If your dog is suffering from urinary incontinence, it can be a major problem. Most dog parents don’t want to see their lovely four-legged friends dribbling and leaking urine everywhere.
It can be an absolute nightmare for your interior décor. Even if you don’t mind your dog soiling your carpeting, sofa, and any number of other parts of your home, living with that kind of persistent sanitation problem is simply not a good idea.
It’s no less problematic for your dog. It isn’t as if it is enjoying this. Urinary incontinence can cause a dog a great deal of emotional as well as physical distress. Just imagine what a toll it would take on you and your livelihood if you were unable to control your bladder.
Sadly, this causes many people to wonder if such a medical problem means they may need to put down their beloved friends. This despite the wide-ranging number of solutions available to help deal with dog incontinence – from urinary dog food to drugs for bladder support.
Should You Put Your Dog Down?
So should you put your dog down? In one word — no. That cannot be emphasised enough. For as much as your dog’s struggle with Urinary Incontinence may be distressing, it is by no means bad enough to put your dog down.
This question arises in part because old dogs can be especially suspect to urinary incontinence. They also seem to find it harder to manage the sudden release from their bladders in places they know is wrong. Dogs are smarter than we think and deserve better than thoughts of being put down.
It is completely natural for dogs’ bodies to break down as they age and that includes their urinary tracts. That said, just because they are having problems with urinary incontinence does not by any stretch of the imagination mean that they are in such dire straits that they need to be put down.
Choosing to have a dog euthanised is extremely difficult under any conditions but it should not, at all, be in play when it comes to something as treatable as urinary incontinence.
It is worth noting that some dog owners do find dealing with incontinence in dogs too hard to handle. Dog parents in this position should consider contacting dog charities and dog rescue homes as they might be able to assist them.
What Can help Dogs with Incontinence?
If your dog is suffering from urinary incontinence, there are many possible pathways to treatment – especially if you are wondering if there’s anything you can give your dog.
Incontinence in dogs often starts as the animal enters middle age and beyond. Sometimes it also depends on the size and breed of the dog.
If, however, your dog is indeed suffering from urinary incontinence connected with its old age, everything from urinary dog food to dog diapers to bladder support medication is available to help you help your four-legged friend through its golden years.
Medications such as Proin are also said to work in helping tighten your dog’s bladder, which can decrease dribbling or leaked urine.
Estrogen, cranberry juice supplements, and surgical treatments are also options depending on the nature of your dog’s UTI. You’ll want to consult a vet to see which option is right for it.
Don’t put your four-legged friend down due to UTI. Give it its due and see a vet get your pet the treatment it needs and deserves.
Is your Dog Breed Susceptible to Incontinence?
While urinary incontinence is an ailment that can affect any dog breed, research has shown that there are some dog breeds that are more likely to develop this condition.
Dog breeds that include Dobermans, Old English Sheepdogs, as well as Cocker Spaniels. Spayed female dogs are also more susceptible to developing urinary incontinence, due to the lack of estrogen in them.
The key thing to note is that as there are so many different underlying reasons for incontinence in dogs, dog parents should tell their vets about any odd symptoms they notice.
Some of the more obvious symptoms associated with urinary incontinence often include drinking excessively, free-flowing or leaking urine, blood in the urine, dribbling while on the move, leaking while lying down, and peeing a lot more than normal.
As each symptom could indicate a different ailment and require different treatment, it is important to fully disclose any observations to your vet.
Arthritis or back pain, for instance, may prevent a dog from crouching enough to fully empty its bladder. Other joint injuries or degeneration of the spinal column can also cause nerves to be compressed, resulting in incontinence. All these are treatable ailments as well though, so putting your dog down should not be an option.
Other options for dogs with incontinence
Research indicators show that bout 90% of dogs with urinary incontinence often respond to medical treatment from their vets.
On the off-chance that medical treatment is unsuccessful, there are additional options things available to dog parents nearing the end of their tether at home.
There are often suggestions that dogs weighing over 44 lbs suffer from incontinence, as such obesity is said to have an impact on the likelihood of incontinence.
The understanding is that the weight of fat around the urinary system has a mechanical impact on the muscles, which can then lead to incontinence.
As such including more frequent walk routine – especially first thing when their dog awakens in the morning and last thing before bedtime – should help improve things.
Using washable dog beds or waterproof pads on normal beds and furniture will also help.
Where possible it is important to always consider your dog’s physical and emotional needs when dealing with urinary incontinence. Housetrained dogs are often known to feel embarrassed when they leak around the house, so showing some compassion will help in dealing with it.