Urine Issues

Difficulty in Urinating

Can’t pee?

Painful pee?

Very little pee?

One day you wake up to find your precious baby girl squatting for a long time and no pee is coming out. You approach her only to find her back arched, and her tummy tender. Is it just UTI?

Problems of the lower urinary system of pets could manifest as:

  • Painful or difficult urination (dysuria)
  • Frequent urination (poikalluria)
  • Slow and painful urination (stranguria)

Either of the three indicates a problem not only in the urinary system, but also of the sex organs. Observing your pet while urinating and if possible, measuring in mL, the amount of urine expelled may clarify the problem. Take photographs and videos, and show to your vet.

CAUSES

Irritation or inflammation of the bladder (pantog) or urethra lining (the small but long tube that drains pee from the bladder and out of the body) causes painful urination. Diseases of your pet’s vagina or prostate may also involve the urethra, producing the same symptoms. One of the leading causes of painful and difficult urination is blockage or obstruction by stones.

Urinary tract infection, or UTI, almost always occurs as a complication of other main problems.

Infection – bacteria

Stones – either in bladder, urethra, or both

Cancer – for old pets only

Trauma – the bladder ruptures from vehicular accident and causes internal bleeding

Inflammation – prostate problem in males, Feline Idiopathic Cystitis in cats

Nerve problem – when all other above causes had been ruled out by your vet

WHY YOU NEED TO BRING YOUR PET TO THE VET

If you think your pet can not pee and shows sign s of extreme pain (screams or hisses when touched), do not attempt any first aid. Bring your pet immediately to your nearest vet as this could be a surgical emergency.

From my experience, if pet parents can not afford an emergency surgery, a procedure is performed to “flush” the little stones from the urethra to the bladder. This may buy you some time, but it is not recommended for the second time of obstruction. Stones are like sandpaper which scratches the insides of your pet’s urinary tract, causing blood to pass along the pee during the early stages of stone formation. This is not an overnight phenomenon. It takes months to form large stones and many sediments (small stones or crystals that look like sand).

However, if this is just a “today problem”, try to observe your pet for 24 hours and see if the symptom returns.

When your vet diagnoses your pet to have stones but no problem in peeing, you may avoid the costly and risky surgery. To dissolve the stones or crystals inside your pet’s urinary system, you must feed it with prescription diet dog or cat food for at least 6 months. Urinalysis may be required every month, until your pet is cleared.

Your vet may also recommend a basic blood workup to screen your pet from other underlying diseases.

WHEN YOU CAN’T FIND A VET AT THIS TIME

Step 1

Coconut or buko juice has claims to help “flush” urinary problems in some cases. I recommend serving your pet with fresh and cold coconut meat and juice (without sugar), once daily until the symptom subsides. There should be an improvement in three days in terms of reducing pain and returning the urine amount back to normal.

If your pet can not pee 100%, this will not work. Bring it to the vet NOW.

If your pet is in pain, you can numb the pain by applying cold compress on its belly if it allows. Call your vet immediately to notify him or her of this emergency.

Step 2

If step 1 worked somehow, encourage lots of water intake and peeing. Frequent drinking and urinating has been shown to help increase the rate of expelling harmful bacteria from your pet’s urinary system. You can do this by replenishing fresh water on your pet’s bowl or feeder as often as possible. You may encourage your pet to pee by applying warm compress on its belly for 15 minutes. The warm temperature will stimulate your pet to pee more often.

Going for a very short walk outdoors for peeing will also help.

Step 3

Ensure good hygiene always. For female pets, some germs from the poop may travel up to its sex organ, causing UTI. Whenever your pet pees or poop, do not forget to use sanitary wipes.

If this is a recurring problem, do not attempt to first aid. Set an appointment immediately with your primary care veterinarian.

Step 4

If the pain worsens in the next few hours or recurs in a few days, your pet must be seen immediately. No amount of first aid can remedy a veterinary emergency.

PREVENTION

It will take half a year or more to dissolve your pet’s stones. But it only takes a minute to decide on how to prevent it.

Selecting the right diet is essential in its prevention. The culprit is mostly excessive salt and calcium as preservatives in the commercial diet.

For dogs, I always recommend Vitality dog food and Holistic dog food if there are budget considerations. If you can afford more for your canine, Royal Canin and Hill’s Prescription Diet are also good options

For cats, Royal Canin, Hill’s Prescription Diet, Monge, and Orijen are best.

Alternatively, creating a home made diet for your pet is encouraged. If you feed twice a day, giving the commercial pet food in the morning is okay, while giving the home made meal at night is ideal. Adjust depending on your pet’s wishes. Avoid overfeeding, especially in indoor pets.

Note

This article is not sponsored by any of the brands above. If I did not mention a brand that you have in mind, it means I do not recommend it based on my clinical experience.

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