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Has your pet’s pee been a little erratic lately? This could be a sign of a urinary tract infection. Find out the symptoms of a urinary tract infection and how to help your pet get back to normal.

What is a urinary tract infection?

Urinary tract infections (or urinary tract infections) in dogs and cats are a common type of bacterial urinary tract infection. This can happen when a variety of non-native bacteria cross the body’s natural barriers and enter the urinary tract of a cat or dog – most often natural bacteria from the intestine or skin. These bacterial invaders settle somewhere in the urinary system and cause an infection.

Some pets are more likely to develop urinary tract infections than others. Just like humans, females and cats are more likely to contract urinary tract infections than men. Urinary tract infections are also more common in elderly animals and pets with other medical problems, such as kidney issue, diabetes and any condition that affects the immune system.

Symptoms And Diagnosis

There are a number of common signs of urinary tract infection in cats and dogs, including:

  • Effort to urinate
  • Discomfort during urination
  • More frequent urination in small quantities
  • Unusual accidents in the house
  • Decreased Urination
  • Bloody or cloudy urine
  • Foul-smelling Urine
  • Excessive care of the genitals

Some or any of these symptoms are enough to justify a visit to your veterinarian, but you may not notice if your pet has a urinary tract infection. Many animals mask their symptoms and behave relatively normally, which makes it difficult to detect a problem. In fact, many pets will go to the vet for a seemingly unrelated problem, only to find out that they’ve had a UTI the whole time (so keep those regular checkups, guys)!

The most common test method for a urinary tract infection in dogs and cats is urinalysis, which consists of examining the urine for signs of infection. But don’t worry, you probably don’t need to pee in a Cup!

Most urine samples are collected by Cystocentesis, a frightening but slightly invasive procedure in which a veterinarian inserts a long needle directly into the bladder to take a urine sample that is not contaminated when leaving the body. They will then perform a culture and sensitivity test that will allow them to identify the exact type of bacteria they are dealing with and prescribe the most effective antibiotics.

Oddly enough, a urinary tract infection can often be the best scenario when it comes to urinary problems. Many urinary problems, which can be symptoms of a urinary tract infection, can also be indicators of more serious conditions, ranging from bladder stones to cancer. This means that your veterinarian can perform a series of Tests both to check for a urinary tract infection and to rule out other urgent medical problems before making the final diagnosis.

Treatment

The good news is that the treatment of urinary tract infections is relatively simple! For most urinary tract infections in cats and dogs, your veterinarian will immediately prescribe a general antibiotic to reduce the population of harmful bacteria.

Now that the results of the urine culture test are coming back, you can transfer your pet to another antibiotic more specifically targeted at the unique bacteria he is facing. Most matters can be completely resolved with a quick antibiotic treatment of 7 to 14 days! Your veterinarian can also provide painkillers to animals that suffer while urinating to make them more comfortable when they heal.

While urinary tract infections themselves are usually a minor problem, untreated urinary tract infections can lead to much more serious medical problems if cystitis becomes a kidney infection or if internal blockages form in the urinary tract. It is important to go to your local veterinary clinic for treatment, even if your pet’s symptoms seem minor. With a quick response, you can prevent future health problems on the road!

It is also important to replenish your pet’s healthy intestinal bacteria after antibiotic treatment, as this medicine will eliminate the good bacteria as well as the bad ones! Make sure that your pet receives a good dose of probiotics to get his intestinal health back in top shape and keep his digestion regular and his body healthy.

You can give them probiotic supplements or give your dog with a urinary tract infection a diet rich in probiotics (the same goes for cats)! Check with your veterinarian if he recommends using probiotics with your prescribed antibiotic or wait until the end of treatment.

Recurrent Infections

While most pets will return to their usual bathroom routine after treatment, you may find that your pet will soon get another UTI. Unfortunately, some pets are naturally prone to recurrent urinary tract infections.

A number of medical conditions can make an animal more likely to have recurrent infections. Other urinary tract issues and any Conditions that affect your pet’s immune system can make him more vulnerable to urinary tract infections. In addition, some pets may have body quirks that make them more sensitive to bacteria that enter their urinary tract.

You should also take into account environmental factors that can provide your pet with unhealthy bacteria. One of the most common ways to do this is through your food and water. Stagnant water can begin to develop bacteria as early as 24 hours. It is therefore important to change your pet’s water regularly.

Do not leave pet food for too long and be sure to follow the instructions on the packaging of the food of your choice to ensure the correct storage conditions. Those big bulk bags of kibble might go bad sooner than you think! Also, don’t forget to wash your pet’s bowls well regularly with soap — it’s not enough to just remove the leftovers to prevent bacterial growth.

Finally, pets who have had several urinary tract infections or other infections that require antibiotic treatment may develop antibiotic resistance. This means that over time, the bacteria in your system can adapt to an antibiotic and reduce its effectiveness. If this is the matter for your pet, you and your veterinarian will need to work together to develop new treatment strategies that may include switching to new types of antibiotics and other alternative treatments.

Prevention

As the saying goes, “an ounce of prevention is worth a Pound of cure” — and this certainly applies to urinary tract infections! If you know that your pet is prone to urinary tract infections, a few simple adjustments to his Routine and environment can help keep him in the best possible shape and reduce the risk of infection.

Drinking plenty of water removes harmful bacteria from the urinary tract. Therefore, make sure that you constantly have access to fresh water. If your pet is difficult to drink, you may want to try a pet running water fountain to keep bacteria at bay and make the water more attractive to your pet.
Vigorous body activity makes your pet thirsty, which means that he drinks more water to flush his system! In addition, good body health supports your immune system and overall body function.
Be sure to provide fresh food and water in clean bowls and eliminate leftovers or sedentary water before bacteria can develop.
Talk to your veterinarian about the underlying causes of your pet’s urinary tract infections. If you have other conditions that make you vulnerable to infections, treating the root cause is always the most effective solution!

Urinary tract infections can be uncomfortable for your pet, but you have all the information you need to make your pet feel better as soon as possible! Soon you will spend less time worrying about potty breaks and more time interrupting every movement for pets — as it should be.

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