What is incontinence in dogs:
Urinary incontinence occurs when a housetrained dog loses control of his bladder. This can range in severity from occasional small urine leaks to inadvertent voiding of a large amount of urine and have several causes.
What causes incontinence:
Weak bladder sphincter
Urinary tract infection
Spinal injury or degeneration (frequently seen in German shepherds)
Protruding intervertebral disc
Presence of other diseases that cause excessive water consumption, such as diabetes, kidney disease, hyperadrenocorticism
What Are the General Symptoms of Urinary Incontinence in Dogs:
Dripping urine, which can irritate the skin and cause redness, is one of the most recognizable symptoms of incontinence, as is excessive licking of the vulva or penis area. Pet parents may also notice the area where the dog sleeps is contaminated with urine.
What Should I Do If I Think My Dog Is Incontinent:
Consult with a veterinarian, who will confirm the diagnosis and try to determine a cause. The vet will take a thorough history, perform a physical exam and likely conduct a urinalysis to verify whether your dog is suffering from a bladder infection, which requires treatment with antibiotics. Other tests may include a urine culture, blood work, radiographs and ultrasound.
What Are Some Complications of Urinary Incontinence in Dogs:
Some bouts of urinary incontinence ebb and wane, but others can progress and cause more serious bladder and kidney infections. A skin infection may result in areas that are in constant contact with urine.
Are Certain Dogs Prone to Urinary Incontinence:
Although urinary incontinence can afflict dogs of any age, breed or gender, it is most often seen in middle-aged to older spayed females; cocker spaniels, springer spaniels, Doberman pinschers and Old English sheepdogs are among the breeds often prone to incontinence.
How Is Urinary Incontinence Treated:
Treatment for incontinence will depend on its underlying cause. Medications can often effectively manage this condition and prevent everyday accidents. Some treatments focus on hormone therapy, while others, such as phenylpropanolamine, strengthen the urethral sphincter, which controls urine flow. Surgery also may be an option if medication alone doesn’t work. Collagen injections, a newer therapy for incontinence, appear to have promising results.
In cases of incontinence due to bladder stones, a protruding disc or congenital abnormality, surgery may be recommended.
Items ME dog owners have used successfully:
Belly Bands are great for male dogs with incontinence problems, also to help those boys who like to mark everything in the house. I would think that the heat season panties would work good for female dogs with incontinence problems also. Both types are washable/dryable.
Male doggie incontinence belts are fluid resistant and just go around the belly and is secured with Velcro. You strategically place an absorbent pad inside.
puppy training pads under her for a while but they also don’t do much.
Cloth pads (also for humans)also at Wal-Mart. They are water proof and washable. They are a bit pricey at about $20 each but to me it was worth it. I used them for months for our dog and they still look brand new.
They do make crates and exercise pens that have a raised wire floor for puppies, so if they pee, the urine just goes through the wire to the plastic tray below. I’ve worried about having a wet diaper on a dog for several hours so it seems that a raised floor might be a better solution.
Try pull ups or adult pull up diapers – whichever fits.
Pooch Pads, reinforced with overnight Maxi pads (with wings). He has to be changed regularly and in nice weather I give him ample outside time to dry out. In the winter, he has to spend some crate time on a hospital pad. I worry about urine scalds if I’m not here to change him often enough.
Medical observations regarding dogs presenting as incontinent:
– Prednisone causes increased thirst, which typically leads to more frequent urination. Another observation is if the “accidents” are large amounts, or small. Large amounts suggest that the prednisone is probably the cause; small amounts suggest a bladder infection.
– It would be a very good idea if needed to have urine collected by sterile technique, for culture.