Our team continues to be here for you and your cherished pets. We are OPEN and are now able to provide a wide range of services. To learn more about the changes we have implemented in response to COVID-19 and what to expect during your next visit, click here.

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Feline Urinary Issues

Some crystals form naturally in your pet’s urine, but sometimes they can become problematic, requiring a visit to your veterinarian. Completing a urinalysis is necessary to diagnose and treat this issue. Every patient is different and requires a full work up to help resolve and prevent reoccurrence.

What are urinary crystals?
Urinary crystals can be found in the urine of cats and dogs, which can be abnormal depending on the clinical signs the pet is presenting such as:
– Inappropriate elimination
– Dribbling or straining to urinate
– Blood in urine
– Discomfort while urinating
– Vocalizing in the litter box
– Inability to urinate

Crystals form in the urine depending on urine pH, which is the measurement of the urine’s degree of acidity or alkalinity. Crystalluria (crystals in the urine) can be associated with urinary infection, bladder stone formation, or diet-related factors. Several types of crystals form in feline and canine urine depending on pH, breed, diet, even certain diseases, and toxicities, and each requires specific treatment.

How do you get a diagnosis?
If your pet is having urinary issues, your veterinarian will first start with a urinalysis. A sample is collected by:
– Free flow in a clean sealable container
– Nosorb litter provided by your veterinary team
– Cystocentesis – the collection of urine with a needle through the bladder wall
– Urinary Catheterization

When performing a urinalysis, the technicians look at a fresh, clean urine sample and evaluate colour, odour, turbidity, specific gravity, which tells us a little bit about hydration status, and chemical evaluation. A microscopic evaluation of the urine is performed when the urine is spun at high speeds in a centrifuge separating it into a liquid portion and sediment portion. Along with crystals, the sediment will show white blood cells, red blood cells, bacteria, cells that line the urinary tract and much more. In prolonged, severe cases where crystals are non-responsive to treatment, a radiographic image or ultrasound exam may be necessary for diagnosing the formation of stones in the bladder.

What is the treatment?
​Treatment of urinary crystals is unique to each patient, requiring a good relationship with your veterinarian to create a plan specific to your pet.

​Treatment methods include:
– Urinary prescription diets
– Antibiotics
– Surgical removal of bladder stones
– Increase in water intake
– Pain control

Urinary issues have a large range of severities – some requiring lifelong management. Early detection and treatment are essential for your pet to have the best outcome possible. Urinalysis rechecks and follow up visits are often required to ensure your pet is not having a reoccurrence. Some cases are very serious if left untreated and may be fatal. ​

Written by Quiana Woolaver, RVT

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Last updated: July 23, 2020

Dear Clients,

With recent changes to restrictions on businesses, we can continue providing our full range of services, under certain restrictions. As our province enters the next phase of the reopening plan, we have some updates to share with you about our safety measures.

We are continuing to see all cases by appointment only including pets in need of vaccines, wellness exams, blood work, heartworm testing, spays and neuters, dental services, parasite prevention, and more.

Beginning July 2, 2020, clients are able to come into the hospital with their pets with the following restrictions:

SAFETY MEASURES TO KEEP EVERYONE SAFE

ONLINE CONSULTATIONS ARE AVAILABLE

If you wish to connect with a veterinarian via message, phone or video, visit our website and follow the "Online Consultation" link.

OPERATING HOURS

We are OPEN with the following hours:

Monday to Friday: 8:00 am - 7:30 pm*
Saturday: 8:00 am - 3:00 pm
Sunday: Closed

*On weekdays we will be closed for 1 hour in the afternoon in order to catch up on communications with our clients. This is a temporary measure. Thank you for your understanding.


NEW PET OWNERS

Have you welcomed a new furry family member to your home? We’d love to meet them! Visit our Must Know New Pet Owner Information page for useful resources and helpful recommendations for new pet owners.

Thank you for your patience and understanding and we look forward to seeing you and your furry family members again!

- Your dedicated team at Avon Animal Hospital