Blowstones & Bladder Grit

Bladder debris sometimes causes irritation and inflammation in the bladder and urethra. Because females have a short and wide urethra, they are usually able to urinate properly. In severe cases in hangovers, the bladder grit can get stuck in the narrowing in front of the penis. This causes a blockage. The symptoms are: going to the litter box all the time, a lot of pressing, complaining meowing, and almost no urine.

Bladder dust is a collective name of mainly two types of salt crystals. The most common is struvite. The other kind of salt crystal is calcium oxalate. Both salts are formed from waste products – magnesium, ammonium (decomposition product of urea) phosphates, calcium, oxalates – that are produced by the cat and excreted through urine. In a normal healthy situation, the salts are dissolved in the urine. However, for several reasons, the salts may no longer dissolve: they crystallize. If the formed crystals become very large, then even bladder stones can form. Bladder stones do not only occur in neutered males. Uncastrated males and females can also suffer from bladder stones.

The exact cause of the formation of bladder grit is not yet known, but below are some possible reasons that increase the chance of developing bladder grit:

Because males have a longer and narrower urethra, bladder debris can get stuck more easily than females. Bladder dust complaints are more common in males.

Lazy males have an increased risk of bladder grit.

We see cystitis, especially in overweight cats.

At an age between 1-2 years, most symptoms occur.

Frequency of urination:
Cats that urinate frequently are less likely to have cystitis: the salts have no time to crystallize out. Cats urinate less often if, for example, the litter box is not cleaned often enough.

Cats that drink little have concentrated urine, in which crystals easily form. Cats that eat a lot of canned food (canned food contains about 80% water!) are less likely to suffer from bladder grit.

The food contains the necessary salts (minerals). If too many of these salts are present in the food, there is an increased chance of getting bladder mucus.