If your dog or cat is having difficulty passing urine, you should seek emergency veterinary care. When an animal is unable to urinate, urine can back up and flood the kidneys. This prevents the kidneys from successfully filtering toxins from the body and allows them to build up in the patient’s bloodstream. This is a time-sensitive emergency and we advise having the patient seen immediately.
If your cat is frequently going into and out of the litter box, urinating in inappropriate locations outside the box, is vocalizing or crying while in the box, has blood in the urine, is not passing any urine or is showing other signs of urinary distress, please seek emergency care.
If your dog is asking to go out to urinate frequently, is squatting or posturing to urinate frequently, has blood in the urine, is vocalizing while trying to urinate, is not passing any urine, or showing other signs of urinary distress, please seek emergency care.
Some potential causes for difficulty urinating can include: bladder stones, urinary tract infections, crystals, inflammation, neoplasia and more.
If your pet is unable to produce or pass urine, it is a life-threatening situation, and it is important that you take your pet to a veterinarian immediately.
The most common cause of not urinating is that something is blocking the urethra, preventing the bladder from emptying. In this situation, urine is still being produced and filling the bladder but can’t make its way out.
Not being able to urinate can cause the urine to back up into the kidneys, which can then lead to kidney failure very quickly. Kidney failure allows toxins to build up in the bloodstream which can cause heart problems and other organs to fail. This occurs most often in male cats but can happen to female cats and dogs of both genders, too.