Many factors affect a cat’s toilet practices, from their diet, water intake, health conditions as well as litter preferences. A healthy adult cat will typically urinate approximately two to four times a day but some may urinate only once, and some up to six times a day which are both typically normal.
Learning what is normal for your cat can help you quickly monitor and pick up any changes. For instance, older cats may pee more often due to reduced bladder capacity, they may have kidney issues, diabetes or even hyperthyroidism which affects urine production and concentration. They may also have difficulty accessing the litter box or holding their urine for long periods.
Male and female
Male cats tend to urinate more frequently than females due to their long urethra. They also are prone to more blockages which can be fatal if left untreated. You will know if a cat has blockages if you see it strain, cry or lick its genitals while trying to pee.
Some cat breeds are also prone to urinary problems which affects their peeing frequency. Persian cats for example tend to develop bladder stones that can cause painful and frequent urination. Bladder stones are tough deposits of minerals that form in the bladder and irritate or obstruct the urinary tract. You can prevent bladder stones by avoiding cat foods high in minerals like calcium, magnesium and phosphorus.
Normal urine from a hydrated healthy cat should be pale yellow or clear. It should not appear cloudy or contain any debris. If you notice any pink, red or dark brown urine colour, contact your vet as there could be blood in it. White or pale-coloured litter for your cat’s litter box might help you monitor the urine colour.
The cat’s diet determines how hydrated the cat will be with wet food being your best bet to keep the cat hydrated and urine dilute. Dry food can dehydrate your cat and concentrate its urine causing bladder stones. The more water a cat drinks the more it will pee. Cats prefer fresh water so change its bowl often or add ice cubes to make the water chilled.
The state of the litter box--how clean, comfortable and accessible it is--affects how often some cats pee. They may use it less frequently or avoid it all together if they hate it.
If your cat pees more or less often than usual, it may indicate a health or behavioural problem which needs to be checked by a vet.
Maryanne is a pet owner. [email protected]