Treating Canine Urinary Incontinence With Phenylpropanolamine (PPA)

Canine urinary incontinence is a common problem, particularly in female dogs that have been spade. It is important when moving forward with incontinence treatment that you are sure your dog is truly suffering from urinary incontinence and it is not a behavioral issue. This means your dog cannot control the muscles of their bladder rather than they are just not properly housebroken.

Weak Bladder Sphincter

Weak bladder sphincter is a common cause of canine urinary incontinence. It is the most common reason after dog urinary tract infection, treatment for which is fairly simple. The causes of weak bladder sphincter are age, obesity, reduced sensitivity or neurologic receptors in the sphincter. Estrogen supplements are effective in treating weak bladder sphincter in some female dogs. Other dogs require medications called alpha-adrenergic agonists.

Medications for Urinary Incontinence

Alpha-adrenergic agonists work by enhancing the release of the neurotransmitter chemicals that increase the sensitivity of the sphincter. The medications improve the "hold it" signals going to the dog's brain. Proin is the brand name for the alpha-adrenergic agonists medication that veterinarians prescribe most often to treat canine urinary incontinence.

Phenylpropanolamine Dosages

The proper dosage for your dog will depend on the dog's size and the symptoms of incontinence. For proper treatment, you must give the dog the phenylpropanolamine medication to the dog two to three times per day, everyday. Most dogs will need to stay on the medication for the rest of their lives unless surgical treatment is an option or the veterinary determines that surgery is necessary to fix the issue.

Side Effects of Phenylpropanolamine

Most takes tolerate the dosages of phenylpropanolamine quite well and display few if any side effects from the medication. The side effects displayed by dogs that do react to the medication are usually mild. One possible side effect is loss of appetite. This is due to the fact that phenylpropanolamine can suppress appetites. Phenylpropanolamine was a primary active ingredient in human diet pills, although it no longer is. Another potential side effect is irritability in the dog taking the medication. Yet another side effect is potential changes in blood pressure levels. Adjustments in medication can minimize the side effects in most dogs.

Dogs suffering from urinary incontinence typically have great success when treated with the proper medication. Treating a dog's urinary incontinence with medication is very common. There are extreme cases of canine urinary incontinence that will require more trial and error to alleviate the problem. There are extreme cases that will require more aggressive treatment. Aggressive treatment can include surgically treating the urinary incontinence. While medication is usually a more economical option for most pet owners, surgery may be the most effective way to treat the incontinence issues the dog has. Working closely with your veterinarian and carefully observing your dog will help you understand the best options for your dog when it comes to treating the dog's urinary incontinence issues.