URINARY PRODUCTS

Why does my dog have chronic urinary tract infections?

What are the  body’s protective mechanisms to prevent UTIs?

  1. Being properly hydrated
  2. Regular voiding
  3. Urinary sphincter is tight
  4. Ability to produce a good stream
  5. General hygiene

What factors set up a dog for a UTI?

  • Arthritis — getting up to go drink or go urinate is work, he might choose to do that less frequently, so urine sits in the bladder longer and is more concentrated.  Urine is a great little petri dish for bacteria if it is allowed to set up shop.  
  • Decreased tone to the urinary sphincter 🡪 many not enough to leak, but enough to allow bacteria through.  This can occur with age, especially in spayed females.
  • Poor stream — Posturing to pee requires the ability to hold the position, if she has to adjust or walk due to arthritis, she will not have a good stream.  
  • Female — The distance from outside the body to the bladder is shorter in girls, and the vulva is close to the anus, and so fecal contamination occurs much more easily.  Hair around the vulva can hold bacteria that migrate into the urinary vault. 

How can I prevent UTIs in my old dog?

  • Getting her up regularly to urinate:  This is facilitated by a Help Em Up Harness.  
  • Regular access to water:  
    • Bringing her water as needed
    • Making sure that water is easily accessible in many rooms 
    • Non-slip access to water – a yoga mat “track” to the bowl is vital.  
  • Helping with hygiene: 
    • Baby wipes to clean after each urination 
    • A “sanitary clip” is helpful both so you can see if there is redness, discharge, or excessive licking and to prevent fecal bacteria from accessing the urinary tract.

What products help prevent urinary tract infections in dogs?

Warning: These products should always be used with veterinary supervision

● Crananadin: Cranberry has used for centuries for prevention of urinary tract infections, but the amount and type has created a lot of different results in studies.    Proanthocyanidins in cranberry prevent adhesion of bacteria to the bladder wall, (meaning it is more likely to be flushed out when urinating), but only in certain strains of Vaccinium, the cranberry plant.

Ba Zhen Sang is a Chinese herb with data both in treatment and prevention of UTIs. Traditional Chinese medicine uses this powder (in capsule form) to promote urination, leach out dampness, address distension, pain, difficulty urinating, and bloating the in lower abdomen. This should NOT be used without a proper diagnosis as to the reasons for UTIs as Chinese Medicine is specific to the patient.

● Phenylpropanolamine is a prescription medication that helps to neurologically tighten the urinary sphincter. In some dogs this decreases the ability of infection to go up the urethra to the bladder. This medication must be carefully chosen by your veterinarian.

● Incurin is a prescription medication that is a very small amount of estrogen. In spayed females, this too can reduce leaking. In some dogs this decreases the ability of infection to go up the urethra to the bladder. This medication must be carefully chosen by your veterinarian.

● Help Em Up Harness: This harness is wonderful for our patients that have hindlimb weakness.  So often when we go to help them we get them under the belly and the front legs shoot out to counteract this — getting up this way is not comfortable.  The Help Em Up can be worn all the time and lifts from beneath the hips as well as supports the front, so getting up is easier, loading in the car is easier, support for urination and defecation is easier and helping on the stairs is easier.  We are happy to fit one to your pet. Dogs that get up more easily, urinate more frequently and drink more water.

● Yoga mats/carpet runners: Carpet runners or yoga mats: The better footing he has throughout the house, the better his mobility will be over all. Dogs that can get up and ambulate more easily, drink more water and urinate more frequently.

More Info
Cranberry has used for centuries for prevention of urinary tract infections, but the amount and type has created a lot of different results in studies. Proanthocyanidins in cranberry prevent adhesion of bacteria to the bladder wall, (meaning it is more likely to be flushed out when urinating), but only in certain strains of Vaccinium, the cranberry plant.
More Info

Ba Zhen Sang is a Chinese herb with data both in treatment and prevention of UTIs.   Traditional Chinese medicine uses this powder (in capsule form) to promote urination, leach out dampness, address distension, pain, difficulty urinating, and bloating the in lower abdomen.  This should NOT be used without a proper diagnosis as to the reasons for UTIs as Chinese Medicine is specific to the patient.

Help Em Up Harness

More Info

This harness is wonderful for our patients that have hindlimb weakness.  So often when we go to help them we get them under the belly and the front legs shoot out to counteract this — getting up this way is not comfortable.  The Help Em Up can be worn all the time and lifts from beneath the hips as well as supports the front, so getting up is easier, loading in the car is easier, support for urination and defecation is easier and helping on the stairs is easier.  We are happy to fit one to your pet.  Dogs that get up more easily,  urinate more frequently and drink more water.

About Healing Arts Animal Care

Healing Arts Animal Care in Beaverton, Oregon provides veterinary acupuncture, pet rehabilitation therapy, physical therapy and athletic conditioning and Animal Massage Therapy for the dogs and cats of the Portland, Oregon Metro Area including Hillsboro, Lake Oswego, and Tualatin. We strive to create a team among you, your pet, your veterinarian and ourselves to create a whole package of care for your pet including wheelchairs for dogs. Pets come through our door knowing that we’re going to have fun here and this isn’t “another trip to the vet.” Through manual therapies, acupuncture, laser, ultrasound, underwater treadmill and creating a tailored individual home exercises, we strive to bring your injured pet back to speed, keep your elderly pet as an active member of the family, return your obese pet back to a functional friend and keep your athletic pet at the peak of his performance.

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