Our customer asked:
Please can you advise how long it's safe for my cat to take cystophen. He's recently suffered from his first bout of urinary tract infection and is now thankfully symptom free. I'm still giving him one capsule daily and wondered if I should continue to do so for life?
Cystophan is intended to be given long-term and it is OK to give it for life. Having said that, it is difficult to be sure if that is really required. Some cats do get this form of cystitis regularly and repeatedly if they are not on treatment. It can be painful and distressing and so should be prevented if possible. Other cats might only get cystitis once in their life, or once every few years, so it might not be sensible to embark on daily medication life-long after one episode. There are a number of other risk factors for the idiopathic cystitis which this product is used for. These include eating mostly dried food, obesity and leading a very sedentary lifestyle. It is also more common in young cats than older cats. Personally I would use Cystophan for 3 months while trying to do what I could to improve the other factors, then I would stop. Obviously this increases risks of the problem returning, but on balance seems sensible. Try to increase your cat's water intake by using plenty of moist foods and offering water in places away from where you feed him (some cats seem to dislike drinking where they eat). A full glass of water placed on one or two windowsills will often tempt cats to drink, as will a cat water fountain. If your cat is plump, reduce the amount of food offered - it is healthy to be hungry sometimes! Offering limitless amounts of very tasty food is really a recipe for obesity, though we often do it for our cats. There are also special foods which reduce the chances of cystitis happening, such as Hills s/d prescription diet. You could ask your vet about this too.