CSI: Pee where it is not supposed to be
By Deborah Comings VMD
Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are very common; they are both painful for pets and upsetting for their families. Pets have accidents in the house, and it hurts when they urinate. Ironically, they need to urinate frequently despite the pain and their urine may be bloody. A veterinarian needs to examine both the pet and a urine sample to look for signs of infection. Thankfully, antibiotics cure most UTIs quickly.
But… sometimes things don’t go according to plan. Sometimes the antibiotics don’t work, the symptoms continue or there are still bacteria and immune cells in the urine after completing treatment. This is when veterinarians act like medical crime scene investigators to find the culprit. Bladder stones and masses effectively hide bacteria from antibiotics. Antibiotic resistant bacteria laugh at some commonly used antibiotics and require more powerful medications.
In a recent case, a patient came to see us with a lot of blood in her urine despite being on an excellent antibiotic from the emergency room. We took x-rays to look for bladder stones. Boy did we find them! This is an X-ray of the poor pup’s bladder; it’s filled to the brim with large stones.
Thankfully we performed surgery the very same day and removed those stones – all 7 of them! This sweet little pup is on the road to recovery and now eats a special prescription food designed to prevent her body from making more stones. She’s doing great! The stones were analyzed and a specific diet is recommended life-long to change the urine’s acidity and chance of minerals forming together in the urine to make these stones.
Don’t wait if your fur-baby has any urinary tract issues. Get a vet to check right away so they can get back to being their normal fun-loving self.