It’s a snowy winter day here in New Market, and you decide to take your four-legged friend outside so she can do her business. Everything seems like business as usual, and you start to head back inside. You glance back on your way in and notice that where there should be a yellow spot in the snow, it’s actually red. Needless to say, this is an alarming thing to discover!
Even the most level-headed of pet owners can start to have a bit of a panic attack, and a quick search on the internet will reveal that it could be something as simple to treat as a urinary tract infection. Many websites that you come across will also casually throw out that it could be something serious, like cancer, kidney failure, or a tumor. Of course, that’s not something you want to read, and it can immediately cause you to fear for the worst.
So what’s really going on? It could be a number of things, and the good news is that your go-to New Market veterinarians are here to help. Below you’ll find facts, information, and resources about what to do if you should find yourself in this situation. The first step you should take? Don’t panic! A calm, level-headed approach to what’s going on is always going to be your best bet. Once you’re all squared away, keep reading below to learn more about what else to be on the lookout for, what you can do, and how our animal hospital is here to help.
Could It Be a UTI?
In the vast majority of cases, blood in a dog’s urine — also commonly known as hematuria — is a telltale sign of a urinary tract infection. It’s incredibly common for dogs to get these, and it happens more often in female dogs than males. In the vast majority of instances in which you find blood in your dog’s urine, it’s going to turn out to be a urinary tract infection.
Although, yes, it’s possible that it could be a sign of a more serious issue, the truth is that it’s always best to start with the most common explanation. Either way, a trip to your local veterinary clinic is in order. Once you are there, your vet will be able to recommend some tests to narrow things down and suggest the next steps that you should take. After all, as the folks at the American Kennel Club note, “Diagnosing the cause behind your dog’s hematuria can be complicated, as you can guess by looking at the extensive list of possible causes, but most veterinarians are well equipped with the knowledge and tools necessary to pinpoint the underlying condition.”
In other words, regardless of the underlying cause, your vet can run a wide range of tests to help determine what is really going on. As we mentioned above, although the normal tendency is to be fearful, the truth is that it could be a problem that is very common and simple to treat. But what types of tests can be run to find out? Let’s take a look.
Generally speaking, your pet clinic will probably want to do a handful of common tests which are usually fairly comprehensive and cost-effective to help determine just what might be going on. These tests can include the following:
- Blood screening
- Blood chemistries
- Blood count
- And more
At the end of the day, it’s best to go with your vet’s recommendations for what to do for your dog’s specific situation. Your vet will likely also do a visual examination of your pet, examining his or her kidneys, bladder, and genitals.
As we mentioned above, urinary tract infections are much more common in female pets. Why is that? Once again, we’ll turn to our friends at the American Kennel Club for a quick rundown: “Female dogs are prone to these infections– male dogs have a longer urethra, meaning bacteria takes longer to travel upwards.”
Although different symptoms will require different responses, the most important thing to keep in mind is that it’s best to follow the recommendations for your pet. After all, the folks here at New Market Animal Hospital want you to be able to have a pup that is happy and healthy!
If it turns out your dog does indeed have a urinary tract infection, what are some of the possible treatments? If you’ve spent any amount of time on Google, you may have seen at-home remedies that include everything from cranberry pills to adding apple cider vinegar to your dog’s water.
Although the people who write these suggestions probably mean well, the truth is that the type of treatment your dog needs is best left up to you and your vet. You might prefer a natural treatment for your pet, but the reality is that the science behind how these things work is inconclusive at best.
In other words, the best thing you can do to help your pup is to make sure the situation is taken care of in a way that’s proven to be effective. While you’re waiting for the results of your test, it’s common for your animal hospital to prescribe some type of antibiotic that will work to get rid of the infection. It’s also important to note that when your dog is prescribed with an antibiotic that it is absolutely vital for you to make sure that the dog gets the full dose. It’s likely that symptoms will disappear before the medicine is completely gone, but just because you can’t see the infection doesn’t mean it’s not still there. Therefore, the best practice is to ensure that your dog takes all of his or her medicine to keep the infection from returning.
It’s also common that your vet will prescribe your pet a probiotic to help your pooch’s digestive system. It’s completely normal for a dog’s stomach to be upset as the antibiotic does its work, and a dog-friendly probiotic can help to take care of any potential issues that might arise. Additionally, the probiotic will help to encourage growth of good, healthy bacteria in your dog’s stomach. There are a handful of different options for probiotics for dogs, and your vet will ask you some questions about your dog in order to be able to prescribe the probiotic that is right for your specific situation.What You Can Do At Home
First and foremost, you can make sure that your dog always has access to plenty of clean drinking water. The more he or she is able to drink at this time, the better off everything will be. Of course, it’s not exactly an easy task to try to force your pet to drink more water. All you can do is make sure that it’s available and try to encourage your pup to drink with positive affirmation.
Additionally, you should make it a point to let your dog out more often, especially while he or she is healing. If that means doubling the number of times you take your dog out during the day, that’s a good plan of attack.
Another good thing for pet owners to do, especially if UTIs have been detected in the past, is to be on the lookout for warning signs of a repeat infection. Unfortunately, as we mentioned above, it’s much more common for female dogs to get urinary tract infections, and just because it’s been treated once doesn’t mean it can’t return. Furthermore, dogs who are over the age of 7 are more likely to get urinary tract infections. In other words, now that you’ve been through it once and you’re aware of the warning signs, be sure to keep an eye out for them. If they do return, the best thing you can do is to see a veterinarian as quickly as possible.
Why Choose New Market Animal Hospital?
At New Market Animal Hospital, regardless of the type of medical service you need, you can count on us to take great care of your pets at every step of the way. Whether it’s an annual exam just to get routine vaccinations or your pet needs surgery, we’ll go above and beyond to provide exceptional care.
Our animal hospital is glad to offer diagnostics, emergency vet care, urgent care, radiology and x-rays, ultrasounds, and more. In other words, if your pet needs it, we can provide it.
When you choose to visit us, you’ll find that we care about your pets almost as much as you do. In short, if you’re looking for an animal doctor in New Market, MD, we’re the place to turn. As licensed professionals, we’ve diagnosed and treated a number of different animals, and we pride ourselves on continuing our education and growing our areas of expertise. Oh, and of course we also love getting to interact with your furry friends on a daily basis!
As your one-stop location for all things pets, we’re also happy to be able to offer pet grooming and boarding. Does your dog need a haircut? Does he or she need a nail trimming appointment? Do you need somewhere to board your cat while you’re going to be out of town for a couple of days? Whatever the case may be, at New Market Animal Hospital, our goal is to provide all of the services you need to take the best possible care of your pet. It doesn’t get much better than that!
New Market Animal Clinic is open 7 days a week. We know just how difficult it can be to take time off of work to get into see a vet, and that’s why we even have extended hours on weekdays. On Monday, Thursday, and Friday, we’re open until 7 pm. On Tuesday and Wednesday, we’re open until 6. If weekends work better, we’re around on Saturdays and Sundays as well. We know how hard it can be to find a veterinarian open on Sunday, and that’s why we’re happy to do it.
No matter what your pet needs, we strive to be the solution that you trust. When it comes to the health, safety, and wellbeing of your pet, you can count on our techs to take great care of you from the moment you enter until the moment you leave.
Have a question? We’d love to hear from you! Feel free to contact us and we’ll be sure to provide you with the answers you’re looking for. Need to schedule an appointment? We would be happy to take care of that as well. You can also like us on Facebook to see what we’ve been up to. We also share fun facts that we come across, information we think you’ll find useful, and even pictures of the pets that come in for visits.