Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease
In a presentation to the Western Veterinary Conference in 2013, Dr. Jerold S. Bell, adjunct professor of clinical veterinary genetics at the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University, stated that feline lower urinary tract disease (FLUTD) is the most common feline genetic disorder, occurring “in approximately four percent of all cats (pedigreed and mixed breed).”
Cats are diagnosed with FLUTD when they have typical symptoms (straining to urinate, urinating small amounts frequently, painful urination and urinating outside the litter box) and other potential causes have been ruled out. Genetics isn’t the only cause of FLUTD but combines with risk factors like stress and obesity to determine which cats develop symptoms.
Treatment for FLUTD centers on stress relief, environmental enrichment, keeping litter boxes clean, dietary changes, increasing water consumption and sometimes anti-inflammatory or other medications. No genetic test for FLUTD is available.