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C2006-08

Dear Christopher Cat

Lucy, my 10-year-old cat, leaks small amounts of urine while she sleeps. How should this problem be treated?

Christopher Responds

Urinary incontinence is rare in us cats – but not in dogs. That’s yet another reason we cats are superior to dogs.

The best approach with any disease is to find the cause and treat it, so it’s time to enlist your veterinarian’s help.

Feline urinary incontinence can be caused by bladder spasms due to infection or inflammation of the bladder, so ask your veterinarian to do a urinalysis.

The feline leukemia virus has the same effect, so ask your vet to do a feline leukemia test, too.

Other causes of urine leakage are neurologic disease, weakness of the urinary sphincter, and excessive water consumption due to diabetes or kidney disease.

After a complete physical exam and some lab work, your veterinarian will be able to advise you about the cause of – and effective treatment for – Lucy’s urinary leakage.

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