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What Are the Symptoms of Bladder Infection in Dogs?

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  • Written By: Sara Schmidt
  • Edited By: Andrew Jones
  • Last Modified Date: 01 April 2014
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Bladder infection in dogs may cause the animals to display some obvious symptoms, such as pain and whimpering during urination. Changes in the dog's frequency of urination, water intake, and the urine itself may indicate a canine bladder infection. Other symptoms may include changes in behavior or demeanor, or other physical symptoms, such as vomiting.

The most common symptoms of a bladder infection in dogs generally revolve around the dog's urination habits and the urine itself. Both infrequent and frequent urination can be signs of an infection, depending upon how the dog is handling it, and his or her other symptoms. If frequent urination occurs, the amount of urine is typically small. Dogs may visibly show strain while attempting to urinate, or exhibit signs of pain, such as whimpering, uncharacteristically laying down, or licking their genital area in attempt to ease the pain. Urine that is bloody or cloudy may be a sign of infection as well.

Leaving puddles in the floor or bed can be a sign of infection, as can dribbles of urine leaking from the dog's body while he or she is not attempting to urinate. If an infection is behind this behavior, dogs are not able to control their bladders and should not be punished for these accidents. Dogs with bladder infections may also be lethargic or depressed due to lack of energy and pain.

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Eating habits can also change if a canine bladder infection is present. While a marked increase in thirst may occur, loss of appetite is a common symptom of an infection. Since bladder infection in dogs typically only affects the bladder and surrounding area, many other symptoms common with other infections are typically not present. Though fever, loss of appetite, and other common symptoms of an infection are not present, the dog may still be suffering from a bladder infection. Recognizing a bladder infection in dogs usually requires the aid of a veterinarian.

In many cases, a bladder infection in dogs is often ignored or unrecognized by pet owners. They might assume that a dog's bed wetting, whining to go outside after having just been out, and other actions are behavior problems rather than medical ones. Changes in behavior such as these should be met with a visit to the veterinarian in order to rule out the possibility of a bladder infection or other illness.

Treating a bladder infection in dogs is usually a simple procedure. After making a diagnosis, and conducting a urinalysis to determine which strand of bacteria the dog is infected with, a veterinarian will typically prescribe an antibiotic to treat the dog's infection. Such medication is often prescribed for a period of two weeks. Long-term medication may be given to animals with frequent bouts of infection.

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