How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Dr. Debbie Your Own Question
Dr. Debbie
Dr. Debbie, Veterinarian
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 5035
Experience:  Full time practicing companion animal veterinarian.
Type Your Cat Question Here...
Dr. Debbie is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My cat is acting like hes in a lot of pain, and he keeps crouching

This answer was rated:

My cat is acting like he's in a lot of pain, and he keeps crouching as if he's about to urinate. (Nothing comes out.) I took him to the vet this morning because I saw drops of blood in the litterbox. The vet told me to wait and see, and they gave me antibiotics to give him. However, his behavior is scary and I need to know if I should take him to the emergency room.
Can you squeeze around the bottom of his belly where his bladder would be and see if you think he acts painful when you do that?
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
(I'm sorry -- I was busy Googling the problem and didn't see that you had answered.)

He doesn't act as if it hurts when I probe his lower belly. This morning, the vet said that his bladder was a normal size. She was unable to get a urine sample.

He's also breathing weird -- his stomach is jumping and twitching. When I come near him, he cries and growls, and he hissed earlier when I picked him up, which he has never done before. He seems to be much sicker than he was this morning when the vet looked at him.

If he has an obstruction in the urinary tract that is an emergency. It doesn't sound like that is the case. If your vet said the bladder was empty and he is not painful when you touch the area it is most likely not completely obstructed anywhere.


I would be suspicious of either a urinary tract infection, urinary stones, or feline lower urinary tract disease (FLUTD).


I would go to the ER if:

1. He cries out in pain

2. He strains at the litterbox with NOTHING coming out.

3. You feel his belly and can feel a firm orange sized mass which is a distended bladder and it seems painful.


Otherwise, I would continue the antibiotics and encourage water intake and go in for a recheck on Monday.


Let me know if you have more questions.


Dr. Debbie

Dr. Debbie and other Cat Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Okay, he started crying in pain, and he hasn't eaten since yesterday morning. The only water he's had is what I squirted in his mouth with a syringe every few hours.

All that is open today is the emergency clinic, which (understandably) costs a lot more than a regular vet. Even though the vet had not seem concerned about my cat's illness yesterday, I decided to risk the cost.

I'm so glad I did. He did, in fact, have an obstruction, and he might have died if I hadn't taken him in. I'm upset that the vet yesterday had not recognized my cat's problem for what it was, but I guess she did the best she could. My cat is spending the night at the clinic and he'll be okay now.

Thank you so much for your help. :)