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I'm finally back from the emergency vet. This evening, I saw Fresh Air jump in and out of the litter box. Clearly something was wrong. He hunched next to the box and looked like he was trying to pee, but nothing happened. He did the same thing in a few different places, but couldn't pee. I could tell he was distressed, so I drove to the emergency vet.

Fresh Air's urethra was completely blocked and he couldn't pee at all. The vet had to insert a catheter and clear out the blockage. Fresh Air is resting comfortably at the emergency vet. The catheter is still in place to give his urethra a chance to heel. Fortunately, we caught the blockage early. The veterinary team were surprised Fresh Air's urine had no blood or other problems. Usually the vet sees the cat after a few days when the kidneys have shut down and the cat is dying.

Due to male cat's anatomy, a blockage is not an uncommon problem. If you have a male cat, and you ever see in and out of the litter box behavior, and a bent leg posture that looks like a female dog peeing, run to the vet. Many people mistake this problem for constipation and assume the cat will recover. They won't. A bladder rupture, or kidney failure is the next stage. The vet told me if we waited until after Christmas, Fresh Air would have died.

I never thought I'd be grateful the people who owned the house before us had a cat that marked a corner in our family room. After our cats marked that spot too, we gave up and stuck a litter box in the corner. You wanna pee there, fine, have at it. We were watching TV and I could see Fresh Air was in and out of the box. That's why my family spotted the problem so quickly.

I'll get him back either Christmas Eve or Christmas day. He's going to need special food to prevent a recurrence, but that's far better than the alternative. I'll let you know how he's doing when Fresh Air comes home.
 

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Yes UTIs in a male cat can be a full-on emergency. Feeding a wet, rather than dry, food can help to avoid them - cats were originally desert animals, getting most of their fluids from prey, and many don't drink enough to compensate for dry kibble. I am glad you spotted Fresh Air's problem before it did permanent damage - here's hoping he is home for Christmas.
 
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Awwww Poor Fresh Air! Unfortunately blocked urethras are common in male cats as they have narrow urethras. A cat can die in 3 days from a blockage! So yes, you were very lucky you caught this!!! One thing that helps, is to not feed your cat dry food as staying hydrated is real important if a cat develops this problem. Diet plays a part in this also but that will depend on what the blockage is made up of and your Vet should be able to advise you. Get well soon Fresh Air!!!
 
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So sorry Fresh Air has been having this problem. Good on you for catching it early. Hope he is home in time for Christmas -would be a real gift.

Keep us posted on Fresh Air. ((HUGS)) from Alabama.
 

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It's so good you were able to catch this quickly. I hope he's home and recovering comfortably asap!
 

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I am glad you were so observant and that Fresh Aire will be ok. I had two cats with this. One I lost and the other was on a special diet for the rest of his life. He did well on it, but he would not eat wet food. The other cats we added some wet food to their diet each day. Cats do need moist food. My cats quit eating it so this reminds me to try again. Healing thought to Fresh Aire
 

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I was sorry to see the title of this thread, but happy to see there is a silver lining. It is awesome that you caught this early. I suspect that problem has put an early end to the lives of many male cats.
 

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Poor Fresh Air. First the indignity of a bath and now a blocked urethra with a stay at the vets. This has not been an easy last few days. He’s going to be thrilled to be home. Thank goodness you caught it early.

The last cat I put to sleep last year (female) kept getting and passing kidney stones. We switched her to a special kidney diet from the vet and she stopped having kidney stones and did well on the change in diet, she died from cancer and not kidney disease. I do think the diet helps.
 
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I got a call from the vet this morning. Fresh Air wasn't eating. They asked me to bring his favorite food to the hospital. I brought some cans and went upstairs to see him in his cage. He was cowering in the back of the crate when I got there. When I started talking, he started purring and was really glad to see me. Mostly, he just wanted me to pet his face. I took the cone off his head. He wanted to chew on his foot catheter, so I discouraged that. It wasn't hard because he was sedated. Slowly, I got him to eat about half a can of cat food.

After what felt like a long time, I went to check the time by pulling my insulin pump out of my pocket, only to discover I didn't have it with me. When I took a shower, I left it in my bedroom so the battery could charge. When the vet called, I was so worried about my cat, I completely forgot to reconnect my pump. Since I pump, I don't have any background insulin in my body to prevent my blood sugar from rising. Zero insulin for hours could be really dangerous. I checked my number. It was rising, but still safe. My husband drove my pump to me, got lost, got frustrated, found his way to the vet's office and gave me my pump. I put my pump back on, pushed some buttons and got insulin flowing. I felt really stupid. I'm absentminded on a good day. Stress makes me super absentminded.

I stayed with Fresh Air for several hours and then left because I had to pick up my daughter at work. Tomorrow we will see if Fresh Air will pee on his own. If not they will have to put in a new catheter and keep him two more days. I'm really hoping he pees ok. His urine flow was a little bloody this afternoon, but I guess that's normal. This is hard for me to deal with.

All of our animals pick their special person to bond with. Sunshine and Francis are my husband's pals. St. Nicholas is my daughter's new pal. Noelle and Fresh Air are mine. Fresh Air should be on my bed with his paws on my shoulder, purring in my ear while I'm writing, but he's not, so I am feeling down and lonely. It was stressful seeing him in a cage with tubes taped to him.

Our special family Christmas Eve dinner didn't get made because I ran out of time. I had kind of a rough day, to tell you the truth. I'm tired and stressed. I need a little down time. My daughter got me Assassin's Creed Odyssey for Christmas. I've been waiting to play this game for months. So, I'm going to play my video game and cuddle with Noelle. I'll be back with an update tomorrow. Hopefully it's good news.
 

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I am so sorry - it is desperately upsetting when a beloved animal is suffering and stressed, and you can't even bring them home to the comfort of familiar surroundings and their own people. Hoping for better news today.
 

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I'm sorry Fresh Aire was not yet herself, it shows what mommy love is though since she the some for you. That is good. I think as much as we do not like our loved pets separated from us they like it even less. I am glad you realized you didn't have your pump and that your husband got it to you. Good thought for you and yours!
 

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I am sorry things went so off the rails yesterday. I am glad you are okay now and hope today brings better news for Fresh Air.
 

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Christmas wishes for you and you, Fresh Air and the rest of your gang. Thoughts and prayer that Fresh Air is getting better. I can't imagine the stress of having Fresh Air in the hospital and the stress of the holidays. Do get that down time - it is important that you are rested to deal with all this. Holidays for your household can be on any day you like - doesn't have to be this one day. ((HUGS))
 

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Bless you for heeding this emergency immediately, and for not taking a casual approach, which would have likely proved deadly.

I saw something subtle, yet similar, in 2009 on a weekend with my cat who passed this year. Within 20 minutes I was dressed and we were in the car to the ER. He was not completely blocked, but close. Ultimately, he needed the PU surgery, and it was highly successful. Our wonderful vet was experienced, and did beautiful work. I'm still at loose ends due to his retirement.

All good thoughts for your darling Fresh Air, Click. My guy wouldn't eat the Hills Rx diet, but did well with the Royal Canin Rx, and eventually was able to transition off it. Granted, his coat wasn't quite as outstanding while on it, but it helped save his life.

Btw, there will be those, perhaps many, who read the ingredients and try to shame you from using the prescription food. Keep in mind those will not be the scientists who developed and proved the value and results of this food, just citizens who've taken up the mantle of horror at any food with corn in it, and who have never dealt with a blocking cat and the complications of that situation. Pay them no mind.

Much love to you and your family, and gentle nuzzles to Fresh Air.
 

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I am so sorry for this extra stress and worry. I am sure you cheered up Fresh Air with the visit and solicitous feeding. Please pee normally, Fresh. It’s your ticket home. Hugs from Houston, Click.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Fresh Air is home. Whew. I am so glad to have him back. He's a little unsteady on his feet, and still sedated, but he's back. The first thing he wanted to do when he got home was eat. I guess he was too stressed at the vet to eat very much. He gobbled most of a can of our normal cat food. He didn't want the prescription food at all. Tomorrow I will mix in a little at a time, but tonight I thought it was more important that he just... eat.

I'm glad he's back. He has the cutest little shaved feet from the IV's in his front paws. They look like he's wearing socks. I'll get pictures when he's more settled. Thanks for being here with me through this. I appreciate every post.
 
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