Feline Kidney Infection Symptoms

Published: 20th April 2010
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Your cats kidneys are responsible for eliminating toxins and other waste products. They are an important part of good health and vital to sustaining life. These are only two of the reasons why it is important to recognize feline kidney infection symptoms early before the kidneys are damaged to a point where they are no longer capable of supporting life. In this article I will provide you with a broad array of feline kidney infection symptoms along with a couple of home remedy ideas which should allow you to get the jump on your cats kidney infection.

Talking feline kidney infection symptoms

Feline kidney infection symptoms can range from very subtle to very obvious. Much will depend on whether the infection is only in the kidneys or propagating the entire urinary tract. In cases where only the kidneys, and possibly other areas of the upper urinary tract, are infected you will not see as many symptoms, and they likely will be less obvious. You may notice a change in energy levels with your cat becoming lethargic and having little interest in things that normally spark their attention. They may also withdraw to a quite area such as the closet or under a large piece of furniture. In these areas you may notice the smell of urine, since sometimes incontinence is one of the symptoms seen with an advancing feline kidney infection. They will also lose interest in food, which may lead to weight loss. Labored breathing or panting may also be seen.

If the bacteria is engulfing the entire urinary tract you will notice symptoms which are more in line with those often seen with a severe bladder infection. These would include urinating in inappropriate places, trying to void with little success, pain during urination, depression, loss of energy, blood in the urine, loss of appetite, pungent smelling urine, and blood in the urine.

In both instances the area around the kidneys will be sensitive to the touch. The kidneys are located about three inches behind the rib cage just below the spine. If this area becomes tender to the touch chances are you feline has a kidney infection.


The type of bacteria most often linked to feline kidney infection symptoms is escherichia coli and generally gains access through the urethra. Your vet will want to run a urine analysis and culture to determine whether this bacteria is present. The bad news is that if the infection is only in the upper urinary tract sometimes it will not show up. The good news is that your vet will likely be able to determine something is wrong by palpitating the kidney area and observing the general condition of your cat. At this point antibiotics such as amoxicillin or baytril will be prescribed. If your pet doctor feels the condition is serious he may insist on keeping your feline overnight to observe behavior and possible administer intravenous antibiotics and perhaps a vitamin B12 supplement.

What else? While a veterinary visit is the best course of action when feline kidney infection symptoms are recognized, sometimes personal situations arise forcing it to be a secondary option. In these instances home remedies are the next best line of defense. In these situations a two step approach consisting of plenty of fresh water spiked with cranberry or blueberry juice along with a homeopathic pet supplement containing berberis and cantharis has proven to be a safe and effective treatment option worth considering.

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