Urinary Tract Infections in Dogs Treatment, Problems and Prevention

Urinary tract infections in dogs can be extremely painful and can lead to kidney problems or bladder infections. Know the signs and symptoms of a dog UTI so that you can treat it quickly.

Dogs can be affected by certain urinary tract problems, such as diseases or infections of the urethra, bladder and prostate. Urinary tract symptoms can also point to other problems, such as bladder stones and even cancer. These conditions can make the furry companion dog unable to stop urinating, or cause them to become lethargic. Your four-legged friend may whimper when they are trying to relieve themselves.

What are urinary tract infections in dogs?

Like us humans, UTI in dogs refers to an infection of their urinary tract. Bacteria are the most common cause of UTIs in dogs. Bacterial urinary tract infection is a common infectious disease in dogs, period. Bacterial UTIs affect 15 percent of all dogs in their lifetime. This means that your dog may experience a UTI at some point in his life.

Certain factors can increase your dog’s risk of getting a urinary tract infection (UTI). Often, female dogs are more likely to get UTIs than males, but male dogs can still get them more easily. There is also an increase in the rate of UTIs currently occurring in dogs with other health problems, such as chronic Cushing’s disease and kidney disease.

Symptoms of UTI in Dogs

Signs that your dog may have a Urinary tract infection (UTIs)
UTI symptoms in dogs can be distressing for the pet owner, as well as uncomfortable for your pet dog. If your dog has a UTI, you may notice one or more of the following symptoms:

  • Frequent urination
  • Extreme thirst
  • Blood in urine
  • Accident at home
  • Dribbling urine
  • Loss of bladder control
  • Symptoms of pain when urinating
  • Excessive licking after urination
  • Straining or whispering during urination
  • Need to go out more often
  • Lick around the urinary opening

Sometimes dogs show no symptoms of urinary tract infection (UTI) at all. In these cases, your veterinarian may discover an infection by examining, among other things.

Causes of urinary tract infections in dogs

About 25% of dogs will develop a urinary tract infection (UTI) at some point in their lives, of which a large percentage are thought to be due to bacterial infection. However there are many other reasons why your dog may be suffering from the uncomfortable symptoms of a UTI which include:

  • Viral infection
  • Urinary stones
  • Crystal
  • Bladder inflammation
  • Weak bladder
  • Fungal infection
  • Kidney disease
  • Spinal cord disease
  • Prostate disease
  • Cancer

Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are more common in dogs with diabetes and in older female dogs. Dogs of all breeds with bladder stones have a higher risk of recurrent UTIs. In addition, UTIs are common in senior dogs of all breeds and sexes aged seven years and older.

Problems with urinary tract infections in dogs

  • Strong odor in urine
  • Increased amount or frequency of urination
  • Fever
  • Lethargy
  • Increase in water consumption
  • Vomiting
  • Change in appetite
  • Weight loss
  • Severe back pain

Treating Urinary Tract Infections in Dogs

If your dog has a urinary tract infection (UTI), it is important to see your nearest vet. Because it can help diagnose the cause of your dog’s symptoms. The treatment recommended by the vet to clear up your dog’s UTI will be determined by the underlying cause of your dog’s symptoms.

Treating Urinary Tract Infections in Dogs

Antibiotic medicines – Urinary tract infections in dogs

If your dog’s urinary tract infection is caused by a bacterial infection, your home vet may prescribe a round of antibiotics for your pet dog. You can expect to see improvement in a few days with the help of these medicines.

However, it is important to continue antibiotic treatment for as long as possible until a complete drug prescription has been used. Ending treatment early can leave your dog with reinfection that can be harder to fight.

Pain management

Urinary tract infections (UTIs) can be a very painful condition for your dog. Your vet may prescribe anti-inflammatory medications for your pet, or in severe cases, recommend special injections to help relieve your pet’s pain due to a UTI.

Diet modification – Urinary tract infections

For some dogs, a diet specifically formulated to prevent stone formation and alter urine acidity can help reduce inflammation.

Treatment for underlying conditions

Underlying conditions such as Cushing’s or diabetes can lead to the recurrence of urinary tract infections in dogs. If your dog has an underlying health condition, treatment may primarily focus on the underlying condition as a means of preventing infection. In some dogs, the prostate disease can be controlled with surgical castration or chemicals, and the growth of bladder tumours can be slowed with medications.

Urinary tract infections – Surgery

Large urinary stones that persist despite a dog’s dietary modifications may need to be removed surgically. Dogs see improvement in 1-2 weeks from surgery. However, in some cases the stones may need to be analyzed to determine the most appropriate ongoing treatment for your dog.

Urethral sphincter medication

Your vet may recommend a urethral sphincter to help ‘tighten’ your dog’s urethra. To help control the release of urine. This treatment is commonly used in ferret dogs experiencing incontinence that has no vet detectable underlying cause.

Bladder Support Medications and Supplements

Your dog may benefit from ongoing treatment with probiotic, antioxidant and prebiotic supplements aimed at supporting the ‘good bacteria’. This treatment improves the overall condition of the lining of your puppy’s intestine.

100% Pure Cranberry Juice

Cranberry juice is often used to fight urinary tract infections in dogs. Sometimes cranberry juice can be helpful in fighting urinary tract infections in dogs.

It is thought that pure cranberry juice can help prevent harmful bacteria from sticking to the wall of your dog’s bladder, meaning it can be flushed out of your dog’s system faster. Be sure to consult your nearest veterinarian before giving cranberry juice, or any other natural remedy, to your dog.

Urinary tract infections (UTI) Symptoms? call your vet

It is important to make sure that your dog’s urinary tract infection (UTI) symptoms are just a UTI or something else. If your dog is displaying symptoms of a urinary tract infection (UTI), your best bet is to call your vet as soon as possible.

Note: The advice we give in this post is for informational purposes only and is not medical advice regarding pets of any kind. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please contact your nearest veterinarian.

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