Welfare of cats 5-29 months after perineal urethrostomy: 74 cases (2015-2017)

Margaret R Slater, Sharon Pailler, J'mai M Gayle, Illoneete Cohen, Erin L Galloway, Kristen A Frank, Camille DeClementi
Journal of Feline Medicine and Surgery 2019 August 19, : 1098612X19867777

OBJECTIVES: The objective of this study was to evaluate the long-term quality of life in cats following perineal urethrostomy.

METHODS: This study comprised a retrospective case series of 74 cats with urinary obstructions that received perineal urethrostomies at the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) Animal Hospital between September 2015 and July 2017. Medical records were reviewed for information on the number of obstructions prior to surgery, urinary tract problems at the time of surgery and other potential factors influencing long-term welfare. Owners were surveyed by telephone and text 5-29 months after their cat's surgery. Responses were compiled and analyzed to determine owner perception of welfare postsurgery, and to identify patterns in medical history and welfare outcomes.

RESULTS: In total, 105 cat owners were eligible for the survey; 74 responded. Altogether, 100% of responding individuals reported at least the same quality of life postsurgery compared with the cat's quality of life before demonstrating urinary problems (48% reported better). On a quality-of-life scale of 1-10 (10 = excellent), 100% of responding cat owners reported at least 7; 75% reported 10.

CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE: Quality-of-life outcomes for cats 5-29 months after receiving perineal urethrostomy surgery were reported to be very good. Given this finding, and that perineal urethrostomy surgery should mitigate future blockages, we suggest considering perineal urethrostomy surgery as a standard tool to manage urinary obstructions in cats. The needs of the specific client and patient, including risks, costs and welfare of the cats, should drive the options for management of urinary obstructions in male cats.


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