canned food. I found a raw food brand called Small Batch that in addition to excellent whole food ingredients it also has apple cider vinegar. And another brand, also with all whole food ingredients that includes goat milk, is Quest Cat Food, from Steve’s Real Food. I’m adding filtered water to the can food if it seems a little dry.

With this approach I was able to get my cat to pee full volume three times within the first 24 hours, and poop. There’s a video on youtube from the Farm Guy where he unblocks his cat with just apple cider vinegar. Hundreds of people commented that it worked for them too. This straight ACV approach looks just brutal though and I’m happy that Primal provides for a much more gentle approach.

I sure hope my information helps someone and their beloved pet.

I wanted to add to my prior comment that I am also feeding my cat three to four times a day. And with each meal I am giving him a tablespoon of the cranberry raw goat milk. So when you think about it, to help reduce or eliminate these crystals our cats need moisture and their ph needs to be on the acidic side. With these four feedings accompanied by the tablespoon of goat milk that is a lot of moisture. The raw goat milk is also providing probiotics and prebiotics and enzymes and help reduce inflammation.

My kitty is still recovering as it is now day five after his release. But his energy is coming back, and his appetite is great, and he’s peeing large volumes about three times a day. I’m probably going to be nervous for months but so far it’s working.

This is what is happening to my cat Simba. He looks exactly like Beaker. Same breed, same color, same age. This article is been very helpful. Thank you.

This has been the most helpful thing I’ve read online regarding difficult recoveries post urinary blockage. My cat became blocked mid December then again a week later due to a terrible uti from the first blockage/catheter. We’re now a little over one month from his last blockage and he’s still experiencing urinary frequency and some pain. My vet has been stumped why he is healing so slowly and has been recommending a large variety of meds and surgeries. My cat IS improving, just at a painstakingly slow pace. How long was it before beaker’s frequency and discomfort resolved completely? Thank you in advance!

Hi Holly. Sorry for what you’re dealing with. It took Beaker probably a month, possibly a little longer until he was more normal. He hasn’t had probs since and the crystals are gone bc he’s on a prescription diet.

Going through this now with my almost 2 year old Tabby Echo. Did you have trouble getting Beaker to eat? They sent him home after 24 hours with dry c/d cat food he ate okay for one meal but now refuses to eat it, vet suggested the wet version which he happily ate, now he is refusing that. He is on phenoxybenzamine, buprenorphine, clavamox, and prednisolone. Any suggestions? Also he hates taking the pills it stresses both him and us out.

Yes Beaker had a rough time all around. I would ask the vet three questions:
1. Would the vet recommend feeding him wet nonprescription food temporarily to get him to eat?
2. Should an appetite stimulant be added? Mirtazapine is available in transdermal and you could put on the inside of his ear.
3. Should the antiinflammatory Onsior be added?

Ask those questions and see what the vet says.

Hi , How do I go about posting a reply and how and when can I view my post and any corresponding replies?..This info is critical to help me take care of my Russian Blue Baby…Dusty…thx Vince

Marilyn. Try the different prescription brands in wet and dry. I think mine may like royal canin best. But I have tried hills, purina proplan as well. I am Rotating the dry and not getting more purina proplan wet. Cat disliked most. He is eating a little more. I have to keep refreshing the food. He doesn’t really like anything left in bowl. Or I keep mixing the wet in bowl. There are some urinary prescription treats as well. I feel for you. Going through same. I tried heating and chopping as well but don’t think those helped. One of 5 vets said get food in no matter what but I have learned has to be prescription.

My 4 year old Russian Blue has gone thru the same Exact thing and same Exact Meds as all of your Babies and my Wife and I have gone thru the same Exact thing as all of you with the Condesending and Very Expensive ER Vets. My 14 lb boy has only eaten a few bites of wet UR canned food and only a little water…So I blended the wet food w some water and pumpkin (Not Pie Filling) and I am feeding him via an Injector tube with Great Caution so as not to Aspirate him. I am giving him a Total of 180 ML a day (in 4. smaller servings the equivalent of 1 can) for the last 3 days (he has been out of the hospital for 5 days and the results said no crystals in his urine. He is peeing and pooping a little But still not eating properly…only a few bites here and there. What can I do to get him to eat regularly…How can I administer the Braggs A.C.V. with the Mother until I can find the stuff that Barbra Gillete was talking about??? Thx in Advance for any Insights…Vince n Diane

Hi Vince and Diane. Is your boy on mirtazapine? It’s an appetite stimulant. That worked for my boy. It’s prescription.

The appetite stimulant the vet gave us says ELURA on the pkg…came in a small syringe..and it says on pkg…”Tastes Terrible…may cause Drooling”…???

Okay I’ve never used that one (but it is an appetite stimulant). If you don’t think it’s working, I’d ask the vet if there is another one you can try.

Thank-You…Will let you know how this plays out…thx again.. Vince n Diane

You have absolutely no idea how incredibly helpful this was. More helpful than anything I’ve found online. I am going through the same thing with my Willie, who is 5 years old. We caught his blockage early on and never did I imagine, was told, or read about the recovery journey we are going through.
We took our Willie to the vet 24hrs after we noticed the signs of blockage. The vet bill was estimated to be $2,000. I wanted to cry because it was money I did not have. I was told the kind thing to do if I couldn’t pay the procedure was to put him to sleep. At that point I lost it, I couldn’t do that to my boy that was loving and thriving days before. I did what I could to move finances around for the next couple of months to come up with the money. He was hospitalized for 24 hours. A catheter was placed to unblock. By the next day they told us he was doing great and could go home. He was sent home with pain meds and a prescription dry diet since dry is his preference. We were to also add more wet food to his diet. We were warned he might try to pee in inappropriate places like he was doing when blocked but I was not told how much he would leak. His leaking is exactly as you describe it with Beaker. It’s been everywhere and you see the fabric under him get darker and the wet spot get larger and larger. If you want to find Willie follow the trail.
When he came home he was not eating or drinking, not even his favorite snacks. He was hissing and growling. I could tell he was in pain because he was isolating, keeping to himself, and not asking for lovies (Willie is a loving sweet boy that enjoys being given lovies ALL the time). He was trying to use the litter box but could not urinate in it when he tried.
We had to go back to the vet for a medication that would increase his appetite. The medication didn’t do much so we went back for a third vet visit since by now it was about 5 days of very little eating and drinking and still not able to use the little box. I wanted to also make sure he was not reblocked. The vet was able to empty his bladder which meant he was not reblocked. He also administered a steroid in form of a shot to increase appetite, thirst, and help with his spasms. That was 2 days ago, thankfully he is now eating and drinking more. Not as much as I want him too, but it’s a win. He’s also a bit more active and asking for lovies. However the leaking is not getting any better. He tries going in his litter box but still can’t. He leaves a trail when walking and wherever he sits or lays a larger spot. It’s been incredibly hard, we love our Willie and want our healthy and thriving boy back.
How long did Beaker leak? What helped him? When was he able to urinate in the litter box? Is he now completely leak free? Do you have any tips or suggestions?
Thank you for your time and help! Your post answered many questions and gives us hope!

Hi Violet,
I’m so sorry for the stress you and Willie are experiencing. I don’t remember how long Beaker leaked (it’s been years now), but I want to say it was 1-2 weeks. He kept using the box but only peeing a little at a time. Once the leaking subsided, he was fine with the box. Now he’s completely leak free. The best thing that worked for him was a combo of prasozin, gabapentin, buprenorphine, and Onsior, and time. It really all had to run it’s course. I know it’s hard to be patient, but it will pass. You just have to get him through this time when everything down there is extremely inflamed. My understanding is some cats take longer for the inflammation to go down than other cats. Willie and Beaker are just sensitive boys. Whatever meds the vet prescribed, I would stick to those. If Willie is still leaking, maybe try to keep him in a room with you so he’s not running around leaking everywhere.

Hope this was helpful. Thinking of you guys!

Thank you so much for sharing this! I came across it while googling about the same exact issue we’re having with our cat, Josie. He spent the weekend in the e/r on a catheter & came home on Monday, but he’s having basically the exact same experience as you described with leaking small amounts of urine. When he made a small puddle, I noticed it was tinged red (the vet did say this could happen, but it’s still so stressful!) He is on similar medications to your cat & also the Hills prescription diet c/d multicare + stress, but he isn’t liking it much so far – I’m hoping it will grow on him. This entire experience has been a nightmare, but your post gives me hope that he will get through it!

Marci, it’s tough to watch for sure, but keep following the vet’s instructions and he will be okay. so stressful tho. Glad my post was helpful

bless your soul for this post. probably the most helpful page i’ve found while dealing with my sane situation with my munchee boy. he has bad anxiety and after almost two weeks things are starting to go back to normal. some questions i have are how long did you keep a cone on beaker to keep him from licking his private too much and how long did you try to keep him from licking? i don’t want to be too intrusive and stress him out possibly restarting the cycle. the last day we gave him antibiotics he threw up out of stress just from hearing my alarm for the medicine after finally picking up the pattern.

I’m glad my post was helpful. I honestly don’t remember but I don’t think I kept it on long at all and I allowed him to clean himself. Agree the cone would have probably made him more stressed out. I let him lick bc he was leaking so much I felt like it was helping him stay clean

THIS POST IS SO VERY HELPFUL! Thank you so much! My Niece sent this post to me as we are trying to help our boy Freddie who had a urinary blockage in June and three weeks later another blockage in July. The first blockage, emergency hospital said they saw crystals and the second blockage was a mucus plug which emergency hospital said was an easy unplug. Each time Freddie was in the Emergency hospital for 24 hours, catherized, medicated and monitored. He was sent home when he could eat and urinate. Each time they told us we caught it early. Freddie was sent home with the course of action being gabapentin and buprenorphine syringes for 5 days and follow up with his regular Vet. Our Freddie was put on Hills urinary soft and dry cat food. (Mostly soft). After the first blockage, I mixed the Hills food with his regular food which was a BIG mistake, I didn’t know he had to be on the Hills food 100% as the Vet at emergency said the second time, the food wouldn’t work to dissolve the crystals if not 100%. I don’t remember anyone telling us that! After ending the medications, the first time, Freddie soon had heavy diarrhea for days and vomited once, then I took him to the emergency for help for this. The second blockage, after ending the gabapentin and buprenorphine course of action, Freddie started day 1 of Oncior. Freddie then began vomiting daily after he would eat. He seemed hungry, but he could not hold down all of his food. After 4 days of vomiting I have an appointment with our regular Vet to check him. Three emergency visits, three regular Vet appointments so far. I am so worried about our boy. I hate having him go through all of this and also his sweet cat brother who doesn’t know what is going on. The next course of action if there is a third blockage is surgery. Today our Vet wants to give him fluids, anti-nausea medicine and check on his blatter to see how much urine he may be holding. Freddie uses the litter box and drinks water and plays a little with his Brother, this is all so confusing to us. I hope this can help anyone to learn what we are going through and doing, and what will eventually help him.

So sorry for all the difficulties you’re having. Urinary issues are no joke, and you are so wonderful to get him treatment everytime you’ve noticed something was off. Please keep me posted on how he’s doing.

Omg! Thank you so much for your post! I have a beautiful Snowshoe who’s about 4 years old… We were getting ready to move when I noticed frequent litter box trips… A few days later we moved and the move was EXTREMELYYYY hard on him!!! I’ve never seen a cat SOOOOO terrified to be someone like that… And he didn’t get better right away either. Well, his litter box issued persisted. It was about a week later when we took our first trip to the vet (They vet we used before closed during covid so we didn’t have a regular vet at that time.) They said it was just stress and he was fine… No tests. No “real” examination… Nothing. Several days later he started howling in pain on evening. But he only did it once. Then seemed fine until the next day… He did not poop or pee since that night though and everytime he’d try he’d come out howling like I’ve never heard a cat do I my life and he was hissing and drooling everywhere. He is the biggest lover… Only heard him hiss twice in his life prior to that and both times he was scared. Took him to UF ER vet, he was blocked with a decent size mucus plug. Couldn’t afford to leave him there for the full 24 hours afterwards. They never checked him for a UTI, which both my gma and I thought was weird… They gave him no antibiotics, again weird. And only sent us home with gabapentin… And gave me NO post op instructions whatsoever. Had no clue I needed to change his food or anything. So in two weeks he was unblocked again. This time I took him to a real vet, which will now be our new regular vet. Such a different experience! Actually got informed, and they actually ran tests! You could tell they cared and weren’t just trying to get animals in and out as quickly as possible… So far he’s been doing fine since the second blockage but he just will not eat the wet food. And I’m seriously stressed about making sure this doesn’t happen again… Because we just simply cannot afford it. So I’ve been researching… just trying to do everything right this time. But I am so thankful he has been doing well… I can’t imagine how terrible it was to go through that. It’s the worst, you feel helpless and horrible, and somehow responsible… like you should be able to help them but you just can’t. It’s the worst feeling and it just breaks your heart. But anyways, thanks for easing my worries a little.

Hi Alecia,

So sorry to hear what you went through – what a terribly stressful ordeal for you and your boy. It is heartbreaking to watch them in pain and feel helpless. I’m glad to hear he’s doing better. As long as he eats the prescription food, hopefully he’ll be good. And thank goodness you found a reliable vet. That makes all the difference.

Hi! Thank you so much for this article this helps me and my Ollie bear — now I need him to eat the new food he was just prescribed the Royal canin + calm !!

Hi 🙂 I searched for “how long cat recovers after urinary blockage” and glad this came up. Today is the 3rd day after my cat got freed of the catheter and been having the same behaviour and voices as Beaker. Glad to see Beaker recovered and gave me hope my cat can recover from it, too. Thank you and best 🙂

Yes, just follow the vet’s instructions and if you think your kitty needs more meds, ask. Good luck

After dealing with this with my rescue kitty Nate, may I also recommend further detoxing with chlorella. I’m using Sunfood chlorella tablets. They only cost about $10 for a package of 60. I cut the tablet in half and crush it, add it to one tbsp of water and give it to him with an eye dropper. Alk those pharma meds are chemicals. Chlorella is a natural substance, an algae full of nutrients. My kitty wound up with a bad skin allergy after all the meds and scratched his skin raw and digested lots of fur from licking. He’s all healed now and his fur softer than I could ever imagine. I’ve also healed two long term issues with myself with the chlorella. For years I’ve had chronic runny nose and drastic hair loss but no more. Please look up chlorella and see for yourself. It’s so nice to give myself and my cat something that has no potential for adverse reactions.

My cat has the same thing… is it normal after to leak some blood ?’s his 2nd day from the vet, and I am thinking his surgery is still fresh.He is eating and drinking water but his pee has some blood.

Hi Jenny. Beaker had some blood too – it’s usually from inflammation. I would call your vet and make them aware just to double check.

I really appreciate your article. From my experience, they didn’t give a lot of recovery information. My cat is on one of the meds but I plan to follow up with my vet and ask about the other two. Thankfully his symptoms are more mild than Beaker’s but still similar.

Glad the symptoms are more mild and I’m glad my article helped. Good luck Alli!

We just brought our guy home ( like less than 2 hours ago) after having his catheter removed and we are already experiencing the same thing that you did with Beaker, I feel a little relief knowing someone else has experienced this. I guess I didn’t know what to expect when we got home, maybe for OJ to have a full on bathroom break, and not pick up with the in, out, in, out right away…. And the licking… I feel so defeated, like did I really catch this in time? IS he REALLY going to be ok? It’s so disheartening, so I just keep re-reading this blog.

Oh Sara, I’m so sorry you’re going through this as well. It is so, so, so difficult to watch them struggle. Please remember that as long as there is pee coming out, OJ should be okay, but be sure to call your vet if you need reassurance. And don’t be afraid to ask if there are any other meds they can give to make him more comfortable. Good luck and keep me posted.

Thank you so much. We had him back in on Friday, and they drained his bladder, said no crystals, it was just full. But they were happy with how it looked. If we could just get over the in and out, in and out, I would feel so much better. I’m just so worried for him.

Thanks for sharing! Our Leo, 2 years old, is in recovery and it looks exactly like Beaker’s! It has been less than a week. It’s a relief to see Beaker eventually recovered. I’ve called the vet so many times but they said the same thing, it’s part of his recovery and he doesn’t have digns of another blockage. Heartbreaking isn’t it?

It really is so heartbreaking to watch and I’m sorry you’re experiencing it. Hang in there and do your best to stay on top of the meds. It didn’t fix Beaker’s issues but I know it made him more comfortable.

My wife and I just had this happen with our boy Fireball(1 year 2 months old). We took him to the ER on Tuesday morning, brought him home Friday(yesterday) afternoon. He seems to be doing better, very sleepy and making potty outside the litter box but at this point I’m just glad he’s peeing and not bothered as to where. We’ve got him on the Hills c/d plus stress wet food and gabapentin and buprenorphine meds. Haven’t seen any leaking or blood and he hasn’t been over cleaning himself, just after peeing. We’re still very worried cat parents, but we’re hopeful that he’s going to be ok. Overall ER stay hit for $4600 and some change. Thank you for this article, it’s very informative about what to watch for.

Sorry to hear Fireball went through this, but it sounds like he’s recovering well so far! My Beaker’s recovery was definitely not typical but does happen. Hopefully Fireball’s is smooth sailing. Thanks for reading the article and I’m so glad it was helpful.

Thank you so much for this article! It was very helpful. Same situation happened with our cat. He had a urinary blockage. We took him to the vet where he had a catheterization and a catheter placed in him. He stayed at the vet for two days and we finally were able to take him home. The veterinarian gave us two medications our cat had to take. One is Parozin to help him urinate and the other is Gabapentin to relief his pain. She prescribed our cat with special dietary food which was the C/D prescription urinary care wet food. She also told us to keep a close eye to see if he was urinating on his own. The first 2 days we brought him home, he peed a small amount in his litter box and a few times outside the litter box as well. However, today we noticed something different which is something similar to what happened to Beaker. Everywhere he sits and gets up we noticed small drops of urine or wetness. Thankfully, he did pee a good amount of urine twice… but not in his litter box! Maybe this is because his urethra is slowly healing and he is not able to control his bladder making him pee wherever he is? Were not exactly sure why. But we are just glad he IS urinating. He is constantly leaking wherever he sits leaving a few drops of urine and he is NOT straining when he leaves these drops, it is just leaking wherever he sits. I’m sure this is all due to the meds and the recovery process but still very stressful. He is also continuously licking his private part. Thankfully, compared to the first day we brought him back, he seems more active and is not always sleeping. We hope he gets better and back to normal very soon but if you could kindly reply, that would be very helpful.

Thank you Liz, I was so relieved to read your experience, and it helped me so much. I am a month today with my boy Cole and it has been awful. They catheterized him twice in a 24hr period, only leaving the first one in only 7hrs. I still have him on some meds, D Mannos and Nutracys, all to help the urinary tract. I left the vets with no info, advise for Coles food. He is my 18th rescue, and I have dealt with infections, but nothing like this, and it was lucky I already had some knowledge of what he needed. I feel let down by my vets, and sadly there are many sad story’s in the UK. I’m at at a loss, everything now seems to be about the £££££. I have spent the last month with him every night, and 4 days ago, it was dire, but he rallied the following day, and your article, and the replies let me know Cole and I are doing OK!
Thank you so very much. Regards Andrea from England x.

Hi Andrea, I’m so sorry to hear what happened to Cole, but I’m glad he’s on the right track. Hang in there. Thinking of you both❤️

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.