The litter box has always provided a fairly accurate, albeit yucky, picture of a cat’s health. But new cat litter products can show you even more warning signs when something’s amiss.
Check your pet supply store for products that can alert you to possible urinary tract disease, diabetes, hyperthyroidism and kidney disease.
How Home Testing Products For Cats Work
The size of the clumps in your cat’s litter box can tell you a lot about the cat’s health. Dr. Elsey’s Health Monitor Everyday Litter gives you a more accurate picture than you get by just eyeballing the box.
The clumping litter is a consistent (calibrated) particle size and comes with a digital luggage scale. Weigh a couple of clumps every few months and compare them to the chart on the box. Increased urination (heavier clumps than normal) can be a sign of hyperthyroidism, kidney disease and diabetes.
Both LifeMate clumping litter and Monthly Monitor crystals test the pH in cats’ urine. The color changes if the pH is too high or too low. While high or low pH is usually a sign of bladder stones and crystals, low pH can also be a warning of kidney disease or unregulated diabetes.
To use Monthly Monitor, pour the crystals on top of your regular litter in a freshly filled box.
Think Outside The Box
Learn To Recognize Other Signs Of Health Problems
- Weight loss
- A veracious appetite but the cat doesn’t gain weight and may even lose some.
- Loss of appetite
- Greasy fur or a poor haircoat
- Excessive drinking
- Excessive urination
- Bad breath
- Hiding or depression
- Changes in personality or activity level
- Straining to urinate or changes in litter box habits. A male cat straining to urinate can be a medical emergency.
I can see where the home testing products can be helpful. But as the standard disclaimer goes, they’re no substitute for professional advice. If you suspect your cat has a health problem, he needs to see a vet!
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