Minerals that are normally secreted into the urine from the kidneys can sometimes, in the right conditions, cause the formation of crystals. In our cats and dogs, the most common crystals are struvite or calcium oxalate/phosphate. These can then clump together in the bladder and form stones known as bladder stones. These stones and crystals can sometimes block the urethra preventing urination which can be life threatening; Or become a great host for bacteria growth and commonly damage the bladder wall. Larger stones will need to be surgically removed.
Cambridge Vets send all of the stones removed over to the Minnesota, USA to be evaluated for the type of crystal forming it. Sometimes they can have multiple types in a single stone, so understanding the composition of the stone is important for ongoing preventative care. Come have a chat with us at the clinic if you would like to learn more.
We have recently had two examples of different types of stones removed from some patients. One dog named ChiChi had FOUR struvite stones, and another named Jesse who had one LARGE combination stone (magnesium and calcium phosphate). They recovered well after one of our pet animal vets Edith performed the stone removal surgery, and are now on a special diet to help prevent this from happening again in the future.
Common symptoms to watch out for, and to come and speak to one of our vets about include:
- Excessive drinking and urinating
- Leaking bladder
- Straining to urinate
- Vocalising while urinating
- Bloody urine