Most people don’t often give much thought to their dogs when they lie down. After all, there really isn’t much of anything to look for, right? This isn’t always true. Depending on the overall health of your male dog, you might want to pay attention to a few things when your dog is sleeping. For example, if your male dog is old, there’s a much higher chance of incontinence. This can present itself when the dog is sleeping, which can make for an unpleasant surprise when the dog wakes up he has been leaking urine. Something else that can cause leaking urine during sleep is if your dog has been spayed recently. This is actually a fairly common side effect of spaying. There are few things to look for if you suspect that this is happening.
Before you can begin looking into whether or not your male dog is leaking urine when lying down, you should first understand why this might happen. For some dogs, the urine leaks will only happen when the dog is lying down and the dog will urinate just fine otherwise. For other dogs, this can be one of the first signs of developing incontinence. Typically, this happens because when your dog is lying down, there is increased pressure on the bladder. For dogs that have poor bladder control, this increased pressure can essentially force the urine out of the dog whether it means to or not.
Incontinence – What To Look for?
One of the first things to consider is the condition of your male dog. An elderly dog is much more likely to leak urine than a younger dog. Likewise, there’s an increased chance that your puppy can’t control bladder due to its age. Dogs who have been recently spayed are also at risk of leaking urine. If your dog is in this sort of position, you should pay even more attention to your dog’s bedding than you otherwise would. The health of your dog plays a large role in the control of its bladder. Besides knowing the condition of your dog’s health, there will be some signs of incontinence in your dog’s bed as well.
One of the most obvious signs will be a strong scent coming from your dog’s usual napping spot. Urine usually has a strong smell, meaning that you will know right away if your dog leaks urine or not. Another thing you should check for is a wet spot on your dog’s usual resting places. The wet spot will usually be towards your dog’s rear end, as you might be able to imagine. The fur on your dog’s hind legs will also be dampened. If your dog has white or light-coloured fur, the stain will be yellow. These are just a few of the signs to look for when you are checking to see if your dog leaks.
Stress- Related Incontinence
Stress can sometimes lead to incontinence. This may be because of something physical, as some male dogs have weak bladder muscles and release urine if they move suddenly and with force. On the other hand, the stress may in some cases be psychological, for example resulting from a major change in the dog’s routine or surroundings. The great book “Dog Owner’s Home Veterinary Handbook” lists submissive urination as a form of stress incontinence often seen in male puppies. It often occurs when a young dog interacts with a human or a dominant adult dog leading to the release of urine.
As many a male dog ages, many become less able to control their bladders. Incontinence often occurs in older spayed females, but it also can occur in other elderly male dogs. Age-related incontinence is one of the awkward ones that can suddenly happen, improve for a while, then progress to more frequent bouts. Consulting with your veterinarian and allowing him/her examine your dog to diagnose the cause, make certain no disease is involved, and prescribe any needed medications.
In other instances, your male dog may suddenly begin leaking urine if he develops an infection in the lining of his bladder. The inflammation will make him feel as if he has to go, and you may notice him crouching frequently and in improper places.
Tumours, injury to the spinal cord, or some hereditary conditions can lead to neurogenic incontinence. In such cases, the nerves that control the bladder are affected, interfering with the bladder’s ability to contract. This can cause a situation where the dog’s bladder literally fills to overflowing. The result is irregular dribbling and random urine leaks.
Hormonal imbalances – estrogen in females and testosterone in males – can lead to what is medically referred to as hormone-related incontinence. Because those hormones are essential for muscle tone of the urethral sphincter, an imbalance can cause loss of bladder control. In most cases, this type of incontinence leads to bed-wetting and leaking urine while resting. Your male dog will urinate normally while awake and alert but will be unable to control his bladder when resting, asleep and relaxed.
How Can You Help Your Male Dog?
If you notice that your dog is leaking urine, the first thing you should do – asides from considering incontinent dog solutions – is to take the dog to the vet. In some cases, it might just be a condition that your male dog will grow out of or it could simply be a sign of ageing. However, this doesn’t rule out the possibility that the leaks could be caused by an underlying medical condition that needs to be treated at once. Vets have both the knowledge and the expertise necessary to check your dog’s health and make sure that your dog stays as healthy as possible.