Causes of Frequent Dog Urination

Dog urination is a problem for you, your dog, and possibly your home if he's taken to using the floor. Polydipsia refers to an excessive intake of water and thirst. Polydipsia is the cause of polyuria, which is excessive urination. Put together, these can be the onset or symptom of several underlying problems.

Urinary Tract Infections

By far the most common cause of excessive urination in dogs, urinary tract infections (UTI) are infections within the urinary tract. Along with the constant need to urinate, your dog might be urinating no more than few drops at a time, having difficulties going to the bathroom, or have blood in their urine.

Urinary tract infections are easily treated by using antibiotics for a period of 10 to 14 days (4 to 6 weeks for more severe cases).

UTIs can happen for a number of reasons, including if a dog is not allowed outside to urinate often enough. If your dog is kept crated or inside for a good portion of the day where he must hold his bladder, it keeps urine within the bladder for long periods of time where bacteria can take hold. Dogs should never have to "hold it" if they need to go out.

Hormonal Imbalances

When urination problems arise in the form of hormone imbalances, it is commonly in a female dog who have recently been spayed. This is also referred to as spay incontinence, and the dog may not be able to hold their bladder. This is due to the decrease of estrogen. Estrogen is used to maintain the urethra muscles and when estrogen levels drop, sometimes urine can drip out without the dog even seeming aware of it.

This kind of hormone imbalance occurs in neutered males as a result of low testosterone levels, however is much less common.

Distended Bladders and Blockages

Bladder distention occurs most often when something is blocking the urinary passage. This could be a tumor, bladder stone or something akin to them. When this happens, drops of urine can make it past the blockage.

You may see your dog urinating in very small amounts, but frequently. Distended bladders and blockages are very dangerous and can cause kidney shutdown if not tended to promptly. Even once the blockage is removed, the bladder is still distended and may need owner intervention to help empty it completely until it shrinks to its proper shape and size.

Diabetes and Frequent Urination

Dogs suffering from diabetes, especially if it has not been diagnosed and thus not being treated, urinate frequently. This is because they instinctively drink a lot more water in order to remove the excess sugar from their blood, and the intake of water causes more frequent urination. Diabetes can be a fatal disease if not diagnosed, treated and monitored.

Leaving it untreated for too long can result in a diabetic coma, and death.

Canine Cushing's Disease (Hyperadrenocorticism)

Excessive urination in older dogs is often mistaken as a sign of aging, when in fact it could be a result of Cushing's disease. Cushing's disease is an over-production of steroids within the dog's body, which causes damage throughout the rest of the systems.

Other symptoms could include:

  • hair loss
  • development of a "pot belly"
  • seizures
  • lethargy

Cushing's disease, while not curable, is treatable and should be taken seriously to help prolong your dog's life and ensure his comfort.