Your cat’s bathroom habits generally won’t be at the forefront of your mind unless
you already suspect that something is wrong. But when you observe your cat doing something unusual, it tends to stick with you.
If your cat has been making more frequent or longer trips to the litter box than usual, it might stick out as something that you should worry about. Here are seven possible reasons your cat might be peeing more frequently or in a larger volume than usual.
Pollakiuria vs Polyuria
First, we need to define the difference between pollakiuria (peeing more frequently than usual) and polyuria (peeing a larger volume than usual). Without solidifying the difference between these two symptoms, it’s impossible to determine what might be ailing your cat.
Pollakiuria and polyuria have different biological causes. So, it makes sense to separate them. So, we’ll split the list into conditions that might be ailing your cat based on whether they’re peeing more frequently or peeing a larger volume.
My Cat Is Peeing More Frequently
If your cat is peeing more frequently (pollakiuria), you could be seeing the signs of oliguria. That’s when your cat pees frequently but only produces small amounts of urine at the time. This is usually caused by increased urinary urgency, where the body signals that it has to urinate even when the volume of urine in the bladder isn’t anywhere near full.
Here are some possible causes of pollakiuria.
1. Urinary Crystals (Crystalluria)
One of the most common symptoms of pollakiuria in cats is urinary crystals. A cat’s urine is filled with microscopic crystals from the minerals they consume in their food. When there’s an excess of mineral crystals in the urine, they can cause pain and discomfort when urinating and increased urinary frequency.
Crystalluria on its own is usually benign and easy to treat with veterinary intervention. However, some literature points to the idea that cats prone to urinary crystals are more prone to kidney stones. So, if your cat regularly has problems with urinary crystals, it’s worth keeping your eye on your cat’s bathroom behaviors!
2. Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease
Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease or FLUTD is a relatively common disease in cats. However, it’s generally benign and will clear up on its own under veterinary supervision. So, cats displaying symptoms of FLUTD should be taken to the vet to rule out any other causes for concern.
In addition to making frequent, small trips to the litter box, cats with FLUTD may begin urinating on cool, flat surfaces like tile floors and bathtubs, as these surfaces are more comfortable for them to urinate on with their condition.
3. Kidney Stones
Cats with kidney stones very rarely show any signs of having this condition. Usually, a cat with kidney stones is found out when diagnostic testing for other illnesses, like FLUTD or urinary crystals.
If your cat has obstruction from kidney stones, you might see signs like pollakiuria, blood in the urine, or discomfort when urinating.
Kidney stones can be “inactive,” meaning they are not infected and not currently enlarging. If they aren’t active, they may not need to be removed, and your veterinarian might recommend that you keep an eye on your cat’s condition to ensure it doesn’t worsen.
- You may also be interested in: Why Does My Cat Pee on Plastic Bags? 6 Likely Reasons
4. Urinary Tract Infection
Urinary tract infections are extremely rare in cats. They have a much higher FLUTD and urinary crystals incidence than urinary tract infections.
Nonetheless, urinary tract infections remain a risk when dealing with any creature with a urinary system. These are caused by bacteria getting into your cat’s urinary tract via the urethra.
Usually, the body can fight these intruders, but when it can’t, bacteria starts to grow in the bladder and urethra, causing discomfort when urinating and increased urinary frequency.
My Cat Is Peeing a Larger Volume
If your cat is making longer trips to the litter box even though they’re only peeing (and they’re peeing the whole time!), then they’re experiencing polyuria. Usually, if your cat is experiencing polyuria, the cause is an increased thirst drive.
Here are some conditions associated with increased thirst and polyuria.
1. Hot Weather
Hot weather is a benign but common culprit in the world of polyuria. When your cat is overheated, they’ll be inclined to drink more water to cool the body temperature down, leading to an increased volume of urination and urgency. After all, when you drink more water than usual, it has to go somewhere!
Diabetes in cats can cause an excess volume of blood glucose. That glucose will be voided through the urine, which leads to increased urine production to accommodate the amount of glucose being excreted in the urine.
Other signs of diabetes include sudden weight loss even though your cat is eating well, increased appetite in the early stages of the disease, and loss of appetite in later stages. If not controlled with medication, diabetes can spiral out of control and become deadly.
Hyperthyroidism is the overproduction of hormones by the thyroid gland. Cats with hyperthyroidism may display a higher appetite than usual, including increased thirst, leading to an increased amount of urine being passed.
If left untreated, hyperthyroidism can overload the body with hormones and cause high blood pressure and heart disease.
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Cleaning Tips for Cats That Pee A Lot
If your cat is peeing absolutely everywhere, you may feel a little stressed about the cleanup. Acting quickly will help you avoid stains and smells, as will a great enzymatic cleaner.
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Another option is a mixture of vinegar and water. Spray the solution on the pee and blot it up with paper towels.
There are many possible causes of increased urination in cats. From something as simple as hot weather to something as serious as diabetes, there are many leads that a veterinarian might follow along when assessing your cat’s condition. However, the large volume of issues that could lead to increased urination is one of the most important reasons to have your cat evaluated by a veterinarian.
Whether your cat is urinating more frequently or producing an abnormally large volume of urine, your cat should be seen by a veterinarian. Any issues they are having will best be treated under the care of a veterinarian, and a veterinarian can help rule out any problems and put your mind at ease.
Featured Image Credit: Creative Cat Studio, Shutterstock