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How Many Times A Day Do Cats Pee And What Can Affect This?

How Many Times A Day Do Cats Pee And What Can Affect This?

A cat peeing regularly means that its kidneys are functioning well and filter toxins and other waste from its blood.

A healthy cat should pee and have regular bowel movements. A change in the color of its pee or feces can indicate that it faces a certain health problem.

Another important thing to observe is how many times a day do cats pee. There’s a frequency that’s considered normal, but there are also certain situations that can cause a cat to pee more or less than usual.

Let’s delve into this issue and help you learn a bit more about your cat’s urinary health.

How Often Should A Cat Pee?

kitten in a litter box

A healthy cat should pee between two to four times a day. There are some factors that can influence this frequency, such as diet type and water intake.

Some cats may urinate just once or twice a day, depending on their lifestyle. If there aren’t any additional symptoms, this is simply the way a cat’s body is functioning and it’s considered normal.

On the contrary, some cats could always pee three to four times a day, and this is their average frequency.

The most important thing here is for you, as a cat owner, to be aware of your cat’s peeing habits. This way you can help it in case you notice its urine routine has drastically changed.

How Long Can Cats Go Without Peeing?

It’s important for its health that you know how often it usually urinates and how long it can go without peeing.

A cat can be okay with not peeing for about 24 to 48 hours. Usually, if your cat doesn’t pee for this long, this shouldn’t be concerning.

However, if a cat doesn’t pee at all for longer than 48 hours, this isn’t a good sign. This is an indicator that you should take your feline friend to a veterinarian, since it may be sick.

What Can Cause A Cat To Pee More Frequently?

You may notice your cat suddenly pees more than four times a day.

There are a couple of causes for this occurrence, including some health conditions. Therefore, you should be aware of them to be able to provide your cat with adequate care.

1. Age

cat in a litter box

As your cat ages, you’ll certainly notice some changes in its behavior and habits.

Most usually senior cats show decreased energy levels. They prefer to nap and spend some time alone rather than engaging in activities with their humans.

The advanced age simply brings a new life perspective and different needs for your feline friend.

Another common change with elderly cats is urination frequency. A cat’s bladder weakens with age, resulting in it peeing more often.

Also, you could notice your cat peeing in other places in your house, such as on your floors or even your clothes.

This behavior likely suggests that your cat didn’t have enough time to reach the litter box and used the nearest available surface.

2. Diet

Wet food helps keep your cat hydrated, so, this type of diet is definitely recommended for felines.

However, if your cat only eats wet food, this can lead to more frequent urination. This isn’t something to be worried about, since it’s only a result of your cat’s nutrition. 

According to International Cat Care, wet food is less easy to use and is more expensive. At the same time, it’s beneficial for a cat’s constipation and urinary tract disease.

On the other hand, dry cat food can be used for food puzzles and food toy dispensers. But, it doesn’t offer hydration for your cat.

The best thing to do here would be to consult a veterinarian if you have any doubts regarding your cat’s diet. They will suggest the best diet based on your cat’s age, lifestyle, and body weight.

3. Health Problems

cat with peed couch

Frequent urination can also be a sign of a medical condition in your cat. Let’s look at the three most common health problems related to this clinical symptom.

Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)

Both male and female cats of all ages can suffer from UTI.

Together with frequent urination, additional symptoms are blood in urine, pain while urinating, and increased licking of the urinary opening.

As WebMD explains, UTI is a result of a bacterial infection in a cat’s bladder or urethra. Antibiotics are prescribed to treat this type of infection.

Diabetes

Frequent urination is one of the most common signs of feline diabetes.

You may also notice excessive thirst, increased appetite, and weight loss in your pet. It’s essential to take your cat to a vet clinic as soon as possible.

Veterinarians treat diabetes with insulin therapy. This is a condition that cannot be cured, but, with the right treatment, diet, and exercise, a cat can still live a normal life.

Kidney Disease

Kidney disease is a very serious condition in felines. Your cat peeing more than usual could suffer from this disease.

Some other signs are weight loss, bad breath, and anemia. Healthy kidney function is vital for a cat’s quality of life.

Therefore, you should reach out to your vet as soon as you notice potential signs of kidney disease in your cat.

The treatment for this condition is complex and typically includes correcting dehydration, intravenous fluids, and specific medications.

Unfortunately, if a cat isn’t diagnosed on time, there’s a possibility that it will need to be euthanized.

What Can Cause A Cat To Pee Less Than Usual?

cat in a litter box with toilet paper

Just like frequent peeing can indicate a certain change in your cat, the same thing is true with it urinating less frequently.

Let’s look at the three most common explanations for your cat peeing less than it usually does.

1. Something Wrong With The Litter Box

I’m sure you’ve already noticed how clean felines are. Not only do they enjoy grooming their coats for half of a day, but they could also avoid places that aren’t perfectly clean as they like.

A dirty litter box could be a reason why your cat refuses to use it. Also, perhaps you’ve changed your cat’s litter box, and now it isn’t confident about peeing in it. Cats really don’t like changes, even the slightest ones.

Furthermore, if your cat shares a litter box with another cat, this could also be a reason for it to pee less frequently. All cats are territorial and don’t like sharing their items.

You should determine the exact cause for your cat suddenly disliking its litter box. It’s important for its health to pee regularly and expel the waste from its body.

2. Lack Of Hydration

Many cats dislike drinking water and enjoy dry food far better than wet food.

These two can lead to a lack of hydration in a cat, and, consequently, less frequent urination than normal. 

It can be challenging to get a cat to drink some water. But, it isn’t impossible. You can try giving it some water alternatives, or get a water fountain to make water drinking a bit more appealing to it.

3. Urinary Obstruction

cat sitting on a toilet bow

Finally, if your cat is peeing less than usual, it could be facing a urinary obstruction.

According to MSPCA–Angell, this is a life-threatening blockage of a cat’s urinary tract that prevents it from being able to urinate.

There are several causes of this condition, such as viral infections, trauma, or diet (a cat that eats dry food exclusively is more likely to develop this obstruction).

Additional symptoms here are a cat licking its genital area, hiding behavior, lethargy, and refusing to eat.

Edward Cooper and his associates [1] explain how standard treatment of a urinary obstruction includes the following:

• Stabilization of metabolic and cardiovascular derangements

• IV fluids administration

• Relief of the obstruction through urethral catheterization

Veterinarians usually prescribe pain medications and a change in a cat’s diet during the process of recovery.

Final Words

Cats usually pee two to four times a day. 

However, several causes can disrupt this ideal frequency. For instance, higher hydration and advanced age can cause a cat to pee more often. Also, this can be a sign of medical conditions such as diabetes, UTI, or kidney disease.

Some cats can pee less than usual and this can be caused by dissatisfaction with their litter box. Furthermore, a cat that isn’t peeing could lack hydration or even be facing a urinary obstruction.

It’s essential you react as soon as you notice a sudden change in your cat’s urinary habits. Observing your cat’s pee frequency can help you get important information on its general health.

References:

[1] Cooper ES, Owens TJ, Chew DJ, Buffington CA. A protocol for managing urethral obstruction in male cats without urethral catheterization. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2010 Dec 1;237(11):1261-6. DOI, Retrieved November 2, 2023.

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