Case description: A 9-year-old castrated male domestic shorthair cat was evaluated because of hematuria and weight loss after an 8-year history of intermittent signs of feline lower urinary tract disease (FLUTD). A complete diet history revealed that the cat was eating a commercial diet that does not undergo the same processing procedures as most pet foods and so might be at increased risk for bacterial contamination owing to a nonstandard industry cooking procedure.
Clinical findings: The cat had a history consistent with FLUTD, but bacteriologic culture of the urine revealed Salmonella organisms. Additional analysis revealed Salmonella enterica serotype I:ROUGH-O:g,m,s:- in samples of urine and feces as well as Salmonella enterica serotype Johannesburg and Salmonella enterica serotype Senftenberg in the diet.
Treatment and outcome: The cat responded positively to antimicrobial treatment for the Salmonella bacteriuria as well as to dietary and environmental management for the clinical signs associated with FLUTD.
Clinical relevance: Findings in this case highlighted an additional health consequence associated with ingestion of Salmonella-contaminated food. Such contamination is of particular concern with raw meat-based diets or diets that have not undergone standard industry cooking practices. Veterinarians should obtain a diet history for every companion animal during every evaluation to help with diagnosis and optimal treatment.