Cystitis: The medical term for “inflammation” of the urinary bladder. The bladder is a balloon-type organ that holds the urine produced by the kidneys until it can be expelled from the body through the urethra. Causes of inflammation can include injury, stones, polyps, tumors, nerve damage preventing total emptying of the urine and infections. Infections can occur through the blood stream or ascend through the urethral opening.

Signs of cystitis include blood in the urine and frequent straining to pass urine. The owner often thinks the pet is constipated.

Bladder infections often become “chronic problems:”

That means they often reoccur regardless of what you do, just as in people. Early treatment improves chances of successful treatment each time. A bladder infection is diagnosed by laboratory analysis of the urine, physical examination, and often x-ray.

Treatment consists of appropriate antibiotic therapy. Surgery may be required to remove stones, remove tumors, or scrape the bladder wall to remove chronic infections.

Notify the clinic if your pet’s condition appears to worsen in any way.