Canine UTI-or canine urinary tract infection-is also known as acute cystitis. The urinary infection is caused by bacteria and is a painful disease. UTI has higher incidence in female dogs due to their shorter urethras. The condition is fully treatable and the most common treatment contains antibiotics.
Canine UTI Symptoms
Even if symptoms of UTI are not present at the beginning of the disease, you may notice a few signs of an infection later: spraying (even if the dog is neutered), lack of activity, extended hours of sleep, pain when urinating and even blood in the urine, bad smelling urine and fever. Any change in your dog's urination behavior may be also a sign of urinary infection. Your dog might lick his genitals more than usual, because he might have a burning sensation and he will attempt to ease this itchiness.
In rare cases, the urinary tract infection will heal with no treatment; however, it is necessary to see a vet to make sure your dog is not in danger. A urine sample is enough to determine if an infection is present. An infected dog will have bacteria or blood in the urine. Lack of treatment may result in the evolution of the disease and the spreading of the infection to vital organs.
Taking Antibiotics for UTI
Antibiotics are the most frequently prescribed drugs for urinary tract infections in pets.
The treatment should last for about one week to 10 days; more severe cases might need more than a week treatment.
The vet will prescribe the most appropriate antibiotics, according to the stage of the disease. Antibiotics from the penicillin group are commonly prescribed. Amoxicillin may be needed if the infection is severe.
Make sure you get the right dosage from the vet. Never give your dog antibiotics without a diagnosis from the vet.
If your dog has been taken a lot of antibiotics lately, he might build up immunity to these drugs. Let your vet know-he will find alternative treatment to make sure the medication will be effective.
Side Effects of Antibiotics for UTI
Antibiotics might create nausea, diarrhea and lethargy. The dog will be inactive. Dogs with a sensitive stomach might not tolerate the antibiotics, and in this case alternative treatment must be explored.
Antibiotics are not recommended for dogs with kidney problems; these may lead to kidney failure.
A treatment with antibiotics may also result in secondary infections, such as yeast infections.
Homeopathic recipes may be a side-effect-free alternative to antibiotics for UTI.
Preventing Canine Urinary Tract Infection
It is always easier to prevent a disease than treating it. In order to avoid canine urinary tract infection, make sure to upkeep a proper hygiene for your pet.
The water bowl should always contain fresh and clean water.
Don't forget to take your dog out so he can urinate regularly and the bacteria will not be collected in the bladder. Walking also stimulates urination.
It is most likely that a dog will have a urinary tract infection at least once in his lifetime.