Often the most important aspect of helping your cat is detecting any problems at an early stage when treatment is more likely to be successful. Cats are masters at masking signs of illness, pain and other problems. This is especially true with changes in cat urination frequency. Increased urination in cats can happen at any age and for many reasons. However, if your cat is urinating more than usual it can be a symptom of several serious diseases or conditions.
Conditions That May Cause Increased Urination in Cats
Your cat may have a urinary tract infection, which is painful and uncomfortable for your cat. Increased urination in cats can be caused by diabetes or kidney failure. To learn more about kidney failure, go to Chronic Kidney Failure in Cats.
Hyperthyroidism is also a cause of increased urination in cats. Your cat’s metabolism speeds up, which impacts the kidneys. This condition causes increased thirst, which leads to increased urination. While hyperthyroidism can be diagnosed in cats from age 4 to age 20+, the disease is most often seen in older cats. In fact, 95 percent of cats diagnosed with hyperthyroidism are at least 8 years of age. To learn more about hyperthyroidism, go to Hyperthyroidism in Cats.
Only your veterinarian can determine the reason for increased urination in cats, so see your veterinarian as soon as possible.
Older Cats and Increased Urination
Increased urination in cats can also be a sign of old age. As cats get older it becomes harder for them to maintain bladder control. As our cats age, they tend to urinate more often, and they don’t always make it to the litter box. Sometimes they urinate outside the litter box. Incontinence or weak bladder is age related. The bladder weakens with age, resulting in more frequent urination. Essentially, your cat will urinate as soon as pressure builds up in the bladder – and often, that can mean urinating outside the litter box.
Increased urination in cats is normal with age. It often results from diseases that are common to aging felines, like kidney failure, hyperthyroidism or diabetes. Increased urination in cats is often an early sign of diabetes in older or overweight cats. But don’t just assume that your cat’s more frequent urination is a sign of old age. If you have concerns, see your veterinarian. Your cat could be suffering from a urinary tract infection or bladder infection, or kidney disease.
The Litter Box and Increased Urination
More frequent urination will cause the litter box to become soiled more quickly. Many cats will stop using the litter box when they encounter a buildup of soil or odor. So increased urination in cats often means urinating outside the litter box. To help keep your cat from urinating outside the litter box, make sure to keep the litter box as clean as possible. Clean the litter box daily, or more often if necessary. To learn more about dealing with a cat urinating outside the litter box, go to How Do You Deal with a Cat Urinating Outside the Litter Box.
Arthritis is another condition that can contribute to urinating outside the litter box. Older cats can suffer from arthritis pain that makes it difficult for them to access the litter box. When this happens, they will simply find an “easier” place to go. Get a litter box with lower sides that is more easily accessible to your older cat.
If your cat is urinating outside the litter box, here are some things that you can try. Increase the number of litter boxes in your house. Make sure there’s one on every floor in case your cat is experiencing discomfort going up and down the stairs. Put the new litter boxes in areas where your cat can easily find them. Many cats also have trouble getting into and out of the litter box when they get older, so use litter boxes that have low sides.
For more information about litter box avoidance, check out The Top 8 Reasons Why Your Kitty Won’t Use the Litter Box.